Steve Louw: “If you can’t just say it, what’s the point?” – interview | Louder Than War

By Nils van der Linden

As Steve Louw releases Thunder And Rain, his second album in as many years, he speaks to Nils van der Linden about finding inspiration in nature, facing his mortality, the power of keeping things simple, a life lived through music, and that one time he shared a stage with Beyoncé.

Steve Louw’s been a fixture of the South African music scene since the mid 1970s, first travelling between folk clubs in his Volkswagen Kombi to perform originals and blues covers on his 12-string Ibanez.

By 1986 he’d recorded two albums with the band All Night Radio. The first was produced by The Kinks collaborator John Rollo, secured after impressing The E Street Band’s Little Steven with a cassette of live recordings. The second was produced by Kevin Shirley, whose CV now includes Joe Bonamassa, Iron Maiden, The Black Crowes, and Led Zeppelin.

Inevitably All Night Radio broke up. “It was just too much touring, too much in the Kombi, too much together, too much fast food,” he laughs in a Cape Town coffee shop just around the corner from the studio where they’d recorded that first LP.

Louw continued, debuting his new band Big Sky with 1990’s Shirley-produced Waiting For The Dawn. Its title track became an anthem of hope and reconciliation at a time of political transformation at the southern tip of Africa and paved the way for and an ongoing creative partnership with Shirley, several more albums, and multiple hit singles.

Read the full interview at Louder Than War

Published by Brian Currin

BRIAN CURRIN MUSIC: PLAYLISTS | RESEARCH | MARKETING The son of a church organist father and pianist mother, South African born Brian Currin grew up surrounded by music. In his pre-teen years he realised that he had no real talent for playing music and he couldn't sing, so he immersed himself in the world of music by listening, exploring and researching. Which he still does today. He served in the military for five years, then spent many years in corporate sales and marketing until his involvement in the re-discovery of Rodriguez, opened up a whole new world for him. He was the Content Editor for Rhythm Online, South Africa's first online music store, from 2006 to 2012. He ran Mabu Vinyl, the iconic music store seen in the Oscar-winning "Searching For Sugar Man" film from 2013 to 2019. His voice could be heard on the streaming radio station All Jazz Radio where he hosted the Vagabond Show from 2012 to 2019. He is very involved in promoting South African music, and is the co-owner of a number of music-related websites including which he founded in 1999.

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