Bassline, founded by Brad Holmes, originally opened in 1994 as a small, live music venue in the bohemian suburb of Melville. It rose to prominence as the ultimate live venue to experience South Africa's finest Jazz and Afro-beat, branching out by featuring poetry readings, comedy and impromptu jam sessions. It was home for numerous musicians and Jazz fans, and helped launch and enhance the careers of luminaries such as Vusi Mahlasela, Moses Taiwa Molelekwa, Zim Ngqawana, Paul Hanmer, Jimmy Dludlu and Tumi & The Volume just to name a few.
In 2003 the original Bassline closed and was resurrected in 2004 in the downtown Newtown Cultural Precinct, with a 1000-capacity concert venue and an intimate 150-seat performing space, both with top-of-the-range sound and lighting.
Bassline has gone on to become an institution amongst music fans. In it’s 21 year history Bassline has hosted over 3000 concerts featuring many of Africa’s most famous stars and world music icons, as well as most music acts that have emerged in South Africa since the 90s. Since 2004 the Bassline in Newtown has helped develop the urban youth stars of Kwaito, Hip-Hop, Rock and Afro-pop. Virtually every major South African music star has performed on a Bassline stage.
Bassline has also grown to become a significant concert production agency in South Africa (see Bassline Festivals page)
Bassline also provides rehearsal rooms, recording and other facilities for artists.
In front of The Bassline is an interactive life-size bronze sculpture of legendary songstress Brenda Fassie by artist Angus Taylor.
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