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Steve Hofmeyr - Steve Hofmeyr Sings Kris Kristofferson

2008-12-24 09:11
Steve Hofmeyr
The first hurdle for any tribute album is love. The ‘Hof’ clears it by a mile: after hearing Help Me Make It Through The Night, there’s no doubt what’s been filling his CD case all these years. In Kris Kristofferson, you feel, Steve finds a roguish like-for-like that fires up his engines, transforming him into a slow-strumming storyteller that we really want to spend time with.
You won’t find a hint of Bloubul on “The Silver Tongued Devil And I”, as Steve puts the baard in country blues with his rendition of a vintage Kristofferson classic. The rich form continues through his performance, summoning grit (“Casey’s Last Ride”), bounce (“Jesus Was A Capricorn”) & soul power (thanks to some great backing vocals) wherever they’re needed.

Steve has pointed out that his two heroes – the other being Neil Young – are in fact opposites. As much as Young belts out his tunes, willing his audience to bask in their power, Kristofferson is just a lazy passerby, a man who makes music seem as easy as flashing a grin. Hofmeyr’s boundless enthusiasm for the material offers a slightly different angle, but conveys its easiness all the same, and the good times roll.

Using the ambience of a live performance and an intimate knowledge of his idol to his advantage, Steve has not only exercised his right to honour his influences in style, he’s damn well earned the right to do it again.

- Niel Bekker
A double century of original recordings earns you the right to stew in your influences. First Steve hand-built a personal shrine to Neil Diamond, and now he takes a musical detour to the catalogue of Kris Kristofferson. So, is his latest live album a bunch of worthless hero worship, or a triumphant ode to a country icon?

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