M I K E R U D D B I L L P U T T . C O MM M I K E R U D D B I L L P U T T . C O MM M I K E R U D D B I L L P U T T . C O MM M I K E R U D D
Mike's Pith & Wind (cont.)
..successfully defy the medical profession in concert with governments for decades, in the process clogging up the courts and generally enriching the legal profession, a profession that we all know will argue for or against any proposition for a buck.
The advertising industry often quotes the example of the former East Germany, which they would tell you was lured back to the West with the promise of Levi jeans, pop records and flashy automobiles. It might surprise you that some former East Germans - and Russians for that matter - are nostalgic for the good old days of the German Democratic Republic and the Soviet Union and were quite comfortable with just the one brand of detergent - and just the one brand of car for that matter. By contrast today, we have the increasingly common psychiatric condition caused by being confronted with too many choices leading to a state of confusion and even desperation, especially among the elderly. (Settle down!)
The elephant in the room is that the poor on the planet will always be poor and will never be spoiled for choice and so advertising for them is not only irrelevant but a moral affront - for those of us that can afford to be moralistic anyway. The frustration is that while there is currently enough of everything to go around, advertising is now stroking the affluent bit's consumer class and telling us we must now buy multiples of everything – like two or three cars, a TV for each room etc. so we can keep the corporations solvent.
This all maybe true, but I’m getting bored with the topic and I need to do some advertising of my own. The fact is that 2017, the year we’re still enduring, is a watershed year for me and my bands, and while it seems obvious now, I’ve only just come to realise that fact.
I’ve got more variations of the band these days than you can shake a stick at, starting with the mother-ship Spectrum with its own particular variants, Spectrum to Ariel, (with former Ariel-ist Glyn Mason), and Spectrum plus, (with another Mason, this time Madder Lake’s Brenden Mason), then there’s the acoustically inclined The Mike Rudd trio (formerly 1st BASE), with piano accordionist George Butrumlis and bassist Jeremy Alsop, the recently invented Mike Rudd’s Indelibles, the latest iteration of the four-piece Spectrum that plays selections of my music from Then to Now with some blues thrown in, and what about Mick’n’Broc, the fun cover duo I have with Spectrum’s bassist Broc O’Connor, and even just me, Mike Rudd solo, possibly accompanied by an errant loop pedal but otherwise on my own, and there are even more – truly! (See the Booking page if you don’t believe me – or just see the Booking page).
Despite this dizzying array of options I’m actually playing less and as a result enjoying it less. Gone are the halcyon days of playing three or four gigs a week with the loyal Spectrum chaps, who didn’t find it necessary to moonlight in other bands to make ends meet.
It’s a measure of how precarious things have got when the loss of Spectrum’s two formerly dependable regular gigs round Melbourne threatens our very existence – honing our skills and arrangements live and in public is a thing of the far distant past. Now I sometimes struggle to even find my voice and remembering the niceties of arrangements without going through a refresher course before the one-off gig we’ve fluked is a real challenge. It’s taken a lot of the fun out of performing live.
Then there are the occasions where you look at the audience and think that there’s nobody in the room old enough to have the faintest clue what we’re on about and even if the I’ll Be Gone song thankfully almost always gets recognised, the majority of the audience thinks that we’re playing a cover. My life flashes before my eyes in such situations and it takes a considerable act of will to bring things back into focus.
It’s not just this year of course, this has been going on for a lot longer than that and it’s not just me that I’ve got to think about either. Mind you, the chaps involved do have other gigs to fall back on and the gigs with me have been so infrequent lately they might scarcely notice they’ve vanished altogether.
Anyway, this is my problem and hardly advertising. Advertising presents you with selective truths or untruths to encourage you to buy something. Listening to me gurgling is not encouraging. There are gigs already in 2018 but I’m of a mind to be selective and focus on recording in the coming year as far as the music is concerned.
The Bloody Newsletter is another creative outlet and this column and my bro’ Dick’s Toolbox will continue to amaze and/or dismay in the coming years. In this regard however I do have something to advertise. I’m delighted to introduce a new contributor to The Bloody Newsletter in Dr Warren ‘Wazza’ Sellers, an old friend from Art School days who’s recently returned with Dr Marg Sellers to live in the northern climes of the North Island of New Zealand and who has just agreed to be TBN’s Kiwi correspondent.
I’m looking forward to that. In the meantime I’m very sorry for the lateness of this month’s TBN but we can all look forward to the new issue momentarily in the fast-approaching New Year and perhaps subsequent issues of TBN being on time can be the first New Year’s resolution. Thanks for taking the time to read this and I’ll see you then.
M I K E R U D D B I L L P U T T . C O MM M I K E R U D D B I L L P U T T . C O MM M I K E R U D D B I L L P U T T . C O MM M I K E R U D D