Tag Archives: music

Big in SA

Sixto Diaz Rodriguez, a folk musician from Detroit, recorded two albums in 1970 and ’71. Sales weren’t great and neither were the reviews, so he gave up on his music career. He stayed unknown in America, but went platinum in South Africa.

In 1992 the Australian pop band, Indecent Obsession, released “Indio”. It was not as successful as their previous album and none of the singles made it into the Australian top 20. In South Africa, it was huge. The album reached the top of the charts and spawned hit singles like “Rebel with a cause”, “Indio” and “Kiss me”. The latter landed at number one and stayed there for 27 weeks.

Why were Rodriguez and Indecent Obsession big in South Africa but relative failures in their own countries? Was it mere chance, a local DJ’s influence or did they appeal to some odd facet of South African taste?


– Thanks to Staal,  who posed the question at Sunday lunch