Friday, February 29, 2008

Alan Dargin with Michael Atherton - Bloodwood

Alan Dargin, 1967-2008

I can make it talk, I can make it sing,
can make it do anything.

Didj, Didj, Didjeridu

Bloodwood log - Alan Dargin

Alan Dargin is most likely an Australian artist you haven't heard of
before and its unfortunate that I'm posting today about this man
because I learnt yesterday that He died on Sunday from a brain
hemorrhage. He was 40.
After veins burst in his throat some years ago while he was playing
the didgeridoo, doctors warned that continued playing
would threaten his life.
Admitted to hospital last week with bleeding on the brain.
A memorial service for Mr Dargin was held at 7am on Thursday,
28 February at Sydney's Circular Quay,
where he often busked to appreciative audiences.
He released some 4 Lps, with a 5th due this year, acted in films
and played around the world.
Yet he could rarely have been as happy as when he was sitting
in the Aboriginal tent embassy in Canberra two weeks ago with
elders from the Northern Territory, on the eve of Kevin Rudd's
apology to the stolen generations.
"I am glad," he said. "We have been acknowledged."
I met him one year in one of the Guinness tents at the Woodford
Folk Festival. We stuck up a conversation and he showed me
his bloodwood digj. It was well over a hundred years old,
made from a species of tree that is now extinct, he even showed
me where scientists had taken same samples from it for some
kind of DNA testing. Understandably proud of this instrument
he proceeded to give us an impromptu show.
I think I remember he gave me a bit of a lesson,
I have a couple of didge's I play,
I just can't do the circular breathing thing.

In terms of my personal style, I play strong and fast.
Initially when I started to perform I created a stir with
blackfellows in Australia that were concerned about my
use of the instrument in a contemporary context.
I don't play ceremonial songs so I won't get into trouble.
I compose all of my songs in a contemporary way and
challenge people to push the didjeridu to its limits.
I take a jazz approach in the use of my instrument
playing in any beat or rhythm structure.
In ensemble playing the didjeridu supplies the bottom
end, it fills up all the holes and makes the sound full.
This may account for the popularity of the didjeridu
and its crossover potential into world music.

Bloodwood is a fantastic album, sometimes almost ambient
like on the killer track "storm warning" a mix of didge and
blues slide that sounds like something off the "Paris Texas"
Ry Cooder soundtrack. "Gaia" combines didge and bird
song that strongly evokes the Australian land scape.
"Hitchhikers nightmare" is a live recording of one of his
signature busking performances, very funny.
"Open road" is didge jazz ,"Trinity" didge with a
classical middle eastern feel and "Anthem" an
expansive masterpiece pushing musical boundaries.
I love the didjeridu, its the one instrument that is
this land, when I've been overseas for extended periods
I've had this odd urge to hear and play this instrument
like some kind of grounding and Alan was the master.

Between meeting President Francois Mitterand in Paris
after playing to a crowd of more than 200,000 people on
Bastille Day in 1994 and playing on the opening night of this
year's Sydney Festival, Dargin played, acted and caroused
with the likes of Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin,
Don Burrows, Jimmy Barnes, Tommy Emmanuel, James Morrison
and Yothu Yindi.
He taught "didge" to Wallace Buchanan from Jamiroquai
and perhaps 100,000 others. He performed at festivals ranging from
WOMADelaide to Woodford in Australia, Airvault in France,
to Swizzeridoo in Switzerland, and appeared on German television
and the BBC in Britain.

Download Here

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Ed Kuepper and the Oxley Creek Boys - Live

I'm certain I've seen Ed Kuepper play live more than anyone else,
these days he plays here quite often living in Brisbane.
This is classic later day Ed, I saw him play a gig at a venue
called "The Healer "(it was in this old church) around this
period and this is how he was sounding.
The guitar sound hasn't changed much since the mid 90's
when Ed took to the brand new Roland VG 8 virtual guitar
system, this recording shows how he uses this tool.
Have a listen and marvel at how all sounds apart from
vocals, drums and bass come from his guitar.
I remember at the Healer gig I asked his roady,
who had restrung and tuned Eds guitar after a broken
string, what tuning Ed used. I'd been watching him
play closely that night and I hadn't seen him
change tuning and I knew he wouldn't be able
to do what he was doing in standard tuning.
The roady told me it was just standard,
a couple of years later when I got the same
guitar processor I discovered that you could
change tunings by pushing a button on the
VG8 and I knew how he had done it.
Well guitar mysteries aside this is a great
CD, Play it loud,
this ones a request for bottlelow,

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Redgum - If you don't fight you lose

When I meet people who think music is just music,
I know that they never have found something in music
like when I found Redgum.
This effect this band had on me when I discovered them
just after finishing high school was electric.
They led me into folk music and into a political understanding,
which in turn led me into many different places.
Their do it yourself type music transcended the punk ethos
which also was happening round the same time.
When I formed a band at 18/19 Redgum songs featured strongly,
they fitted in with everything else, they had their finger on the
pulse of this nation like no other.
The founding members John Schuman, Michael Atkinson and
Vertiy Truman met at a politics and the arts course in Adelaide
in 1975, this their first album was released in 1978.
By 1983 when they released their 4th album, they
were one of the biggest crowd pulling acts in Australia.
It took the song " I was only 19" to propel Redgum into the
mainstream, where they lasted for a couple more albums
before spitting in 1987.
If you haven't heard the early Redgum, its a completely
different band to the more polished act of later years.
I'm going to post right through this bands legacy over time,
so I'm starting at the beginning.
This album is a joy, a surprise best seller for Larrikin Records
that received airplay on most of the non commercial stations
round the country. I heard them on 4zzz of course,
its Johns vocals that grab you first. Rough and quintessentially
Australian. The music for the most part is folksy and acoustic,
but they add drums and bass for two tracks at the end,
turning into some kind of folk punk band.
The lyrics are this bands greatest strength, from the
very funny "One more boring night in Adelaide"
and" Serving USA",the insightful "Peter the cabby",
Or" Hmas Australia",the sad but beautiful "Killing Floor",
To the fury of "Letter to BJ", This is a fine album.
The BJ in Letter to Bj Is Joh Bjelke-Petersen the
Premier of Queensland(the cartoon behind my header
is joh) who ruled Queensland with a strong fist, a
corrupt police force and a electoral Gerrymander
which kept him in power from 1968 to 1987.
The song is a letter because being based in Adelaide
Redgum wanted to express how they felt despite
the distance.

Letter to BJ - Redgum

Can you hear me Bjelke-Petersen
From your leather padded chair?
There's a tide outside your door
Steadily rising
It's a simple case of freedom
And a lot of us who care
And if demonstrations aren't enough
Well I hope you've said your prayers

It seems this time you've gone too far
Next you'll call the troopers in
And you can put my dossier

In the glossy pages of the bulletin

Oh you think the battle's over

Well the war has just begun Your
legislation's just a piece of tissue

Oh won’t you listen to the beat
Of ten thousand marching feet?
Taking to the street

Oh there'll be a national monument
In yellow-cake of course

where the plaque reads

"Look what Bjelke-Petersen did
A traitor's tree, a traitor's rope,
Thirty bits of silver
And a couple of Queensland
Jackboot kicks

There's loads of references which have dated, but
this album is still speaking today. They tackle all
the big (to them) issues and were the first band
to do so for many of them. Aboriginal deaths
from alcohol, nuclear power, unemployment,
redunancy and US influence on our country.

Let me leave you with these lines from Poor Ned,
that express the Australian larrikin attitude
that is unlike any other.

You know they took Ned Kelly
And they hung him in the Melbourne gaol

He fought so very bravely

Dressed in iron mail

And no man single-handed
Can hope to break the bars

It's a thousand like Ned Kelly

Who'll hoist the flag of stars

Download Here

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Cloulds - Penny Century

The Clouds are one of Australia's great overlooked bands from the
1990's. One of my favorite live acts of the time,
I saw them numerous times, mainly cause they loved a Livid festival.
Once they were playing in the Livid big top when this huge storm
stuck and they had to abandon playing for a while cause they were
getting electric shocks on stage.
I also saw them play support for the great Stan Ridgway one time,
which was a memorable show all round.They came on of Sydney,
having formed late 1989, the core of the group was
Jody Phillis (vocals, guitar) and Patrica Young( vocals, bass),
with several different fellows on guitar and drums over the years.
Their trademark sound is the vocal harmonies of the girls, which are
really something wonderful.
In late 2005, Phillis and Young resurrected their band under the name
The Girls From The Clouds, launching a 5-track EP titled LaLaLaLa,
In April 2007, however, the duo announced they had disbanded again.
This is their first album, released in 1991 and remains my favorite.
Incidentally Chris Abrahams plays organ on the track "Too Cool."
If you haven't heard these guys and you like indi pop with girl
vocals, download this cause you'll love it.
"Show Me" track 8 is incredible, gives me goosebumps to this day
and this is one of the greatest albums to come out of Australia.
If anyones got any clouds stories I'd love to hear them, or the
Girls from the clouds Ep.

Show Me - The Clouds

Show me where is center is
The center of your universe
I'll put a hole in it
If I could get in your head
I could open some doors
Maybe clear the cobwebs
Shed some light
Show me where the borders are
The boundaries of your consciousness
I'll reach them
Tear them down
And you won't have those limits anymore

Download Here

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Necks - Chemist

The Necks,
Chris Abrahams(piano), Tony Buck(drums)and Lloyd Swanton (bass)
have released some 13 albums of what is often described as experimental jazz.
They defy traditional description's however and define themselves as follows

Not entirely avant-garde, nor minimalist, nor ambient, nor jazz the music of
The Necks is possibly unique in the world today.
Their albums feature lengthy improvisational pieces that
slowly unravel in
the most intoxicating fashion, frequently
underpinned by an insistent deep groove.

These three musicians are among the most respected
and in-demand in Australia,
working in every field from pop
to avant-garde. Over 200 albums feature their
presence individually
or together, but the music of The Necks stands apart from
everything else they have done.

This 2006 album "The Chemist" is a masterpiece, split in 3, 20min
pieces instead of their more usual hour long single track albums,
it is a mesmerizing, sometimes discordant, sometimes minimalist,
unpredictable journey. Stan in Canberra, who requested the last post,
is hoping to see these guys play tomorrow night, I'm sure it will
be a wonderful experience.
This fits in well with yesterdays post as a follow on and I have
many more Chris Abrahams related posts planned for the future.

Download Here

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Ed Kuepper - music for len lye (judith wright centre 6-8-04)

Len Lye was a New Zealand-born artist known primarily for his
experimental films and kinetic sculpture. It was Brisbane-based
curator David Pestorius who placed these films and Ed Kuepper
together. Originally these short animation films had soundtracks,
some of which were lost in time, the concept was Ed would create
new soundtracks to these films, which could be performed live
as an audio visual experience.

Kuepper says he was “inspired by the abstract rhythms”
to create the music for Tusalava, and several other famous
Lye animations. Rather than try to replicate the original
soundtracks, which were deeply, generatively intertwined
(a result of Lye’s obsession with synchronicity),
Kuepper’s interpretation resulted in freer flowing,
rock-inspired pieces for guitar and drums.
The Lye Foundation granted permission to use Lye’s films
and Music for Films was born.

Later when permission to use the films was withdrawn

both Pestorius and Kuepper wanted to continue the project,
and so a number of artists were contacted to produce video works.
Each artist was provided with examples of Kuepper’s more
cinematic music (including those pieces devised for Music For Films)
and invited to produce imagery in response.
Kuepper was then presented with the videos,
from which he devised the final music for the program.

In 2004 Ed took this show on the road, taking with him
Jeffrey Wegener and touring Europe to widespread acclaim.
I'm pretty sure this recording from here at Brisbane's
Judith Wright Center is from just before that tour,
dated 6/8/04 .This is a sublime soundboard recording
thats well worth having.
Its a pity they didn't make a DVD of this.

Download Here

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Laughing Clowns - Law of Nature

The clowns started around 1979 and ended round 1985
with the release of "Ghosts of an ideal wife"
"Law of Nature" was released the year before
and is argumentably their greatest Lp.
Originally released as a 9-track LP in 1984.
That edition was quickly withdrawn and replaced by the 10-track
version with the same catalogue number. I have the 9 track record,
it was re-released in 1991 on Cd, which this rip comes from.
The Clowns were at this stage area formidable band,
with Jeffery Wegener on drums and Peter Milton Walsh on bass
we have an amazing percussion section, add to that the legend
Chris Abrahams on piano and Ed on Guitar/vocals,
you know its going to be something special.
This album contains many long and intriguing tracks,
but the standout is the incredible "Eternally Yours"

Eternally Yours - Ed Kuepper

I see the light that shines on you
I see the legend you see it too
I see the reasons why you hold your point of view
And with your split personality
I'd thought you'd show independence there
But not quite so when there was room for everyone
You see the knife you feel the pain
I've heard it time and time again
These must be times
Not hit but missed an empty kiss
I've seen the leisure that suits you
I know your reason your point of view
There must be more
That you could do
When your loves in vain

Download Here

Out of Nowhere

Beside the legendary Apartments, Peter Milton Walsh headed up this
Laughing Clowns inspired band that released this one vinyl single.
Out of Nowhere began in Brisbane in march 1981
and played a number of significant well received dates
prior to moving to Sydney in October 81.
While in Brisbane they released their 1st single on cassette
"The Arrangements" in conjunction with Pink and Blue.
On arrival in Sydney, they played a few dates,
added a bass player and lost a drummer.
Subsequently Jeffery Wegener guests on this recording on
Ed Kueppers , Prince Melon Lable.
I'm not sure what happened after that, according to the short bio
I just quoted from above, they were to find a new drummer
and embark on their first tour of eastern Australia in late April 82.
By 1984 Peter was playing with the laughing clowns
and recorded on the next Lp I'm blogging.
If anyone can fill in the history please do in the comments.

Download Here

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Waifs

The Waifs debut album is a joy, the wondrously folksy, acoustic
sound of this trio, the strong but delightful vocals of the girls,
adds to out of Australia's most successful folk exports ever.
I first saw these guys play Woodford in the later 90's,
they were unknown outside these circles, but had a fanatic
following. They put on a mighty show too, these days seeing them
in a small, intimate setting like that would be impossible.

So in 15 years or so this band, who I've seen open for Bob Dylan,
have cemented themselves as a fiercely independent,
but successful act, crossing from the independent folk to mainstream,
through the hard work of constant touring and very good songs.
In December 2006, it was announced that Bridal Train had won not only the Best Folk Category in the US Songwriting Competition, but had taken out the Grand Overall Prize, the first time a non-American had won this prestigious award.
The band returned to Australia in March 2007 to perform at the Womadelaide Festival, their first Australian performance in 2 years, followed up by the West Coast and East Coast Blues and Roots Festivals, amongst others.
Last year saw them release their 5th studio album, recorded in Nashville.
There story is a wonderful inspiration for anyone starting out at the bottom,
they have never sent a cd to a record company, in that respect they remind me
of the also fiercely independent Michelle Shocked.
An their music isn't light years away from her ether.
If you missed these guys somehow give this a listen,
you won't be disappointed.

The Wait Song - the waifs

We drive an old beat up car
We play our out of tune guitars
Mother Nature keeps us safe

Even when we’re off our face
A waif is all I want to be
Not better for you no worse for me
You’ve got a mobile phone and heaps of money

We ain’t got much but at least we’re free
You may sit and talk and stare

But he’s not gonna cut his hair
Not gonna patch my jeans or wash my face

Going to keep on being a waif
A waif you see is an unloved child
A kid that’s stray and gone kind of wild
You can change your name, change your look
You can even change your style
But why don’t you come and live with us for a while
We pick up work when we can
Our clothes are all second hand Harmonicas are old
and abused
But she can still play the blues

Waifs Web Site

Download Here

Sirocco - The Breath of Time

Heres another band you most likely haven't heard of, I saw them play
many times, I seem to remember mostly at the Maleny folk festival.
Sirocco are one of the best world music bands this country ever
produced. Truly a joy to watch and listen to. Below is a bio I found
on the web.

Sirocco was formed in 1980 by Guy Madigan, Bill O’Toole
and Andrew De Teliga.
Since then, Sirocco has developed
its own unique blend
of music which combines Celtic,
Mediterranean, Middle Eastern
and South American music
with that of Australia’s Aboriginal
and Anglo-Irish heritage.

Members of the group play over thirty different musical instruments
including the Arabic ud, bagpipes, bodhran,
bombard, didgeridoo,
electric guitar, flute, Greek bouzouki,
hammered dulcimer,
medieval shawm, seedpods, and Turkish baglama.

They also make many of the instruments that they play from Australian timbers.
All of these instruments reflect the diverse influences
make up Australia’s rich musical background which has developed
through its increasing multicultural society.
Sirroco has toured many overseas countries as cultural ambassadors
for Australia. It was the first Australian band to tour both Russia and China
and it also played in India and other places in Asia
and America.
Its performances have included: the Seoul
Olympic Arts Festival,
1988, Houston Festival (USA),
1988, Kawaguchi World Festival Fusion,
Japan, 1992,
and the Vientiane Theatre, Laos, 1995.
The group has played extensively throughout Australia in concerts for
Musica Viva Australia and also works in schools for the
New South Wales
Department of Education, giving concerts and
workshops which show
the diversity of music and instruments
found in Australia today.

This album is a wonderful journey, a Middle Eastern , Turkish
inspired journey.
I once saw this band at a small Folk festival out from a
Place called Toowoomba,
about 2hrs drive west from Brisbane.
It was about 45mins out again so it was out in the sticks.
Sirocco were the head line band, but We had gone to see
some friends play in a wonderful Latin band Gaviota.
In a performance I'll never forget,
at the hight of an electrical storm the power failed completely.
The band, which I'll add had a lot of electronic gear, samplers
and the like, didn't miss a beat.
Being percussion masters they kept playing and rounded
everyone into a circle for a middle eastern type dance,
by gas light, which had replaced the torches by now.
I don't think there was anyone who wasn't impressed.
These albums are very hard to find now,
I wish I had bought more stuff back then.

Download Here

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Woodford Folk Festival

Penelope Swales

Shane Howard

Archie Roach
Ruby Hunter

Neil Murray

The Wood ford Folk Festival looms large
in my musical consciousness, before I had kids
(7 years ago) I attended every year for 10 years,
from the 3rd festival in 1990 till 99/2000.
It started at Maleny in easter 1987 for 3 days.
They say there was round 800 people
in attendance,
by 92/93 the 8th festival,
(which after the first one was held
after Christmas till new years day),
it was obvious they had to move after
attendance had grown to 65,000.
So they purchased 320 acres of land that became the Woodford site.
The attendance last year was round the
130,000 mark, with 2500 performers
making it the largest folk festival in the southern hemisphere.
Woodford is about 45mins drive north of where I live near Brisbane
which means I should go more often these days.
The grand finale of the whole festival
is the fire event with is a kind of hippy
extravaganza with a cast of 100's.
I've dug around the boxes of photos we have, to share a few of
the artists I've blogged here and a few of the festival.

Me and the fire event

Penelope Swales - Live at Woodford '96 -97'

"Penelope Swales is a unique Australian singer/songwriter and performer. She performs usually as a soloist but also performs with many of her colleagues in various line-ups. She is a quality performer who always wins her audience irrespective of their age or demographic background. She writes and sings about contemporary and historic Australian life developing great pictures of the issues and the experience of ordinary people. She has much to offer her audience and I believe she is a great representative of Australian culture."

- Bill Hauritz, Director Queensland Folk Federation, Woodford Folk Festival

Penelope Swales is one of the greatest artist amongst in fine group of
folk performers in this country. A brilliant songwriter and performer
with something like 9 albums to her credit, she is truly under rated
and overlooked. I've only heard her played on 4zzz and the only
people who have heard of her are those who attend the various
folk festivals around the country.
Penelope sings songs about herself, particularly about men she has
developed relationships with, social justice with no hold back and
people. Shes is both funny and deadly serious and seems to approach
things in a way unlike anyone else.
This album was recorded over the 96 - 97 Woodford Folk Festival
in various locations around the festival site I'm sure I was at all
of the performances, myself and some friends made it our mission
to watch
Penelope when ever she played.
She once turned up to a gig and because of rain the
performance was canned cause the power was out.
She recognized us as those crazy people who stalk her,
sat at our table and asked us what we would like to hear
and proceeded to take our requests and play them, while
having a coffee with us, what a nice person.
Penelope is at her best live and this is the perfect introduction.
She starts the Cd with
"Do you know me really well ,
do you know me well enough to like play the Panther
without preparing you first for my personality"

The Panther - Penelope Swales

I couldn't say to save my face that he dragged me into his lair.
More that I sat at the door and hugged my knees
and said "Can I come in there?"
He smiled, turned away, arched his back and then he said "Mmm....."
He smiled as though embarassed,
thought awhile
and then said " Yeah, hop in. "
It was then that I realised I'd climbed straight into the den of a panther.
Like Leda and the Swan but more carnivorous.
I put my arms around his deep chest,
I put my face in his fur.
I breathed deep his animal scent,

arched my back beneath his paws.
And there rose inside me, deep in my human flesh, deep in my female flesh,
an answering panther call Rraah
I watched him play like big cats play, with water.
I watched him cautious like big cats are with fire.
I watched him watching me, that sideways,
feline glance burning with a cool fire.

The flicker of interest concealing the furnace of desire.
In the middle of the night,
I rang my mother.

You'll just have to listen to hear what her Mother says.

Theres lots of great songs on this but the stand out
track is the last one, the 16 min spoken word journey
leading into the song about
Penelope's time living
on the streets in Sydney as a young girl and another
woman she spent time with. I heard this story and song
one year at Woodford and I was a fan for life,
its really unbelievable.
She decided to record it as it was always being
requested and it became to painful to keep regurgitating it.
Give this a listen you won't be disappointed and checkout
Penelope's other stuff on her site - Here.
I'm sure she like some legit support.

Download Here

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Cantolibre - Pure Madera Pure Wood

I'm taking things in a different direction with this band from Sydney.
These guys are Chilean and Argentinean Australians who like so many
of the Latin Americans that ended up in Australia as refugees,
brought their culture with them and enhanced this country.
I mentioned in an earlier post how I found myself rather involved
with the Latin community in Brisbane, in the 1980's and 90's.
This band were friends of friends and I met them and saw them
play a bit. Lovely people who can play brilliantly and understand the
music of a region which is some of the most beautiful in the world.
If you aren't familiar, this Lp focus's on Andean music. the haunting
music incorporating instruments indigenous to the region,
which is what lead me into my love of all things Latin.
Try it out its excellent.

Download Here

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Archie Roche - Charcoal lane

Tomorrow a historic and long time coming apology will be made by
our new prime minster Kevin Rudd. For those who don't know
what this is all about, He's saying sorry to what has become knowen
as the stolen generation.
This explaination of the term is found on the Dreaming Online site

The greatest assault on Indigenous cultures and family life was the
forced separation or 'taking away' of Indigenous children from their families.
This occurred in every Australian state form the late 1800s until the practice
was officially ended in 1969. During this time as many as 100 000 children
were separated from their families.
These children became known as the Stolen Generation.
The separation took three forms:
putting Indigenous children into government-run institutions;
adoption of children by white families;
and the fostering of children into white families.
The last two strategies were particularly applied to 'fair-skinned' children.
These forced separations were part of deliberate policies of assimilation.
Their aim was to cut children off from their culture to have them raised
to think and act as 'white'.
In the early 80's as I finished school and began working I listened to the
Murrie radio show on 4zzz. It was on Saturday mornings and became
a source of great music and political awareness that lead me to more
personal involvement with Aboriginal people later.
One thing I learn quick was how much hurt this taking of children had
caused. This part of our history has only become understood
in a widespread fashion in the last 10 years or so
and still so many don't get it.
So I had to post on this and find some deadly music to go with it.
Its important for this to happen and I hope its the beginning of true
reconciliation in this country.
I read an article in the "Australian"(newspaper) today from Noel Pearson
One of the leading Indigenous leaders today, You can find it here
In it he makes this important statement

"One of my misgivings about the apology has been my belief
that nothing good will come from viewing ourselves,

and making our case on the basis of our status, as victims.
We have been -- and the people who lost their families certainly were
-- victimised in history, but we must stop the politics of victimhood.
We lose power when we adopt this psychology.
Whatever moral power we might gain over white Australia
from presenting ourselves as victims, we lose in ourselves.
My worry is this apology will sanction a view of history
that cements a detrimental psychology of victimhood,
rather than a stronger one of defiance, survival and agency."
Archie Roche and his wife Ruby Hunter are survivors.
Both taken as children and ending up living on the streets,
they became two of the most respected musicians of their
And Archie's first album "Charcoal lane"contains the amazing song
"They took the children away" this has become an anthem
for the stolen generation,
When I met this humble man I asked him if he minded
if I sang his song publicly, he responded by telling how
he had sung it in schools and other places to educate
those who didn't know what had happened to them,
and he didn't mind at all.

If you haven't heard this its well worth it, Archie has
an incredible voice and is one of Australia's great singer
songwriters and this is a great day to listen to a true

Download Here

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Go-Betweens - live-to-air Brisbane 4ZZZ 10/11/79

This is a very rare and historically important recording,
I've collected a lot of Go-betweens shows,
but this has to be the oldest.
Recorded by 4zzz and broadcast live I assume it was at
a market day this was the highlight of a weekend of fundraising
mayhem zzz would undertake sometime every year in October so with the date given as November I could be wrong bout that.
I was a bit young to be getting to things like market
days in 79, but I went to a few later ones before the
station was booted off the uni campus.
They were loads of fun with bands playing and stalls
selling all sorts of weird stuff, food like cane toad burgers
(not really made from cane toads), a nick cave look a like
contest one year and the AM radio throwing contest.
I remember one year comedian Gerry Connelly dressed
up as the Queen opening the festivities and very
nearly getting hit by one of those small transistor
radios which someone had thrown farer than expected.
Enjoy this, its a great recording, bit of a rough performance, but well worth having

Track List

01. Lee Remick

02. Help Or Something
03. Don't Let Him Come Back

04. Lies

05. Stop Before You Say It
06. Waiting Here So Long

07. What The Sea Wants
08. Green Light
09. Only Sinners Care
10. The Sound Of Rain
11. First Time Ever

12. Karen

13. Hope

14. But You're Close

15. People Say

16. Breathing In The Cold Air

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Don’t Look Back concert series - Ed Kuepper and Died Pretty

“Oh it is such an honour. You’ve got to go into this with a certain amount of professionalism. You can’t just get out of your minds and go on. It has to be an extra, extra special night.” Ron Peno

The Look Back Concert series hit Brisbane last night,
after opening in Sydney the night before and it was fantastic.
After having a Chinese New Year banquet at nearby
Chinatown in the Valley and being subjected to stereo
Chinese dragons at one stage, we headed to the Tivoli.
Just before Ed Kuepper took to the stage,
With a fine 4 piece band, including
legendary Jeffrey Wegener on drums,
they launched into the Fine Kuepper Lp,"Honey Steels Gold."
This is a great choice of Lp for something like this,
not a bad song on the album, quite a few favorites from the
Kuepper canon and some songs that rarely get
an outing, like "Not Too Soon",
which Ed commented on being the first time He'd played it in Brisbane.
"Everything I've Got Belongs To You"
was introduced as the reason the album was made,
some German record company wanted it as a single, send the money
over Ed recorded it and they went broke closing shop,
leaving Ed with a song, so they recorded some more songs
and the song that started it all never became a single.
"The Way I Made You Feel" did however and its a ripper,
which they really pumped out.
Ending the wonderful "Summer Field" , the band came back to do an
incredible encore with "Electrical Storm",
then having blowen us away they left
the stage for Died Pretty.
This was mostly the same band I saw play a few weeks ago
at the release of Ed's new album and they are all incredible musicians.

I got the impression that the lions share of punters had come
especially to see Died Pretty. I've been to the Tivoli on many occasions
but this was one of the biggest and most excited crowds
I've ever seen there.
From the start Ron Peno and the original band that recorded
"Doughboy Hollow" had the crowd eating out of their hand.
It was an electric atmosphere and a very excited crowd,
maybe us old Gen X'ers don't get out enough,
but there was the gigantic roars between each song
and as the new ones started. With Dc second song in
I thought the collective ecstasy would be too much
and there was so far to go.
Peno was in fine voice, Brett Myers guitar incredible
and the band playing as if they'd never stopped.
There was no stopping them tonight, as they worked through the songs,
not a dud amongst them. "Sweetheart", "Godbless", "The Love Song"
among my favorites, ending with the beautiful "Turn Your Head"
they left, returning to the very loud audience to do 6 songs in 2 encores,
with songs like "Stoneage Cinderella","Everybody Moves", "Desperate Hours",
"Stops 'n' Starts" and "Blue Sky Day"
At the end Ron thanked us and left a satisfied and truly buzzing audience.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Steve Kilbey - Remindlessness

Steve Kilbey, from the iconic Australian band the Church has had quite
an impressive solo career. This 1990 release often described as haunting,
melancholic and evocative is a masterpiece.
I saw Steve do a rare solo show around when this was released, it was
at a spring Livid here in Spring Hill.
He opened with a stripped back version of "life's little luxuries" a brilliant
song, then managed to forget the lyrics of just about every thing he tried
to play. He explained later that it was true what they say about short term
memory lost and marijuana.

Life's Little Luxuries - Steve Kilbey

What you need is a flattering mirror
A strong elixir with no hangover properties
Nineteen year old lovers who can stay hard all night
A million dollars with no strings attached
I say yeah yeah yeah
But you don't know where you can find it
I say yeah yeah yeah
Life's little luxuries

What you need is a vial full of asses milk

Your very own doctor to prescribe you the blues
A brilliant career with critical acclaim
A trip to India A trip down the Ganges
A copy of Justine, signed by de Sade
A bag or two of Neil's purple heads

Gold-tipped, silver printed, black calling cards
A villa in Sydney An igloo in Alaska
A girl who can come Anytime
I ask her
Thirteen red peacocks with eyes like the sun
Monogrammed bullets for my pearl handled gun
A Rolls a Mercedes A dozen Blue Poles
The flesh of my servants The deed to their souls
To meet Damien Lovelock from The Celibate Rifles

Chocolates and salmon Truffles and trifles
Wait there's more
and more
There's gotta be more

What a song!
To Meet Damien Lovelock from the celibate rifles.
He must of loved that.
If you like the Church at all
you gonna love this.

Download Here

Ambience - Various artists

This 1987 release was a project of the ambience radio show on JJJ, which
was on sunday nights. I never heard the show but liked the look of this
compilation which quickly became one of my favorites.
When the program was conceived in late 84 such music by Australian artists
was rare, a situation changed in part by artists on this Cd.
There are the artists that you'll be familiar with, such as Not Drowning Waving,
Steve Kilbey, Chris Abrahams and the wonderful Gondwanaland.
I plan to cover all these artists, however this really special Cd will serve as an
If your wondering what this is like its very beautiful instrumental music, its
also very intelligent and very relaxing, I remember many years ago camped
at the Lamington national park camp site, playing this round sunset and
people coming up and asking what it was, being quite blowen away by this
If anyone knows more about the artists, or the radio program please tell us
via the comments.

Track list
01 - Movement One (Beginnings) - Andrew Wilson.
02 - Ephemeral Lakes - Gondwanaland
03 - Orpheus - The Umbrellas
04 - Water drops - Not Drowning, Waving
05 - The Cheshire Cat - Not Drowning, Waving
06 - Bin Dancing - John Elder
07 - Twirly- Bird - Michael Atherton
08 - CFD - Chris Abrahams
09 - A sad Little Piano Piece - Steve Kilbey
10 - Napoleon's Army, Christmas Eve, Outside Moscow - Steve Kilbey

Download Here

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Shane Howard - Time Will Tell

Shane Howard should be a national treasure,
His music career started in 1982
with the legendary Goanna Band.
He wrote and recorded the Australian classic
"Solid Rock", which in His own words
"Threw me into aboriginal culture without
a safety net."
The first mainstream song to talk about
aboriginal rights its impact on this country
is felt to this day. Goanna released a 2nd Lp in 1985,
Oceania and split some stage after that.
Shane disappeared for the next few years,
after some personal issues and reappears in 1988
with His 1st solo Lp, Back to the track,
Which I'm really after if anyone has it.
1990 sees the release of, River,
his 2nd solo outing, which I may post and
1993 brings us this most wonderful Cd.
These 1st 3 solo Cds are all out of print now,
which is a shame. Since 93 Shane's
released 6 Cds and in 98 Goanna reformed,
played a Woodford (which I saw)
and released the brilliant, Spirit Returns.
I've seen Him play countless times,
he is a master and even met Him once,
a very humble and talented fellow.
This Cd has some of his best tunes and some fine lyrics,
his music is comforting yet challenging,
his understanding of Aboriginal culture
and its importance to the identity of this country unparalleled,
His ability to share His own journey inspirational.

Flesh and Blood - Shane Howard

Walk with me talk with me tell me your stories
I'll do my best to understand you
You're flesh and blood, flesh and blood
Don't refuse me your love,
More than words can express
More than wealth or success,

Oh there's a thousand things to do
So let's start here with me and you,

All the pain that you feel
All the hurt that seems so real
Oh come on walk with me, talk with me,
tell me your stories

I'll do my very best to understand you
You're flesh and blood

Flesh and blood is a case in point, written to His estranged Children,
He shares something few songwriters have had the courage too.
This song was picked up by Irish folk singer Mary Black, who
recorded it and had a hit single in Ireland. Shane ended up touring
Ireland and connecting with His Celtic roots.

The other song I'd like to highlight is the beautiful Murri Time.

Murri Time - Shane Howard

Brother, Sister, Now our time is growing short.
Do we fear what we face, Do we carry a torch.
How long, How long, Do these scars take to heal.

To be free, spiritually, once again.
Murrie man, Murrie woman .
Do you still walk, on that same ground.
Do you remember, special feeling.

Musgrave Park, Brisbane rain,
Murri land.

Now I'll explain Musgrave park, is a park in south Brisbane,
Which is a meeting place, of cultural significance to the local
Aboriginal people who refer to themselves as Murri's.
Now this is a beaut album and the fantastic version of
Dylan's I shall be released is worth the download alone.

Shane's Web site

Download Here

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Wondering Kind - Neil Murray

At the end of last year I bought two Cds from two artists I really admire.
They were Shane Howard's newest "Songs of love and Resistance" and
Neil Murray's "Overnighter". I recommend both these Cds, however
because you might not know these guys I'll introduce them to you.
I'm going to cover Neil Murray first.
Neil is a true legend, as a young man he went to work in central Australia
at Papunya, as a teacher for the western desert aboriginal community.
It was here that the legendary Warumpi Band formed with Neil as a
founding member along with Sammy and Gordon Butcher and George
Rrurramba, More about these guys later.
Since 1989 Neil has forged a solo career which has earned him critical
acclaim, but not what I'd call commercial success.
I've seen play shows to very small groups of people yet give it his
all, yet when this guy puts outs something I listen.
He sings about the essence of Australia, He knows this country like
few of us do, I mean I've been to the Western Desert Country, yet
Few Australians I know have. He sings about Australia from the gulf
to Broome, from Melbourne to Alice and He can tell a story.
For you to get to know this guy I've picked his 2000 Lp
"The Wondering Kind "
Theres some brilliant tracks on this, let me tell you about my

"Driving days" is a hoot

"I've held the wheel on stormy nights
I've steered my way through the city lights

I've driven with rage and I've driven with tears

And I've changed my wheels every year

Well my driving days are over now
I've seen the bush, I've seen the towns

I've done more miles than I care about

My driving days are over now

A young ,man told me the other night,
He was going out west he had a job in a mine

He said, “Why don't you come along for the ride

It'd do you good, open your eyes”

I said, “I've done that trip already son

I've seen that country I know where you run

I followed that track to the setting sun

You just take care which road you're on”

But my favorite track is Good light in Broome
For those for don't know where Broome is
Its right up the top of Australia, considerably
west of Darwin and well, bloody remote.
About as far away as you can get from the rest
of Australia and this song turns it into a kind of
nirvana. I've just got to post the whole song.
Its one of the best stories in a song I've ever heard.


I was hangin’ out in Sydney and I was goin’ down
I’d done too many parties and my money was runnin’ out
Then I met an old man, who lived all alone
He had two dogs for company, that’s all he owned
He was savin’ his pension for a one-way fare
Said when he had enough, he was getting’ outta there
I said “Really, what are you gonna do?”
He smiled and said
“There’s good light in Broome”

I went out to western Queensland, working in the sheds
Met a girl in Quilpie and we got wed
Moved up to the Gulf, had our first born
We were livin’ in a caravan, I was workin’ on the prawns
I came home from a stormy sea
She’d up and gone and left a note for me
On it she wrote, “I’m sick of you”
That’s when I felt- there’s good light in Broome

Good light in Broome and I’ll be there soon

I know exactly what I’m a gonna do
Sit on the beach, stare at the moon
Haven’t you heard? there’s good light in Broome

I headed down south, couldn’t take the hint
Saw a lot of pubs, I had a lot to drink
I was runnin’ pretty ragged, I didn’t hardly eat
I was thinkin’ about her and what she did to me
There was a road and a hairpin bend
Then I woke up in a hospital bed
“How do ya feel?” said a voice in the gloom
I gave the answer, “there’s good light in Broome"

I went truckin’ out of Melbourne, back and forth to Perth
Didn’t take long and it seemed like a curse
My eyes were on the road, but my mind was somewhere else
When I pulled in to a Nullarbor roadhouse
The waitress came over and she’s there lookin’ at me
She asked me how I was, I said “Bit ordinary”
She said “I thought that might be your tune”
I said “Don’t tell me, there’s good light in Broome

Good light in Broome, well I’ll be there soon
I know exactly what I’m a gonna do
Sit on the beach, stare at the moon
Haven’t you heard? there’s good light in Broome

Well when I get to Cable Beach, I’ll fall right out of the truck and into the sea
With my clothes still on, I’ll plunge under the waves
And all the dirt will drain away
And just like Bunjil, I’ll get two dogs
And every evenin’ I’ll walk them along
On the edge of the country, take in the view
Just like I heard, there’s good light in Broome

Good light in Broome, well I’ll be there soon
I know exactly what I’m a gonna do
Sit on the beach, stare at the moon
Didn’t I tell ya? there’s good light in Broome

I Hope that some of you will get like this so much that you'll
want to buy a CD or so, cause I don't think Neils rich and he
deserves your support. visit his web site here

Download Here

Monday, February 4, 2008

The Models - Local and or General

The Models were a great band one of my favorites and very quirky, at least till
James Freud joined them and they became, well very poppy.
Don't get me wrong James Freud was a fav of mine too (and Ive got this solo lp of his
to rip one day), but Sean Kelly was an amazing vocalist.
I saw them in 1983 when they played support for Mr Bowie here at Lang Park,
I don't think James was with em then I could be wrong, But I did see them play
somewhere like the St Lucia Refectory later and He was with them then. the girls
in the audience wouldn't let you forget.
This Lp is tremendous I love all the songs, but its more like the feel of the album
that I like and "Unhappy" is one of the best pop songs ever.
Its the non-conventional approach musically and Sean Kelly most non-conventional
vocals that make this and all the early Models.
This was their 2nd Lp released in 1981.


1. Local And/Or General
2. Truth About Truth About Scientists
3. Unhappy
4. Telstar
5. Dying for My Country at the War
6. Drive and Reflex
7. Bantam Had
8. Man O' Action
9. Drunk in the House
10. Tearing Hair Out
11. Rate of Change

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