Posts Tagged ‘Angry Anderson’

ARS57_large.jpgOn episode 57 of The Australian Rock Show we play new music from Scott Ginn’s outfit Mazz-XT, Nowra (NSW) HM band Temtris and also Bob Spencer (ex-Angels, Skyhooks). We look back and crank some Doomfoxx along with some classic Saxon (featuring Lemmy and Angry Anderson). Plus rock news, rants, and more – real rock n roll action which you need to hear ! CLICK HERE TO LISTEN OR DOWNLOAD FOR FREE! !

Music by: Mazz-XT, Temtris, Bob Spencer, Doomfoxx, Saxon.


Marc Lee De Hugar of The Candy Harlots lets it rip.....1988

If the Kardomah Cafe in Kings Cross was the spiritual home for Sydney’s Candy Harlots – then the St. James Tavern in Castlereagh Street must have come a close second. The St. James Tavern had a long flight of stairs at the entrance, and looking back, must surely have been a bit of a fire trap risk. In 1988/89, I saw a stack of bands there, including bands like the Screaming Tribesmen, Psychotic Turnbuckles and Celibate Rifles, and I  must have seen the Candy Harlots there about 10 times – and it was always good. They often were supported by the underrated all girl band the Rum Babas, who had a distinctive and original tribal beat. I remember seeing Angry Anderson there one night – he’s come to check out the Candy Harlots.  Some of the live footage for their ‘Red Hot Rocket’ video was filmed there. In 1988, Mr. Rockbrat and Cowboy Col travelled all over Sydney to see the Candy Harlots, the ‘next biggest thing’, who came so close to inking with a major label it wasn’t funny. In 88, they were the best kept secret on Sydney’s live scene – and had an amazing young guitar player who had fast fingers, flash, and hair as big as Steve Stevens. His name was Marc Lee De Hugar, and he was part of the Candy Harlots line up that I remember most fondly – along with Mark Easton, Tony Cardinal, Leeno Dee and Ron Barratt (RIP). Here’s a photo taken by Mr. Rockbrat of De Hugar in action at the St. James Tavern in July, 1988. Great days my friends…….it only seems like yesterday! (If you have a look at the photo of Mr. Rockbrat at page left, you will see he is wearing a Candy Harlots Tee Shirt – the first ones the band ever made)

Wells, Cocks and Anderson showing 'em how it's done

Who: Rose Tattoo
Where: Wagga, NSW Australia  – 22 January 1993

I’ve written about the 1993 Rosie Tatts reformation elsewhere on this blog so will not repeat myself. This was one of my favorite images I shot of the Tatts over the years. I can actually re-call walking past a venue in Adelaide in December of 1992 and spotted an upcoming gig poster for Rose Tattoo. Was the Rockbrat’s eyes playing tricks ? I mean, Wellsy and Angry both had solo careers and Angry had even once told the Cowboy on national radio – that there’d never be a re-union !! But here was the proof right in front of me. Straight away I made some calls and yes, a re-union was on featuring Geordie on bass and Fred Zeppelin (Paul DeMarco) on the stool – along with Anderson, Wells and Cocks of course. First show was to be held in the country NSW town of Wagga of all places. It was at a nightclub – straight outta 1975 – called The Copacabana. The evening was baking hot and by the time the boys hit the stage the mercury only rose higher. It was a great show – a warm up to the band’s upcoming Guns n Roses outdoor shows, where Wells and the boys – put simply – showed em how it was done. The Rockbrat ears have been subjected to some loud volume over the years – eg Kiss, Maiden, Metallica, Thorpie – even Manowar – but on this particular night Rose Tattoo were ungodly loud. The boys really were back in town…

Here is a post about a chapter of Australian rock n roll that you may not know about. In 1988, (with both Rose Tattoo and Heaven just a memory) guitarist Mick Cocks was playing around the traps in Sydney with the Headhunters, which was Dave Tice of Buffalo’s band. Cocks put together a short lived supergroup called The Wild Colonial Boys for a series of live dates. The band featured Cocks on lead guitar, Alan Mansfield of Dragon on keyboards, Mark Meyer of Richard Clapton Band, Ian Lees of Moving Pictures (and Chasin The Train) on bass, and even a member of Little Feat. The high light though were the three vocalists –  Sharon O ‘ Neill, Marc Hunter and Angry Anderson. Some pedigree. The band played a set comprising some r ‘n’ b classics, some early 70’s swagger and mixed with a bunch of rocking soul standards. The result ? High energy rock n roll. It’s a pity that they never recorded anything ‘cos live, this band simply cooked. The term Wild Colonial Boy goes back to Australia’s formative years. The original definition  of Wild Colonial Boys was  about Jack Donahue, an Irish rebel who became a convict, then a bushranger, and who was eventually shot down by police. Many bushrangers were of convict ancestry and were also called Wild Colonial Boys. These guys were the original outlaws, or if you are in the US, call them highwaymen. The theme was continued further with a spin on Sergio Leone’s eternal spaghetti western imagery by calling the band, ‘The Good, The Bad and The Angry’, with O’ Neil being the ‘good’ and Hunter being ‘the Bad’.  A nice concept.  I was fortunate enough to see the band a couple of times, and clearly remember seeing them at Dee Why Hotel on Sydney’s northern beaches in July, 1988. Here’s a bit of a show review from that night. The set kicked off with Angry tackling the lead vocals on The Stones’ ‘Brown Sugar’, followed by the blistering white soul of Steve Winwood’s ‘I’m A man’, which simply cooked. Angry always had a great voice for singing soul. The beer flowed freely, as it often did in these suburban venues. The place was packed, and the punters wanted to party. Angry reminded the crowd to “Leave Noiseworks for the suburbs and the little girls. Tonight is about real rock n roll.”  He then introduced Sharon O Neil  to the stage, described her as “the most perfectly proportioned female I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with.” She launched into a ballsy version of the Eagles ‘Heartache Tonight’ followed by the Stones ‘Tumbling Dice’. Man. Sharon O Neil was always great to see live. I remember seeing her at an outdoor gig at the Raiders spiritual home Seiffert Oval back in 1987. I think Rockbrat has some photos of that show somewhere, and  I last remember seeing her in 1991 on a Thursday night at Feathers, Crows Nest.  Cocksy did all the solos this night, tasty and distinct as always. Enter Marc Hunter. Two songs from ‘the perennial prince of perversion himself’, as Angry referred to him. He opened with the classic soul of Jimmy Reed’s ‘Shame Shame Shame’ and then led an enthusiastic and responsive crowd through a killer version of ‘Roadhouse Blues’ that would have bought a smile to the face of the lizard king. With a raspy voice that was always compared favorably to Rod the Mod, Angry delivered a very authentic version of ‘Maggie May’, augmented very nicely by some Alan Mansfield keyboard. The band looked like they were having fun, the crowd certainly were. Angry lead the band through another hard rockin’ soul classic, Ray Charles’ What’d I Say’, which simply smoked. O Neil autentically tackled Linda Rondstadt’s It’s So Easy To Fall In Love’ before launching into Stevie Nicks’ ‘Stop Draggin My Heart Around’. This was indeed one of the nights highlights, as in some people opionion, Sharon O’Neil was the Stevie Nicks equivilent in this part of the world (Australia and NZ). The song segueyed nicely into her signature tune, ‘Maxine’. The last three songs of the nights were the Tatts ‘Bad Boy For Love, Sharon O Neil’s hard rockin ‘Physical Favours’ before the night ended with Dragons’ ‘April Sun In Cuba’. A great night, great memories. Dedicated to Mick Cocks and Marc Hunter.  

I recorded this particular gig with my trusty tape recorder, and now you too transport yourself back to the 29th July, 1988 and experience the Wild Colonial Boys. Sheesh, 22 years ago now. This is the band recorded at the Dee Why Hotel on Sydney’s northern beaches as they blaze through ‘Roadhouse Blues’. This song has Marc Hunter on vocals, and I just love the guitar solo because it sounds so distinctly like Mick Cocks. After the solo Marc Hunter says, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Mick Cocks.” Never heard anywhere before, a Rockbrat exclusive. Check it out here.

 You can also check out a Mick Cocks interview from 1988 that talks about the Wild Colonial Boys project here

On the 3rd of October, 1990 Angry Anderson appeared on the ‘Rocksat’ programme, a weekly radio show which was broadcast across Australia on the Triple M network. Angry was promoting his ‘Blood From Stone’ album. The brother of Rockbrat called in and asked Angry, “Is there any chance of you working with Pete Wells or Mick Cocks again?” Tune in to listen to Angry’s response. Another gem dusted off from the Rockbrat audio archives. Here’s the UK cover of Angry’s ‘Beats From A single Drum’ LP. It’s no wonder this album didnt ship gold in the UK as its ranks as one of the worst choice of album cover art we’ve seen. This type of poster on the bedroom wall would keep the kiddies awake at night. We love Angry, but I think the marketing section of his UK record company needed a clip around the ears for this one.  Listen here

I found this great interview with Cocksy today whilst going through the Rockbrat Scrapbooks. It was written by Michael Smith at the time Mick was playing in an outfit called The Wild Colonial Boys – also featuring Angry Anderson, Sharon O Neill and Marc Hunter. The Rockbrat remembers seeing this outfit at the Dee Why Hotel and they were pretty damn good. Interesting to note that at the end of the article Mick hints that the Tatts will reform – something which took another 5 years to occur. Enjoy the read my friends.

The much-missed Peter Wells and Mick Cocks

For the uneducated, Peter Wells and Mick Cocks were the twin guitar attack for Rose Tattoo. I have many great memories of seeing the Tatts over the years, and Pete and Mick in other incarnations as well. Their contributions to rock n roll are immense and it is important that the memories of Cocksy and Wellsy live on.  I was fortunate to see Pete dozens of times in the late 1980’s and early 90’s, and those memories will live with me. Pete was an original, the pioneer of the bad bay tattooed rock n roll outlaw that was shamelessly ripped off by Guns n Roses and other Sunset Strip wannabe posers in the late 80’s. I saw him play with Mick in the band Heart Attack in the late 80’s, I saw him play at the Espy in St. Kilda in 1991 with the thunderous Warwick Fraser on drums (Billy Thorpe – in Australia at that time was also in attendance). I saw him do a residency at the Northpoint Tavern in North Sydney for many Tuesday’s throughout the winter of 1993. Also, residencies at the Hopetoun Hotel in Surry Hills spring to mind, as does the Brittania Hotel in Chippendale. Pete was always giving of his time and was always kind enough to chat with me. I remember sitting on milk crates with him and his partner Lucy DeSoto, chatting and drinking beer, after a gig at the Manly Boatshed in 1992. So many fond memories of those shows. His slide guitar sound, Lucy’s rollicking piano and spirited harmony vocals – man I thought those days would last forever. For a time Pete had Mick on guitar in his line-up, along with long time Rosie Tatts drummer Paul DeMarco ! What a killer line-up ! What I’d give to see them one more time. Selecting the best time I saw these two on the same stage is a tough decision. But I would probably name the 22 January 1993 show at Wagga – of all places – as my choice memory. You gotta remember that the Tatts had been on hold for some years – with both Angry and Pete forging succesful solo careers (Angry even said on a nationwide Radio Interview in 1990, in response to my brother’s question of ‘would he ever work with Pete and Mick again ?’ that “there will never be another Rose Tattoo” !!) The prompting of Guns n Roses for Rose Tattoo to open the shows on their 1993 Australian Tour set the wheels firmly in motion. My memories of the Wagga show are still vivid. It was a sweaty Friday evening and baking hot – at a nightclub called The Copacabana.  The scorching summer heat was matched only by the ferocity of the re-united Rose Tattoo when they hit the tiny stage at around 11PM. As usual, they were ungodly loud – and their heavy-handed blooze and boogie assault was relentless. I stood in awe – whilst being pounded by rock n roll in it’s purest form. I also remember – when they started playing Astra Wally, finding a public telephone at the back of the venue and calling my brother back in Sydney so he could hear what he was missing out on. ‘Cop this !’ I thought !!    

For a time, Mick filled the shoes of Gary Dixon in TMG when the band re-commenced gigging in the early 90’s as well. I have very fond memories of seeing TMG during this period at Coogee Bay, the long-demolished Manly Vale Hotel and also in Canberra at a venue called the Charnwood Inn. I remember seeing the smirk on Cocksy’s face that night with a sparse Canberra crowd – that was mostly made up of drunken females – (70’s throwbacks weened on Countdown) who were dancing at front stage clutching vinyl copies of ‘Here We Are’. Many times I did not bring my camera with me to these shows – as I said before, I thought these days would never end. Only they did. In 2006 Pete passed away from prostate cancer and in 2009 Mick succumbed to liver cancer. Rose Tattoo continue to carry on –  it’s not something I believe they should be doing. Imagine hearing some kid in Germany in 2010 saying he just saw Rose Tattoo – when Wells and Cocks are not there !?  It’s like the Stones without Richards – but that’s just my opinion. These are some of my thoughts and memories of Peter Wells and Mick Cocks – I will add other photographs, live reviews and album reviews when time permits.  I hate all that Rock n Roll heaven bullshit which people carry on with, but if it is true….geez….Bon, Wellsy, Mick Cocks, Lobby, Thorpie, Rilen…..J.C would want some serious ear plugs !