29.10.03 With the big SoC gig just
a week away, Mike, Bill & Robbo have actually got down and done
some rehearsing! Mike's planning a few surprises for the
gig and a few extra hands are joining Spectrum on stage for the
recorded show at the Comic's Lounge next Thursday. Seen here (pic
1) is the enduringly sensitive Jimmy Sloggett, who's going
to be doing a couple of numbers with the boys. Mike and Bill also
went down to 3PBS studios in Collingwood this morning and did and
interview with Helen Jennings (pic 2) and played a tune
or two live-to-air.
arrived the other day that a stalwart of Aussie
blues music, former bass-player with Chain, Barry Sullivan (known
to all as Big Goose), died in his sleep on Sunday night at his home
Barry Harvey (Little Goose) writes: 'Barry just finished a great
gig for "Brother Goose" supporting Renee Geyer at the
Tivoli in Brisbane last Saturday night and he played great bass.
After playing on & off with the "Big Goose" since
1965, he was probably the greatest & strongest bass player I
ever knew or heard. I will miss him dearly.'
The last time I saw BG was on the LWTTT tour when he turned up to
the concert in Brisbane (see pic). I believe the funeral
will be held next Monday in Queensland.
goes mad and attacks author of sensationalist LWTTT book
22.10.03 Tony Barber, the real Tony Barber that
is, took Spectrum to Angus & Robertson's in Knox City S/C to
sign copies of his book, Long Way 'Til You Drop. It was a bit of
a Spinal Tap moment in some ways - we didn't have a huge turn up
and we only lacked the agent begging to be kicked up the arse
(I was gratified that a couple of punters that did show
had actually been tipped off from this website).
smiles for the camera at
Angus & Robinson..
Robbo wasn't happy though. It seems Mr Barber had spelt his name
wrong (Robinson instead of Robertson) and Robbo
had to be restrained from snotting the hapless Barber even before
we got to the shopping centre. Well, not really, but the book itself
isn't in the slightest bit sensationalist either, despite efforts
to characterise it as such from certain quarters. Tony's just too
nice a guy for all that rubbish.
While I contented myself with taking the obligatory swag of photos
for this column, Bill had a wonderful time chatting up Nicole from
Channel 31 and then doing a side-splitting interview with her -
so side-splitting that Nicole assumed
to cop a smacker from a delirious punter
my complimentary copy of the book
that I was part of the Putt/Rudd comedy duo and was disappointed
when I could only muster up a couple of minutes of squirming discomfort
in front of the Ch 31 camera. Ah well, it was only Channel
It seems I have a new monicker though . Tony observed my penchant
for low-key stage attire and dubbed me the Lawnmower Man. Just as
well he didn't catch me in the girls' toilets then..
can buy Tony's book just about anywhere - get it, it's a hoot!
Georges pay a visit
|15.10.03 Last night, Linda George
and her brother Colin, dropped in to say hi and pick our brains
to find a suitable venue for the launch of the Fatherhood CD. It's
an old issue I know, but the lack of a suitable replacement for
the Continental Cafe was prominent in the conversation. Colin's
going to have to settle on a venue by the end of the day - I'll
keep you informed as to where and when it'll be.
Yesterday the website was off the air for most of the day.
Something to do with our domain name expiring. Oops! We
apologise to those of you who were inconvenienced .
note from the Quill of Greg
I got a generic e-mail in my junk mail box the other day from Greg
Quill (Country Radio), and thought to myself 'Hmmm. A gig or two
in Canada wouldn't go astray - I'll sound out the old Gregster.'
Greg's real (earning) gig these days is as the entertainment columnist
for the Toronto
Star, but I caught up with him ever so briefly at the Port Fairy
Festival playing with the as ever wonderful guitarist/producer you-name-a-musical-hat-and-he'll-wear-it
Amongst other things, Greg said: 'Busy right now trying to get some
dates here next summer and fall (!!!) for Kerryn and me, and a proposal
for another Oz tour in Sept.-Dec. as a trio with Garth Hudson.'
Talk about musical cred! It sounds almost too delicious to be true!
But, as you can see from the poster, the association with Garth
is a fact, and they're even planning to do an album with the great
Anyway, with one thing and another I'll be keeping in touch with
Greg and I'll let you know what he's up to when it comes to hand.
You can check Greg's website on: www.quilltolhurst.com
A Long Way 'Til You Drop
More poop on the book of the epic tour from juliusmedia.com sent
to me by the bemused author, Tony Barber. Incidentally, I'm thinking
of having the book in question available for sale at our gigs and
on the site. Let me know if you're interested.
Fear and loathing
in old rock wars printable format
go back on the road as promoters squabble. And about The Book...
| Monday, 21 July 2003
Long Way To The Top was a money making spectacle with high
production values and a quarter of a million happy punters when
it toured the arenas. The tent version flopped, but really - no
one makes money under canvas, do they? Now Countdown: The Stadium
Show will, square up against Long Way Version 2, and the blood pressure
is up. But it was Sam Righi's new company, Waterfront Entertainment
Group that beat off the old guard to get the first 80's Best Hits
concert off the ground. 'Now and Then' will run in November, with
a mouldy but golden oldie lineup including Mondo Rock, 1927, Belinda
Carlistle, Human League and Go West. Wow.
Sitting on the sidelines is author Tony Barber who played in the
original Aztecs in 1964, and who had the tap on the shoulder to
play again at both Long Way tours last year. His forthcoming book,
called 'Long Way Till You Drop' has been caught in some savage backroom
action, where some Long Way stakeholders appear to fear what will
"It needed to be written", says Barber
whose life in the quarter century between gigs involves children’s
books. "But I've been staggered by the pressure and the tactics".
Barber's book is said to be uplifting and a true insider’s
account of the Long Way tour, which was the creation of producer
Amanda Pelman and rock legend Billy Thorpe - with whom Barber played
in the Aztecs.
Five Mile Press will publish the book in October, and Barber says
he hasn't gone deeply into some of the issues that may bug some
insiders. There is reference to a character called "Rock Hard:
The Gnome", a concrete individual who may have been liberated
from a backyard and who bears slight resemblance to a performer
on the tour.
Barber has fertile turf to select from, as the regional tent tour
was thrown into some disarray with rescheduling and threats of legal
action from performers who claimed they were promised a spot on
People who weren't offered a spot and thought they should have been
are also quite vocal.
Then there were press reports that headline artist Brian Cadd departed
his long marriage in favour of a female show staffer. But Barber
doesn't appear to be setting anyone up for a fall with his book.
Meantime the ructions between Frontier Touring, who will host Countdown,
and Long Way (2) management escalate, with rock groups like Psudeo
Echo, The Models, Mondo Rock and Men at Work from the 1980’s
rumoured to be reforming for one of the tours. Acts like Sherbet
are also known to be working on reforming, and the Countdown tour
is said to feature international acts like Human League, Thompson
Twins, Erasure and Bananarama.
Some performers have claimed they’ve been told to deal with
only one tour, so the current game is called: "guess which
tour will do the best?”
Long Way is a Michael Chugg tour, while Countdown will be run by
his former boss Michael Gudinski.Looks like a long, hot summer……
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