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Party time!

1) Neil Clarke presents the birthday cake 2) Faith (cake maker) Neil, Mike and Pen
gig report
Mike at the Vesbar in Somerville Wed. 23.12.15 for Neil Clarke's 60th
A Rudd panic precedes Neil's special night of celebration
24.12.15 - It was a very special panic too as I belatedly looked at the invitation at six o'clock to find the guests were arriving for Neil Clarke's 60th at the Vesbar in Somerville at, yes, six o'clock! In shock I lurched out to the van, (which I'd fortunately prepared earlier), ringing Bev as I did to warn her and birthday boy Neil (pics 1&2) that I was going to be a bit late and hit the highway. I made it in pretty good time too (6.30) and was actually set up and playing slightly before 7.00, which Neil later assured me was about when they expected me to start anyway.
Apart from a couple of special songs I was happy to simply accompany proceedings and allow people to mingle and chat. Neil is a certified fan and has been for decades, but not all of his friends share his predilection for the Rudd oeuvre. Helpfully Neil took some time in his speeches to talk about me and my significance in his life, so when the time came to play 'the song' for instance, everybody joined in like a good crowd of genuine Spectrumites.
Despite my low-key approach a number of guests complimented me on the way out and Neil said that many more had confided to him that they'd thoroughly enjoyed the music. I couldn't tell if anybody was listening so this was a good result.
Maybe you think that I would suit your personal celebration. Check out the Book Spectrum page if so.
Mike and Mick & Broc

1) Mike in monochrome (Heuch) 2) Mike adds the appropriate harp licks to Mark's I'll Be Gone in Elwood
gig report
Mike at the Vesbar in Somerville Sat. 12.12.15 + Mick & Broc at the Elwood F&W Bar Sun. 13.12.15
More than twelve bars in bars on the weekend
14.12.15 - I've finally had to admit defeat with the Canora nylon-string and so decided to resume playing the Morris, (Mr Morris Nylon to you), mothballed about a year ago in favour of the Kelly for Spectrum performances.
First up was the Vesbar, a solo night for a change. I was happy with the guitar sound and enjoyed the night on the whole, both musically and socially. Bev and Leigh were charming and generous hosts as ever and we enjoyed a takeaway meal from the excellent Indian restaurant next door with them. I sold four copies of Warts Up Your Nose as a bonus.
The next day's gig at the Elwood Food & Wine Bar was as polar opposite from the Vesbar as you could expect, reasonably or otherwise. It wasn't possible for me to finesse a guitar sound at the low volume we play at, (due to the restrictions on noise in the building), so we spent the evening being gradually swamped by the sounds of happy revellers getting happier. Mind you, it's fun playing the odd selection of covers and Rudd originals we play as Mick & Broc and I'm able to relax with the guitar hanging off me as an ornament while Broc plays the complete palette of chords I've never heard of and I'm able to concentrate on just singing.
Pete Newson is an affable operator and has promised to have us back in late January, early Feb, so I'll keep you informed.
Warts Up Your Nose

1) Warts Up Your Nose in all its glory 2) Mike's impotent Mitsi gets dumped back in Mt Waverley
At last! Warts Up Your Nose gets re-issued
11.12.15 - The traffic on the M1 was so bad getting back from our couple of days on the Great Ocean Road that we chose to come back via Flemington on the Princes Hwy route, (like the old days), but we were still late. So I was already cutting it fine for my meeting with Gil Matthews in Camberwell on wet roads that turn my Mitsubishi Express into a lethal skating machine at the best of times.
I had three minutes to get there when my motor just stopped, leaving me stranded on the Prospect Hill and Trafalgar Rds intersection. Luckily I was able to glide backwards and park on the side of the road before calling Gil and then the RACV.
Gil turned up in five minutes and gave me some copies of the new Warts Up Your Nose CD and we managed a short chat before the RACV guy turned up (only ten minutes into his ninety minute allowance) to assess the damage.
FB readers will appreciate the irony. Last week it was Gil's SUV breaking down minutes from the radio interview about the Warts' release and now it was my turn!
The good news is that the van's home (pic 2) and you can now buy Warts Up Your Nose (pic 1) from the CDs page on this website. Do your worst, Fate!

Warburton, O Warburton!

1) The modest entrace to the WHO Club belies a modester interior 2) Crudd's shadowy appearance
gig report
Spectrum at The WHO Club Warburton Sat. 5.12.15
A retro night at Warby's The WHO Club
6.12.15 - I have to say I was a bit sceptical about the wisdom of a Saturday night gig at an unknown venue in downtown Warburton (or is it uptown, I'm not really sure) with a hefty $25 entry fee on the door. I wasn't reassured when Robbo noticed that The Wild Thyme, our erstwhile stomping ground in Warby, appeared to be still open for business despite my being told it wasn't a music venue anymore.
When we eventually found The WHO Club it presented us with a dark doorway (pic 1) which led into an even darker room which I imagine might actually smell dank in winter - but in the warm, humid conditions we're experiencing I was already sweating.
An added dimension for this inaugural appearance was an actual filmcrew (with steadicam) recording our performance - so, no pressure at all! I'd met with the film's director, Peter Lamont, a couple of days beforehand to discuss his project (which I'll talk about a little later) and filming began even as we were loading in and setting up.
After we'd sound checked we adjourned next door for pizzas. These seemed to take an inordinate time to prepare which led to our starting fifteen minutes later than we'd intended, but the room had filled out with a half-decent crowd by then and they seemed to be enjoying what we were dishing up. Freddie Abela, the guy who booked us for The WHO Club in the first place, was happily noodling away on the sound desk and I have to say the on-stage sound was pretty friendly too.
We had to combine the second and third sets to finish at pumpkin time, but everybody was continuing to enjoy the journey and we couldn't really do anything wrong - although I'd started to tire by the end. My best moment of the night was when we were packing up and an eighty-one year old gentleman approached me to say how much he'd enjoyed the gig, followed by a much younger bloke, who could scarcely have been twenty, who assured me the gig had been 'wicked'. That's the sort of shit* that makes it all worthwhile.

* demographic spread

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