began as a
parents in the
Jaco spent his
in the outdoors.
Jaco's love for music can be traced as far as he can remember learning the Alphabet. He picked up his first musical instrument 5th grade at age 11. Between a transistor radio, guitar or the much-coveted, all-time-option cash as a birthday present, passion won. "I've always wanted to make music, so I chose the guitar," he recalls. A game-changing decision as the ambiance of their humble abode was never the same.
“There was not a day where we did not hear the sound of his guitar” his mother claimed
It was music to our ears. I can’t say the same for the neighbours though she added.
Soon after, he went for music lessons and developed fondness for a number of musical instruments which he now plays proficiently.
indie mix | david slinger63
Writing and constant practice (even with only a knowledge of 4 chords) became a daily groove.
I know that’s virtually
impossible but [that’s]
just to give [you] an idea
of how often I played.” he
Performing in front of people did not come easy. Naturally an introvert, his love for connection displaced (and still does) his reticent outlook. “I didn’t let it get me down too much. I’ve pushed through awkwardness and being shy and I’ve grown from the space of not talking to people to love being with people.” said Jaco.
As if that was not a challenge already back then, he suffered from eczema when he was 12 making it excruciating to even bend his fingers. “I was determined and found other ways to play the guitar.” claimed Jaco.
He has learned early on the value of persistence and hard work from his mentors (Winston, a bassist friend at his church and Ruan, a guitarist friend who always challenged him to become better). “Practice is very important to learn new things” he quotes.
Looking at practice as a means to simply enjoy the learning process is a different perspective he hopes others will learn as well from this paradigm shift.
I believe that if you don’t enjoy doing something, wait a bit until you’re ready to do it.
Jaco’s take on his guru’s nuggets of wisdom. “…because not giving it your all doesn’t reap the best raesults.” he added. To his point, at this day and age patience is a rare commodity. Something he embraces in his music process.
indie mix | david slinger64
when asked what
it’s a resounding Mumford and Sons, Josh Garrels and Matthew Mole. “Skillwise though, I’ve always looked up to Eric Clapton and John Mayer.” he added.
Jaco tarted off with playing at church, in 2010, which helped a lot in overcoming stage fright
His performances are lining up. It was only in 2018 when he started performing publicly, “The first time I performed a song was in 2018 at a place called Nomads, a restaurant in Cape Town.
indie mix | david slinger65
It was quite stressful because of the interaction with the crowd that I had no experience in. I started off with just talking about the song which really helped with calming me and as soon as I started singing the song it came naturally on how I wanted to interact with the crowd” and the response of his audience kept him playing despite challenges.
It wasn’t long after that he released his first single via Soundcloud, titled, “Singing In The Trees”. Everything was uphill from then on.
Apart from the one or two times where he played an entire gig with a broken string, all those days of practice and dedication has been paying off
“I’ve been busy booking gigs lately it’s quite hectic but fun!” he told musivv.
With the advent of technology, he agrees that producing music has never been as handy as it is nowadays. Before, what normally takes months and years for musicians to accomplish in terms of music production, now takes weeks given the proper avenues and access to technology. Jaco is hands on with producing his music as he loves working with his hands. Much like a repair man - a vocation he’d probably be doing if he wasn’t doing music.
His views on how music has evolved are worth noting. “I think music has always been changing since the beginning. And its always been good because a different generation has a different voice. I love that there’s such a massive variety nowadays because it makes it possible for new ideas. I do love older music though where they focused on not just vocalists but the skill of musicians as well. Where [you] worked hard to become the best.
indie mix | david slinger66
I do love older
where it focused
on not just
vocalists but the
skill of musicians
indie mix | david slinger67
I always try to get a very acoustic or natural sound from my instruments, so I don’t use too many effects pedals on my guitars or vocals. Instrument-wise I play a few instruments, ranging from a guitar to banjo to piano to ukulele.
But when i play live i would always take along my Cort acoustic guitar, my kick drum and tambourine and then my harmonicas. Depending on the setlist I would also take along my Squier Black Bullet electric guitar and my Tanglewood Union series ukulele.
I use my Laney Prism65 guitar amp and whenever I need a specific amount of delay or reverb on my guitars I use the built-in reverb and delay on the amp.
Whenever I decide to put a distortion sound in a song I will use the Boss DS-1 pedal. From my other instruments I use the Caraya BJ-005 5-string banjo mostly in my recordings. And then I use the YAMAHA PSR-260 keyboard for other specific sounds, for example if I want a stringed background with violins and cello’s.
Like David of the Bible, from being a shepherd boy to slaying a giant, David Slinger is set on overcoming challenges to reach a goal.
Music can change people’s lives.
And I hope that my music will, like David, cause the fall of many Goliaths in people’s lives.” he concludes.
That - we all can ponder on.