Got to the call to do some shows opening for Glen Campbell last week, a few days before they started. Seemed easy to set up and do the shows so off I went. Flew to Brisbane and got a car and drove two hours to Toowoomba. Its a big old reception centre type place off teh main strip. Carpet on the walls. No dressing room, no drama. The band were sound checking, no Glen.I went on in a light blue suit with white shoes, trying for a Hank Williams look! Played for forty minutes, probably too long. A quite elderly audience. About a thousand people. Probably more.Reception was pretty reserved. At the end a couple of people shouted for "more" and more people laughed as someone was, obviously, joking!
Glen came on and opened with "Gentle on my mind,", the "Galveston" , Country Boy""Lovesick blues", "she thinks I still care", "dreams of the everyday housewife", "don't pull your love out one me baby", "by the time I get to Phoenix", and "true grit". His daughter Debbie storms on and kicks the ass out of "silver threads and golden needles" and "crazy". then his youngest daughter Ashley comes on and does a modern op song I don't know and then Stevie Nicks "landslide" with her sister. Glen comes back and all three rip through "rollin in my sweet babys arms. (Ashley plays banjo and keys in the band as well). Glen did a couple of guitar workouts, (as well as ripping out great solos in ALL the songs) "classical gas" and "the william tell overture".
There is not a single amp on the stage, all di'd into the desk and in ear monitoring. The show comes to the end with "southern nights", "wichita lineman" and "rhinestone cowboy". The band are pretty amazing and so is the set list.
I drove back to the hotel and got to bed at 2am.
Brisbane was the enormous Convention centre in Southbank.
I did the Bowie song "sorrow" as its a tune people should know. I then do my own "you put a spell on me" "you're just too hip ,baby" and Elvis's "one night of sin".
I then do a new song of mine called "Mt Gambier night". Around about now the audience turned quite ugly and started to call for me to "get off!" One fellow started a slow hand clap. I had to stop that. I made light and had said at the beginning that they might like one song and not another and thats just as good. "we want glen" was the reply. "we've had enough". "Go away!"
I had to stop the silliness and did a song called "don't mess with the blood", then after the abuse began afresh I introduced a song "about how tough you have to be to be an entertainer", "my schtick weighs a ton". People were getting up in dozens and storming out. It was like I'd walked up and taken a shit in the stage, the way they carried on. Like sulking kids. I ended with "night of the wolverine". All the songs were quite pretty and ballad like in their tone. I was going for guitar picking moments and had put a lot of work into the sound of the 12 string.
I thanked them for listening and hoped they had a good night with Glen and expressed regret that some had taken offence. "Don't call us , we'll call you" came the reply. I walked off and sat with friends.
The next day Clare Moore and Stu D arrived and we did a show of our own at the Brisbane Powerhouse to an audience who were in tune with us and the general flow of a performance. We tore it up.
On the Gold Coast the day after that, I sat and reada book at the beach . I got a call about all the Brisbane gig and the emails and complaints that went to the promoter about me. Apparently I offended some by greeting them ,as I always do, as "comrades". Also, i was from melbourne.
The band and crew and the promoters were very supportive and I said I'd do a shorter set of more tunes by other people. Basically, to keep it nice.
That night I did some Tim Hardin and Fred Neil and Kris Kristofferson and Curtis Mayfield. Also the pop song "seattle" which I introduced as being "by the noted country songwriter Hugo Montenegro". Tumbleweeds blew across the stage.The reception was better than Brisbane. I rode on the crew bus to Tamworth. I was worried about this joint. It was Country Music central in the middle of New South Wales. The gig here was the best received so far, though my judgement was only in that people didn't call for me to be killed or storm out of the room. Success!
This night, the audience started to slow handclap Glen before he started!
Rode on the bus again and we arrived in Sydney, at the State theatre in the middle of town.
I did my own songs here in the theatre. A few of the songs I'd gotten to like playing like Mike Nesmiths "Joanne" and Tim Hardins "Lady came from Baltimore".
People dug it. I left the theatre and went across town to a gig I'd organized. There were about seven people there. All being musicians. I knew. I played for two hours, doing anything I liked and any requests that were called out. Then I took a cab to the inner west, where I was staying.
I did another show in Sydney . A dinner and show type room. I don't really like those kinds of rooms, they are toffy and beige. I like rock n roll clubs where people who have a shared interest in getting blitzed and / or listening to music go. Places they know how to find.
I gave them my best and they kept chewing. I was opening. I left the joint and headed out.
Next day I caught a Greyhound bus to Canberra. Just like a Jimmy Webb song. the bus was full of teabags. Limeys. All trying it on with the nearest gullible sheila.
The theatre in Canberra is nice. The audience is almost totally men who look like country party senators on a casual friday. Constantly getting up to go and strain the potatoes. I am getting my mojo back and do a few more of my own songs. I stray over 30 minutes and nobody dies.
I ride in the crew bus to Melbourne. We watch "step brothers". I have seen it twice and still laugh. We arrive in melbourne at 7am and I catch a bus and a train home for the day.
Later, Clare and I drive in to the Palais. I am doing tonights show with Clare on percussion and vocals and Stu on bass and vocals.
We crowd around the two vocal monitors in the middle of the stage. (there are no other monitors on the stage as the band all have in ear foldback sound.
We play for about 35 minutes, mostly my songs. People know who we are and know what we are reputed to be able to do.
Playing acoustic guitar and singing in a theatre is a delight. The sound in the room rise and swells and has a long delay and decay. We triumph.
Glenn comes on to a standing, cheering crowd. Of all kinds of ages. There has been no reception like this anywhere else.People are into the nuance and the icon and the amazing set list. Glen rips out all these solos from nowhere and clearly is on his best game. He fumbles for words in between songs here and there, as usual , but the performance is amazing. the band all step up to the plate too. this crowd have given them some bounce. They had played well everywhere but tonight they know that people are catching all the notes and the moves. It is going somewhere. that thrills a player.
My favourites are many. "Dreams of the everyday housewife" with the 3/4 skipping time and the beautiful melody. "Southern nights" with the great funk beat and the funny 30s cha cha timing. "Wichita lineman" which swoons out like a great film. Glen does "the HIghway man" tonight and its so funny when he puts the guitar behind his head a la Hendrix for "the william tell overture". There is a standing ovation.
Backstage the band is all abuzz at the reception and wish theyd been staying in Melbourne for a week as opposed to Brisbane. I say my goodbyes to all and we drive home. Thats it!
- dave graney
- WORKSHY - 2017 memoir out on Affirm Press. Let's get Tight - 2017 CD with Clare Moore. Moodists - Coral Snakes - mistLY. I don’t know what I am and don’t want to know any more than I already know. I aspire, in my music , to 40s B Movie (voice and presence) and wish I could play guitar like Charlie Christian or Grant Green -but not in this lifetime, I know.
2014 solo album from Dave Graney. *****"If I've learnt anything in my years of writing about music it's that if you are going to do anything of worth in this tough game, you better have your own thing. Today's generic is easily replaced by tomorrow's. And yet you need to be flexible, to follow wherever the songs demand. In the case of this, only the second credited as a solo album among 30 or so Graney releases, it's a curious yet welcoming lane he walks you down, with acoustic guitars, not much percussion, vibes, smooth sounds. At the end of it you feel like you've awoken from a strange yet pleasant summer's dream. As shot by Luis Bunuel. It ranges from off-kilter reveries (A Woman Skinnies Up a Man, The Old Docklands Wheel) through to the softly seductive (How Can You Get Out of London) and the downright arch (Look Into My Shades, Everything Is Great In The Beginning.) This is music that is neither folk, nor blues, nor country, but it's all Graney, somewhere out to the left field beyond Lee Hazlewood's raised eyebrow. It's astringent on the tongue but sweetens in the telling." Noel Mengel Brisbane Courier Mail
you've been in my mind
June 2012 super high energy pop rock album - blazing electric 12 strings - total 70s rock drive. Greatest yet! available via paypal - $20 pp
SUPERMODIFIED - August 2010 remixed/re-sung/re-strung//remastered/replayed comp via PAYPAL
also available as a digital album
Knock yourself (2009)-first ever dg solo set-filthy electro r&b-available via Paypal- $20
available as a digital album too
We Wuz Curious (2008)-blazing R&B jazz pop album available via paypal-$20
UNAVAILABLE-COMPLETELY SOLD OUT!!!
AVAILABLE AS A DIGITAL album
Hashish and Liquor (2005 double disc by Dave Graney and Clare Moore) available via Paypal $25
UNAVAILABLE-COMPLETELY SOLD OUT!!!
Single album HASHISH available as a digital release