Friday, March 31, 2006

van honoured in nashville

Oldies songster Van Morrison was as excited as a scientologist on Oprah and showed his usual exuberance when graciously accepting his Van Morrison Day plaque from Nashville Mayor - Bill Purcell.

Monday, March 20, 2006

artic monkeys - my arse

I've just upped 2 X MP3s of my offsprings band.

After a sell out gig at Bar Bushka in Smith St, Sons Of Mothers will be playing The Rob Roy and the Barleycorn and others.

very 'eavy, very 'umble but tight and enthusiastic, all originals - motto - "Go Hard Or Go Home"

Web site coming soon.

Grab March 2006 fresh and crusty demos for your pussyPod now :

Next track here soon: ....

Following David's advice I've lowered my standards. Here's track 1 done with VBR and lower top rate. Comes in at 4.5MB rather than 10.5 above. Make your choice. Given that most people listen on crappy PC speakers I'm guessing it doesn't matter much.

David has done a piece on Augie March and MOO and made me want to have a listen.

Friday, March 17, 2006

vale michael dugan

My ex-next door neighbour and friend of 25+ years Michael Dugan died yesterday. Michael had not been well for some time.

When I first met Michael he was in the King Hippo Poetry Band and played at Frank Traynor's Jazz Club although it was more like a "folk" venue. ( I think in Little Lonsdale St).

Extract from Laurie Duggan's (no relation) diary 1971:

"..6th December. I am committed to the poetry reading — SAVE THE PRAM FACTORY — Friday night. An ad. in the Review — Charles Buckmaster, Garrie Hutchinson, Chris Wallace-Crabbe, Russell Deeble, King Hippo poetry bank (sic.) & others. I despair that anyone would listen & fear that I will have lost all the courage I had in Canberra and Sydney in May. [The misprint should have read ‘King Hippo poetry band’, an outfit put together by Michael Dugan. I remember them on one occasion playing a folk-rock version of Keats’ ‘La Belle Dame Sans Merci’ before an audience of septuagenarians at a P.E.N. Club gathering.] "

I don't know a lot about
Michael's writerly life but he always was proud of the fact that he had never held a "real" job except for a bit of writing for the infamous Institute of Multicultural Affairs when he did There goes the neighbourhood - Australia's migrant experience.

Michael was generous in his help to young and beginning (and experienced) writers and was Vice-President of the
Victorian Fellowship of Australian Writers.

He was long associated with
Overland magazine and according to John Jenkins (another ex-neighbour from Michael's house if I recall correctly) :

"....after Overland 112, he (Barrie) handed the laurel wand (which could sometimes be a thorny one) on to Michael Dugan. During this time, Barrie also sought occasional input from Shelton Lea, myself and others. Michael continued to select poetry after John McLaren became editor in 1993 (for Overland 131-147) and for the early period of Ian Syson's stewardship, beginning in 1997, up until Overland 149. Pam Brown was formally listed as Poetry Editor in Overland 151, winter 1998. Previously, the role had not been publicly defined and was even sometimes shared between several people, with ad hoc input from Overland's 'extended family' of editorial helpers, although Michael Dugan, tirelessly and always meticulously, did the lion's share of this work. "

Kris Hemensley writes:

"We were thus excited to discover Crosscurrents magazine, edited in Melbourne by Michael Dugan, which appeared two weeks before my own. Both Taylor and I wrote to Dugan immediately, sending him our life work!, inviting him to our next La Mama reading. It is interesting that even in this small city, Dugan hadn’t heard of the La Mama readings, that presumably without co-ordination groups might exist in mutual isolation.
The poets published in the first issues of Our Glass and Crosscurrents make interesteing reading: Beard, Hemensley, Dugan, Taylor, Shelton Lea (who joined with the short-lived rivals of La Mama, Sweeny Reed’s glam-poets at Strines, Carlton, featuring that enigma, Russel Deeble!), Paul Smith (then a Cheshire’s bookseller), Romeril, Rushbrooke, Charles Buckmaster (whose address, Gruyere, was so unlikely that I was sure it was a hoax, but on consulting Mike Dugan, found that the same young poet, experiencing problems at high school, inspired by a single line of William Golding’s Pincher Martin he claimed, and a prolific poet if ever there was one, was real), Mal Morgan, Terry Gillmore (“influences — Pound, W.C. Williams, Olson, et al”: reading that in Crosscurrents made my heart flutter!), Geoffrey Egglestone, Frances Yule, Andy Jach, Norman Campbell Thomson, Maurice Benton. Add to these, Ian Robertson, who was a friend of Buckmaster, whom Buckmaster published in his own type-sheet, The Great Auk, in September, 1968, just prior to the first La Mama Poets Workshop Reading, and you have the nucleus of the poets who gravitated towards La Mama and/ or the little magazines, type-sheets, that sprang out of the place.

I don't know what to say except that as far as I know Michael never held a driving licence and always tipped taxi drivers a bit too generously for me.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

no t-shirts - collar and tie please

Inspired by a discussion over at the rock and coffee blog Larff At Us Pros on the talent of Charlie Watts I put together a small set of the elegantly dressed one's wisdom.

"You don't think I take this seriously do you? It's just a fuckin' rock and roll band"

"When I'm at home I listen to classical music most of the time on the radio. If I put CDs on I usually play jazz. But my wife plays ah, what do you call it, rock 'n' roll or soul music, Motown, things like that, so I hear all of it."

"I don't need to hear Bill to go through a song. I need to hear Keith to go through a song. I know Bill will be playing what I'm playing anyway. I need to hear Keith because it's all there: the time, the chord changes, and all the licks you have to follow."

"I never had lessons. Used to try to play to records, which I hated doing. Still can't play to them."

"I've seen Keith fall asleep at business meetings about millions of dollars for him-because of heroin, just nod out and then wake up and answer a question."

"Keith is the start and the finish. I have to hear Mick, but I can follow Mick like lip-synch almost if the mic goes out. It's not as much fun, but I can do that. But if I don't hear Keith, I get completely lost in things."

"My whole block used to listen to
Savoy jazz records as kids. I never used to listen to Elvis Presley or anything. It's only through meeting Mick and Keith, really that I got interested in things like that. The only person I suppose I really loved a lot was Fats Domino."

"The world of this is a load of crap. You get all these bloody people, so incredibly sycophantic."

"Usually I can hear the pianos, the saxophone, and usually I can hear Ronnie. But I really need to listen to Keith and Mick. The rest of the band is sort of an embellishment to that."

"When people talk about the '60s I never think that was me there. It was me and I was in it, but I was never enamoured with all that. It's supposed to be sex and drugs and rock and roll and I'm not really like that. I've never really seen the Rolling Stones as anything."

"Another drummer who's quite brilliant is
Jerry Allison. He used to play with Buddy Holly and The Crickets. He's probably the best player that I know. He doesn't really play the drums-he plays the songs, and that is really more important within the context of that music."

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

van pines for crystal set

VAN MORRISON has launched a scathing attack on the internet, insisting it is responsible for the dumbing down of society and modern culture.

The GLORIA hitmaker is convinced the worldwide web has caused more problems than it has solved, and insists Earth would be a better place without it.

"Now, because of the internet, everyone's suddenly a big shot. I'm talking about people who think that because they've looked up a website, they know everything.
"You used to have to study things but now you can just find it on the internet, and everybody feels very important because they have access to this stuff.

"It was a different culture when I was young. Quality, respect - they seem to have vanished."

FXH says: I can only agree.

Oh and Amanda I think he means YOU, you young whippersnapper.

Silly old prick. But I love him.