Our History and DNA

Making memories together

The Airborne band was formed in 1984 and has been a popular and regular attraction at venues and concerts around Cape Town and South Africa. They are primarily a 4-piece unit (keyboards, bass, lead guitar & drums), however regularly feature guest artists on horns, percussion and vocals.

The band released a CD titled “I’d rather be listening to Airborne” in January 1998, which made it to no. 10 on the ‘P4 Smooth Jazz Top 40’.

Upon returning from a gig in Melbourne Australia in 1999, Sean O’Connell and Benedict de Maar (founder members) produced a CD ‘Rainbow Africa’ which has two original compositions on it, one, ‘Melbourne Kwela’ having been composed for the trip to Melbourne. This CD also made it onto the ‘P4 Top 40′ and was exported to Australia as well. The musicians featured on this mini album (it only has 4 tracks) hail from many different bands in Cape Town and was a collaboration of Cape artists with whom Airborne have played over the years.’

Taxi Ride’ is a combination of traditional ‘Kaapse klopse’ songs, featuring the same artists that appear on ‘Rainbow Africa

Their CD, “Christmas with Airborne” was recorded in 2006 and stems from Sean’s desire to record a Cape jazz flavoured rendition of popular Christmas Carols; and to record at their own pace in their own studio thereby ensuring the maximum creativity and quality output.

Airborne released their much anticipated live DVD “Intimately Airborne”, in August 2008 which is a worthwhile addition to any collection. It is a double DVD which in addition to Airborne, features the legendary Tony Schilder and Basil Moses, who perform some phenomenal renditions of unplugged standards. It captures the live vibe and energy emanating from Airborne’s slick concert of original and classic cover works.

The Airborne DVD premiere was by all accounts very successful. There is an ongoing demand for the DVD and it has received significant airplay on the regional television channel, ‘Cape TV’.

In 2009, Airborne hosted another concert “An Evening with Airborne and Friends”. This memorable performance featured the renowned smooth jazz sounds of Airborne, enhanced with the classic vocals of Melanie Scholtz and Richard Ceasar and introduced the latest addition to the band –Matthew O’Connell on Saxophone. This was also recorded and released as a CD/DVD titled “An Evening with Airborne and Friends LIVE”. The varied repertoire makes for easy listening and the sound quality is exceptional. Feedback from folks who have bought this CD/DVD combination has been very complimentary “with demand for the album confirming this”.

The launch of this album was a great success with fans – new and old – enjoying the band who featured Richard Ceasar on lead guitar and vocals.

Established in 2006, Airborne Records undertook to drive and expose local music and the Airborne brand . This included publishing and releasing albums, promoting and showcasing the band at concerts, hosting album launches and LIVE recordings e.g. ‘’An Evening with Airborne & Friends” featuring Richard Ceasar and Melanie Scholtz’’), as well as publishing and promoting numerous local musicians and bands.

Airborne Records implemented a national and international concert strategy in 2010 which culminated in sold out events such as Conversations 2011 featuring Frank Paco Art Ensemble, Don Vino Pins featuring Bergvliet High School, Back To the Hits featuring Alistair Izobell, Karin Kortjie and Zayne Adams, Joe McBride at Jazz On the Rocks 2012 and Conversations 2012.

In 2013, Airborne Records changed its name to ‘’Airborne Experience’’, focussed on creating innovative and memorable experiences in collaboration with our growing partner network. Defining your brand and digital became a driving force in our comprehensive offering. As always, our mission is to be passionate about what we do and to return the trust of our customers by constantly striving for excellence and customer experience.