Acoustic Element (aka AE) has just been signed by Rude World Records and has a new single,’The Great Pretender’, playlisted at local radio stations. We caught up with AE guys Jody Abel (on the guitar) and Callen Petersen (on the violin) to find out more about their budding music careers.
Many Capetonians will be familiar with the sweet sounds of the guitar-and-violin duo. What was the moment that made Acoustic Element decide to share their talent with the rest of South Africa?
In 2010, we started playing the Stuttafords stores in Canal Walk and Tygervalley malls. We started drawing quite a hefty crowd of shoppers who would enquire about us whether it was for a birthday party, wedding or corporate function. At that point, we were really doing it for the fun and to make some extra cash, but seeing the reaction that we received, we then realized that we have something special. We decided, after lots of deliberation and financial projections, to leave our jobs to pursue music full time.
Which is your favourite AE memory from the journey so far?
Gosh, we have so many beautiful memories from playing all around the country, and we’re so fortunate to have a client base of amazing people. We would have to admit that performing our Party Set in front of 6 500 people in Johannesburg at the Grand White Dinner was a moment we will never forget.
‘The Great Pretender’ has been hitting the airwaves of 5fm and Good Hope FM, bringing a fresh local sound to dance music. What was the inspiration for the latest single?
The inspiration came from our desire to create a fusion between dance music and acoustic pop. Callen had also written down some lyrics drawing from a particular experience of his. We basically met our producer, Colin Sher from Cosher Recording Studios, recorded some ideas that we came up with on the spot, produced the electro aspect of the song, and finalized the track in just over 3 hours. Everything was just going right that day and we thought we’d just go with it.
We’re keen to pick your musical brains – which songs are currently on repeat on your playlists?
‘Are you with me’ – Lost Frequencies
‘Marvin Gaye’ – Charlie Puth ft Meghan Trainor
‘Short Girls’ – Ruby Burton
Being proudly from the Cape, where are your favourite spots in the city to hang when you’re not making music?
Asoka, Watershed Market, The Village Idiot.