Influential rock band The Saints to launch new Brisbane music track

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He plans to return from Saints to Railroad Gin and Carol Lloyd, return to Tony Worsley, Purple Hearts, Billy Thorpe, and then move on to Go-Betweens, Powderfinger, Regurgitator and Savage Garden.

Young Go-Betweens, left to right, Robert Vickers, Robert Forster, Grant McLennan and Lindy Morrison.Credit:Bernard Zuel

There might be some Cloudland stories, which have been flattened for the developers. It will tell stories on Festival Hall, flattened for the developers. About Spring Hill. The Judith Wright Center in Fortitude Valley, the home of 4ZZZ in the former Communist Party building on St Paul’s Terrace. The changing face of George Street.

“It’s kind of an archeology,” said John Willsteed, musician from Brisbane and expert on local cultural history.

Dr Willsteed is the man behind Brisbane’s new musical journey.

Years ago he was John E, artist and musician in some of Brisbane’s most inventive bands; Zero, then Xero, then the Go-Betweens and now, Halfway.

Musician John Willsteed in Brisbane.

Musician John Willsteed in Brisbane.Credit:Glenn hunt

Today Dr Willsteed is a Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Creative Industries, Queensland University of Technology.

But it’s his four decades as a musician, film score composer and designer of hundreds of leaflets, flyers and posters that make him the key to this new modern digital interpretation of a Brisbane musical journey.

“So it’s not about building a statue for someone like Johnny O’Keefe,” said Dr Willsteed.

“It’s about looking at the sites, because those sites are about the city.”

Dr Willsteed wants more Brisbane people to know about the place known as the Curry Shop, where the Saints, among hundreds of other bands, have performed.

“What’s important to me is a place that is now covered by the George Street court buildings,” he says.

“So I think it’s very important to say that underground here, this kind of thing has happened and it’s very important for those reasons.”

The Curry Shop was an influential Brisbane location, already known by international tours, including Blondie and Talking Heads, but unknown to most Brisbane residents.

“This is part of the strangeness of this country. As soon as you step away from the very obvious, like Michael Hutchence, or people who have had significant success in the leaderboards, people largely ignore the cultural history that lurks beneath their seats, “said Dr Willsteed. .

Ed Kuepper during his time with the Saints.

Ed Kuepper during his time with the Saints.

The concept of Dr Willsteed is to build an online digital history of groups, artists and places, which are activated by place markers.

But first.

At last week’s BigSound conference, Ms Palaszczuk announced that the Queensland government will fund a mural to honor the music of the Saints and their uncompromising DIY attitude.

Ed Kuepper co-founded the Saints with vocalist Chris Bailey, drummer Ivor Hay and bassist Kym Bradshaw in 1974.

They rehearsed in a small shared house just up Lang Park at the corner of Petrie Terrace and Milton Road. They called it Club 76.

Along with Bailey, Kuepper, now in his sixties, was one of the two main songwriters of The Saints.

He told Fairfax Media that he liked the idea of ​​a Saints mural on Upper Roma Street.

Ed Kuepper.

Ed Kuepper.

“I think it’s great. I’ve been for a long time in favor of plaques and things that recognize artistic endeavor and I’m not saying that just because this time it’s my business, but it’s because I think that it makes a city more interesting, ”he said.

When he wrote for the Saints, the sound in his head was a mix of Stooges, Pretty Things, Kinks, Chicago blues, instrumental Ramrods, jazz, Ramones, Velvet Underground, Doors and MC5. , mixed with the brass of Ike and Tina Turner soul records and some of the best rock and roll on radio in the late ’60s and early’ 70s.

“I wanted the guitar to be a combination of a lot of things. I started writing songs before I formed the band and for a long time the guitar had to be everything, ”Kuepper said.

“The guitar had to be the band, the guitar had to be the orchestra in a way.

“I just wanted something that was harmonically rich enough to do that and to have the kind of power that a band that had bass and drums should have.”

The first three albums of the Saints; (I am blocked (1976), Eternally yours (1978) and Prehistoric sounds (1978) went beyond musical fashion and showed what was possible with brass, balls and the imagination.

And then the group left.

Dr Willsteed has been quietly planning his musical journey in Brisbane for the past two years.

His doctoral performance in 2015 at Brisbane Powerhouse, It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity, tells how Brisbane’s buildings and layout influenced its popular culture.

This show is the kind of thing visitors download when they arrive at a site on Brisbane’s New Music Trail.

“I’m watching a Brisbane musical journey where we can activate our recent cultural history to make it visible in the city,” says Dr Willsteed.

“Because I really don’t think we are aware of what we really have. “

Performance: Ed Kuepper performs songs from the original Three Saints album as The Aints on September 27 at Tivoli as part of the Brisbane Festival.


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