One of South Africa’s most prominent live music venues, The Bassline, is closing down at the end of December 2016 as part of a new business strategy.
“It has been a great honour for Bassline to create a platform for musicians to start their careers, blossom and make businesses out of their talent,” said Bassline founder Brad Holmes in a statement. "We have had the honour of saying good bye to many musicians whose memorial services were held here.” He added.
The new strategy will see the brand offering technical production and artist management services to musicians.
The Bassline team will also continue to stage a number of events, including the 12 year-old Bassline Africa Day Concert, the annual Fete De La Musique and other special monthly events at select venues across the city. These also include the popular monthly series with Kaya FM, Kaya FM Presents Live at the Bassline that has featured top artists such as Vusi Mahlasela, Mafikizolo and Simphiwe Dana.
“It’s been a rewarding and exceptional two decades. We offer heartfelt and huge thanks to all the jazz, hip-hop, kwaito, Afro-pop, soul, African, ragga, world, rock, punk and metal bands that have performed at the Bassline venue over the past 22 years. We look forward to hosting you all on our festivals and outdoor concerts in the future,” said Holmes.
Founded in 1994, Bassline started as a small jazz club in Melville and then grew into a full-scale concert hall in Newtown, with a 1000-capacity concert venue and an intimate 150-seat performing space, both with top-of-the-range sound.
Over the years, the venue has transitioned to produce successful festivals and outdoor concerts, becoming an iconic platform for live music in South Africa. Almost every major South Africa music star has performed at Bassline and the venue has hosted over 3000 concerts over the past two decades, featuring musicians from all walks of life.
Its influence propelled it to receive support from different institutions, including the City of Johannesburg.
Africa’s most famous stars such as Zim Ngqawana, Moses Molelekwa, Paul Hanmer and Jimmy Dludlu, to name a few, also started their illustrious careers using the Bassline as a regular venue.