Eudlo Musos August 2, 2015: We tried something a little different at the Musos at Eudlo on Sunday, playing down the length of the hall. Now this is traditionally how you might use these old halls, with the stage up high at one end for the musicians, but we all know the challenge that presents in a big wooden reverberant hall with a smallish audience. By placing speakers half way along the hall as well as at the front, and EQing pretty dramatically (cutting the most troublesome frequencies), you can reduce the problem, but it doesn’t go away.
So generally we play across the hall at Eudlo with the musicians on the floor and the audience sitting in nice and close. It is much more intimate and the sound (especially with all the windows ands doors open), is much better.
The reason for using the traditional set up, involving the stage, was to include the upright piano in our show. Eudlo, again like so many big old country halls, has an upright sitting in the corner of the stage not getting the use it once had, so we were looking was an opportunity to give it an airing. It is heavy – surprise, so we manhandled it to the front of the stage for our feature artist Glenn Stephens who later happily tickled away on the ivories and of course did a marvellous job. Aside from his pianistic talents Glenn has a fantastic voice with a vocal range to match and John Farnham, the Beach Boys, Crowded House and Queen were only a few of the “vocally challenging” artists he covered in his performance. The audience sang along with all of these popular favourites and also got to enjoy a couple of Glenn’s originals, which sat nicely in the mix. One of these, his Love Song for the Australian Woman, dedicated to Tony Abbot, is a great send up and I’ll look forward to more of these comical numbers from his pen!
Also on this week’s bill was one of my favourite performers in singer guitarist Alex McKean. I’ll admit to being a bit of a blues aficionado, so when someone of Alex’s stature is on the stage it is all ears. His Fender telecaster ripped and snorted its way through standards such as Crossroads and then he took up his resonator guitar or dobro for some slide playing with Rollin’ and Tumblin’ and it just made the sweetest sound. OK, I might be just a tad biased, but it sure as heck sounded as smooth and as pure as honey to me! A very solid rhythm section in Doug Pullen and Mike Duggan were right there with him throughout this set. A total pleasure – thanks guys.
The Musos is rarely without a newcomer and for this session we had two – poet John Powell and singer guitarist Peter Jones. John Powell assured me his health wasn’t quite what it should be but it didn’t appear to harm his delivery which was strong and clear. He gave us great readings of a couple of horse poems, Bruce Simpson’s Goodbye Old Chap, and WF Holmes The Old Brown Horse. You didnt need to be an animal lover to enjoy verse being presented as well as this. The Musos love their poets (and their comedians)! Now do we have any fire eaters and jugglers out there?
Peter Jones has only recently moved up from Melbourne and came along to the Musos to acquaint himself with what we do, but I can’t resist a smiling face, so asked him if he’d like to get up and play. As luck would have it yes, he is a musician, but no, he didn’t have his instrument with him. So luck once more dealt us a useable hand, and I came to the rescue with mine! Peter has a bluesy feel to his playing and comes up with an infectious groove which is complimented by a more than respectable voice. We’ll hope to see more of him at the Musos! I know Doug and Mike will happily join him on stage.
Back for a second appearance at the Musos was Glenn Munday. Glenn came up from Brisbane a few weeks ago and liked what he saw so he was back with a set of originals for us this time. There is something of the “alt country” about his songs – they are a little bit country and a tad folk rock and there is more than a speck of catchiness in them. I for one look forward to hearing them again.
Regular performers Bob Wilson, Warren Freeman, Lawrie White, Mary Martin and Doug Pullen also gave a sets, making up a good afternoon’s music at Eudlo.
We’re back next Saturday at Beerburrum – hope to see some of you there.
First Sunday, Eudlo Hall 1 – 4pm
Third Sunday, Glasshouse Coffee and Tea Merchants 1 – 4pm
Second and fourth Saturday, Glo’s Kitchen, Beerburrum 1- 4pm.
First Friday (beginning October), Wild Rocket, Montville 6 – 9pm