On 14 February 2018, there will be a plethora of music shows celebrating Valentine's Day, and one such show is at the Orbit Jazz Club in Braamfontein, Johannesburg featuring the amazing musical director, Chadwin Alexander who will help his long time friend, RJ Benjamin put together an evening of neo soul and R&B with a 12-piece band.
Chadwin has an impressive body of work having worked with artists including RJ Benjamin, Ziyon, Donald ProVerb, Bongi Mavuyana Zola 7 Pebbles Nothende, Kabelo & Zwai Bala (TKZee).
I caught up with Alexander last week to find out what music means to him and more.
What does music mean to you?
Music has become my life. One can say music is life, but it’s the one thing that has taught me so much about people and about myself.
What is the most enjoyable aspect of your work?
The fact that I can work with amazing musicians and artists and be creative in the music industry. So, in essence, music is all about people and what I basically love is that I can work with people and create something beautiful, and also create lasting friendships and lasting business relationships.
Have you experienced any funny moments on stage?
One time, I set my keyboard up with its stand and while playing, the keyboard stand gave in and the keyboard, and the stand, fell directly onto the top of my feet and there was absolutely no way I could be cool about it.
Which living person do you admire most and why?
Ryan Leslie. He’s an international musician and artist, producer and business mogul who silently and sometimes quite prominently goes about his business of making great music despite the lack of attention and spot light from the general music industry. I admire the work ethic and the fact that he functions on a Dymaxian sleep pattern, where he sleeps for three hours everyday with one 30-minute nap, which I find pretty incredible.
What is your most treasured possession?
This is a super tough question, because I have a few. Most people would think I would say my piano because I’m a pianist, but I’m going to have to go with my Yamaha Steel String Silent guitar.
What would you say makes you stand out?
I would have to say my white Roland FP4 Electric Piano that I’ve been playing on for around 12 years now. It has become a part of my brand as a musician. I would also say that I’ve worked very hard on developing my own sound as a musician, pianist, guitarist, bassist, producer, etc. So basically, I don’t sound like anyone you’ll ever come across, at least I hope so!
If you were not a musician, what would you do?
I would do a few things; open up a restaurant, be a photographer. I also wanted to be an artist (as in painter) or a cartoonist.
Pick five words to describe yourself?
Complex. Funny. Spiritual. Caring. Reliable.
Could you give us some real proper slang and what it means?
“Awe ma se kind”– indirect translation would be: “Hey there, mother’s child”, but the correct, colloquial laments interpretation means:” Hey there, brother/sister from another mother”.
What has been your greatest achievement?
Musically directing two seasons of a television music show called Stripped Down on Channel O and Vuzu on DSTV.
What do you complain about most often?
Poor service in South Africa.
What do you tend to do on stage?
Zone out, and I become another version of myself most people don’t get to encounter.
What are your wishes and dreams for 2018?
I would love to release my debut album before 2018 is over.Connect with Alexander via Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr.