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I’m delighted that to finally be able to share “Where the Water Was” written with Casper Ace in Cape Town. Connecting the mindset behind the inequities of the past to social and environmental transgressions in the present, our song calls for an awakening of care and connection.

We as songwriters feel that if we can retrain ourselves to take care of water, in all its forms, we may simultaneously learn to address the challenges of environmental crises in constructive ways. Therefore “water” is used both as a physical, political, and metaphorical reference throughout the lyric.

“Where The Water Was” sings a story of the impact that the first permanent European settlement at the Western Cape in South Africa had on the indigenous inhabitants, the Khoi and the San peoples. The consequences left a legacy still felt by their descendants, and by extension the descendants of many others living with the repercussions of colonialism at the Cape today.

Using Cape Town as a lens, a resilience and a resourcefulness inherent in indigenous knowledges are highlighted in the song. It proposes that an awareness informed by these knowledges may further greater harmony with nature and each other in the present.

Cover for “Where the Water Was,” artwork by Martin Pedersen, photo by John Lauritzen.

With help from the public
Towards the end of 2022 we met in central Cape Town at the event “Water & You” organized by the “Future Water Institute” (UCT). We invited the general public to participate in a music video for “Where the Water Was.” Each participant lip-synced a line from the lyric to the song which they connected with upon having read the words and listened to the music.

Watch the video here:

Listen to “Where the Water Was” here:

Our deepest thanks to all who participated in the video!

Martin Høybye and Casper Ace

Martin Høybye: Ac gtr, vocal
Dennis Ahlgren: El gtr, juno,
percussion, vocals
Peter Dombernowsky: Percussion
Ida Gormsen: Bass
Andreas Brinck: Wurlitzer

Producers/engineers: Dennis Ahlgren & Martin Høybye
Mix: Dennis Ahlgren
Mastering: Sigurdór Guðmundsson

Camera work: Martin Høybye, Casper Ace/Gideon Malherbe, Lerato Matyityilili
Editor: Thomas Jensen

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