The Sound of Now, Then and Forever, hand-stitched to seamlessly fit the evolving atmospherics of the Supernatural Amphitheatre. Mother Nature on the lights. Moon on full beam.
Time for some magic realism.
One of the most wonderful songwriters in the history of music and one of the most talented humans walking this Earth will take to the stage for a rare and very special performance, under a Full Moon at GPXI.
From his time in the incredible Split Enz, and of course Crowded House, through several acclaimed solo albums (discover the magnificent Dizzy Heights), the two 7 Worlds Collide projects, Neil Finn has written some of the world’s favourite songs: Don’t Dream It’s Over, Better Be Home Soon, One Step Ahead, Message To My Girl, I Got You, Distant Sun, Fall At Your Feet, Into Temptation, Weather With You, History Never Repeats, Private Universe, Four Seasons In One Day, Locked Out, Sinner, She Will Have Her Way, World Where You Live, Now We’re Getting Somewhere, Something So Strong, It’s Only Natural, When You Come, Mean To Me, etc etc…I could go on and on and on.
Neil’s songs strike a chord that resonates within the human condition. If you wanted someone to write a ballad for the world he’d be high on the go-to list. His songs just seem like they are part of you. They can be beautiful, bittersweet and melancholy at times, then glorious, raucous and triumphant at others.
Paul McCartney, when accepting an award for ‘Greatest Living Songwriter’, famously said “I think you mean Neil Finn”. When Elvis Costello was asked to name one song that he wished he’d written, he nominated Into Temptation.
Many of us know how special it was last time in The Sup’, just Neil and a guitar and the sunset and a chorus of humans joining in. That’s now seven years ago. So it’s time.
Graciously accepting our invitation to perform solo with maybe just a guest or two on the night, this will no doubt be sublimely wonderful as the sun sets on the Nolan Farm in March.
Stop your messing around
Better think of your future
Time you straighten right out
Creating problems in town
Rudy, a message to you
Rudy, a message to you
The UK at the beginning of the 1980s – mass unemployment, the right wing on the rise, heavy racial tensions, class wars, rioting, police state overtones. Music venues closing. Grim times. A world coming apart at the seams.
This town is coming like a Ghost Town,
All the clubs are being closed down
One renegade band of musicians summed up the times, set them to a new beat, and soundtracked them with infectious, danceable protest songs. One wilful group united the tribes – musical, political, social, fashion.
All you punks and all you teds
National Front and natty dreads
Mods, rockers, hippies and skinheads
Hailing from industrial Coventry, this multiracial seven-piece combined the angry, disaffected voice of punk with the twist-your-waist enjoyment of Jamaican music to make a nation dance again.
They popularised a movement – 2 Tone – a fusion of mod, punk, new wave, pub rock, and the ska and rocksteady of Jamaica. British street music.
They opened barely-formed minds to racial tolerance, defying the fascist thugs of the National Front.
They made all these killer tunes:
A Message To You Rudy, Gangsters, Ghost Town, Too Much Too Young, Concrete Jungle, Rat Race, Monkey Man, (or live on TV in 1979), Do The Dog, Pressure Drop, Friday Night, Saturday Morning, What I Like Most About You Is Your Girlfriend, anti-apartheid anthem Free Nelson Mandela… pretty much everything they released is classic.
Two-and-a-half years and seven Top 10 singles later, it was all over. Their first, Gangsters, was their calling card. Their last, Ghost Town (“the most remarkable single to ever top the UK charts”), pre-empted riots across England.
Their eponymous debut album was a gigantic totem of the times. It is still widely considered to be one of the great British albums.
The times we live in now appear to mirror certain aspects of The Specials’ time. And maybe the time is right for The Sup’ to dance to that Specials beat.
Enjoy Yourself Sunday Night at GPXI. It’s later than you think.
So much more Goldenness to come.