Get wild with Alt Ego
“We were playing in the hotel lobby and a small crowd had gathered near us. Justin walked out of the gym and no one had seen him, because the crowd was facing us. While we performed for the crowd, little did they know we were also performing for Justin Bieber,” Petersen said. “He danced while we played, which was pretty awesome.”
A few months earlier one of their idols, DJ Snake, interacted with them during his stay at the hotel and with each encounter they became more invigorated by the dream in front of them.
“People love what we do. It’s different from Acoustic Element because we want people to dance, but to music they would never normally dance to,” Abel said.
Success or even a career in music, however, was not a foregone conclusion all along.
“Jody took about two years to convince me to quit my job. I went into the corporate world. I studied financial accounting, and then fashion, said Petersen.
“After I quit my job then the business side kicked in, and it was spreadsheets, financial projections and income statements. I calculated how many hours we needed to work into order to make X amount of money. We mapped everything out. It was a calculated risk. It wasn’t just a whimsical thing. But it never took away from the music. It was a way for us to do what we had to do, and make sure we could survive.”
It’s a surprisingly pragmatic approach to the arts that few are capable of. The image of a wasted, struggling musician playing in dingy bars and hideouts couldn’t be further from Alt Ego’s experience and yet the authenticity and passion is present. It doesn’t end there.
“We are also on the board of two companies. One is an events company with Marc Lottering. We’re staging an event early next year called the Black Ball. The other company involves an app for artists and people who want to book them. It’s basically an Uber for artists. If you want a DJ for your party tonight, we will find an artist for you based on your needs. Even if you have R500 for an hour, you can book someone and they’ll be there.”
The duo have set themselves high goals for the future, inspired by some of their role models.
“We’d love to stand next to Goldfish and Goodluck. We’ve worked alongside Jimmy Nevis many times. We love Clean Bandit; their work is amazing. I love the way they incorporate techno, house and classical music,” Abel said.
“We’re taking DJ lessons. We’re going all Goldfish with mixers and live instruments,” Petersen laughed.
It’s a dream they’ve kept alive for seven years and in their burgeoning careers, it’s a dream that grows wings with every performance and nod of approval from their peers and an adoring fan base.
To download the album go to hyperurl.co/ALTEGO.
Jody Abel and Callen Petersen released an album on Thursday and have been taking the charts by storm.