Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Radio Skidrow, KOMPACTION, 88.9FM

Frank Sultana hosting behind the desk of Radio Skidrow in Marrickville, 88.9FM, KOMPACTION show.

A few weeks ago I was asked by Frank Sultana to come along and guest on live community radio. KOMPACTION is a program that features singer-songwriters. Frank - a brilliant songwriter and musician (he has an awesome feel for blues) and who plays both guitar and piano - booked me in for April 13. We played tracks from my album, and other tracks from more recent recordings.

We kicked off with 'Ride' from the Sea in June album (I wish I called the album something else...), and then 'End of a Civilisationist' from my new batch of recordings. I then sang 'Alexandria' and 'Every Girl just wants to be my friend' live to air, after which we mistakingly played the newest version of 'Sea in June' featuring Brigette on lead vocal as we couldn't find the song I wanted, 'Secrets', on this recently mastered CD of relatively newly recorded tracks.

I talked about each song prior to or after performing them. Frank and I discussed songwriting, live performance, and playing and working with other musicians. I told him about Brigette and the Eva Cassidy duo we've worked on, Velvet Road who I currently play live with, and ZaraMeow who I collaborated with. Frank remembered Zara and remarked on what a great voice she had, at which I proceeded to sing my newest song, 'Mercy of your moods', live.

Frank played tracks from Lincoln Davies new CD. It was a beautifully sonorous track with Lincoln's rich nylon-string guitar being complimented by djembe and chocolatey cello.

Finally, we spun 'Diamicron Baby' from my album (I wish I called my album 'Diamicron Baby'), and I sang 'Secrets' live as the tail-out.

Frank was surrounded by CDs. Much of this music is very good. Frank marvelled at how much talent there is out there, that it's a scene about to burst through and happen. We can certainly hope so. But in the meantime it was fun to go live on radio and spurt forth verbally and musically...

we can go for the Ride, HEY!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, 4 April 2010


Carillon Avenue, Camperdown

I visited my nephew at his apartment in Newtown this afternoon. I wanted to get an idea of the apartment specs as I'm buying (or hoping to buy) an apartment that's only marginally bigger than his is - on the inside; Charlie's unit has a balcony, mine doesn't. At this stage I still don't know if I've landed the unit as my loan application is pending approval. It's not the deposit amount, or my income, that's posing the problem; it's the size of the unit they're concerned about. Technically my unit is above specifications to safely procure a loan for the amount that I require. Nevertheless, the ball is in the court of head office in Melbourne. There's not much I can do but wait until they make their decision, and hopefully soon. I can't really see what the problem is though. Being so close to UNSW, parklands, a major shopping centre down the road, Maroubra Beach, the unit is an investor's dream. Funnily, it seems the bank would be that more comfortable in lending me 100K extra for a bigger apartment - even though this poses much greater risk for them - than to lend me a reasonable amount to buy a small apartment. Nevertheless, a chill runs up my spine when I realise that I could buy a grand house in a country town for the money I'm coughing up for a small one-bedroom unit. It feels right to me, though, so I will buy if the bank accepts my application and hands me over the dough. I can always rent it out and go live in the hinterlands of NSW north coast anyway.

Terraces in Camperdown

Later I took off for a walk around Newtown and Camperdown. I got lost - twice! I ended up on Parramatta Road the first time after wandering around having lost my sense of direction, enjoying the brisk autumnal air of the late afternoon. Later I decided to walk through Sydney Uni via the Parramatta Road entrance and found myself getting lost inside the RPA hospital to find my way back onto Missenden Road. I walked around King Street and meandered in and out of bookshops, and helped myself to a vegetarian buddhist cafe meal.

Sunday afternoon of a long Easter weekend. Hazy-headed, impervious to direction, yet basking in the sweet suppleness of gentle amber sundown where streets turn and spin in all sorts of refracted directions. I haven't been sleeping well. Apart from a cold I've taken on for the long-weekend, I find myself being kept awake at night obsessing on how to arrange my wee apartment. I'm spending too much time on the net looking at budget and 2nd hand furniture shops for storage and shelving solutions. It's silly, really. All I need to do is wait until I move in - if I move in - and take it from there. One thing's for certain and that is that a lot of physical and mental gymnastics will be involved to fit everything that I want to fit into that unit and have it all looking effortless and reasonably spacious.

Sydney Uni, or RPA?

I was in Bondi Junction yesterday morning. The shopping precinct was teeming with people. I went into the newsagent to purchase Mojo magazine. Syd Barrett is the current issue's cover story and included with the magazine is a CD of multiple artists covering every song off Syd's disturbing 1970 solo release, 'The Madcap laughs', of which I love. I decided not to wait in line because too many people were lining up in the lotteries queue. I walked over to the other newsagent. Same thing. Long, long, lotteries queue, with the line of people wearing that exact same expression they always do when standing in a lottery queue, the kind of nose-askew look like someone farted. Maybe they did. But it wasn't me, this time.

It's kind of tough out there and unless you're reasonably wealthy it's hard, no matter how you look at it. That's when you delve into your being to coax out all your spiritual tools, just like you would a steady spray of Exit Mould, to help deal with being in this rather tough existence. Looking back at my ancestors of this land (by 'my' I'm being universal rather than personal) I can't help but feel that urge, or wish, to live off the land again.

I just want to go walkabout.

Parramatta Road

Paul Hewson shooting star

i'm in the sunshine A mate of mine produces a monthly songwriter newsletter which goes out to a hundred or so mainly Sydney-based...