August 4, 2014


South African Band KONGOS Make "Folk Music With Nuts"

If you live in the United States, you might be unfamiliar with South African alt-rock band of brothers KONGOS, but that's all about to change! Fuse's Esteban Serrano sat down with the quartet at Lollapalooza to talk filming music videos with GoPros, writing folk songs for rock fans and finding new fame stateside.

The music video for "Hey I Don't Know" was filmed using GoPros, one of the first vids to ever do so. "We didn't really link up with them," says Jesse of the camera company and their virtually indestructible product. "We knew about their cameras. We saw all these videos online of extreme sports and stuff and we thought, 'Is there anyway to make us look cooler than we are?' We put on our instruments and shot a live set a few times in South Africa at festivals. Editing, a lot of editing!"

The band has recently adopted "folk music with nuts" as their go-to music description, something they didn't even come up with! 

"Somebody else described [us] that way and we just adopted it. We can't ever come up with our own description. That and 'jungle rock.' [It fits because] we're all males," Daniel explains. "You can hear a lot of influence from folk music, especially folk from around the world. The accordion is ubiquitous everywhere in traditional folk music. We're influenced by that a lot but it's disguised by a rock band."

"Come With Me Now" is KONGOS' largest single, one that is having a major moment stateside. "For us it's a relatively old song... We actually put it out in 2011," says Jesse. "For it to be reinvigorated like this is amazing for us. [We] go and play it and people know it. They go nuts on it. That adds a whole new life to the song. It's exciting to play."

Watch the full interview above and click here for more exclusive Lollapalooza coverage!