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1) Kay and Mick Gunn at the end of the night 2) Bill and the oldest patron at St Andrews

3) Trollops' Lyn and Heather - and Bill 4) Marie Leggat and Peter de Groot came from WA to listen to Spectrum!
gig report
Sat. 9.6.12 Warracknabeal Racing Club Mick Gunn's 60th Sun. 10.6.12 St Andrews
Big travelling by the band - and the audience
11.6.12 - Mick Gunn contacted me quite late about doing his 60th in Warracknabeal. When I realised we were doing the St Andrews pub the following day my first instinct was to decline the invitation on the grounds that time was just too tight getting back to St Andrews from Warracknabeal, but then I remembered that's just the sort of thing we used to do all the time and thought 'why not?'
It's a good four hours plus from Mt Waverley, but we got to the Warracknabeal racetrack an hour earlier than I'd anticipated to find the place empty. After setting up, checking in to our accommodation and having a slap-up meal at the Commercial, (or the 'Commie' as they call themselves, which is an interesting contraction), we arrived back at the club rooms to find the place filled to overflowing - and the hubbub was almost deafening. It was so loud there was no way we could overcome it with our modest set-up, so we played at a level that engaged those that wanted to be engaged and left the rest to chat amongst themselves.
There were a few moments of mutual recognition during the speeches and then it was back to more or less entertaining ourselves. We worked hard at it however - the last set was going on ninety minutes - and at the end there was the predictable commotion and demands for more, which we happily obliged. Mick (pic 1) is a lovely bloke and devoutly enthused by music, (he's been to all the Byron festivals since '96), and anyway, we were a lot cheaper than the Backsliders..
We left Warracknabeal at 8.30 and arrived back at Mt Waverley at 12.45 so were in plenty of time for the load-in at St Andrews. There was a slight kerfuffle when Daryl packed away a couple of my leads away while I was setting up - and then we were off on a typical Spectrum-at-St Andrews musical mystery tour. Either I'm getting used to the 'new' stage sound or there've been some improvements, but it all sounded pretty good to me and a relief after the indifferent sound the previous night.
Cameron wasn't expecting much of a crowd and so was delighted with the roll-up. Marie Leggat and Peter de Groot** (pic 4) came all the way over from WA especially to see Spectrum - I'm just sorry we don't have a plaque to present to them for such a special effort. (They seemed to enjoy themselves too). There've been some 'adjustments' in the Trollops' camp (pic 3) and now they're looking for a new name - maybe something a little less, er, suggestive. All in all it was a really good mix of people and we loved seeing everybody there. Roll on the next St Andrews! (On Sunday August 12th as it happens!)

** Peter has written a glowingly biased gig review that you can read on the Correspondence page

*There will be a necessary gig hiatus for the next four weeks, (all will be explained in good time), but naturally I'll stay in touch and keep you abreast of events.

1) Spectrum's original drummer Mark Kennedy and Bill 2) Bobby Bright salutes you

3) Forever young - Gloria and Jimmie Sloggett 4) Internationalist Bob Starkie and Mike the homebody have a natter
Debonairs' boozy lunch No. 9
5.6.12 - Jimmie Sloggett rang a couple of weeks ago asking if we were coming to the Debonairs' lunch this month. I usually ration the Deb's do's to one a year, but there is something of a rock & roll mystique about No. 9 and so I decided to attend. The first thing I noticed was that it was a bit quieter than the Christmas do, for which I was grateful. After Dom's introductions, Phil Manning did a couple of spritely blues numbers and someone did a version of Slippin' Away, which got Jimmie and me talking about Max, of course, but after that I tuned out. You might've guessed I'm generally not favourably disposed to entertainment at these functions, firstly due to the indifferent acoustics in the restaurant and secondly because we're mostly half-deaf musicians for goodness sake and we'd just like a quiet-ish natter. And some food and some booze. And another bloody parking ticket..

1) Dr Wazz and Jude Ocean at the Lomond 2) Robert Baxter listens to the birthday speeches

3) Kerry and Tim from St Andrews met at the Green Lantern 4) These muscular guys helped us with load-out
gig report
Lomond Hotel
Sat. 2.6.12 Robert Baxter's 60th Sun. 3.6.12
A busy weekend
4.6.12 - It was nice to be able to write that headline after garnering patchy work at best over the past few weeks. We haven't done the Lomond for quite some time and I've been thinking the late finishing time of 12.30 might be inappropriate for our designated audience, (you know who you are), but on this occasion nearly everybody stayed the course. A lot of the people I talked to hadn't seen the band for decades and they seemed to be delighted with the whole experience - one lady claimed our performance was 'mesmerising'!
Bill stayed in Mt Waverley overnight as we were bumping in at midday at St Joseph's Hall for Robert Baxter's 60th (pic 2). I was told that the acoustic baffles had only gone in recently and we were grateful for that - the acoustics would've been quite challenging without them. As it was we played fairly strategically, gradually upping the ante until late in the afternoon, by which stage the party was just getting going. By then, of course, it was officially over, but we were bribed to play 'one more set of Murtceps' tunes', which we were more than happy to do. As we were packing down we met Tim and Kerry (pic 3) from St Andrews who met at the Green Lantern when Bill and I played there back in the '90s. (Ain't that sweet?) The two kids (pic 4) get a special mention as they were a big help loading out.
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