When these two Cape Flats ouens wanted to start a band at age 16, they had no idea that one day it would be a Spanish Flamenco group.
Not only did they teach themselves how to play the guitar, but they also write their own original music.
Yazeed Adams, 33, says it was his best friend and now band mate Nizaam Moses, 35, who bought him his first guitar and taught him how to play.
“It was his birthday and I think it was Westgate Mall where he saw it and then he came home with this flamenco guitar,” says Yazeed.
“We were self-taught, it was just like Nizaam to get into something like this because he’s a fun, impulsive guy.
“At the same time he got the guitar there was this Gipsy Kings CD and it was from that we really learnt to play.
The Portlands, Mitchells Plain, duo had no exposure to the musical style before but today they perform as Duende.
Duende means “soul” or “the ability of an art to move a person”.
“We were in the nasheed groups and I was helping with vocals and compositions but when I look back now, I can see it’s very different to what we are doing now,” says Yazeed, who works as a travel sales consultant.
Nazeem adds: “We will perform anywhere; we don’t turn a gig down. We performed at a funeral once, after the burial the family just wanted like soft music in the background.”
They also compose their own flamenco tunes – instrumentals.
“You must have like a basic knowledge of music when composing and that makes it easier. So far we have six flamenco compositions and about 20 Spanish pop kinda songs,” says Nizaam.
The duo say their music is more than just Gipsy King covers.
“The flamenco guitar is different to an acoustic guitar. It’s lighter and the sound is more amplified,” says Yazeed.
On Friday, November 18, Duende are part of the Strings of Fire: A Night of Flamenco and Rhumba show at Joseph Stone Auditorium.
The show also features the Young Gypsies, a flamenco dancer and Ché Adams.
For more details call 083 616 3060.