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Rodriguez (Searching for Sugar Man) Announces March Shows

Rodriguez (Searching for Sugar Man) Announces March Shows

Thursday 17th January, 2013 12:00PM

Rodriguez, star of the most talked about documentary of 2012 Searching For Sugar Man, has been announced to play two New Zealand shows in March. The Detroit based singer-songwriter renowned for his haunting and experimental folks songs, was lifted from 30 years of obscurity by two South African fans who thought he was dead and decided to find out how/when with their journey forming the basis of the spectacular, award winning documentary. Now receiving the acclaim and recognition he rightfully deserves, Rodriguez is making his way to New Zealand for the first time ever...


Saturday 16th March, Wellington Town Hall, Wellington
Sunday 17th March, The Logan Campbell Centre, Auckland

Tickets available from Ticketek from Tuesday 29th January.

Here's the trailer for the must see documentary Searching for Sugar Man...

(Here's the slightly different American version which we cannot embed)

And here's the beautiful track that inspired the name of the doco...

Press Release:

RODRIGUEZ - Searching For Sugarman star to perform in New Zealand for the first time.

Saturday 16th March - Wellington at the Wellington Town Hall
Sunday 17th March - Auckland at The Logan Campbell Centre

Tickets available from Ticketek from Tuesday 29th January.

Plain and simple, Rodriguez spits the cold facts. He drops acute humanistic observations gleamed from a Detroit born and bred existence. And though this talented singer-songwriter’s primary recorded output reaches back to the late sixties and early seventies, its enduring legacy has manifested itself in the most unexpected, far reaching, and mind-blowing of ways. While heads have been passing Rodriguez LPs around for a number of years in the American underground, a wave of mainstream acceptance in Australia and South Africa dating back to the 1970s has opened up new fragments of reality for the man born as Sixto Diaz Rodriguez…


The 2012 documentary Searching for Sugar Man a hit at Film Festivals all over the world, has been nominated for an Academy Award and reveals a man as humble and generous as his songs suggest - he still lives in the same clapped-out Detroit house he has lived in for some 40 years and he has given most of the proceeds of his new-found fame to his friends and family.

The award-winning documentary has launched Sixto Rodriguez into a global spotlight. ‘Searching for Sugarman’ – the story of two South African fans and their search over three decades to discover their hero - claimed two awards at the Sundance Film Festival, Best Documentary at the Moscow Film Festival and the Audience Awards at Melbourne, Los Angeles and Durban Festivals.

It’s a fairy-tale story of an amazing musician, extraordinary wordsmith & talented performer

“…One of the greatest, and most moving documentaries ever made” 5 STARS - Ali Catterall Q MAGAZINE

“It is one of those rare lost albums that turns out to be a genuine classic” – Joe Tangari, Pitchfork

“A buried treasure worth its weight in gold” – AllMusic

It’s one of the lost classics of the ‘60s, a psychedelic masterpiece drenched in colour and inspired by life, love, poverty, rebellion. The album is Cold Fact, and what’s more intriguing is that its maker – a shadowy figure known as Rodriguez – was, for many years, lost too. A decade ago, he was rediscovered working as a day laborer in Detroit, Michigan. He was unaware that his defining album had become not only a cult classic, but for the people of South Africa, a beacon of revolution.

Rodriguez recorded Cold Fact – his debut album – in 1969, and released it in March 1970. It’s crushingly good stuff, filled with tales of bad drugs, lost love, and itchy-footed songs about life in late ’60s inner-city America. “Gun sales are soaring/Housewives find life boring/Divorce the only answer/Smoking causes cancer,” says the Dylan-esque Establishment Blues.

But the album sank without trace, thanks, in part, to some of Rodriguez’s more idiosyncratic behavior, like performing at an industry showcase with his back to the audience throughout. When the follow-up, 1972’s Coming From Reality, also sold poorly, Rodriguez called an end to his recording career. He’d never even played a proper gig. And he got on with life. Over the years, he turned his hand to local politics, gaining a degree in philosophy, factory work and eventually, hard labour.

As his music career became a memory, Rodriguez’s legend was growing – on the other side of the world. In South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, Cold Fact had become a major word of mouth success, particularly among young people in the South African armed forces, who identified with its counter-cultural bent. But Rodriguez was an enigma – not even the label knew where to find him – and his demise became the subject of debate and conjecture. Some rumours said he’d died of a drug overdose or burned to death on stage. Others said he was in a mental institution, or in prison for murdering his girlfriend. Barring a couple of sold out Australian tours in 1979 and 1981, nothing had been heard of him for almost 30 years.

But the tide began to turn in 1996, when journalist Craig Bartholemew set out to get to the bottom of the mystery. After many dead ends, he found Rodriguez alive, well, free and perfectly sane in Detroit, ending years of speculation. Rodriguez himself had no idea about his fame in South Africa (the album had gone multi-platinum, Rodriguez has received not so much as a Rand in royalties), and embarked on a triumphant South African tour followed, filling 5,000 capacity venues across the country.


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