Listen: Innovation, progress for André Schwartz


Introducing a new song is always like holding a butterfly in your hand and then letting it go.

This is how the singer and songwriter André Schwartz talks in RNews’s studio about his brand new single, “Sal jy?”, which has just been released.

“Even though I wrote the song about two years ago, I’m only now emotionally ready to release the song,” he says.

The singer boasts a successful music career that spans almost four decades and says he has with “Sal jy?” ‘s sound felt it was time for renewal. He used international artists like Zayn Malik and Pink as reference for the song, he says.

“My last album, The road, certainly doesn’t sound like the first ones. I am very happy with the people who support me, they like to walk the road with me. I’m not going to do anything radical right now, it would just be stupid and it wouldn’t suit me – but I wanted something new.”

The music video for “Will you?” was created and produced by digital production designer Seun.

“I’m really proud of this video. I don’t think anything like this has ever been done in Afrikaans music, because it’s like an installation artwork. Each frame tells part of the story and it’s beautiful.”

André is the only South African male artist who carries the Andrew Lloyd Webber stamp of approval for the title role in The Phantom of the Opera in South Africa.

His performance Any Dream Will Do – My road with Webberwill be presented on 3 and 4 October at the Momentum Beleggings Aardklop and on 10 and 13 October at the Toyota US Woordfees in Stellenbosch.

The musicians Bryan Schimmel and Mauritz Lotz are part of the production.

“One forgets that there is so much more to the Webber songs and lyrics (than we think), because we hear them so often. We turn the songs upside down. You will hear lyrics and tunes for the first time.

“I tell the story of how Webber was still on my life’s path all the time; since I was a child for the first time Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat saw and later played the role of Joseph. I use that narrative to tell the story of my own life.”

André, who already hit in the 1980s with additions to the Afrikaans music treasury such as “Lief vir alles hier” and “Ek wil jou nioti weer sien”, says that after all these years as an artist he is still inspired daily to create new music.

“I inherited a piano, a Petrof Concert Grande, from a dear friend of mine. It’s bigger than the Steinway Grande. If I walk past her for a few days – pianos have a feminine energy for me – it’s as if she starts looking at me with lion eyes. Then I have to sit down in front of her and I have to start playing.

“In that respect, musicians are very lucky, because that’s where a lot of our healing lies: in the moments that go through those strings.”

“Will you?” is available on all major digital platforms.

  • Listen to the full studio interview with André Schwartz at the top of the report.

Watch the music video for “Will you?” here: