THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Little Ross of Bird Nest Roys

 |   |  2 min read

Bird Nest Roys: Who is the Silliest Rossi?
THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Little Ross of Bird Nest Roys

Bird Nest Roys apparently never actually signed to Flying Nun even though their music appeared on the label, and they didn't quite fit the stereotypes anyway. They weren't from Dunedin or Christchurch (they were from Auckland and specifically West Auckland before it became fashionable to be a Westie) and they didn't wear black jeans and polo-neck sweaters. 

They actually dressed up in strange and colourful clothes.

But -- despite these seeming disadvantages and music which was more sunshine than shade, more amusing than melancholy -- they were accepted by the Flying Nun inner circle, and their introduction was opening for the Chills in '85.

They didn't last long -- one album, an EP and a single -- but they were a source of delight for anyone who saw them.

As Big Ross says in the liner notes to the reissue of all their music now crammed onto a single disc Me Want Me Get Me Need Me Have Me Love (on Flying Nun of course), they didn't make any money but a psychic told him they would have a lot of fun.

"She was right," he writes. "We had fun, we were fun and many of the friends and associates I met through that silly old band are my friends today."

Big Ross and Little Ross were the chief songwriters in Bird Nest Roys and so on the occasion of the reissue of their material on CD -- also available on vinyl, see here -- Little Ross answers our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire. 

The first piece of music which really affected you was . . .

Daydream Believer (The Monkees) and Georgie Girl (The Seekers) followed by Puppet on a String (Sandie Shaw).

Your first (possibly embarrassing) role models in music were . . .

David Bowie and Neil Young.

Lennon or Jagger, Ramones or Nirvana, Madonna or Gaga, Jacko or Jay-Z?

Lennon, Ramones, Madonna and Jacko.

If music was denied you, your other career choice would be . . .

Professional boxer or tennis player.

The three songs (yours, or by others) you would love everyone to hear are . . .

Ain’t Mutatin (Bird Nest Roys), Song to the Siren (This Mortal Coil) and She’s In Fashion (Suede).

Any interesting, valuable or just plain strange musical memorabilia at home?

I’ve got some original photos of the Rolling Stones playing Western Springs from the early Seventies.

The best book on music or musicians you have read is . . .

Shakey, Neil Young.

If you could get on stage with anyone it would be . . . (And you would play?)

The Happy Mondays and me on bongos.

elephantmanThe three films you'd insist anybody watch because they might understand you better are . . .

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

The Elephant Man

This Is Spinal Tap

The last CD or vinyl album you bought was . . . (And your most recent downloads include . . .)

Neon Bible by Arcade Fire and my most recent download was Melanie Safka’s Greatest Hits.

One song, royalties for life, never have to work again. The song by anyone, yourself included, which wouldn't embarrass you in that case would be . . .

How Bizarre by OMC.

The poster, album cover or piece of art could you live with on your bedroom forever would be . . .

Bird Nest Roys tour poster by the late Glen “Solvent” Thomas.

You are allowed just one tattoo, and it is of . . .

The logo on the bottle-top for Ravenwood Lodi Zinfandel.

BNRFRONTDavid Bowie sang, “Five years, that's all we've got . . .” You would spend them where, doing . . .?

In a fantastic eco-friendly mansion on Great Barrier Island, Hauraki Gulf, fishing, growing veges, diving for paua, and creating/recording music in my own private home studio.

And finally, in the nature of press conferences in Japan, “Can you tell me please why this is your best album ever?”

Because it’s something that I don’t visit very often but when I do, I feel very proud of it.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   The Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire articles index

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Liam Finn

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Liam Finn

When people in your family -- in this case your dad and uncle -- are famous musicians your road can actually be harder than most might think: just after a couple of Lennon kids. Liam Finn... > Read more

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Damien Dempsey

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE QUESTIONNAIRE: Damien Dempsey

If we judge people by the company they keep or those who admire them, then Ireland's Damien Dempsey is somewhere in the clouds. His fans include Sinead O'Connor and Brian Eno (who have recorded... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

THE BARGAIN BUY: Daryl Hall and John Oates, The Box Set Series

THE BARGAIN BUY: Daryl Hall and John Oates, The Box Set Series

When people asked me what I thought about Hall and Oates coming to New Zealand in 2012 I didn't know what to say. I missed their career mostly and when I did finally tune in, it was well after... > Read more

Age of Consent: Fight Back Rap (1983)

Age of Consent: Fight Back Rap (1983)

Who said the gay power movement lacked humour? Quite the opposite in fact, and humour is a powerful weapon. This one-off appeared on the Harvey Kubernick-curated double album English as a... > Read more