Carike Keuzenkamp looks back on her career

Carike Keuzenkamp looks back on her career

Long, long before Cartoon Network there was 'Kraaines'. One of South Africa's first kiddies shows it was hosted by Carike Keuzenkamp who, in the ensuing three decades, has become an Afrikaans living legend.

Currently best known for her 'Carike en Ghoempie in Kinderland' albums, we speak to the singer and actress about 43 years in the music industry, her unplanned success, her children's albums and her current SAMA nomination.

Your career is a very illustrious one. Did you ever imagine that you would be doing children's and Ghoempie albums?

You know, I never really wanted to sing. I wanted to become a teacher. I just wanted to marry and have kids. I played a small role in a film and then I got the opportunity to present the kids show 'Kraaines' in the early '80s. Since I was doing the show, the company asked if I would do children's songs, so that's when I recorded 'Heidi', 'Haasdas' and the others.

Singing to me has always been a hobby, but 10 years ago I decided that I wanted to record some songs for my grandchild, and that's how it started with Ghoempie. I thought it was just going to be a once-off thing, but before I knew it, the album took off and went gold. We are now in the process of recording the seventh Ghoempie album.

You have been nominated for a SAMA for Best Afrikaans Children's Album. At this point in your career do awards still mean anything?

For me, just being nominated is an incredible honour, it's the ultimate. It's the best award to get, as the whole country chose it. It's almost like a South African Grammy. But it will be a bonus if I do get to win one. It will be a very nice conclusion to my long career. I've never really worked for a SAMA, as I feel that some of the up-and-coming artists should rather get the award.

There are already six Ghoempie albums out. What's next?

Honestly, I don't know. In my 43 years in the music industry, I have never planned anything. I just go with the flow, but like I said earlier, we are in the process of recording the seventh album. We will also be making another 'Legendes' album with some of my friends. Oh, yes - and I have an English DVD that should be released next year.

 Will we get to hear another full-length album?

 Well, we will be doing 'Legendes 2', but something like that takes a long time. You know, for the DVD, two videos can be filmed in two separate locations in one day, and that's if you're lucky, so it's a long process. But I don't really like performing on stage, so I won't be doing that anytime soon.
Looking back at your career, is there any one memory that stand out in your mind?

The best for me were shooting the music videos, especially the 'Dias' video, as it's such a great song. I recorded the song, and then found out there was an annual Bartholomew Dias festival. Before you knew it, the song became the unofficial festival anthem and I'm on a plane to Madiera for the Portuguese version.

My time on TV also wasn't planned, as I actually didn't want the 'Kraaines' job. But if I was told 43 years ago that I would be nominated for a SAMA, I wouldn't believe you.

 How important is something like the SAMAs?

 It's very important for artists to get some form of recognition, and for artists it's a great place to be. The awards also inspire musicians to work harder in order to be nominated, or even win. And it's a great opportunity for them to go so much further. I think that awards are a very good idea.

Are you excited about the upcoming FIFA World Cup?

I'm very excited. I don't really know a lot about football, but you are never too old to learn. We got some tickets to the opening match, and it's a very positive thing for the country. I think that Bafana Bafana might just have a surprise in store, but we'll just have to spur them along.

Date Posted : 09 Apr 2010