Mar 212016

CHEAP TRICK – AT BUDOKAN – Rock Hall of Fame Celebration Performed by The Riff Raiders
Cherry Bar, AC/DC Lane Melbourne
Saturday 9 April 2016, 8pm

Tix $15 presale or at door

On 9 April 2016 Cheap Trick will be inducted in the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame at the official ceremony at New York City’s Barclays Center. This recognises the band’s four decades of almost continuous touring performing over 5,000 gigs and its influence on major rock acts such as AC/DC, Nirvana, Guns N Roses, Smashing Pumpkins, Green Day, Foo Fighters, The Posies, Weezer, Fountains of Wayne, Kiss and Motley Crue.

To celebrate this special occasion Cherry is paying homage to this ground breaking rock n roll band with a special live performance of the album that started it all for them – At Budokan. Recorded live in Tokyo in April 1978, originally only for Japanese audiences, At Budokan launched Cheap Trick to the world, going triple platinum in the US alone, and giving us roaring guitar versions of ‘I Want You to Want Me’ and ‘Surrender’.

AllMusic review sums it up perfectly, ….With their ear-shatteringly loud guitars and sweet melodies, Cheap Trick unwittingly paved the way for much of the hard rock of the next decade, as well as a surprising amount of alternative rock of the 1990s, and it was At Budokan that captured the band in all of its power.

New Melbourne stadium rock powerhouse The Riff Raiders will perform the album in full. This is not some cheesy dress up cover band, they will be smashing out this set with the fun, passion, skill and respect those songs deserve.

This will be followed by a second set where The Riff Raiders will take on other hall of famers, including Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Queen and Kiss, in the Raiders style, choosing not the bleeding obvious songs, but the other killer songs from these seminal hard rock acts.

The night will be topped off by a special guest DJ appearance by James Young, playing Trick classics and even more hall of famers.

9pm: Riff Raiders – at Budokan 10.30pm: Riff Raiders – Hall of Famers Plus special guest DJ James Young


Riff Raiders smashing out Cheap Trick rarity Born to Raise Hell at their last Cherry Show:

Riff Raiders taking on Black Night in their formidable way at Cherry:

Riff Raiders - Band Shot-1


Mar 102016



Saturday, 12th March, good people, Steve Boyd is back – Healing and Howling for your pleasure and mine at the Rainbow Hotel from 9.30, no cover charge.

Flashback to the late nineties/early noughties when Boyd was fast gaining a reputation as a singer, songwriter and performer of considerable substance.
Borrowing largely from the classic American roots music forms, his band Steve Boyd and The Preachers were festival circuit regulars sharing stages with the likes of Bob Dylan and Ray Charles. Their wildly impassioned performances drew a large, loyal crowd and their recordings were heard on American College radio and mentioned in prestigious UK music bible ‘Mojo’.

Changing the core line-up and the group’s name to The Steve Boyd Revue did not slow things down in the slightest. In fact, as the sound morphed into a bigger Gospel-Soul affair, complete with Hammond organ, percussion, brass and backing singers, the group’s credentials only grew. Steve was seemingly poised to ease into a long and successful career in music.

So what happened next?

Life happened.

A series of life-changing events, unexpected challenges and personal tragedies occurred and Boyd was hurled into an inward journey of epic proportions.
Through this period of soul-searching and healing, he established a new relationship with music.

For over ten years Boyd ran music and song writing groups for VincentCare Victoria. Primarily working with marginalised members of the community, He discovered music’s power to ease the hearts and minds of those struggling with poverty, mental health, addiction and homelessness.

Running song writing and music therapy groups, Boyd discovered he had a talent for drawing out the creative spark within a broad range of participants from all walks of life. Under his guidance these groups performed at various community festivals and even most memorable time at the Vinnies CEO Sleepout at Etihad stadium.

Upon occasion, Boyd enlisted additional music mentors to assist him. At one time none other than Spencer P Jones caught the bug and got on board Steve’s plight to soothe, challenge and inspire some of the folks who would otherwise miss out on the opportunity to make music altogether.

In actuality the entire process was cathartic not only for the participants but for Boyd himself. Over time he rediscovered his muse with a vengeance and began considering the next chapter of his musical odyssey. Now was the time to recommence writing and rehearsing new material for his own project. It simply felt right.

Time had done its job healing old wounds but a creative void desperately needed filling.

Enter Steve Boyd’s Rum Reverie.

Essentially the brainchild of both Steve Boyd and Paul Fiddes (long time friend and musical collaborator), the project came about over many nights of shared musings, quaffing of shiraz and listening to vintage vinyl records.

Much the same as Boyd, Fiddes had taken an extended excursion from music whilst focusing on exclusively on photography. It became apparent that both shared a yearning to return to the fold.

At the end of the day it was agreed that nothing else quite compared to the wild high of bashing out original tunes in the sweating bars of Melbourne. Both agreed it was time dust off the drum kit and restring the guitar.

There was new music to be made.

The influences are primal and instinctive; perhaps not schooled and certainly not slick. Initially starting out as a two-piece, the core group of Paul on drums and Steve on guitar and vocals was eventually augmented by upright bass and brass. This process occurred through many writing and recording sessions: Steve and Paul allowing the music to dictate what should happen next.

The sound is heartfelt and raw.

With a punk brain, a gospel soul, a blues heart and even hints of jazz trickling through its veins, Steve Boyd’s Rum Reverie may be something of a musical Frankenstein’s monster.

It’s a monster that will hoot, holler, growl and grind with all it’s might.

Check out the new EP and first single ‘Papa Likes It’ at this downloadable link:

Mar 082016
RIP Ross Hannaford.

Ross Hannaford, he of the Richest Baritone was the first Australian guitarist I ever fell in love with, nearly 20 years ago now. Over the years, it has been my very great pleasure to cross paths with him to work on several projects including various Daddy Cool appearances, Hall of Fame inductions (yes, plural), gigs and [more]