As I write, I feel as if I’m about to attempt to conquer an unconquerable mission. Since my arrival in Western Australia, the universe and I have been enjoying many a giggle with one another as it prods and pokes at my patience levels; at the same time, throwing questionable fortune and love my way. This unconquerable mission is the attempt to try and explain all these almost-unfathomable connections I’ve made with both people and places tied to my home town on the East coast: ie- THE OTHER SIDE OF THIS CRAZILY LARGE COUNTRY. Bear with me if you’d like to read one heck of a story. Here goes…
Slowly making my way from the south-east of WA following van trouble, a $400 fine, and a run in with a friendly park ranger (with some sweet little gigs in between), I finally made it to Perth for my first show, supporting my Sydney buddies, Kallidad, at The Rosemount Hotel. T’was a super fun show and the first of many subtle reminders that this world is not as big as we think.
Super pumped to check out as much live music as possible, after my show with Kallidad I ducked next door into Bar 459 to find my buddy Kiah playing with one of his band’s! Kiah is not a WA resident. Although from South Australia, Kiah and I first met in VIC where I supported his other band, Conchillia. I last caught him briefly at The Port Fairy Folk Festival back in March playing with The Bearded Gypsy Band who I was about to see play again- but this time, on the other side of the country, in a state far away from home, in the same venue as me AND on the same evening… what?!? At the conclusion of their set, Kiah kindly introduced me to the band members of Canada’s The Bombadils, who supported The Bearded Gyspy Band. I instantly recognised their band name, racking my brain to understand the connection. MARGARET RIVER. I had seen a glimpse of their name plastered on a poster the night I played an open mic at Settler’s Tavern a week or so back. I expressed my longing to land on Canada’s shores to The Bombadil crew, swiftly followed by an invite to join them for some shows WHEN I make it over there! Loving life.
With no desire to remain under the scrutiny of city lights, I excitedly headed to the familiar ground of Fremantle where I spent a little time busking and frolicking about 5 years ago. Following a fun little nostalgic time busking at the Fremantle Markets, I made the most of my time in this lovely mini-city and made a point of chasing more live music. Mojo’s became my home for the next two nights where magic truly happened. Trying to keep this recap, sweet and detailed is quite difficult, so here are some semi-easy-to-follow dot points:
- Thursday: Upon my catch up with Kiah, he informed me of The Bearded Gypsy Band playing a gig at Mojo’s, alongside local band’s ‘Justin Walsh’ & ‘The Galloping Foxley’s’.
- Ran into Simon Marks! I booked Simon to play in Halls Gap (VIC) last year during my time in The Grampians. Hugs were exchanged.
- After muchos boogie-ing, I recognised the mandolin player and his smile from both ‘Justin Walsh’ & ‘The Galloping Foxley’s: Jason Snook.
- I first met Jason back on the Gold Coast when we played a gig together at my old stomping ground of The Loft, guestimating about 7 years ago. He and Mitch (from The Lamplights) were also living out of their van at the time and made me lemon tea to soothe my sore throat. <3
- Turns out, Jason is originally from WA and moved back quite some time ago. Holy moly. Hugs were exchanged.
- Friday: Marlon Williams at Mojo’s
- Marlon and I randomly first met in The Grampians last year when I was drinking coffee with Melody Pool. He was playing a wedding with Mick Thomas.
- Marlon & Melody ended up returning to the Grampians together a few months later for a show at Ararat Live. They stayed in front of the fire at my house (a real one- not my van) afterwards!
- Here was Marlon about a year later, playing to a packed Mojo’s crowd. Just to reiterate again, on the OTHER SIDE of the country. Hugs were exchanged.
- I recognised both the guitarist AND bass player in Marlon’s Band (The Yarra Benders). Uh oh.
- Turns out, the rocking bassist was Mia Dyson’s guitarist (!!!)
- I reminded Tim (bassist) of our run in at the airport last year when I was touring with Shaun Kirk. He remembered.
- The guitarist was Dan Parsons.
- Dan and I first met at least 6 years ago in Brisbane during the venue establishment and mentor programming being run at The Hive. Here he was, standing in front of me on the other side of the country. Hugs were again exchanged.
- Tour support act for Marlon was the beautiful Julia Jacklin
- Julia is originally from The Blue Mountains (NSW)
- Turns out, I supported her boyfriend’s band (Eddie Boyd & The Phatapillars) in Katoomba late last year.
- She was at the gig. CRAZY.
- The Friday freak-outs continued, when I literally RAN into my ex-love on the beach.
- Originally from northern NSW, but falling madly in love in VIC, he was back in WA for work.
- Knowing we were both in WA, but not planning to meet, we were somehow brought together when he spotted me running on South Beach in Fremantle… at sunset.
- The next few days in Fremantle brought welcomed closure and happiness to both of our hearts.
- Saturday night, I ended up playing an insanely beautiful backyard show for a friend of a friend I happened to meet whilst down in Denmark (Katie J White, south WA). Turns out it was at the house of a talented Didgeridoo player my ex-love had met and told me about earlier that week. CONNECTIONS EVERYWHERE.
- A happy Sunday in Fremantle resulted in us running into a talented street artist called Rene’. I ended up scoring a literal last-minute gig at the ArtGames held at The Newport Hotel that very evening! My MC skills were put to the test also! What a night!
- Whilst still in Freo, I got word from a dear new friend of mine that Ziggy Alberts was playing a house show in Perth that night. Tickets sold out in 15 minutes. I didn’t get one. But ended up in the audience anyway.
- Ziggy and I first met back on the Gold Coast in the early stages of my tour in late 2013. We played a show together at Sol Bar. Hugs were exchanged.
- Ricky Green was on my ‘ WA musos-to-meet’ list after our exchange of a few emails trying to make a show happen whilst I was touring the west.
- Thinking our paths wouldn’t cross, I unexpectedly caught Ricky play a show at The Odd Fellow a few nights ago. He was amazing.
- We’re going to be in Bali at the same time in May. Hugs were exchanged.
- On the road. Magic. Happens.
Well folks, that’s about the extent of magical Fremantle time I think you can handle. Thanks for hanging in there. Maybe if I blogged more frequently, I wouldn’t have this whole ‘overloading-you’ issue. Although, this stuff all happened within the space of a few days… Thank you world; and to the beautiful people within its space who are making my world so magical. That includes YOU.
Love and Smiles from the road!