Monday, 1 December 2008

I was in a band once....

*Part 5- One last shot (with a big gun.)*



Though I had no involvement in Kashmir anymore the loss of Jessy as drummer would have implications resulting in me starting another band.
Roger was keen to keep the band going so he advertised for a drummer in the local papers.
One of the people who missed the cut was Andrew a pseudo punk and a neighbour of Tony the disappearing ex Kashmir singer.
He had a brother who was in an up and coming band who were being courted by Record Labels. (this never happened as they were in a car accident just before they signed and it all collapsed) and I think he was somehow destined to live in his shadow.
Kashmir eventually found a drummer in John , though nowhere as good as Jessy he was competent and did what he was told. Like all good drummers should.
One thing I reckon that Roger never really latched on to during this period was how instrumental James was to the continuation of the band.
James was a hugely popular guy and with Russell had a large network of friends through their ability to find a party in anything. James actually held band practise at his flat that was more of a drop in party centre than home.
This network supplied parties and ultimately work.
During this time as mentioned earlier Jim was back hanging around and both he and myself would constantly be bagging Kashmir on how serious they had become. I suppose I must single out how serious Roger and Chris had become because James was often more times than not in for as much as he could get out of it. With Roger there was always an emphasis on what the crowd wanted and which songs were for dancing and which songs were for quiet times, bullshit really, so Jim and I decided to put a band together to do it how it was meant to be: Simple, stupid and fun.
We hatched a plan. Kashmir’s first gig with John was going to be held at the old Youth Club a venue that had been unavailable for some time due to renovations. We enlisted the services of Andrew the reject drummer from Kashmir and named our selves I.Q =O pronounced eye kew equals zero. And we would crash the Kashmir gig as the support. We made no secret of our playing we informed Roger that the Youth club had accepted us.
We just wouldn’t tell him what we were playing or how we were playing.
This drove Roger nuts, Russell and James thought it funny. We even put up posters everywhere saying things like IQ=O in Sydney soon coming to Chadstone, or Kashmir & I.Q=0 in London coming soon to your town. Anything to bump up the numbers. We rehearsed the week before the gig using acoustic guitars and a drum pad, why we didn’t do things this way in the beginning is beyond me, it was so easy and quick. Jim and I decided to do all our songs Kashmir were still doing in their set and change the words on others. Because Andrew was such a pain in the arse we decided to only use him on 5 of the songs. The plan was to start off as a folksy acoustic duo and finish as a hard-core punk band in the course of 8 songs. When the night came Roger kept asking what we were doing we didn’t let anyone know, but we made sure we did a sound check before hand. Al rocked up early and we asked him to control the levels of the mixer for us, he said he’d be honoured and to his credit did a sterling job. The crowd was one of biggest yet at the hall, I don’t know if they were expecting something special or it was the usual nothing to do on a Sunday night in Chadstone thing.
Jim and I jumped on stage early and the crowd weren’t expecting us because all the hall lights were still on.
We started with Leprosy and then moved onto a rendition of Hey ,Hey My, My by Neil Young (since it was his idea we stole the soft to Ultra heavy theme from) We renamed it Ho, Ho Hee, Hee Jim playing the worst harmonica he could. By this time I think the audience were starting to get the picture as we went in our version of Knockin’ On Heavens Door. We then introduced Andrew to a sort of Middle of the road ballad called YUK from our Metal Magistrate set. I used nice clean guitar sounds at this stage Jim was winning everyone over with his ad-lib and happy banter.
Then we turned on the overdrive.
The crowd probably thought we were one of those bands that play in coffee houses up until that moment. Because we had no bass player we had miked up Andrew’s bass drum for bottom end attack. The crowd loved it and were jumping up and down we were as sloppy as shit but they loved it even though we wrote the song Circus the night before. Then we ripped into our new version of Adolescence . By this time Roger and Co had realised we were doing songs from their set and were screaming out rip off. Jim quickly reminded the audience
” the song done by the originals is always better, remember that later on tonight folks”,
and the classic
“We used to members of the next band but we all got kicked out, probably too higher standard “
We finished with our version of Advance Australia Fair morphing into Wild Thing something we did in Metal Magistrate and another part of the Kashmir show that they used as a highlight. When we had finished the crowd screamed for encores and Jim yelling back “ We don’t know anymore songs” So like in the Metal Magistrate gig we just played a couple of songs again.
To Kashmir’s credit they played a good set, even though we reminded them that we warmed up the crowd for them.
We had a ball and did exactly the same thing again a couple of months later at the next Kashmir gig, the highlight would have to be accused of ripping off material, even though we wrote it . We decided to end it there mainly because Andrew was an annoying a person that ever could be put on this earth.
I think we needed to do that to get it out of our system and say at least we did it.

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