Not many brought up after Rock ‘n Roll era of the 60’s and 70’s will remember the female rocker Suzie Quatro. Described as “a female rock pioneer, in some ways the female rock pioneer and the first female lead singer and bassist, an electric ax-woman, who sang and played as freely as the males, inspiring other females.” Her energetic performances and husky voice saw her over the years pile up sales of over 50 million records.
So what has Suzie Quatro got to do with St Francis? Well nothing really other than on Friday night while enjoying a last beer with a couple of mates, intending to leave before the evenings musical act at Rock Lily was to start, the musicians, a husband and wife, or should that be a wife and husband band called ‘Heather Waters’ started to do their necessary sound checks. The normal “one-two; one-two; one two” a few guitar chords, drum beats that are the signature of most sound checks were mostly ignored but then…..
Suddenly the music started with great rock beat and then this voice! Turning to see from where this great sound was coming from, there was this petite lady seated on a chair really rocking whilst beating out the song on her guitar. Whether it was the voice or the way she was attacking her guitar and gyrating in her chair or the leather jacket, something almost instantly brought back memories of Suzie Quatro. She only played for about 30 seconds as part of the sound setup but it was enough to rouse old memories and certainly grabbed the attention of most in the pub. It suddenly seemed a good idea to nurse a beer for maybe it would be worth waiting around until the show proper started.
And it certainly was worth staying on for what a show it turned out to be. This lady oozes talent and much of what she sings she has written herself. Her music is well composed with meaningful lyrics and to compare Heather to Suzie is more only in the way they perform their foot stomping music rather than the music itself. Suzie is more hard rock whereas Heather Waters is more folk rock. Casting one’s mind back one has the feeling that had Heather been around way back then and playing at Woodstock, she would have fitted right in and would have been one of the stars of the show.
Heather, with hubby on percussion, played solidly for two hours without a break and even when she broke the strings on her one guitar, she hardly missed a beat replacing the guitar with another so she could belt out her next song. Great show and congrats to Rock Lily for bringing this accomplished duo to Cape St Francis.
Some biography on Heather from her website
“A year after the release of Heather’s first album ‘Lyrics in my Pocket’ (2007), ABC Broadcasts (USA) voted Heather ‘Best Artist in Style (Folk), and her song ‘Masquerade’ – ‘Best Song in Style’ (Folk), with two of her songs receiving regular airplay in UK and parts of USA and Europe. Spending most of 2009 busking and performing live shows across the Mediterranean, Heather returned to SA where her acoustic trio were selected by PANSA (Performing Arts Network of South Africa), to perform at the FIFA 2010, WORLD CUP FOOTBALL celebrations in Cape Town”.
NOTE to organisers of St Francis Rocks 2016 – Here is an act really worth securing for this year’s event
Some interesting videos & links
Suzie Quatro: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xYoogY-UGio
Heather Waters: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4vMn7l8WiI
Footnote: Suzie never really made it big in her homeland America but has a huge following in Britain, Europe and Australia and aged 65, Suzie is performing her final tours having performed in Australia last year and is in Europe this year