District 6

District 6 was a part of the city where a lot of immigrants from all over the world lived. Other inhabitants were former slaves, artists and workers. Different races and religions mingled and musical experience spilled over from one group‘s style to another. It was a hotbed for political activists, but a battle field for gangs as well.

This melting pot of the city – the heart of the coon carnival – became a thorn in the eye of the apartheid government. One day in 1968 they started bulldozing it without warning. Until 1982 about 60 000 people were deported to the Cape flats and other undeveloped areas far from the city and the remains of the houses were used to build parts of the harbour.

At the District 6 Museum in Buitenkant Street you can look back into the rich history of this neighbourhood. Sometimes you can meet people who where born there, lived or worked there like Mr. Peterson and his guys. Nowadays they mostly perform at the Waterfront, playing for the tourists. Here they are back in District 6, still largely an empty space in the middle of the otherwise thriving city.

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