The Smoke Train Blues Movement is an African Blues brand comprising of blues musicians from all across the continent of Africa (from up and coming to the finest ). The vision to develop, nurture and keep the blues alive, is led by the lead guitarist, composer and singer Nico ‘Smoke’ Lawrence. Starting out as a solo artist in 2016 after losing his business and all his belongings in a fire in Port Shepstone KZN he and his family relocated to Johannesburg (Edenvale).
I wanted to play and write authentic blues music that reflects and captures the times we live in here in South Africa, With that being a huge success and The Smoke Train band gaining love and support in the blues community locally and abroad there was another challenge that Smoke faced, how do we grow the blues in Africa? How do we develop and nurture the blues talent as we have many musicians wanting to join the band, but we could not accommodate them all? This is how The Smoke Train Blues Movement came about, we represent Africa. We are taking our first African team of talented musicians from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Madagascar, local artists from Durban, myself, and our drummer from Johannesburg.
Some remarkable progress has been made in late 2019-2020, we have been inundated with invitations from Argentina, Spain, Mexico, Columbia, Ghana, and Swaziland etc. We are looking forward to taking the Blues into Africa 2021.
- Nico SMOKE Lawrence: Lead singer, lead guitarist, composer and Driver of The Smoke Train Blues Movement.
- Rob Domijan – Drummer on the Smoke Train Blues Movement, he is an accomplished artist and has been around the Blues circuit for many years.
- Gracious Nkulu – Bass guitarist from DRC, been groomed by the Train since he was 19 years old. A bass guitarist of note, super talented.
- Iffa Raz, 28, pianist from Madagascar, talented artist who loves the Blues, he is also a Commercial Pilot.
- Ashvin Laljit, 55, he has a BA. Degree through UNISA majors in Music and Sociology, is a talented and experienced artist. Ashvin hails from Durban, KZN. Ashvin is passionate about teaching youngsters music.
- Featuring Black Jack, my friend, mentor and blues brother. A knowledgeable man, with lots of wisdom to impart. He is one of the main pinnacles of the movement, who operates solely behind the scenes.