Clare Moore hates people starting off sentences with "so". She says she has noticed it a lot recently. She finds it very passive/agressive. I think.
I started to notice it too. Now.
So we played with our band the mistLY on Sunday May 2nd at Howler in Brunswick . It was our first shows with the band since February 2020 and its always touch and go playing in Melbourne, where we live. Our audience is like no other and we always try different venues. They aren't people who go out to rock clubs a lot. So this turned out to be a great evening. A seven o'clock show for which the Covid affected audience was all seated at tables. I mean Covid affected in the number that are allowed in the room. I like this Covid effect. I'm always looking at 50's movies of people in nightclubs sitting at tables watching lounge singers or jazz combos and wonder to myself what the hell happened to show business that it has to take place in a paddock somewhere with thousands of people. What the actual....? (On a similar note we watched a documentary about a Sri lankan train station which is high in the montains with a classic nine arch bridge for the train to cross a gorge. Dozens of people are employed to walk along the tracks and clean it and oil it and more work to keep the station spotless. So many people working! And the train ride cost Three Euros. More people working and less costs for living, sounds great).
For the Howler show we played mostly songs fom our last four albums. They were Zippa DeeDoo What Is/Was That/This?, One Million Years DC, Lets Get Tight and Fearful Wiggings. I blame the pandemic.
We also caught the last day of Stu Thomas and Kim Salmons art show at One Star Lounge in West Melbourne, a new coffee lounge/gallery run by Mick Harvey and Katy Beale. We took our old friend and band mate Steve Miller along and then Mick Turner (also once of the Moodists) walked in. Almosta reunion.
Clare and I then flew to Coffs Harbour, hired a car and drove to Grafton in Northern Rivers area of NSW where we played at the Pelican Playhouse, a really nice community run theatre.
This is our gear at the airport. Of course, getting into an airport and then a plane was a bit of a THING after being housebound for so long. The man pictured below was standing there, talking loudly into the void/earpiece phone. There were a few others acting similarly. Have they no sense of dignity/other people? I wore two masks in the airport and on the plane.
Two guitars, effects rack, keyboard and suitcase. Just us.
Grafton South was where our show was located. We had last been there in November 2019 when this usually green and lush area was totally ravaged by bushfires. A unique looking town.
We were staying in Coffs and driving out to these other shows. Walking along the beach in the morning.
We had been offered a gig on short notice in a beautiful spot called Red Rock. The local councils in NSW were being really proactive in getting people out and about to community events. We did a set in the afternoon on a stage facing an estuary. It was quite delightful. The local tv news filmed an interview with us.
After playing for 45 minutes we drove on to Bellingen where we had some coffeee and played that night. A strange venue, the audience on a level below us. A possum came into the room and swung from a mirror ball in our second set.
After the show we drove back to Coffs and then on to Brisbane where we did two sets the next day at the Junk Bar. This was the first time back at the venue since it had changed hands. The young man doing sound helped it run smoothly. A tiny venue but a great place to play in Brisbane.
We played at 5 and 7pm and then ate some Indian food at a nearby late night food joint.
We flew back to Melbourne for a few days and then drove to Newcastle where we played at the Stag and Hunter. Always great to play in Newcastle. Another great young sound man . The lights went luminous after the show.
We then drove to a beautiful wide spot in the road up near Taree in NSW and played at the Flow Bar. The town was called Old Bar. Deluxe sound and stage outside with people seated around eating and drinking. The sound man was an American known as Cali Dave. It sounded great.
We then had a few days off in Sydney before a show at the The Vanguard in King st Newtown.
We went for a long walk around Clovelly and Bronte, looking at the seabaths.
The Vanguard is a place we have played at many times over the last two decades, up the end of King st near the University. Next to where Goulds Bookshop used to be. Set up like a small theatre with audience seated below and an upper area to sit as well. We played two sets. Lindy Morrison burst into our band room before we played and actuallly stayed for the two sets. I think she was impressed and enjoyed the sounds. It was nice to see her anyway. She said we should play with an orchestra but you know us - we lean more towards jazz than longhairs and strings.
Then we drove south to play at Kiama, near Wollongong. A beautiful part of Australia. A young guy had set up a music venue in a kind of inside/outside configuration all around his own food truck which worked a treat. Audience seated again as in a theatre or club situation. The PA blew up after our first set but they found another.
Had a great night. We were playing mostly newer material , including unrecorded instrumentals and songs. People come to us for a show or a night out. Its not an album/tour situation with us. Our good friend and fellow traveller Jodi Phillis drove from Wollongong to say hello.
We had a show the next day in the Southern Highlands at Bowral but it had been cancelled. Something we would never do. The promoters idea. Oh well, a night off in Sydney.
Sunday morning we packed everything and drove to the SHIRE to play at the Brass Monkey. This is in Cronulla, where our filthy PM has his seat. Always great to play in this venue. We have been here many times before too. The hospitality is the best. We made show at 1pm , playing two sets until driving away at 5pm towards Melbourne. We stayed the night at Mittagong and then made it home nine hours later.
Here are some links to shows we are playing soon. We really enjoyed that run of dates and appreciated people coming out. The experience of COVID has been universal and flattened the world, especially the flimsy showbusiness world. Peoples habits with QR codes were noticably more effective in NSW, QLD and SA than Victoria. Hopefully that will improve.
Friday July 2nd -
Three Brothers Arms, Macclesfield SA
Saturday July 3rd Trinity Sessions - Adelaide SA
318 Goodwood Road, Clarence Park, SA 5034
Sunday July 4th Bellwether Wines - Coonawarra SA
Thursday July 8th
Goleby's Basemen West Street Ipswich, QLD
Friday July 9th Imperial Hotel Eumundi, QLD
Saturday July 10th Toowoomba Bar Wunder , QLD
Saturday July 24th , Archies Creek Hotel, Victoria
Friday 30th July 30th
Citadel Murwullimbah, QLD
Friday August 13th Smiths - Canberra
Saturday August 14th
Palais Ballroom Katoomba, NSW
Firast of a FOUR WEEK residency by Dave Graney and Clare Moore in this boutique venue.
“I caught a set from Dave Graney and
Clare Moore at Finding Fillmore’s in Kiama.
As always I just dig their vibe.
Doing it their way, with their
smooky sounds (smooth and kooky, a term I have coined just for them) weird and hilarious songs and stories and Dave’s golden voice.
Cool venue too!”