Coming To Auckland-Elvis Castello-

•30-March-2009 • Leave a Comment

Coming to Auckland ,Wanganui Herald Time Out Friday, June 7  1985

Elvis Costello solo is, an intriguing prospect for the legion of fans who know him only from his big-selling albums with the Attractions and, later, country and orchestral ensembles.

elviscastello-aucklandconcert-rev1The angry young Englishman (depicted below) of the late ’70s and early ’80s has, however, been getting rave reviews during his international concert tour with Texan solo act T-Bone Burnett.

Both artists perform one New Zealand concert – at His Majesty’s Theatre,Auckland – on June 27 so New Zealanders can judge for them selves whether the new style is an improvement.

Costello launched his career on a rebellious note after all, he was competing  with the Sex Pistols for public attention  prompting one English writer to comment that he “looked like Buddy Holly but this wimp was going to write the book of hate.”

From a promising but inconsistent first album, Costello went on to produce the impressive “This Year’s Model” with the Attractions, his three piece backing band. The classic “Armed Forces” album which Costello claimed was strongly influenced by Abba, established him as an artist with both credibility and mass appeal – even if some critics condemned his bitchy lyrics. His promising career received a blow on a subsequent    American tour when, in a drunken argument with Bonnie Bramlett and members of the Stephen Stills band, he made an unfortunate remark about Ray Charles.elviscastello-magazinerollingstone2009-rev1501

The echoes of that conversation in a Columbus, Ohio, bar echoed around the world and Costello faced accusations of racism from the media. The subsequent scandal caused Costello to retir and reconsider his position. As a musical campaigner against facism he was a little offended by the publicity, Since then his career has been erratic  he has produced records for a variety of acts and made experimental albums like “Almost Blue,” “Imperial Bedroom” and the landmark “Get Happy” a set of  ’60s-style soul offerings.He describes his latest work as “subversive.” New Zealand is about to find out what that means.

Bob Dylan is still doing it – Bob Dylan NZ-

•23-March-2009 • Leave a Comment

Bob Dylan is still doing it – 20 Dec 1985 –
POOR Robert Zimmerman. He has had to answer for his fictive alter ego ever since he reinvented himself, at the University of Minnesota in 1959, as Bob Dylan. He forged the new identity from fragments of off campus Bohemia: jazz poetry, beatnik nihilism, dissenting politics and folk music’s fantasy of uncorrupted community.Transcending the artless manner of Woody Guthrie,he became a rock-and-roll Rim-baud, the hobo prophet of his generation.

Had he died in his near fatal motorcycle accident in July 1966, he would doubtless be revered today as a martyred cultural icon, along with James Dean and John Lennon. But Dylan survived. “I’m not concerned with the myth,” he said several years ago, in a typically evasive comment. ‘I’d rather go on, above the myth.”

The myth, however, has a life of its own. Witness Bio graph,the five-record boxed set just released by Columbia that chronicles Dylan’s career. The set includes 53 tracks, 18 of them previously unreleased, all recorded between 1961 and 1981. Highlights include rarities like Mixed-Up Confusion, Dylan’s first single, which was released and quickly withdrawn in 1962.bob-dylan-patti-smith-poster

The digital mastering brings out fresh detail in familiar songs: for the first time, you can hear clearly such lovely musical touches as the curling guitar figure on I Want You. The set opens with a kalei doscope of love songs recorded between 1961 and 1970. It closes with four songs from the late ’60s full of religious imagery, including All Along the Watchtower. And it includes a 36-page illustrated booklet, built around a revealing new interview with Dylan.

“I don’t write confessional songs,” he says in the interview. “Emotion has got nothing to do with it. The ’60s were not any big deal.. I would rather have lived at the time of King David.” In the mid-’60s, Dylan was taking his music to extremes he would never again venture near.

“Chaos is a friend of mine,” he declared at the time, and you knew it was true – you could hear it in his voice. His art came to a full boil while he was on tour in Great Britain in my 1966. Biograph includes a previously unreleased rock version of I Don’t believe you from an early stop on that tour.

His audiences hates this music. He defiantly played it louder, harder, more violently than ever before.To borrow a metaphor from the critic Greil Marcus, Dylan stared into the void and in the summer of 1966, the void stared back. After his motorcycle accident that July, chaos would never again be his friend. “All our tongues are confused,” he laments today. “That lie about everybody having their own truth inside of them has done a lot of damage and made people crazy.”

He should know. Continue reading ‘Bob Dylan is still doing it – Bob Dylan NZ-‘

BARNESTORMING LIVE – Sunday News 22 Jan ’89 –

•19-March-2009 • Leave a Comment

BARNESTORMING LIVE – Sunday News 22 jan’89

Jimmy Lets loose on Kiwi audience

ROUGH-shaven, hard rockin’ Aussie Jimmy Barnes has been a busy man since he toured New Zealand last year.
“Since I played in New Zealand I’ve pist together the Barnestorming live album,” Jimmy told me during an interview from Australia. “I’ve always wanted to do a live album and I thought it was about time to do it. “People regard me more as a live performer than a studio artist there’s more opportunity to let loose.

“For the Barnestorming album we recorded shows where we thought there would be a good audience reaction,” he told me. “We recorded three Shows. Two outdoor to Crowds of between 30,000 and 40,000. and the other to 8000 .at an indoor Melbourne concert. “All of the venues were really good but we ended up using more of the indoor show because it was a bit more controlled as far as the band was Concerned.

“You can’t pick a performance on crowd reaction alone. Continue reading ‘BARNESTORMING LIVE – Sunday News 22 Jan ’89 –’

Eighties doowops ditties and dance mixes

•6-March-2009 • 1 Comment


MUSIC took a few twists during the last decade-some surprising but most shortlived. Fads became faster to flourish and fade than ever before as pop culture frantically devoured the old and devoured the old and vomited out new ideas.


The eighties saw the end of punk rock meander into a pit of self doubt and feedback. It was the decade in which disco died, only to be reincarnated in remixes five or seven years later. Rock and roll took a backseat, beaten down by its own baby, the blues. But through it all, pop ditties were the big sellers as the teen market jumped to the jive of anything with a gimmick, a go-go beat or, if all else failed, a gifted artist.

But a countdown of the decade in New Zealand tells it’s own story. 1980 kicked off in the midst of Michael Jackson mania. His Off The Wall album released hit after hit. Jazz king Dave Brubeck toured New Zealand with his quartet,Sharon
O’Neill sent words back from Sydney and later teamed with Jon Stevens, bouncing on the charts with Jezebel, to tour New Zealand.

Pink Floyd found commercial successs and critical acclaim with the wall while Fleetwood Mac found neither with their $1.5m dollar flop, Tusk. British band Recey toured New Zealand with their wide lapelled clothing and thin talents. Split Enz released their biggest selling single, I Got You. Donna Summer relinquished obeyance to disco and converted to Christianity while Blondie’s Debbie Harry kept the faith with Call Me. Marcia Hines, Gary Numan and Devo toured New Zealand.

Tina Cross threw away her boob tube and satin disco trousers and was barely heard of again The Boomtown Rats tured. Jon English toured New Zealand while disco lovers flocked to -try the New York groove called the Chic. No one really knew much about the craze except it involved rubbing naughty bits through clothing. Comic strip characters Kiss toured New Zealand.


John Lennon released Just Like Starting Over. A In 1981 Dolly Parton busted out with the song 9 To 5 and this was immediately confused with Sheena Easton’s Morning Train (ine to five). Willie Nelson caused a stir by playing I Love To Have A Joint With Willie over loudspeakers before his New Zealand shows. Olivia Newton John cut a sweaty single intended for Rod Stewart called Let’s Get Physical, her lily-white im age took a battering.

John Lennon was gunned down. Blondie released a hint of things to come with Rapture. The Blues Brothers hit the big screen-the soundtrack was to change the sound of parties for years to come. Try as they might, who could forget Laurie Dee’s Rugby Deck Of Cards.

Stevie Wonder toured, local ska band The Newmatics did likewise and A Taste Of Honey released the song Sukiyaki. Bob Marley succumbed to cancer, Continue reading ‘Eighties doowops ditties and dance mixes’

Iguana of rock – IGGY POP –

•27-February-2009 • Leave a Comment


Iguana of rock –  NZ Herald 27 January 1987

After 20 years of life in the fast lane, Wildman IGGY POP isenjoying his most successful period ever. He plays here next week, and he spoke to DOMINIC ROSKOW from Paris about his career and the bands he’s influenced.

“I’VE ben trought it all. I’ve been thepuppet, the dupe, the junkie, and I’ve come trough it and proved I’m the equal to mention.” Iggy Pop’s a survivor. It’s just over 20years since he set about self-destructing with the Stooges, and you’d have been a brave person to bet that he would see out the decade.

It’s about 10 years since he made the statement above, at a time that, for all the bravado, was one of unhappiness for the artist. Given his sttuttering career, his spells in mental institution and his seemingly limitlees capacity for drugs and alcohol, you’d have been a mug to pick him as a centender in the 80s.

And yet here we are, the final decade of the century just over the next hill, and Iggy is rushing ahead like an excited child while the rest of us struggle to keep up.

HE’S 41 now, enjoying as successful a period in his career as he’s ever had, and next week he’s breezing into New Zealand, for a couple of a shows that take the gig total on this current tour well past the hundred mark. Not bad for a man whose former lifestyle makes climbing electricity pylons tame by comparison.

“I couldn’t have done tours like this back in those days,” he says. “We were just a weekend band back then. “Nowadays I have an enormous advantage because in my early 20s I was on so many drugs it slowed me right down. As I get older I take less and less drugs and I have more and more energy. It means I’ll probably be reaching my peak in my 70s.”

READY TO FLY, The story of New Zealand Rock Music

•23-February-2009 • 2 Comments

By: David Eggleton.
Copyright 2003


At the beginning of the 1980s, reggae music had revolutionary value: it seemed slightly threatening. But by the end of the 1980s, reggae had become an accepted part of the mainstream musical landscape. The group that most symbolised this transformation was New Zealand’s leading reggae band, Herbs.

Herbs were the top Polynesian rock band of their era, cultural ambassadors for Auckland as the Polynesian capital of the world. Their harmonies, skanking rhythms, and Pacific themes made them especially popular throughout the Pacific Islands, where they toured several times. Herbs, with their regular changes in personnel, were more than a group, they were an institution, a taonga.

Herbs sprang out of a band called Back Yard. founded in the mid-1970s by core members Tony Fonoti (a Samoan songwriter and vocalist), Fred Faleauto (a Samoan-Cook Island drummer) and Spencer Fusimalohi (a Tongan guitarist). According to the group’s original leader, Tony Fonoti, he wanted: ‘to put Pacific influences into music, make Island culture more available, give it a modern soul’. The group rehearsed in Ponsonby, and in the late 1970s had a residency at the Trident Tavern in the working class suburb of Onehunga, their starting line-up augmented by a number of different musicians, including Maori guitarist and vocalist Dilworth Karaka.
Continue reading ‘READY TO FLY, The story of New Zealand Rock Music’

Stevie Wonder hits town – Stevie Wonder-

•17-February-2009 • Leave a Comment

Stevie Wonder hits town , From IRENE GARDINER – Auckland – April 1981

WITH BOTH his beded hair and hair and his finger clicking,Stevie Wonder smiled and joked his way through a half-hour press conference at Auckland airport yesterday

The acclaimed soulful musician, with 30 years, 12 albums, several number one singles and 14 grammy awards behind him, appeared pleasant and relaxed, clicking his finger and talking about things being “bad” and “outasight man”.

Blind eyes hidden behind silverrimmed dark glassess, and six-fot figure clad in a fawn leisure track auit and sport “Davis Cup” shoes, soft spoken Wonder answered question ranging from, “How long does it take to braid and bead your hair like that?” to “What do you think of the Springbok tour?”.

The tour questin could have upset and angered the black American, but he handled it cooly: “You know how I feel about that. You know everyone like me feels about that. It’s there in my music.” And the cornrowed hair: “it takes 12 hours to do it like this, and the same lady has looked after it for the past three years.

“Hair like this isn’t somethinkg me, Stevie Wonder started though. It’s thousands and thousands of years old. But I Like it, it’s part of my culture.” Tiredness seemed to show a little in Wonder’s long and rambling – from the point answers.

He had just been up all night in Sydney (the no-concerts leg of his Japan-Australia-New Zealand tour) with his 15-piece backing band, Wonderlove. Stevie Wonder seems to like to bring his outomatic religiouse philosophy about life and love into conversation at every opportunity. Plentiful were continue to give people positivereason to look forward to tomorrow”. “We to will live some day in a word of eternal bliss” and “for every person I make smile, I smile twice”.

But definite answeres were also given. This may be Stevie Wonder’s last tour, if not for ever, at least for along time. He wants to produce and write more for others. He’d like to go travelling, or mybe go back to school and do some more study. And does the man who has been recording with Motown since he was 10 (he had his first number one hit “fingertips 1 and 2 live” at 12) and discovered in a Detroit ghetto by Berry Gordo, plan to leave the record company?. “No it’s importand in may eyes that as long as there is a Motown I am part of it.”

Stevie Wonder performs at Western Springs, Auckland, tonight and at Athletic Park,Wellington, on Monday night.


•13-February-2009 • Leave a Comment


SALT 30 July 2002 Dix MEISTER


Jhon Dix

Hugh Lynn, once New Zealand’s highest profile rock’n’roll promoter, may have been away from the public eye for over a decade but he’s hardly been idle.

The Whakapuare Trust, a multicultural concept based on Australia’s Building Bridges programme, now has chapters in Indonesia and Zimbabwe (whakapuare translates as “opening of the doors”),
and 20 years of collecting memorabilia associated with his promotions is starting to pay off.

In the pipeline is a Whakapuare album, for which Lynn’s former business partner, Australian promoter Michael Chugg, is now recruiting acts.

The fundraising album aims to raise the profile of indigenous peoples. In the meantime, The Hugh Lynn Collection is about to launch its internet site.

The Collection has sold 800 items in the past 16 months, mostly posters. “We’ve sold very little to New Zealanders,” Hugh says. “Most of our sales have been overseas, mostly in the USA.

We have clients in all but three of the 52 US states and, at last count, we’ve sold to 32 or 33 different countries.”

And the most popular items? “Bob Dylan and Neil Young sell very well but, surprisingly, Jimmy Buffett posters are our most popular item. $US50 a pop Kiwis are still loathe to pay those price.

“Rock’ n ‘roll memorabilia is still new but it has been big in Britain and the States for years.”

Straight from the lip – Jimmy Barnes –

•12-February-2009 • 1 Comment

Straight from the lip – North Island Herald 3rd February 1989

IT ISN’T every honorary member of Wellington’s Black Power who talks of his forthcoming month long holiday at his home in Thailand, and the 24-track recording studio he is building at his country estate in the southern hills of New South Wales – but rock’n’roll makes for some strange bedfellows.

And for Jimmy Barnes,the working class man who pours out hard-drinking, throat-tearing power rock,it all sits pretty easily.

In Auckland for tonight’s Mt Smart concert with Iggy Pop,the Choir boys and Knightshade,Barnes shoots straight from the lip with the kind of tell-the-truth attitude which has made him a true Australian hero.Right now,Barnes is in a between-albums limbo with one eye on the lucra tive but as yet out-of-reach American market.nort-island-herald_3rd-feb-19891

HIS last album partly recorded in Los Angeles – didn’t crack the big one but although he acknowledges rock is big business, he says he isn’t busting himself to appease the Americans.

“The last thing in my head when I’m writing is that American market. It doesn’t matter if it’s for America or Belfast, a good song is a good song,” he says in his Auckland hotel room. “I was probably aware of it when I did the last album because I was in America recording it with Americans, but it isn’t something I plan to do.

“That last studio album, Freight Train Heart,was panned by some Australian critics for its “American-ness,” and while Barnes admits the best parts of the album were recorded back in Australia, he has some opinions about those writers.

“I didn’t get a lot of flak but that’s the Aussie press. It’s probably a bit like here – a very British mentality. Once people get up you knock them down again. “In America if someone is Continue reading ‘Straight from the lip – Jimmy Barnes –’


•9-February-2009 • 1 Comment

$3o FOR TICKET TO ROCK SHOWS! 8 O clock, Saturday, February 9, 1985

I F YOU think rock concert ticket prices have gone over the Top for Neil Young’s New Zealand shows this month. . .well that’s Just the beginning.

Promoter Hugh Lynn has set prices at S22 for advance sales and S26 at the gate for the February 22,24 and 26 shows in.Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. And by the end of the year he’s tipping that Kiwi rock fans could be paying as much as $30 to see and hear superstars.

The reason: “Our dollar is just so bad – and most of these acts want to be paid in US dollars.”So, either New Zealanders are going to have to get used to paying around $25 and $26 or we’re going to miss out.” Already, Lynn says, we’ve missed out on Genesis,the sultry Eartha Kitt,British pop duo Wham – now in Australia -“and a couple of others.” 0013_centre_8-oclocksatfebruary9-1985-rev-10001

In addition, Van Morrison and Spandau Ballet are doubtful to extend Australian tours into New Zealand.

At least the Young show is promising virtually three acts for the price of one: Neil with the country band the International Harvesters,Neil doing a solo, acoustic spot and Neil with his electric outfit,Crazy Horse.

Crazy Horse features the same lineup that appeared in the Rust Never Sleeps movie,namely Frank Sampedro on guitar and keyboards,bass player Billy Talbot and drummer Ralph Molina.

While the International Harvesters comprises fiddle player Rufus Thibodeaux, guitarist/vocalist Anthony Crawford and Ben Keith on steel guitar. The show is a variation on what Young’s been dealing out in the States recently:Shows there featured only him and the International Harvesters.

SPRINGSTEEN lament – The Boss is definitely not coming to New Zealand as part of his Down Under tour next month.

That’s the word form local promotor Benny Levin,Who says the low value of the New Zealand dollar and the tight schedule Springsteen is on counted out a New Zealand show. Event in Australia,the show Springsteen and the E Street Band are playing are limited – meaning many Aussie fans will miss out. In Sydney,for instance,he’s doing seven show at the 12.000-seat Sydney Entertainment Centre. He’ll only do one show, a 10.000-sear venue, in Queensland and two in Melbourne.

Fans have already been calling CBS Records here in search of details of the Springsteen show in Australia.