Saturday, July 11, 2009

Roaring Jack - The Smoke of Innocence

In keeping with the Irish/Australian vibe of the last post,
Tim has shown us the way to more joyful music to drink
Jameson's to and that's my favorite drink.
So raise your glass to Tim and enjoy.
This is a great band of whom I knew nothing.
Thanks Tim.

Roaring Jack - The Old Divide and Rule

Roaring Jack is an Australian Celtic punk/Folk punk band
of the 1980s and 1990s. The band formed in 1985 and played
their first shows in Sydney in 1986. Original members were
Alistair Hulett (acoustic guitar and vocals), Dave Williams
(bass), Steve Thompson (drums), Bob (Rab) Mannell
(electric guitar and bouzouki) and Hunter Owens
(accordion/mandolin and vocals).Owens was later replaced
by Steve (Steph) Miller on the same instruments and on vocals.
Rod Gilchrist replaced Steve Thompson on drums after the
recording of their first album.
The band built a cult following by playing the Sydney pub
circuit eventually scoring regular slots at the Harold Park
Hotel in Glebe and the Sandringham Hotel in Newtown.
Their music had a strong political focus with emphasis on
Scottish sectarianism, Aboriginal Rights and union activism.
In keeping with this the band gave many benefit performances
for a diverse range of left wing causes, including the workers
of Cockatoo Island with fellow rebel rousers Urban Guerillas,
Tim Anderson and against the first Gulf War.
The band went on to support the likes of Billy Bragg,
the Pogues and The Men They Couldn't Hang during their
Australian tours.
Roaring Jack recorded for independent Sydney label Mighty Boy
Records. They released the Street Celtability mini-LP in 1987,
The Cat Among The Pigeons LP (1988) and
Through The Smoke Of Innocence LP (1990).
German label Jump Up Records released all of these as
The Complete Works, a double CD package, in 2002.
The band split in 1992. Alistair Hulett now has a successful
solo career as an internationally recognised folk musician.
Steph Miller formed his own band, The Wickermen in 1991 and
spent most of the 1990s as a multi-instrumentalist in the
successful Sydney band, Eva Trout. Steph released a solo CD,
Strange Sea, in 2004.

Download Here


Mona said...

Nice post and I must admit I had never heard of then, am going to investigate the solo stuff now...

Anonymous said...

I've got the "Street Celtability" and "Cat among the pigeons" albums on vinyl.

I saw them at the Barwon Club in Geelong, back in the 80s. I'd recorded an interview with them to play on my community radio show and plug the gig, but due to scheduling mixups, it never got played.

I think about 1/2 dozen people showed up. The rest of Geelong missed a bloody good show.

Anonymous said...

Nowt to do with Roaring Jack, just a general query ...

I remember hearing a song on RRR a few times in about 81 or 82, called "Ride the bones of Elvis", by a Sydney (I do believe) group called Inner City Unit.

Never heard it since. Does anyone else remember it?

Bob, Brisbane, Australia said...

Sorry Clownfishdesign I can't help maybe someone else?

Mona said...

Don't know that song, but there was an Inner City Unit that was an offshoot from Hawkwind...featured sax player Nik Turner.
Yep just googled and it was the same from the album 'Maximum Effect'
always worth remembering that Google can be yr friend!