Being born in one of the South African's most loved musical families; Riaan’s passion for music has been part of his life for as long as he can remember. His parents understood and encouraged his desire to perform and included him in their shows as a musician from a very young age. He performed his first aperence on TV at the age of 4 in 1980 on a kiddies program.
As part of his school training he studied classical piano since the age of 6 for 12 years and classical percussion for 5 years. After completing school in 1994, Riaan proceeded to further his studies in music and obtained a Music Diploma from The Technicon of Pretoria, majoring in Jazz Drumming Performance and Arranging in 1997.
Riaan then started his session musician career as a drummer/percussionist in the South African Jazz market and since then had the privilege of working with many of South Africa’s top musicians such as Louis Mchlanga, Selailo Selota, George Phiri,Sipho Hotstix Mabusa, Vusi Khumalo and Dimpie Tchabala to name but just a few. He also worked with singers such as KB, Zama Jobe, Wendy Oldfield, KaolinTompson and international singer Netsayi .
During this time Riaan played in many bands aswell. These bands veried in musical styles and Musik ye Afrika(African), Kwacha(African), Naked(Pop/Rock),Khoi-Trans(Afro-Fusion), Mondetta(World Music), Jungabeez(Electronic World Dance) and Mikanic(SA Pop),Boo!(Munky Punk) was just a few to mention.
In the Afrikaans music scene Riaan toured with artists like Pieter Smit, Dozi, Blackie Swart, Chris Cahmeleon, Ollie Viljoen, Schalk Joubert, Kaliber, Johan Stemmet, Rina Hugo, Wiam, Deon van der Merwe, Jannie Moolman, Jakkie Louw,Veraz(Reggae artist) and Anton Goosen. This all happened in the time between 1998 – current.
By working with all these deferent bands and artists, Riaan toured the world and perform in 15 deferent countries, performing in deferent music festivals, and live music veneus.
In 2001 Riaan went to study West African drumming and percussion rhythms in Ghana at a dance company, Odehe Dance Centre in Accra. Here he has learned and studied traditional rhythms, songs and dance. Back in South Africa Riaan attended workshops presented by West African Drum Masters Elhadji Diop, Emanuel Gumado and Mamadi Keita featuring Traditional Rhythms and used these rhythms to facilitate groups/clients in his workshops.Later that same year he started working at a South African company called 'Drums and Rhythm', which facilitates team building in the corporate environment. “We use the African Drum as a metaphor to build team spirit and synergy within the corporate teams”. These therapeutic sessions are most enjoyable and highly in demand. With his extended academic background and years of experience in this field, Riaan is today regarded as one of the top facilitators in his country.
When he lived in London for two years between 2003 – 2005, Riaan was employed by “Drum Jam’ where he did similar work in schools and community centers. Whilst living in London, Riaan also joined a few local bands in the Rock scene. He also recorded on 2 house tracks and 4 drum&bass tracks for dj’s. This was his beginning of performing live with dj’s in clubs. While living in London. Riaan had the privilege to play in many music festivals, around England, also touring Ireland and Wales, and performing in many famouse live music veneus. Riaan performed for famouse international singer/songwriter called “Netsayi”in the Queen Elizabeth Hall. Today Riaan still does this on a freelance basis.
In 2007, Riaan made his first debut solo album, called “Dans met my” and has since then focused more on his own solo career as an artist. All the songs on this album was composed by Riaan and he introduced a lot of defferent music styles on this cd. And it was his ability to combine Latin-American music with traditional Afrikaans music, that gave him his unique sound.
Riaan then started his own brand-new Boere-Orkes dans band called the “Riaan van Rensburg en die Boere-Biscuits”. This band is not your normal type Boere-Orkes. Of course they play all the hits that any lover of this genre would like to hear, but what realy makes them unique, is that they take modern-pop music, and convert it into a Boere sound. Just imagine songs like Pokerface,Can’t take my eyes of you, Sooper Trooper and many more, all played with a Boere style. Riaan also sings his own music and some sing along Afrikaans music from Anton Goosen, David Kramer and more, and wha-la, you have yourself the perfect party-dans band for your function, wedding or festival. You wil be surprised to know that not only Afrikaans people enjoy this music. The “Boere-Biscuits” came 4th in the Kyknet natinal boere music competition called “Varstrap”
Other than his own projects, Riaan is mostly seen working with Chris Chameleon. He has recently joined Chris’s band called “Boo!”, which is a Munky Punk Rock music band. The group was formed in 1996 and they manage to built up quite a big following in Europe. Early 2010 Riaan then joined the band and they recorded an album in Amsterdam, which was released in October, followed by a launch-tour in Europe, Holland,Belgium,Germany and London. If you not a Boo! lover already, this might just be something you’ll enjoy. In 2010 they won the international award for the best unsigned band in the world, and in 2011 they were nominated for a SAMA for the best new and upcoming band. Recently in 2012, they just did another tour to Holland. They perform in venues like 013,Tivoli de Heling, Melkweg,Paard de Saal,P60 to name just a few. In South-Africa they also performed in the most popular music festivals like, Splashey Fenn, Rocking the Daisies, Oppikoppi, Ramfest, Up the Creek and more. Riaan also works in Chris Chameleon’s Afrikaans theater productions which performes in the most popular Afrikaans music festivals like KKNK, Aardklop and Inniebos where they’ve won the award for best production.
Riaan also plays with a group called CH2 where they perform in several theaters in South Africa giving an international standard performance not to be mist. CH2 is a Spannish/Flamenco guitar duo, who has won the international competion for best contemporary music group in Nashville.
The last 20 years, Riaan was seen on the very popular music game show on television called Noot vir Noot, where he playes percussion. Not only did he visited people in there homes watching TV but also had the privilege of work with many different artists on this show. Series 38 recently finished screening with 678 episodes in total. It has been anounced that Series 38 – 41 has been signed and will show until 2014. Riaan joined in 1996, series and is currently shooting his 30th season with this show.
Riaan enjoys what he does and always performs with lots of passion. For Riaan, there is nothing better in life, than sharing his art, by creating and performing with fellow musicians, and an audience appreciating what they hear.
Professional Series Conga 11" Quinto
Professional Series Conga 11 3/4" Conga
Professional Series Conga 12 1/2" Tumba
Professional Series (DE patent) FWB400 Wood Bongo 7" Macho & 8 1/2" Hembra
Artist Series Chimes (Luis Conte) 60 bars
Artist Series Timbales Luis Conte (patented) 14" & 15"
Cowbell 8" big mouth
Percussion Block Low Pitch
Mountable Recording-Combo ABS Tambourine, Dual-Alloy Jingles 2 rows
Original African Style Rope Tuned Wood Djembe 12"