Born on 11 July 1959 at his family home on Princess Street in Harfield Village, a suburb of Cape Town , Eldred Schilder grew up amongst several families of musicians, all who have carried the legendary Schilder name. He learned easily from this family DNA to play a Cape form of jazz from the traditional goema (klopse) beat heard all around him. As the apartheid government dislocated homes, Eldred’s family was thrown out of Harfield Village and into a Cape Flats community of Newfields where he continued to grow his musical ear. His musician father, pianist Richard Schilder, performed in various popular bands that emerged in the Cape Flats of Cape Town. who was also a goldsmith, taught young Eldred songs on the piano, and allowed other senior Schilder family members to groom Eldred. In partcular, Uncle Philip, who also played bass and other instruments, mentored Eldred over time. Jazz pianists Uncle Tony Schilder, and Uncle Chris Schilder, renamed Ibrahim Kalil Shihab after converting to Islam, left a profound mark on Eldred’s growth.