Some influences strike young. This holds true for Jeremy Loops, a musician based in Cape Town, South Africa, also known as a one-man band. Loops’ love affair with music began when he was a child and used to stay awake post his bedtime to listen to the music his parents loved — songs by Bob Dylan, Dire Straits and Neil Young. At the time, he didn’t know that years later, music will become much more than just an interest.
Today the musician, who performs with a loop pedal, creates a mash-up of a number of genres including Folk, Reggae, Hip-Hop and Gypsy-Jazz, to bring forth his unique sound. Now, he is all set to take Mumbai’s music aficionados by storm, in his debut performance, here.
Charting his journey till now, the musician gets candid: “Music became a part of me after I finished school. I had never had any music lessons but decided to take a guitar with me on a yacht that I sailed on from South Africa to Florida. On that trip I had many nights when I was on watch, and taught myself to play the guitar. After that trip I would use music as a way of finding creativity while studying for a degree in finance. Now, music is my life.”
Loops began by playing the guitar and harmonica, but always harboured the wish of learning to play different instruments together. So, now he sings, plays the harmonica and beatbox while playing the guitar, banjo, ukelele (a tiny guitar-like instrument) and the mandolin. “My new quest is to learn to play the sitar,” he informs.
It’s not just the sitar or India’s music that beckoned the multi-faceted musician — Indian food was a driving force as well. “I have never been to India before that’s why I’m so excited about this visit. I’ve heard some wonderful things about it — that it has everything you could be looking to find — culture, cities, deserts, jungles, mountains that touch the sky and beaches. I am also a huge fan of Indian food — we have a huge Indian population in South Africa and I can’t wait to eat the thali while I’m here,” he reveals.
Music and the environment
When I’m not playing music I am working on Greenpop, an organisation that I started three years ago with a couple of friends. It is a social business that believes being green and sustainable can be fun, and strives to get youth involved in planting trees.
We face many difficulties in South Africa including poverty and environmental problems, which Greenpop tries to provide some solution to. We use planting trees as a way of educating and inspiring individuals and companies to start doing something about the problems they see in the world. We have planted 23,000 trees so far!
— Jeremy Loops