Aboriginal spears at Cooktown in Australia's Far North
Elsewhere by Graham Reid

music - travel - arts

Wide angle reviews, interviews and opinion by writer Graham Reid

Absolute Elsewhere

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LUCINDA WILLIAMS INTERVIEWED (2011): Darkness from light

LUCINDA WILLIAMS INTERVIEWED (2011): Darkness from light

These are more good days for Lucinda Williams: happily married and comfortable, a Grammy nomination for Kiss Like Your Kiss (best song in a film or television series, it appeared in True Blood) and acclaim from her peers, critics and an increasing fan base. And she has a new album out, Blessed which was produced by Don Was, her husband Tom Overby and Eric Leljestrand (the latter... more >>

Lucinda Williams (with Elvis Costello): Seeing Black

DENNIS LECORRIERE INTERVIEWED (2003): Is there a Doctor in the house?

DENNIS LECORRIERE INTERVIEWED (2003): Is there a Doctor in the house?

Dennis Locorriere spends most of the hour laughing and is more amused than irritated that many people mistake him for someone else. Locorriere - with slight streaks of silver at his temples and celebrating his 54th birthday on this day - is the voice of Dr Hook. But he wasn't the face of that Seventies hit-making machine which cluttered up radio with songs like Sylvia's Mother, Cover... more >>

RUMER INTERVIEWED (2011): Thankful, and slowing it right down

RUMER INTERVIEWED (2011): Thankful, and slowing it right down

With her debut album Seasons of My Soul; the British singer Rumer has delivered an album destined for many 2011 Best of the Year lists come December. For Rumer – born Sarah Joyce in Pakistan 30 years ago – it has been the culmination of a long and quite remarkable journey. After she and her mother returned to England, she grew up in London, tried her hand in bands and... more >>

Rumer: Love and Affection

BILLY JOE SHAVER PROFILED (2011): The rough diamond from Texas coal

BILLY JOE SHAVER PROFILED (2011): The rough diamond from Texas coal

The truth about Billy Joe Shaver is much more interesting than anything anyone might make up about the guy. Shaver has lived on the hard edge of life. Born in Corsicana in Texas in late 1941 or '39 depending on where you read it (“just a cotton-gin town, the same one Lefty Frizzell came from") and raised in Waco, he lost two fingers in a sawmill accident when he was 26... more >>

Billy Joe Shaver: When the Fallen Angels Fly (1993)

FRANK ZAPPA. AGAIN: Just one more time . . .

FRANK ZAPPA. AGAIN: Just one more time . . .

The irritation, pleasure and difficulty with Frank Zappa was that he was always part of rock culture - but not exactly a rock musician. Well, not when it suits him. “Being a rock star is nothing to aspire to," he once said. “Rock stars have to be cute and I`m a realistic guy. I shave this face every day. I know the deficit I’ve got." But as the... more >>

Frank Zappa: Ship Ahoy (from Shut Up 'N Play Your Guitar)

JACK BRUCE INTERVIEWED (1994): Cream rises to the top

JACK BRUCE INTERVIEWED (1994): Cream rises to the top

Talk to Jack Bruce and the of name of That Band just cannot be avoided. Yet this Band That Dare Not Speak Its Name occupied a mere three years in the life of this 51-year-old musical polymath - and that ending as far back as ’69. Then he took his phenomenal bass playing skills and distinctive, strong tenor voice into a series of jazz-fusion projects (most notably into Lifetime with... more >>

Jack Bruce: Waiting on a Word (from Somethin Els, 1992)

SHARON O'NEILL INTERVIEWED (2009): This heart, these songs

SHARON O'NEILL INTERVIEWED (2009): This heart, these songs

Sharon O’Neill laughs loud and often about her current profile in Australia, and admits that as a live performer it is low. ”I’d be lucky if I could half-fill the Rooty Hills RSL!” she hoots. “It’d be more like the Brass Monkey down the road -- but that’s what everybody does. Dragon do it, and that’ll be the first cab off the rank when I... more >>

Sharon O'Neill: Love Can Be Cruel (from Sharon O'Neill, 1980)

WANDA JACKSON INTERVIEWED (2011): Still ready to have a party

WANDA JACKSON INTERVIEWED (2011): Still ready to have a party

Wanda Jackson – at 73 – has had a number of careers: in the Fifties she was a rockabilly star and touring with (and dating) Elvis Presley while delivering belters like Fujiyama Mama and the classic throat-tearer Let's Have a Party; in the Sixties she went back to her country roots as rock'n'roll faded; by the Seventies she had embraced the church and was adding gospel and... more >>

Wanda Jackson: Teach Me Tonight

THE RUTLES. RON NASTY and NEIL INNES INTERVIEWED: I have always thought in the back of my mind . . .

THE RUTLES. RON NASTY and NEIL INNES INTERVIEWED: I have always thought in the back of my mind . . .

In the Sixties they changed the world -- in 1970 they changed their mind and broke up. They were the Rutles, lovable legends from Liverpool who launched their career with innocent hits such as Hold My Hand. Within two years the cynical Ron Nasty and cheery Dirk McQuickly had penned dozens of enduring classics. As they matured through films A Hard Days Rut and Ouch!, their music became... more >>

The Rutles: Eine Kleine Middle Klass Musik (from Archeology)

DAVID GATES INTERVIEWED (2003): Not in it for the Bread

DAVID GATES INTERVIEWED (2003): Not in it for the Bread

Here's something not many fans of soft-rock singer David Gates -- formerly the songwriter and voice behind Bread -- will know. When he was a much younger man he wrote and produced some material with one of rock's greatest and most musically challenging eccentrics, Frank Zappa protege Captain Beefheart. The gentle-voiced Gates - now 63 - also played in the studio with the legendary Phil... more >>

David Gates: Goodbye Girl

NOEL GALLAGER OF OASIS INTERVIEWED (1995): The view from the top

NOEL GALLAGER OF OASIS INTERVIEWED (1995): The view from the top

It's the week after Oasis’ Earl’s Court triumphs where they’ve pulled 20,000 for each of their two night stands and now Noel Gallagher is slouched backstage in the unpromisingly named Gramby Halls, Leicester. In two hours the band will play a blinder of a gig to 3000 in this basketball stadium. Their set tonight is the same as at Earl’s Court; a sharp 80 minutes... more >>

Oasis: Some Might Say

ODETTA INTERVIEWED (1989): The human touch

ODETTA INTERVIEWED (1989): The human touch

Folk singer Odetta has kept her sense of humour about the 15 year lull in her recording career. “I’ve just been practicing," she says, but is delighted by at last having another record out there in the marketplace. Despite her acclaim by audiences as far spread as Russia and Nigeria and accolades by Yale University, the album came about through a small personal... more >>

Odetta: Chilly Winds

JIMMY BUFFETT INTERVIEWED (2011): Sail on sailor

JIMMY BUFFETT INTERVIEWED (2011): Sail on sailor

Easy-going Jimmy Buffett always gives the impression he's in walkshorts and a Hawaiian shirt, and is just metres away from the ocean filling in time until cocktail hour with his Coral Reefer Band. Buffett – often in shorts and bare feet -- has performed in all kinds of places, most often within hearing distance of an ocean (his Live in Anguilla CD/DVD of two years ago shows him... more >>

Jimmy Buffett: Beautiful Swimmers (from the album Buffet Hotel, 2009)

THE HOLLIES. TONY HICKS INTERVIEWED (2010): The road is long . . .

THE HOLLIES. TONY HICKS INTERVIEWED (2010): The road is long . . .

A couple of years Noel Gallagher of Oasis saw Tony Hicks of the Hollies in a local supermarket and felt compelled to yell, "Love yer band, man. You've got the songs". And the Hollies certainly did. Pop-rock classics among them. So when in March 2010, the Hollies out of Manchester, were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame – it seemed long overdue. For a decade from... more >>

The Hollies: Look Through Any Window

WIRE, ON THE RECORD (1977-80): The short, sharp pop of art-punk

WIRE, ON THE RECORD (1977-80): The short, sharp pop of art-punk

The best thing about the punk years wasn’t punk of course. That stuff exhausted itself pretty fast. No, punk’s importance was the doors that it opened to let in the likes of the Gang of Four, This Heat, Pere Ubu and musical architects such as Wire -- whose early claim to fame was getting 21 tracks onto two sides of vinyl. Field Day for the Sundays on their ‘77 debut Pink... more >>

Wire: Outdoor Miner (from Chairs Missing)

SMOKEY ROBINSON: The man and the Miracle worker

SMOKEY ROBINSON: The man and the Miracle worker

It was one of those fortunate circumstances that Motown Records founder Berry Gordy from Detroit met his label’s star (and later his producer and boardroom exec) Smokey Robinson -- who had been around the Detroit scene in high school groups for years -- when both of them happened to be in New York. The ambitious Gordy, who’d written a couple of songs and got into small-time... more >>

Smokey Robinson and the Mirales: I'll Try Something New

JOE COCKER INTERVIEWED (2010): The school and sound of hard knocks

JOE COCKER INTERVIEWED (2010): The school and sound of hard knocks

It's a trick question, but see how you go: Who's the odd one out in this list; Hannah Montana, Britney Spears, Joe Cocker or Justin Bieber? The answer is, of course . . . the Bieber boy. He's the only one who hasn't had a song written for him by former American Idol judge Kara DioGuardi. But the real question is, what is 66-year soul singer Cocker doing with having not just one,... more >>

Joe Cocker: Unforgiven

JAMES BROWN INTERVIEWED (2004): I'll go crazy?

JAMES BROWN INTERVIEWED (2004): I'll go crazy?

We go through a very polite Mr Bobbitt, James Brown's business manager. He warns "everything with him is 'Mister' and do not speak about his personal business or his family affairs". It isn't the last we hear from Mr Bobbitt. Initially there is some confusion when Mr Brown doesn't understand a question and later electronic interference briefly drowns us out. But we... more >>

Get on the Good Foot

THE JAM and TOM PETTY in '79: Two bands separated by a common language

THE JAM and TOM PETTY in '79: Two bands separated by a common language

At the fag-end of the Seventies, the sound of the Sex Pistols explosion in Britain had faded and in the place of furious punk anger came the more intellectual and cooler sound of post-punk: bands like Magazine, Wire and Joy Division. Across the Atlantic the Ramones' flat-tack energy was faltering and the names to note were Talking Heads, Blondie and Television. Britain and the USA... more >>

The Jam: Pop Art Poem

AL GREEN INTERVIEWED (2004): Soul from pulpit to the street

AL GREEN INTERVIEWED (2004): Soul from pulpit to the street

In Memphis, a few kilometres south of Graceland is a small church in Hale Rd, a sidestreet off Highway 51 also known as Elvis Presley Boulevard. Not many music lovers make it this far; they are waylaid by the fridge magnets, postcards and facsimile of Elvis' drivers licence further back up the highway, or are taking the tour around the room in town that is Sun Studios where Presley,... more >>

Al Green: I Can't Stop