Took a beautiful road trip out to Molong - over the mountains one day and back via back roads south (then north) the next. Was a little window of liberty and luck, as you can no-doubt see.
Coming home has been harsh however. Sydney's perpetual devaluation of culture continues to wreak havoc. On top of an errant NYE issue, I've just lost a valuable and promising residency at one venue due to changed management deciding to import their own crew before even listening to what we've built for the community there over a year or so thus far. Suddenly having the rug pulled out from under you at this time of year is a cruel blow.
Discussing the closure of the World Bar on ABC Local with Robbie Buck and Wendy Harmer the other day really brought home to me how much this city has devolved. During my 5 til 7PM Friday residency there almost every track I played had either been released that week or was yet to be available publicly. Most came from our city, our country. Sounds and songs from countless genres were invariably welcomed by everyone: old diggers and residents; nurses just off work; kids heading out to party.
That would simply never happen here now. Not because multiple layers of society wouldn't embrace fresh local culture though, only because of paralysing institutional timidity. Even already successful venues owned by the handful of companies that rule nightlife in Sydney largely contract further and further into a handful of hackneyed hits til there is very little left to differentiate one place from another. It's a tragic abdication of ambition and representation, that patronises punters and cements our woeful reputation as a global embarrassment.
I'm still profoundly grateful to have the freewheeling career in music that I do - but dead-set it is becoming near-impossible to maintain my complete commitment to it and feed a family.
Wednesday December the 12th ~
It seems fitting that I'm guiding you to a sandstone cellar above the Tank Stream under this picture of Cox's Rd, which was the first passable track built between Sydney and Bathurst. Incredibly just 30 men, later lauded (justifiably) as heroes, cleared and built it (including multiple bridges) in 6 months.
Celebrate in timeless style as Miss Pia's Swing Combo play 7 til 10, before I spin from then til 3AM. Swingin' at the Speakeasy is always free.
Friday December the 14th ~
I'll be enjoying a creative and thematic respite from the usual haunts during my annual contribution to the APRA AMCOS Xmas party, this time a garden affair in lush surrounds I've long wanted to see.
Saturday December the 15th ~
Jess Locke sings live on Jack Off between 3 and 5PM.
Thence there's a free two-hour-long seaside set from 10.30, on the ground floor of Bondi's Hotel Ravesis.
Sunday December the 16th ~
I saw constellations on the ceiling of this cave, deep below the earth. As above, so below.
So what will we discover at Imperial Up between 3 and 8PM this Sunday? Something free. Something me.