Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Friday Music: The First Time

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  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Mike O'Connell,

    Nick Strong
    (who may have been in the Playthings)

    He wasn't in this iteration of the Playthings, though...

    ...but he was definitely Expendable!
    ;- )

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7953 posts Report

  • Neil Kirkland,

    Fleetwood Mac 1977 first ever concert, Kiss 1980 then Sweetwaters 1982, that is the year that live music really took off for me and I have never looked back, still going to gigs every other weekend ...

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 1 posts Report

  • Hebe, in reply to Samuel Scott,

    And Dylan was INTENSE.

    He was, wasn't he. Time Out Of Mind was one of the boys' lullaby albums when they were tiny babes. Both of them only liked growly male voices singing: Bob Dylan, Rod Stewart, Lou Reed/Velvets (the melodic songs), Nirvana Unplugged. If we put on soft baby-go-to-sleep music, both would wail, weep and eventually roar until it was replaced by an old growly down low. Enya sent them right off immediately. Only exception to the sexism was Blondie's greatest hits.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2899 posts Report

  • Sacha, in reply to Alan Perrott,

    ringing for days

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Sacha,

    contrastingly, biggest sound system ever (but used responsibly) would have to be U2's Zooropa tour at Western Springs in the early 90s. Giant beast run at less than half capacity as I recall. Big Audio Dynamite sounded awesome on it beforehand.

    By then I'd seen a whole lot of brilliant locals in small venues but this was huge pop done proper. And the biggest screens in NZ.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Sacha,

    Deepest sounds would be Grooverider at The Box and sundry other d'n'b gigs.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Sacha,

    Best crowd engagement would be that Grooverider gig, Derrick May in K'Rd , and Michael Franti acoustic in a tiny cafe on upper Queen St. Oh, and Chris Knox as MC at the Flying Nun anniversary gig at The Powerstation (no earbleeds).

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report

  • Stephen D. O'Hoy, in reply to Jackie Clark,

    I saw Dire Straits play in Sydney in 1991. I fell asleep about 5 minutes into Knopfler's first guitar solo and woke up as they played their final song. It's still the only gig that I've managed to sleep most of the way through. Thankfully we didn't pay for the tickets. A friend of mine had been sleeping with the manager of the support act, who I think were Hothouse Flowers, so we got comped.

    Since Sep 2013 • 7 posts Report

  • lloydois,

    Pretty sure it was Millie Small at the Whangarei Town Hall with my gran. Solo was Four Tops at the Auckland Town Hall in my 1st year at university.

    Memorable gigs following were the Stones at Western Springs 1973. Led Zep around the same time and Elton John's 1st NZ performance with a 3 piece circa Tumbleweed Connection before my mum and sisters discovered him and he lost all credibility!

    Last gig for me was Steely Dan doing Aja and assorted hits at the Beacon Theatre in New York about a month ago. Brilliant beyond belief but some treasured gigs in kiwiland for sure not the least of which was U2 at Mt Smart 2006.

    Sydney • Since Jan 2008 • 12 posts Report

  • Simon Grigg, in reply to Stephen D. O'Hoy,

    I fell asleep about 5 minutes into Knopfler’s first guitar solo and woke up as they played their final song.

    I did that for the Doobie Brothers in 1976 or so. Every song of theirs sounded roughly the same so the beginning of the first song segued perfectly into the end of the encore and I was happy. I'd won the ticket on a radio station so like you I didn't feel cheated.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3284 posts Report

  • kiwicmc,

    Sweatiest gig Trouble Funk - Hammersmith Palais 1987 Washington DC GoGo, crowd was bouncing from the DJ intro and didn't stop for 2 hours.

    Auckland, New Zealand • Since May 2008 • 88 posts Report

  • Hebe, in reply to Stephen D. O'Hoy,


    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2899 posts Report

  • Rob Hosking,

    I've seen a lot of local (and a few international) bands in pubs and at Uni and Polytech and the like but I've never done the big concert Western Springs/Mt Smart type of gig. Don't like crowds much.

    Sweetwaters is the biggest I've managed: the 1984 one which had Talking Heads, Pretenders, Eurythmics, Simple Minds, and pretty much every local outfit who could plug in an amp.

    My main memory of the Saturday night is the Pretenders doing a very perfunctory gig, Chrissie Hynde getting pissed off because the punters were throwing a lot of beer cans around and some were ending up on the stage: she swore very loudly at them in the middle of a song. But the band ending with a storming version of Small Faces 'Whatcha Gonna Do About It?' And, being chronically historically obsessive, explaining this factoid to the folk I was with instead of just, you know, getting into the whole thing.

    Missed most of the Talking Heads part: David Byrne came on, on his own, strumming a guitar and singing ('Psycho Killer', I think) but by then the beer cans were flying again and I got whacked on the head with one which was half full - probably of someone's piss.

    Never did any gig with my parents. Idea is bizarre...

    First unpaid local gig - I know during the Twitter exchange alluded to above I said Daggy and the Dickheads, which has a 50-50 chance of being true. The first few weeks on my Polytech course after I left school they played a lunchtime concert, and so did Blam Blam Blam. (this is February 1982). But I don't recall which was first.

    Both were very good - Daggy and the Dickheads were from Taihape, they had one single which can be heard here (and I still have my copy) and a few other songs which came out on an EP later that year and which were good live and crap on record.

    The Blams, of course, are much better known. Was impressed by the fact McGlashan could sing from the drum kit, and then get up and play the French horn. They did a mixed soft shoe shuffle/twirling dance during the chorus of "Maids To Order'.

    First international artist gig was probably John Cale at the Gluepot, summer 1986-87.

    Just Brilliant.

    First School gig A local band made up of a few blokes a year or two ahead at school. Bass player sang most of the songs - a lot of covers of Police numbers. [this was around 1980-81.]

    Dave Patrick, who comments up-thread, might remember this outfit - I think they were his his year.

    Anyway, the bass player is still playing bass, and his outfit is doing rather well, |though not doing Police songs any more. ]]

    Biggest gig regret Cold Chisel farewell tour late 1983. Was all set to go but ended up stuck in Whakatane in bed with concussion after car accident.

    South Roseneath • Since Nov 2006 • 830 posts Report

  • FletcherB,

    First concerts with parents? I Don’t recall them as I was a baby in a bassinet… many and various Jazz concerts and gigs

    First concerts with that I recall (with parents). Melbourne City Council sponsored “FEIPS” (free entertainment in parks) a whole summer afternoon/evening of various big-band and small combo Jazz at the Meyer Music Bowl, several years in a row around 1975 or so… memorable for the music, the picnic food, and the running away into the park to climb trees, throw “dry ice” nicked from the caterers into the streams, and catch yabbies (fresh-water crayfish) with both old friends and ones made that day… (age 7-9)

    School lunch-time concert The Mockers in 1982 or 3…

    First international concert: Dire Straights 1986 at Mt Smart- Brothers in Arms tour.

    First pub gig: Helping set-up (ie. “roadie”) friends of my brothers, Hoi Poloi at the Gluepot (aged 17 or so)

    Near miss: In 1984 (fifth former) I asked my mother if I could catch a bus into town after school to see the Aotea Square free concert which turned into the Queen St Riot… She declined, but mainly due to a misunderstanding of the nature of the event… turns out she would have been happy for me to go if she’d known what it a was (before things turned sour). Never so glad of being declined permission before or since…

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 893 posts Report

  • FletcherB,

    Update: just remembered: also during primary school- year/age forgotten… Being bus-ed to the Moorrabbin Town Hall to see Melbourne Symphony Orchestra playing a selection classics for kids, theme from Peter and the wolf, 1812 Overture, Flight of Bumblebee, and such… including conductor explaining different sections (i.e., brass, woodwinds, strings, percussion, etc.) of orchestra and how they all sounded different but worked together… was fun and educational!

    I dont recall if our whole school went, or just several classes… but the same thing was obviously happening for many other nearby schools at same time… I’d never seen so many kids (or busses) in the same place at once.

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 893 posts Report

  • FletcherB,

    International: David Bowie @ Western Springs on his Glass Spider Tour (1987?)

    My recall of that concert:
    Great Band, Great lights, Great Dancers, and a Mr Bowie who was obviously sick and tired of the tour and was clearly just going through the motions...
    (it was the very last date of a 7-month-86 concert world tour )

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 893 posts Report

  • Henry Barnard,

    Ironically, I have had to think carefully about my early days in Aotearoa New Zealand recently. I arrived in Wellington straight from Calcutta (and Schooling+First year at University) in August 1966 at the age of 17. I immediately enrolled in the Correspondence School so as to be able to get some background to be able to tackle the UE exams (which I had to sit rather than have accredited), After the exams I headed up north to a place near Hamilton for a summer job at an alternative community called Beeville from where I went (in early 1967) to my first `gig’/`international concert’ – all rolled into one: The Yardbirds, Roy Orbison. This was with friends who had introduced me to Beeville.

    I do remember this:

    I also remember it was in a theatre – which seems strange in the light of more recent experiences.

    Palmerston North • Since Aug 2013 • 65 posts Report

  • Reg Bloor,

    In the mid seventies I took the bus from the West Coast to Christchurch, stayed at a B&B and saw Janis Ian at the Christchurch Town Hall. I was still at high school at the time. Janis played an electric guitar which totally stunned me as she was a girl(uhumm).

    Local concert was Pop Co with Mark Williams and several other acts. I remember thinking how passionless our singers were and how our drummers like a mushy sound.

    Also saw first Dudes concert in Welly at Uncle Alberts, you could only drink coke. Now that was a band with passion and something to say!

    Hawkes Bay • Since Oct 2013 • 2 posts Report

  • Grant McDougall,

    Thursday before last when I was waiting to catch the free bus out to Chicks in Port Chalmers for the Astro Children album launch gig, some young guy came up to me and said "It's really good that old guys like you are still coming out to see bands".

    I stood with a perplexed look on my face for a few seconds and said "I just think they're a really good band".

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 760 posts Report

  • Dave Patrick, in reply to Rob Hosking,

    First School gig A local band made up of a few blokes a year or two ahead at school. Bass player sang most of the songs – a lot of covers of Police numbers. [this was around 1980-81.]

    Dave Patrick, who comments up-thread, might remember this outfit – I think they were his his year.

    Anyway, the bass player is still playing bass, and his outfit is doing rather well,

    Peter Koopman - yes, he's managed to turn an excuse to get out of 4th form science (double bass lessons) in to a musical career. No idea who the others would have been in that band.

    Rangiora, Te Wai Pounamu • Since Nov 2006 • 261 posts Report

  • Geoff Lealand, in reply to Henry Barnard,

    Beeville was in a little burg called Orini, off the the Gordonton to Taupuri Road. Honey was the primary production? Bizarre to think of Roy Orbison playing there.

    Screen & Media Studies, U… • Since Oct 2007 • 2562 posts Report

  • Rob Stowell,

    We lived in 'Beeville' for a few months when I was a tyke. I seem to remember long rows of feijoas along the roadside.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2120 posts Report

  • Rob Stowell,

    First concert: Lou Reed at the Chch town hall, 1977. Thought I was still 16, but judging from the concert archive Oct 24th, I would've been 17.
    It wasn't a great concert, musically. The band were far too loud, and you just couldn't hear Lou. He seemed annoyed by this, and got quite stroppy with them- stopping and starting til at least 'Walk on the Wild Side' started out with audible vocals- before getting louder and louder ...
    I don't think me and my mate Winton really minded. We'd saved and scrimped and anticipated, listening to LPs over and over. We drove into town in his Morris Minor, quite hyped up. Like seeing Dylan a few years ago, with terrible sound and frankly, a pretty a-tonal performance of scarcely audible vocals, just being there was enough.
    RIP Lou.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2120 posts Report

  • Henry Barnard, in reply to Geoff Lealand,

    Yes, that's right, Geoff and Rob. My tasks involved, if I recall rightly, putting honey in tins as well as helping out with fruit picking. Kind of early WWOOF. I was in a state of culture shock for most of that time adjusting to NZ after spending most of my life in India up to that point.

    Bizarre to think of Roy Orbison playing there.

    The concert was in Hamilton itself. I had nothing to compare it with but we, too, felt it was a weird combination. In hindsight, it also feels strange in another way: big music in a small venue. The only `gigs' I had been to uptill then were the `socials' at my last school in Darjeeling, The place was run by French, Belgian, Canadian and Indian Jesuits who organised these events for us lads with the girls from the local convent!!

    Anyway,the next year it was `The Animals' (sans Alan Price) in Wellington.

    Palmerston North • Since Aug 2013 • 65 posts Report

  • Kumara Republic,


    I've started doing 3D art in my spare time, and for your amusement, here's a salute to the golden age of hard rock.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5446 posts Report

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