CHAMPAGNE LOVE GARDEN THE DARLINGHURST DEMOS (1988)
The songs collected in this download represent a sample
of writer's demosI made in about 1988 or 1989.
A friend of mine, David McComb of Perth band The Triffids,
once told me that he valued my 'instincts' over my '
premeditation.' More or less as an experiment,
I decided to take him at his word and write a bunch of
songs with very little by way of premeditation.
I wanted to capture myself at my most spontaneous.
Each song was therefore written and recorded in the
space of an afternoon,with the exception of a couple
for which the words had been written in advance.
Despite many clumsy lines and over strained vocals
(as well as other signs of general hastiness),
I've always thought of them as the best songs
I've ever written.
I thank Bob for offering to post them on his blog
and hope that, after twenty years,
they may still have something to offer.
James Paterson has generously shared these recordings after 20
years.For those who don't know who James is you can read his
self written bio on his myspace page here
James grew up in Acacia Ridge here in Brisbane in the early 70's.
It was there he met John Kennedy and they eventually formed
the band JFK and the Cuban Crisis. After a move to Sydney,
recording their fantastic album "End of the affair" they split in
1983. I'll quote James here from his myspace site
Around the time JFK began breaking up,
I dabbled in co-writing songs with David McComb of the Triffids;
of the dozen-odd songs we worked on together my favourite is
Blinder By The Hour, which is on the Triffids' Calenture album.
We also did an 'unplugged' affair, a mini-album called
Lawson Square Infirmary,
which was recorded covertly one night at the Sydney Opera
House.By the late 80s, after I had failed to get a new band,
Champagne Love Garden, up and running,
I lost interest in contemporary music and concentrated on
my studies in ancient and modern history at the
University of Sydney.
I have to say these are some great songs, its a shame James
didn't get Champagne Love Garden up and running, because
Australia's musical landscape would have been richer for it.
These songs are recorded in a simple acoustic manner, with
some very nice instrumentation. Theres shades of the Triffids,
of JFK, of Lawson Square Infirmary, with its alt country feel
and I can even hear Robert Forster's best work, with his
honesty and off center manner of seeing things.
I'm Almost Dawn is a fabulous song co-written with David
McComb, which begins and ends the album.
Modern Heaven could have been a JFK song, it reminds
me of End of the affair, with its beautiful guitar work.
Rain of arrows is poetic, wonderful,
"I saw you shrink from a stranger
as if she carried poisoned tips"
One Dollar could of been on Lawson Square Infirmary.
Rocky Joe has that JFK feel again, with its catchy hooks.
Life Is What You Make It, has some great lyrics.
"Was it your moment of glorywhen you said that terrible thing
It was your dangerous hour
Your tower of power
when you flaunted your broken wing"
St Francis is one of my favs sung by Zonda it grooves along,
Smoke On The Water has that country feel, but its the way
both James and Zonda take turns sings that makes it.
Write It Off To Love is my Fav track its got some of the best lyrics
and a fantastic melody.
I just have to include the whole songs lyrics, it so reminds me
of Robert Forster.
Write It Off To Love - James Paterson
I met you in a crowded room
You said you felt like your in your tomb
You said it might be wise if we took a walk outside
You said your life was a dead end
It had no meaning without a friend
You wanted someone you could commune with
And I was drunk I liked your face
We took taxi to your country place
And I bought a toothbrush so that I could stay
We took the gown of love now
Took the gown of love ...
I made the coffee cause you had to think
You were writing books
So I unplugged the sink
You had big plans
So it was my job to clean out the old shed
For seven years we shared a bed
You went to town to buy the bread
I later heard you took off with a policeman
that you'd met
You crossed the hands of love now
Crossed the hands of love ...
I went to Gleebooks to buy some books
And I saw a book bearing your name
I was so surprised and pleased and grateful
for your fame
I found this poem called 'Pop Singing Boy'
It was obviously about me
You said I always wanted to be on Countdown
but that was a lie
You said you'd be rich
If I hadn't kept you down
Your name would be celebrated
All over town
But now your poetry's passe
And your book just got remaindered
So write it off to love now
Write it off to love...
None More After You is a change of pace beautiful,
melancholy like a Joy Division song, I like it.
Figment Of Your Imagination is a fantastic instrumental
tune and we finish back with I'm Almost Dawn.
I really want to hear what other think and
I'm sure James will be to,
so please leave many comments.
Words and music by James Paterson, except I'm Almost Dawn
(words by David McComb, music by James Paterson)
and None More After You
(words by David McComb and James Paterson, music by James Paterson)
All instruments were played by James Paterson except viola,
which was played by Neil Sanderson (RIP)
despite the fact that he had not picked up the instrument
for several years.
The songs were sung by James Paterson and Zonda Donabauer.
All tracks were recorded on a Tascam 4-track Portastudio in the
front room of Zonda's flat in Bourke Street, Darlinghurst, Sydney.
The songs were mixed down onto cassette tape
by James Paterson in 1988
and digitized by Graham Lee in 2008.
01. I'm Almost Dawn
02. Modern Heaven
03. Rain of Arrows
04. One Dollar
05. Rocky Joe
06. Life Is What You Make It
07. St Francis
08. Smoke On The Water
09. Write It Off To Love
10. None More After You
11.Figment Of Your Imagination
12. I'm Almost Dawn (reprise)