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1) 3NRG's Tony Rockwell and co-presenter at the Lomond 2) Ian and Chris at the Mornington Peninsula Brewery
gig report
Sat. 29.9.12 Lomond Hotel Sun. 30.9.12 Mornington Peninsula Brewery
A busy weekend for the trio
1.10 12 - We've been conspicuously unbusy for the past few weeks, so the prospect of a couple of gigs in a row on GF weekend was tantalising. The known quantity was The Lomond, of course, but the prospect of rediscovering our Peninsula constituency on the Sunday arvo at The Mornington Peninsula Brewery was intriguing. I remained hopeful even after I got a late e-mail advising me that they'd like to move the times forward by an hour to accommodate the NRL Grand Final fans. There was no chance of advising everybody in time so I just FaceBooked it and hoped for the best.
I was initially a little dismayed that the crowd was down at the Lomond, but they certainly made up for it with the warmth of their response. On a musical note I was debuting heavier gauge strings on the Strat' - I've not changed them for a good twenty years - and I was generally pleased with the result, especially the clarity and solidity of the bottom end. My Morris decided to get into the act and presented me with a broken 5th (!) when I opened its case. Ask any guitarist and they'll tell you that nylon strings are capable of being very treacherous.
After the gig Bill and I popped over to Triple R to have a chat with Headley Gritter (pic 3) on The Party Show. We were expecting Michael Chugg (spruiking the LWTTT tour no doubt) and so we were pleasantly surprised to find Billy Pinnell was the other guest. Amongst the usual raucous chat we got a surprise phone call from Ken Murdoch, but his battery went half way through the conversation, probably because he'd been calling 3CR for half an hour by mistake, and we didn't really find out what he was calling about.
Bill stayed at my place over night as we had to be in Mornington by midday. We got there shortly after 11.30 as it turned out (thanks Bill) and set up against an unpromising looking concrete wall on an unpromising looking concrete floor. Nevertheless, people started to arrive and the place was virtually full by the time we started playing. We were delighted to find the sound was quite fine - I think due to the exposed insulation in the roof - and once the overhead heater was on, we were all quite cosy as well.
It ended up quite a lovely afternoon all told. Lots of our good friends were there and some others who hadn't seen us since the last Frankston RSL gig a few years back. The deputised manager (Jarrod) said he was pleased to see a lot of new (beer-drinking) faces there as well as their (wine-sipping) regulars. Special thanks to Patrick Elliget who suggested the venue to me in the first place and I'm sure we'll get to play there again pretty soon.

3) Billy Pinnell and Mike stare each other down as Bill speaks on Triple R

LWTTT rides again!

1) The man - a svelte Tony Naylor 2) The other man - the not quite as svelte Dai Pritchard

3) Chain's Phil Manning got to hang around the airport for a while 4) 10's Angela Bishop had a nice chat with us
The Return of The Long Way To The Top
28.9.12 - I'm almost restored now, but I felt like shit when I got up yesterday morning at 5.50 after a restless night. It seems I shall never get used to the prospect of travelling. Anyway, by the time I got to the airport, Mr Punctuality had been there for over an hour, so that made me feel slightly better.
We got to Sydney and then the (Stagedoor) rehearsal rooms without incident and found things were actually running ahead of time for a change and we'd finished our rehearsal by midday, our scheduled start time. (Incidentally, we're doing two songs this time - things are looking up). They found us something to do and we filmed another run-through of I'll Be Gone and then did a snappy (as in amusing) interview with Channel 10's Angela Bishop, (pic 4) who turns out to be a pretty good sport. I s'pose you'd have to be to survive that long in the TV business.
Jim Keays and Russell Morris arrived for their rehearsal and we had a bit of a chat about things Roman, things footy and things less savoury on the domestic front. I'm guessing some of it was delusional. Our old mate Phil Manning (pic 3) had already headed to the airport when I rang the office about our flight being delayed and he was still there when our flight finally left for Melbourne. I hope he got out safely. Whatever, he wouldn't be spending as much time in the air as Matt Taylor, who flew there and back from WA for the one rehearsal. We theorised that maybe video conferencing might've been the way to go, but we're only the musicians.
Incidentally, I'll be appearing on Headley Gritter's The Party Show on Triple R with LWTTT's Michael Chugg after our show at the Lomond tomorrow night. Another incidentally is that we were told today that the starting time for our inaugural gig at the Mornington Peninsula Brewery has been brought forward to 1.00 to accommodate the broadcast of the NRL GF at 4.00.

1) Jess Cornelius at the sound check 2) Action Jackson and Mark Baker hunt autographs
Mike and Jess reprise Crying on RocKwiz in Adelaide
16.9.12 -
I have to say I was surprised to be asked to join the the touring version of RocKwiz in Adelaide for a reprise of Crying with Jess Cornelius (pic 1) - and I'll Be Gone, of course. The show's producer, Peter Bain-Hogg, told me candidly that their first selection had dropped out, but I still managed to feel slightly special. I met the cast at the Qantas check-in on Friday morning, with the exception of Jess Cornelius, who was flying in later from Brisbane. I was really quite concerned about going blank during Crying, so when I discovered that the show wasn't being recorded, I felt quite relieved.
The flight was uneventful, (apart from Linda Bull being asked to divest the contents of her shoulder bag after a sniffer dog had shown interest in it), but when we were waiting for the bus to take us to the Entertainment Centre for a sound check/rehearsal and Jess arrived I made another discovery - she's now a blonde. Of course it suits her, but I was surprised nevertheless. Girls!
When the show eventually got under way and Jess and I were assigned to our Rock Wizard teams after singing our respective songs - I'll Be Gone went down especially well. During the quiz I thought it was just me, but Kevin Mitchell (aka Bob Evans) confirmed that it was pretty hard to pick up what Julia Zemero was saying from our side of the stage. Luckily Julia seemed to be confining herself to rhetorical chat when she was talking to me - dunno really. Maybe she's just used to me looking at her blankly.
Anyway, for whatever reason, my team was struggling when Kev tagged in and so I was astonished to see when Jess and I were about to take the stage for our duet that our team had fought its way back into the winning position! Jess had been trying to loosen me up before we went on and I think our Crying performance was pretty relaxed. I'd been struggling a bit with sustaining the last note in rehearsal and had devised a cunning plan to take an extra breath, so I was surprised that Jess seemed to be still going strong as I was starting to fade - I'd pushed it well into Glyn Mason's exploding blood-vessel territory before I realised it was actually Vika and Linda Bull hanging out there with me in the stratosphere.
After the show had ended rapturously, the cast trooped out to the foyer and signed T-shirts and other merch while I punced about taking the odd photo. I was approached by a few people to have my pic taken and ended up having quite a long chat with Michael Warren (aka Action Jackson) and Mark Baker, (pic 2) whom I've met before over the years.
The cast and crew had a quiet aprés show party in the Hilton Bar and I had long and meaningfuls with Marcia Hines, Julia and Brian Nankervis. They're all such lovely people and it would be a shame if I wasn't to do another show with them sometime. (hint, hint) Of course, my feeling now is that it was a pity the night's show wasn't recorded after all..

Warner's Lucy baby-sits Mike and Bill at 3AW today
Mike & Bill on the Boogie! trail again
7.9.12 -
This time we were taken to 3AW by Warner's Lucy (pic) for what we thought was going to be a spot on the Denis Walter show, but which actually turned out to be the Steve Vizard show. Denis' music expert, Billy Pinnell, was on hand to very sweetly say he thought Spectrum was best in show before we launched into the B version of IBG.
I did pretty well considering a smoked salmon royal was trying to clamber back out of my asophagus, but I should really be less cavalier about eating just before we perform on air.
Anyway, some interesting news is that I've been asked to reprise my RocKwiz appearance with Jess Cornelius next week in Adelaide. I'll bring out the white jacket again..

1) Bill chats with Enza after our meal at Gopals 2) John McKinnon and son Luke join Bill in a backstage smoko

3) Ted Lethborg's due onstage
gig report
Wed. 5.9.12 Myeloma Foundation benefit Hi Fi Bar
Myeloma Foundation benefit gig
6.9.12 -
When Bill and I arrived for our 4.30 sound check things were running a bit behind, but everything sounded fine. For some reason alarm bells didn't ring and while the Lakes' sound checked we popped into Gopals, Bill's favourite old haunt a few doors down from the Hi Fi for a vego meal - Bill reckoned of all the places he hasn't visited for thirty five years, this had changed the least.
Madder Lake was on first and I made a guest appearance on harp, which was fun. And then Spectrum was on. I have to say our contribution ranged from the inept to the sublimely average, but happily it was accepted in the spirit it was offered - that is with warmth and generosity. As we were leaving a bunch o' young dudes were playing and I thought they were doing it right - keeping it simple.
Jim Keays had been talking about retirement earlier on, but I can't see it. He's still got a full head of hair for goodness sake!

4) 3NRG's Andrew Smith took this shot of me with the Madders 5) Andrew's shot of Spectrum's inevitable I'll Be Gone
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