25 April 2008

Mix Tape Friday: The Wizard of Oz

It appears that Fridays are no longer my own. Beloved Aussie blog vivant Mountjoy, from Ribbed for Your Pleasure, recently retired from the blogworld (something about continuing life as a grown-up), and asked to host a mix tape as his e-swan song. I didn’t want to start an international incident, so I'm giving him my page for the day. Mountjoy, throw some tunes on the barbie and get this mix tape rolling.

Okay, Coffey addicts, welcome to a special Down Under edition of the Friday Mix Tape. Beth has kindly agreed to let me mix up the tunes this week, and in doing so has given me the chance to put a compilation of home grown music from Australia and New Zealand out there for your enjoyment. Couple that with the fact that today is ANZAC Day (the down under equivalent of Memorial Day, when we celebrate our war dead) and I hope you will take this slice of Southern Hemisphere hospitality and enjoy.

I make no apologies for the bias of this collection — it is retro and fairly clichéd, but it’s also a cross-section of the music that makes me proud to be an Aussie, and at the same time sad that a lot of these acts never went on to bigger and better things. It’s a safe bet that if you aren’t from these parts of the globe, you will have missed a lot of this magic. Many of these tracks were staples heard on the radio when I was a teenager growing up in Sydney in the 1970s, and although the majority have disbanded, most still get plenty of radio airplay today.

Editor’s Note: The track listing is chronological so that you can sit back, listen, and experience Mountjoy’s life and maturation via his homeland’s turntable. I've been listening to the mix all week, and feel more worldly and aurally educated than I did a week ago. Oh, and the songs are awesome.

I’ve tried to avoid the obvious choices — so while INXS are present, you’ll hear “Burn for You” from The Swing, the album many Aussies think is their best, capturing them at their prime before they hit the big time with Listen Like Thieves and Kick. Cold Chisel’s “Khe Sanh” is my concession to public opinion — this song is the unofficial national anthem for a generation, spoiled only by over-saturation on the radio even today, some 30 years since its original release. Not all of you will find a song like “Tenterfield Saddler”— an autobiographical song, almost country & western, by the late Peter Allen (who was a master songwriter, penning Olivia Newton John’s “I Honestly Love You,” also part of the list today) — to your taste, but to hear the man who is probably best known for the flamboyant “I Go to Rio” singing so soulfully about his life story is a timeless.

Making the song choices for this list was incredibly hard; nearly every act represented here has a fistful of songs I wish I could share. The best I can do is to give you a taste, and hope maybe you’ll find your own diamonds within this grab bag. So from Johnny O’Keefe’s 1959 cover version of the Isley Brother’s “Shout,” all the way through to Powderfinger’s 2007 hit “Lost and Running,” I invite you to sit back, download, and enjoy some of the best pop and rock music Down Under has had to offer in the past half a century.

Johnny O’Keefe :: Shout

The Easybeats :: Friday on My Mind

Daddy Cool :: Eagle Rock

Billy Thorpe & The Aztecs :: Most People I Know (Think That I'm Crazy)

Peter Allen :: Tenterfield Saddler

Stevie Wright :: Evie (Part 1)

Olivia Newton John :: I Honestly Love You

Skyhooks :: Living in the 70s

Sherbet :: Howzat!

Jon English :: Hollywood Seven

Dragon :: April Sun in Cuba

Cold Chisel :: Khe Sanh

Ignatious Jones :: I’m Not Like Everybody Else

The Angels :: Marsellies

Australian Crawl :: The Boys Light Up

Mental as Anything :: Berserk Warriors

Men at Work :: Who Can It Be Now

The Church :: Almost With You

Splitz Enz :: Six Months in a Leaky Boat

The Divinyls :: Boys in Town

Midnight Oil :: Power and the Passion

INXS :: Burn for You

Mondo Rock :: Come Said the Boy

Mi-Sex :: Down the Line

Jimmy Barnes :: I’d Die to Be with You Tonight

Do-Ré-Mi :: Man Overboard

Paul Kelly :: To Her Door

The Go Betweens :: Streets of Your Town

Richard Clapton :: Deep Water

Hunters and Collectors :: Throw Your Arms Around Me

John Farnham :: That’s Freedom

Hoodoo Gurus :: 1000 Miles Away

Crowded House :: Weather with You

Noiseworks :: Hot Chilli Woman

Weddings Parties Anything :: Father’s Day

Wendy Matthews :: The Day You Went Away

Kylie Minogue :: Cowboy Style

Delta Goodrem :: In This Life

Powderfinger :: Lost and Running

It may take days to get to Australia — but you can get there aurally in a snap with this handy zip file. It extracts file counterclockwise, however.

Beth will be back to mixing tapes next week — tapes with R.E.M. tunes, no doubt.

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At 4/25/2008 12:52:00 AM, Blogger Artful Dodger said...

Wow I'm the first commentor and downloader. Good things do happen when I stay up late.

At 4/25/2008 02:41:00 AM, Blogger lulu said...

Cool. Thanks.

At 4/25/2008 08:18:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

(I've got my lighter out, waving in the air) MOUNTJOY! MOUNTJOY! MOUNTJOY!

Hope you're elbow is better, Beth!

At 4/25/2008 10:12:00 AM, Blogger Sean Wraight said...

This is very, very cool. Thank you so much for reminding me just how good the Church were (are)...

Glad you're looking after that tender elbow Beth, you'll need it for the R.E.M. shows later this summer.


At 4/25/2008 12:30:00 PM, Blogger Bubs said...

Very cool. I must admit, it's a little strange coming here and seeing a mix with no REM tunes.

Best wishes on your non-blogging future!

At 4/25/2008 12:31:00 PM, Blogger BeckEye said...



Can't wait to download these tunes.

Hey, there's no Michael Johns on here. I actually do have some of his pre-Idol mp3s.

At 4/25/2008 02:01:00 PM, Blogger FranIAm said...

Holy crap Beth- and you think Dcap and me are living the life of the cool kids?

Mountjoy Mix Tape at Beth's?

I need medical assistance now, I can't breath.

Whooooo boy! I love me some Coffey, I love me some Mountjoy, I love me some music!

PS - if I can be an honorary yid, why can't you? You are so in baby!

At 4/25/2008 05:13:00 PM, Blogger SkylersDad said...

Happy ANZAC day Mountjoy!

I was in Perth back in 1977 during ANZAC day when I was in the Navy. I have never had a better time partying with my Aussie counterparts.

At 4/25/2008 11:46:00 PM, Blogger Pagan Sphinx said...

I was glad to see Crowded House on the list.

Beth: thanks for stopping by my blog. We have a lot of favorite music in common. I've started to feature music on my blog jukebox. Come by anytime for a listen (or for whatever thing suits your fancy)


At 4/26/2008 12:10:00 PM, Anonymous CC said...

So glad to see Mountjoy included Paul Kelly in the mix. Paul Kelly's "Gossip" will always take me back to traveling in Australia in the 80s. Great mix!

At 4/26/2008 12:35:00 PM, Blogger Barbara Bruederlin said...

Lovely list, and I always applaud anyone who pimps their countrymen's music.

But I am shocked at the lack of The Lucksmiths! Aren't they the Australian R.E.M?

At 4/26/2008 01:44:00 PM, Blogger pistols at dawn said...

I think I have a few Ben Lee CDs, and he's Australian, so I'm covered.

At 4/26/2008 02:53:00 PM, Blogger Dale said...

I love good aural so I'm off to download!

At 4/27/2008 03:04:00 AM, Blogger Artful Kisser said...

Sad I didn't get to read Mountjoy before he closed shop. I haven't heard of Ignacious Jones or Mi-Sex for years! Wont mention that some of these acts are New Zealanders...but that's the ANZAC spirit hey? I always loved Jimmy & the Boys doing 'They Wont Let My Girlfriend Talk To Me' with him in the asylum in the vid.

At 4/28/2008 09:59:00 AM, Blogger Tenacious S said...

Paul Kelley, Mental as Anything, and Hunters and Collectors? Fab mix! Happy anonymity!

At 5/01/2008 12:28:00 AM, Blogger Mountjoy said...

Sean - yes, The Church have been around awhile now. They supported Dire Straits at the first gig I ever went to in 1983.

Bubs - I will probably do some guest spots every now and again. I have something I want to put up over at FranIAm shortly. Keep an eye out.

Beck-eye - I did try and go fairly middle-of-the-road, so not everything came to the surface.

FranIAm - Hey there! I'm just back from Japan, and will get in touch about a post regarding my visit to Hiroshima shortly.

Skylersdad - yes, we do have a reputation as party people. I think that's why the 2000 Olympics went off. I love Perth, it is a lot more laid back than the East Coast.

Pagan - Yes, that Crowdies tune means a lot to me. Its one of those songs that has a specific memory of a time and place for me. But like a lot of the artists on my mix tape, I could have picked any of a half dozen other songs of theirs and it still would have been great...

CC - Paul Kelly is one of our greatest songwriters. It is almost criminal he never had much success outside of Oz.

Barbara - There are a lot of ommissions, I know. Even the mainstream didnt get a full look in.

Pistols - Yes, Ben Lee is an Aussie. Again, hard to fit in, and would have meant leaving something else off. I had to cut ten as it was to make it a civilised length!

Dale - we love our Aural too. It ain't called "going down under" for nothing!

Artful - yes, I kinda used the ANZAC day date as an excuse to let the Kiwis slip in. And they are some of the best ones too - Mi-Sex, Dragon, Split Enz, Crowdies etc etc. If you google me, many of my blog pages are still cached if you want to have a read.

Tenacious - I had the best time mixing this lot up!

Beth - Thank you so much for allowing me to use your blog to host this little party. You're the best!


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