Two of SA’s most enduring rock bands, Jack Hammer and Akkedis, have a bond that goes back many years.
Having been friends since the early 1990’s they often performed at the same shows and would jam together whenever the opportunity would present itself. During 2001 Piet Botha and J.Martin of the Jack Hammer band were on a two week tour in the UK but the venues were more suited for a full band than an acoustic 2 piece,and so the Akkedis band who were on the same roadshow filled in on all the dates as Jack Hammer besides doing their own repertoire.These were tough times but the bond was cemented by their experiences there.
Since then they have worked together on many occasions but distance has always been a hindrance as Jack Hammer is a Pretoria band and Akkedis is from Stellenbosch. During December 2009 they embarked on a rollercoaster tour starting in Wildernis and winding up a couple of weeks later in Cape Town. It was during this time that Piet Botha came up with the idea of naming this collaboration “The Lizard Kings” after a poem by Jim Morrison.
During Feb 2010 they performed at the annual “Up the Creek” festival and are on their way to Mocambique in May for the annual STRAB festival.
What happens is that a whole bunch of songs get thrown in the mix and the really good ones become the backbone of the sets. It is also a bilingual happening as both Piet and the Dennis brothers have written in Afrikaans and English. “It’s a wonderful thing that happens because we are all just so crazy for the music and we just want to play ..”, Botha has said on more than one occasion.