bob short - The I-94 Bar

BARFLY TOP TEN: Bob Short

Bob Short Top10There is a school of thought that suggests great art is the product of suffering. 2016 has largely put paid to that notion.

I mean, this year should have positively dripped genius. I couldn't come up with a full ten. Here's my Top Six.

BARFLY TOP TENS: Bob Short of Filth, Blood and Roses, Dead Rabids and The 4 Stooges

bob top ten 2017Oh Christ.  The Barman’s on the phone from Bondi.  Says he’s gonna make me a star.  David Essex once made me a similar offer which probably would have certainly given me a #metoo moment.  A Top 10 list?  Shit.  Have you seen the state of Planet Earth? 

Just when you thought the whole place couldn’t sink much further, they gave a pussy grabbing paedophile the keys to the kingdom and a button for his tiny finger.  I tried not to write.  Mother said something about “if you don’t have anything nice to say…”  I’d been putting my foot in the truth for a long time and it was getting me in trouble.  Hate mail.  Death threats.  I wasn’t allowed to attack their freedom to be dicks.

And it’s been a shit year with a whole bunch of old timers coming back to provide a less than memorable version of the past.  I could name names but, let’s just remember I was there when those moments were something to throw your life behind.  Best thing about saying  that is anyone asking “Is he talking about me?” is probably right.

Noticeable Exception 1 is Top Ten 1.

1. PATTI SMITH plays Sydney 2017.  How to grow old disgracefully…

Bob Short's Complete History of Rock and Roll Episode 15

You want more Bob Short? He's back with Episode 15 of The Complete History of Rock and Roll. It's entitled "More of the Same Old Same." What does that mean? You'll have to listen to find out. Tracklist after the MORE button. 

Bowl me over! The Johnnys are back.

johnnys bowlo webAfter seven years, thousands of kilometres and innumerable demolished backstage riders, The Johnnys were Australia’s indisputable, rough riding champions of cowpunk.

Fresh from two gigs in New Zealand, The Johnnys – Graham Hood (bass and vocals), Slim Doherty (guitar) and Billy Pommer (drums) - will play their first Australian show in two years, headlining Marrickville Bowling Club on Friday, April 13.

They’ll be joined by The Four Stooges (Australia’s only Stooges homage band), Maximum Security (launching their debut album) and Bob Short & The Light Brigade.

The Johnnys formed in Sydney in 1982 when bass guitarist Graham Hood tried out for the Hoodoo Gurus after quitting the Allniters. He met Hoodoo Gurus' guitarist Roddy Ray'da and, with drummer Billy Pommer, they formed The Johnnys, playing their first show at Palms Disco on Oxford Street in Sydney.

New Zealand-born Spencer P. Jones joined on guitar and the four-piece released their single "I Think You're Cute" in October on Regular Records. Ray'da left and the band signed with independent label Green Records before joining major imprint Mushroom.

Et Mourir de Plaisir - Bob Short (Full On Noise)

bob short lp"This album is dedicated to a small club: the squatters of Campbell Buildings in 1979/80. Every year our numbers get fewer but the story lives on," writes Bob Short on the LP cover.

Yeah. Just like the 100 Club and the Sex Pistols, occupants of the Campbell Buildings in London now number in their mythological thousands.

Yeah right. Some pasts attract wanna-be’s like flying bugs to apricot jam, others … well, let’s just say you’d give some pasts a wide berth.

Going Underground - The Light Brigade (Full On Noise)

going undergroundRock and roll's fascination with the doomed is a story well told. From the members of the 27 Club of Janis and Jim to Johnny Thunders, Amy Winehouse and beyond, it's a love affair that's been going on a very long time. 

On the other hand, you don't have to die to be an occupant of Rock's Pantheon of Lost Causes. It's much larger than any physical graveyard and my mate Bob Short is a proud tenant.

It's not that "Going Underground" or its makers are going out of their way to sell no copies or that its investor (Bob) wants to finish deeply in the red side of the ledger. Not when there are more guitars to buy.

Even Bob knows that "recouping" is not another word for a re-constructed chicken enclosure. He's also a realist who knows the sweet, abrasive sounds of this collective will never grace the airwaves of a commercial radio station.

John Lee Hooker’s World Today - Hugo Race and Michelangelo Russo (Helixed/ Rough Velvet), Raw - Bob Short (self released) & Let Them…- Meat Cake (Conquest of Noise)

meat cakeOnce upon a time I went to The Big Day Out. I can’t remember which, but the events themselves I always thought were a nuisance which one was obliged to endure in order to see the two or maybe three bands you actually went to 

Anyway, it had dawned on me that “my generation” was utterly reviled by the one coming up. Which is understandable, of course, as every generation has to gain independence and identity, and the quickest route is to revile the old farts. ’Cause of course, we no nuffink. 

Now that I am a card-carrying Old Fart who Shouts At Clouds and Doesn’t Like the Look of Those Teenagers, I have a blessed distance to view the rich landscape of modern music [Barman: insert vomit noisehere]. In 1987 Steve Albini made a passing comment: “Pointless teenage thrash bands”.

Seasons Beatings! Bob Short is back with his podcast

Bob Short's Complete History Of Rock and Roll returns with Episode 14 to wish you Merry Xmas and/or Happy New Year. Here's what the postman brought Santa Bob in the mail. Tracklist after the fold (click MORE)

To Die With Pleasure b/w Waterloo Sunset - Bob Short (Full On Noise Records)

to die with pleasureAlong with half of once-underground Sydney, I know Bob Short. Unlike the rest of Sydney, it seems, I’ve only seen the scrote play once and, because he was rather brilliant, he rates a decent listen and a proper review of his first 7”.

This isn’t an essential purchase, not in this world of freebie downloads and rubbish music. Surely?

Well, actually I rather love this little record, and it looks super in my collection. And, as I understand from Bob’s accompanying pitiful blurb that there’s an LP in the works, all this is as far as I am concerned, most certainly essential. Why?

So settle back on Granfer’s knee and I’ll tell ye a story young feller …