Rubbish my little town all you want. Tonight, Nambour proved itself.
Heading down to the Town Centre with its little amphitheater, the area was celebrating the coming of Christmas with Nambour Alive!, which featured markets, and live performances. People tend to poo poo Nambour for the stigma attached to it, but being a Nambour boy myself, I’ve loved this town mainly because you don’t get the pretentious types that like to spoil everyone else’s fun living in the neighbourhood. I get to the amphitheater area in time to catch Michael Fix doing his guitar virtuoso thing, which is pretty damn amazing.
What’s even more more amazing is the amount of people that have gathered around to take in the sounds. Well done, Nambour.
What I’m waiting for though, is the soulful, funky sounds of Brett Orr and band. I’ve seen Brett cameo as part of The Outlook before, but never with his own material (apart from YouTube clips). This dude can play. From the very Gotye drum intro, into the Stevie Wonder-ish funk soul keys and vocals, the guy can really captivate. However, being a bassist, my eyes and ears were glued to bassist Phil Roach. I like to think I’m pretty good, but this guy makes bass shredding seem effortless, and what’s even more intriguing is that he’s so damn comfortable and has so much fun playing, you can’t help but feel the vibes.
There’s a lot of Nambour regulars in the crowd, as well as some blow-in musos all coming to see what the fuss is about, but the thing is, there was such a sense of unity and community within the music crowd, they can all stay in Nambour if they wish.
I head on up to the Commercial Hotel to see if The Floating Bridges have kicked off yet, but it seems things are running nice and casual tonight, so I grab a beer and mingle a bit. It’s frontman Cale’s birthday tonight, so we’re here to celebrate. I catch up with fellow Pointer Rohan and finally meet the legendary Bump Crew, and the decision is made to head back down to catch Dubmarine in action.
I’ve known of the Brisbane band for a while (hell, I downloaded the clip to Point the Bone), but this is my first live experience. The band are in full swing, but the crowd, as appreciative as they may be, are just sitting around. This has a bit of an effect on the band, UNTIL, the Bridges crew, the Bump Crew, and The Point all move down the front and start dancing, and VOILA! Instant dance floor, and others follow suit, which transfers on to the band.
I do have to say, this band is f*cking awesome. And vocalist, Kat, phwoar. I’ve sworn off blondes for a while, but if she came up, I’d forget about that for a second. And the girl can SING. The whole outfit are ultra-tight and know how to work the crowd. Big fat bass sounds, bold brass, tight snappy drums and samples, the right mix of guitar and synths, and the combined power of the two charismatic vocalists make this band a juggernaut of the live music scene in Queensland. They’re launching their new CD, ‘Depth of Sound’, so if you’re not aware of these guys yet, go see them at Nambour Originals and then get a copy of the CD. They try out a few new tracks which are very dubby and super dancey, but it was when they cranked out Point The Bone that the crowd really got into it. I’m looking forward to seeing them in 2 days time at Nambour Originals.
I look through the crowd and see Johnny Boinkin (producer, Mr Boinkin), and The Mank getting into the grooves, so I head on over for a chat, and they’re mighty impressed with Nambour’s display. Let’s get more shit happening in this town – there’s room and potential to do it.
I head on up back to the Commercial to hear the Bridges already getting into their first set. These boys know how to play, know how to win a crowd, and know how to play under the influence.
It’s Cale’s birthday, and he’s in fine form tonight, with the Commercial Hotel absolutely pumping and buzzing with friends, family, fans and ring-ins who have no idea of the power of this band.
This is also didj/percussionist Adro’s last show with the band, as they now become a 5-piece. Instead of it being all bittersweet, the boys embrace the moment and make the most of it. I couldn’t be prouder of these guys, having seen them grow over the last 18 – 24 months into a well-oiled music making machine that work bloody hard for something they love.
The beer is flowing, the vibes are pumping, and everyone’s smiling. In the third and final set, the boys ask me up to join them on bass on their track ‘Fire’, which is always a hell of a lot of fun. I feel privileged to be accepted into the Bridges family so much so that they trust me to join them in one of their most popular songs.
So to some up the night, Nambour has got it cranking, the community spirit supported some fantastic live music, Michael Fix did his own rendition of the William Tell Overture (on guitar with 2 to 3 parts playing at the same time, WTF?), Brett Orr and band poured the soul into the crowd, Dubmarine converted a hell of a lot of people into dub fanatics, the Bridges celebrated a birthday and a departure in style, I got slightly accosted by an overzealous cougar, Security guards in Nambour need to loosen the hell up, my legs are cramped and sore from bouncing everywhere, and I have a huge grin on my face. I’d say that’s a pretty damn good night.
Folks, seriously, keep your eye on Nambour. Things are happening, and I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of people/promoters/bands that are getting tired of the attitude the more Coastal areas are starting to display when it comes to live music, and if there’s any town that can really stick it to the toffee-nosed wannabes that complain about noise all the time, my home town can do it. Just. You. See.