The night actually started at a tiny Auckland bar buried in Newmarket’s back streets. The minute Lucha Lounge was hosting the Swiss founder of Voodoo Rhythm Records, Reverend Beatman. Hours earlier Beatman had performed in Radio New Zealand’s Auckland studios with Jeremy Ansell engineering and Trevor Reekie producing. Beatman was joined by Cantabrian troubadour Delany Davidson, who later introduced the Reverend to the tightly packed Lucha Lounge throng. Earlier in the evening the audience were assaulted by a raucous teenage duo that promoter John Baker had scraped off the streets of Point Chevalier. The Cavemen writhed about their corner of the venue like kites in a gale tethered to the ground by very flimsy threads. Heart Attack Alley were first up and they needed to be as guitarist Kristal Gallagher was required across town as she also plays for The Vietnam War.
The Vietnam War
Band leader Lubin Raines has seen many musicians come and go as the ranks of his Vietnam War ensemble swelled and diminished over the years. At one point the troops were so thin on the ground the band had to stop playing all together but Lubin kept writing, strumming and blowing that harmonica. For a while he led a band called The Expressive Men and the name of that act goes a long way towards describing Lubin’s approach to music. Close friend and promoter Matthew Crawley sits down with Lubin to unravel the story behind a slow-burning self-titled country album that has already outgrown the modest Sandringham home it was recorded in.
One of New Zealand’s most successful acts Fat Freddy’s Drop had to make a very difficult choice recently. After receiving an invitation to the prestigious Coachella Festival in the US the band made the call to pull out of the American market. Manager Nicole Duckworth explained the thinking behind the decision while questioning the real reasons local bands are so eager to head offshore. Nick Atkinson was at the Music Summit in Auckland to hear Nicole’s talk and speak to her afterwards.
Fat Freddy’s trumpet player Toby Laing is the founder of Economy Records. You may already be familiar with their latest release Sing Along with the Yoots, an instrumental album of classic waiata helmed by fellow Freddy’s brass player, trombonist Joe “Hopepa” Lindsay. Emma Smith talks to the president of the label about his unique roster and his hope of making the “air crackle with the finest party music, songs from distant corners of the earth.”