Open stage night at Toninos


Toninos in Dunnotter Street in Orange Grove, Jhb, might look like an ordinary pub, with…

Regulars playing pool in a back room…

Interesting wall decorations

The ubiquitous foose ball table

and they are licensed to have these slot machines as well.

When I visited there recently the bar staff were working really hard to keep the customers happy

I do enjoy a good pizza…

My dinner, tasty thin crust base and PLENTY of cheese and anchovies! Highly recommended.BUT the real reason for me being at Tononos on a Thursday evening was for their Open Stage event.

Diving right in as the “opening” act was Pieter Albert Jordaan.

He does look just a little like Jerry Springer, but by repeating his name often the audience was left in no doubt as to who he was.A great set of covers ending with his version of the stunning Leonard Cohen iconic song, “Hallelujah” …give this man a Bells!

The house band consists of Jonathan Judin, who at 15 plays a mean axe and has a voice that belies his age!

Bassist Trevor Muller brings years of experience to the mix

And hiding behind the drum kit is the talented Errol Favish.

Dynamite comes in small packages and Monica might be small in stature but her voice is HUGE!

Jonathan and Monica fronting their currently nameless band…

Next up was the weirdly named band called “Reign of Cipher.” I asked bass player Hedley Brest about the name and his response”I am glad that you asked that question” and then he vanished. however, he has responded via email with the following explanation:
“Its all Julian Weinberg, the guitarist’s concept as is the music we crank out.
Although hopefully Julian didn’t intend for the name to have a direct reference to the band or us as its members, (Dictionary definition: Cipher – representing naught or zero, a person or thing of no importance), albeit a somewhat morose idea,I believe that he is just using it as a metaphor to describe the state of the world as he sees it sometimes. For example,how some of society and people have become slaves to technology, excess, self interest etc and are losing there individuality, self expression etc”.

Time to riff.Hedley together with lead guitarist Julian Weinberg.

Once again the drummer,in this case John Dewar, hides in the background.I wonder why it is always the drummers and bass players that have all the groupies? Answers to me via email please.

The evening ended off with ex Ballyhoo lead guitarist Mick Mathews joining forces with the resident band to rock out some fine(if somewhat loud) music

 Keep your ears open for young Jonathan…I cannot wait for him to produce his first CD.
If you want to take part in a Thursday Open stage evening, contact Alan Judin on 0828280671 or you can call Torinos on 011 485 1748
If you pre-book your set your group gets to do five songs.If you arrive on the night, you will get three songs to entertain the crowd.
Student performers get the early slots and back track facilities are available.
My thanks to owner Tony for hosting me for the evening.
I capture the soul of the evening in this