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Aussie artists
Welcome to Living in the Land of Oz

Howzat! Archive - December 1st 2010

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Mark Mordue wrote a beautiful piece about Bobby Flynn in The Sydney Morning Herald. "Travelling with him," Mark declared, "is like going on a voyage and not knowing where it will end up." Bobby, who started his career in Brisbane, has now landed in Melbourne. He's playing at the Northcote Social Club tonight (Wednesday). What prompted the move? "The reputation that Melbourne is Australia's premier music city," Bobby tells Howzat! He says he loves Melbourne's "satellite suburbs that all have their own soul and psyche. And the great musicians, writers and producers who are all working hard!" What does he miss most about Brisbane? "My family, the weather and the river."

Bobby released his debut album, Out Front, in 2008. He's now working on his second album, in the studio with Pip Norman from TZU. "We did a couple of co-writes together and there was chemistry so we just kept writing," Bobby says. "Before we knew it, we had an album on our hands."

Fans can contribute to the making of the album via the Pledge initiative. "Pledge is a great way to give people a chance to get into the studio and hear tracks as we make them," Bobby explains. "It breaks down that wall a little more, and it's a good way for people to see the creative process at work. It's also a sweet way to pay for the record to be made." There's a range of offers: $10 will get you a download of the album; $30 will get you an autographed CD. For $50, you can get a phone call from Bobby or your name in the album credits; $100 will land you two tickets to a gig and the chance to drink Bobby's rider, while $1500 will see Bobby doing a gig at your house. Find out more at

Bobby was 11 when he wrote his first song. "It was a pivotal moment," he recalls. "It felt like magic." Around this time, Bobby started washing cars for $4 an hour, spending the money on cassettes, so he could tape his neighbour's record collection. "They had this great collection of vinyl: The Clash, The Church, The Cure Hearing this music really affected me. The Cure's Killing An Arab was the first song that really went into my mind. It affected me physically."

Bobby - who lists his three favourite local songwriters as Don Walker, Perry Keyes and Alex Burnett - was the Idol revolutionary, the artist who confounded the critics and didn't fit the format. When he was voted off the show (he came seventh in 2006), a SMH reader, Roger Joyce, was moved to write a piece for the paper: "The night that Bobby went, I was reminded of the dispiriting scene in the film JFK where Kevin Costner's character learns about the assassination of Robert Kennedy. He quietly goes upstairs to break the news to his wife: they got Bobby. Well, they did. They always get the Bobbys of this world."

Steve Lucas is a survivor. As Murray Engleheart's new book, Blood, Sweat & Beers ($35, HarperCollins), points out, many X members are sadly no longer with us, including Ian Rilen, Ian Krahe and Steve Cafiero. In fact, Steve - who also fronted the blistering Bigger Than Jesus - is X's only surviving original member. But Steve needs a back operation, and a benefit gig this Thursday at the Espy's Gershwin Room will help with his X-penses. The line-up includes Kretch, The Ears, DollSquad, Brian Hooper Band and Chris Wilson. $20 will get you in.

They call their sound "postmodern folk". There are also some classic British influences. JJ Symon & The Monochromes are prolific - Mayday is their third album in three years. They're also very good. The album is being launched this Sunday afternoon at the Northcote Social Club with special guests The Ronson Hangup.

Doc Neeson did a moving tribute to The Angels' legendary roadie Pat Pickett, who died of cancer last Thursday. Doc dedicated Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again (which was originally inspired by the motorcycle death of a girlfriend of the band's manager John Woodruff) to Pat at their Doncaster Shoppingtown show. In Clinton Walker's Bon Scott biography, Pat was described as "a wicked friend of Bon's who managed to attach himself to both Fraternity and AC/DC. In doing so, he learnt the ropes as a roadie and today enjoys almost legendary status himself as one of that game's elder statesmen." Pat also did some work with Howzat!'s favourite band, Horsehead.

X Factor winner Altiyan Childs arrives at number eight.

Somewhere In The World ALTIYAN CHILDS (number eight, debut)
Who's That Girl GUY SEBASTIAN (11, debut)
Saturday Night JESSICA MAUBOY (16)
Freefallin' ZOE BADWI (26)
Planets SHORT STACK (27)
Big Jet Plane ANGUS & JULIA STONE (38)

Guy Sebastian's best-of has a Top 10 debut.

Twenty Ten GUY SEBASTIAN (number nine, debut)
He Will Have His Way VARIOUS (14)
Down The Way ANGUS & JULIA STONE (15)
The Great Tenor Songbook MARK VINCENT (18, debut)
This Is Bat Country SHORT STACK (19)
Get Closer KEITH URBAN (20)
Vegas Songs From Sin City HUMAN NATURE (23)
Gilgamesh GYPSY & THE CAT (27)
Birds Of Tokyo BIRDS OF TOKYO (32)
Little Bird KASEY CHAMBERS (33)
Get 'Em Girls JESSICA MAUBOY (40)

Running Around BOBBY FLYNN
Everything You Need NICK BATTERHAM
Degenerate Boy X

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