Official blog of Mr Brady frontman, John Nelder (mrbrady.com)
All of John's latest news, clips and music writings

Sep
04



Here I am captured on tape at a recent solo gig, playing some of my more comedic material – enjoy!

Apr
08

 

Here I am with Graham Gouldman of 10cc fame!

After a tremendous stroke of luck at last night’s 10cc concert, I managed to find myself backstage with Graham Gouldman (and also longtime 10cc drummer Paul Burgess)!  Graham is one of my biggest influences as a songwriter and it was truly an honour to be in his presence.  Both Graham and Paul were incredibly down-to-earth and really receptive to my all-round excitement at meeting them.  I was also lucky enough to be able to give Graham a
copy of the Mr Brady album, which really just capped off an incredible evening!  [Please read the post below for my gushing fan review of the concert].

Apr
08

Inside The Palais Theatre

Last night I went along to the grand old Palais Theatre and saw a concert like no other – Graham Gouldman’s 10cc playing support for Roger Hodgson of Supertramp.  Talk about a dream ticket!  10cc and Supertramp were two of the most influential bands the 70s ever produced and boy have they influenced me in my own songwriting.

I’m happy to report that Graham’s 10cc line-up was in fine form.  In fact, I was even more impressed this time than when they last played here in ’03.   The venue’s sound was spectacular and really brought out the best in the group’s
performances.  Graham’s bass playing, for example, was superb to hear live.  As was Rick Fenn’s guitar work and Paul Burgess’ drumming.  These guys truly are masters of their instruments and it really shines through in a live setting, stripped of all the studio overdubs.

Just as impressive were the vocals.  Mick Wilson does a hell of a good job impersonating Eric Stewart and took lead vocal duties on most of the tracks.  But what struck me most were the sparkling harmonies.  The lead and backing vocals were all turned up very high in the mix and I thought it sounded sublime.  I also thought Graham’s vocals sounded better than ever on those few songs that he did sing lead.

Of all the material they played during their hour, I was probably most excited by `Feel The Benefit.’  Admittedly it was a tall order trying to pull off Del Newman’s string arrangements on a digital keyboard, but the song still worked for me as a whole.  I spent much of the Latin break wondering how on earth they were going to handle the outro minus Eric Stewart, but then out of nowhere came Graham with some ripping bass solos – surely life can’t get much better for us `Stronies than a moment like that!

`Good Morning Judge’ also got the juices flowing.  It was a real thrill to see Rick and Graham trading lead guitar riffs (with Mike Stevens having taken over the bass just for that one song).  Meanwhile, `Life Is A Minestrone’ I thought
sounded even better than the original recording.  I’ve always thought the vocal treatment on that original recording dated it somewhat and I was very pleased to hear it in such a crisp, not-overly-camp arrangement.

Other highlights included `Art For Art’s Sake’ (they really rocked here!), The Wall Street Shuffle (ditto!) and of course all the megahits (I’m Not In Love, The Things We Do For Love and Dreadlock Holiday). The crowd (some of whom might have been there to see Roger Hodgson) genuinely loved what they heard and were roaring for an encore by the end.  Graham and the boys obliged with an extended version of `Rubber Bullets’ – it was all very exciting!

Roger Hodgson of Supertramp was equally terrific.  He pulled off even the most challenging tunes from his catalogue with the help of just one other player (who, admittedly, was a freakishly talented multi-instrumentalist).  Several of my favorites were there, including ‘Lovers In The Wind’, ‘Child of Vision’, ‘Dreamer’, ‘Sister Moonshine’ and many more.  Even ‘Fool’s Overture’ got a guernsey – what a treat!  I was just shocked by the remarkable sound Roger was getting out of his keyboard.  Unfortunately from my vantage point I couldn’t quite see which brand of keys he was using.  Perhaps it was a custom-made model, the likes of which I may never be able to afford.  But wow, at least I got within 40 metres of it and heard it played by one of the greats.

Mar
15

In this latest instalment of the ‘Mr Brady presents…’ series (produced by the ever-talented Shane Dunlop), I talk about the man best known for penning for the Golden Girls theme.  He’s one of my all-time favorite singer-songwriters – Andrew Gold.

Mar
10

Yes, recording is well underway on Mr Brady’s new single due out later in the year.  Check out this teaser clip!

Feb
25

Well, we had a great time playing Elwood Lounge the other night.  One major point of contention, though, was my decision to wear glasses for the final song.  If you click to see the full size image, you’ll see that my bandmates (Alex and Craig) had very mixed reactions.  Highly controversial!

Feb
23

Image Copyright 2010 by The Sydney Morning Herald (Photo: Vince Caligiuri)

Here in Australia, I think it’s fair to say that watching sport is our national pastime.  Nowhere do we spend more time than on our buttocks inside sporting stadiums.  Walk into any of our major stadiums and you’ll no doubt feel its aura.  Stroll its hallowed halls and there you’ll likely find all manner of memorabilia describing a proud history and wondrous architecture.  Why, then, must stadiums ruin it all with one simple failing?  Namely, why must every break in play on the field be treated as an opportunity to blast out a somewhat generic brand of early 90s rock?

Don’t get me wrong – there certainly is a time and a place for early 90s rock (namely the early 90s).  And there certainly are highlights from that era (who could forget Robert Palmer’s joint venture with UB40?)  It’s just that when the same snippet of the same song is played over and over for the duration of an entire football season, one’s ears are left feeling sorry for each other.  Twenty20 cricket is even worse, with every slog for a four or six being accompanied by terribly dated dance anthems.  Tune into the WNBL and almost immediately you’ll be confronted with the famous cry of “ya’ll ready for this?”  Well, yes, I am ready, but I’ve been ready for a good 18 years now.

Perhaps basketball can be excused for wanting to follow its American roots, but what excuse can be proffered in the case of football and cricket?  Why try to Americanise the un-American?  Australian sporting leagues and stadium operators have neither the budget nor cultural awareness to recreate the excitement of an NBA-like experience.  What’s more, our sports don’t need that kind of showbiz anyway.  Nothing could be more exciting than the natural crowd buzz just before the opening bounce of an AFL game.  The last thing I need at that very moment is for the booming voice of a former game show host to remind me of just how excited I should be.

Feb
17

Special thanks to Matthew Crist of Hubbub UK for publishing a review of our album.  Here’s some of what Matthew wrote:

“The genre is most definitely in the quirky envelope but the guys have proved that clever and quirky doesn’t necessarily mean a lack of depth. The arrangement of the ten songs mean that the tracks are more mini power-pop operas than three minute pop hits, mostly thanks to the effective use of keys and the occasional synth electric guitar solo, backed up by some meaningful yet light hearted lyrics.”

To read the full review, click here – thanks!

Feb
10

Okay, it might not have been the moment that stopped a nation.  But it was a moment that stopped everyone in their tracks at Saturday’s Acoustica festival.

If you take a look at the above photo, you’ll see that it captures me in the midst of a manic offstage rant – the centrepiece of one our new songs!  What the camera didn’t capture, though, was the moment I jumped back on stage after my rant had ended.  In what can only be described as a “rock’n’roll moment”, I jumped back on with such force that the milk crates supporting the stage couldn’t help but buckle under the pressure (oops!)

Suddenly Alex’s big, heavy bass amp (pictured) looked more like The Leaning Tower of Pisa.  The crowd’s reaction was one of audible shock as they noticed it about to topple onto Craig’s hugely expensive drumkit on the ground below.  Luckily I saw this too, and with heroic foresight, managed to intervene mid-topple.

Exactly how my keyboard managed to stay upright in its already-precarious-position (pictured) I’ll never know.  I guess you just never know what might happen at a Mr Brady show!  Thanks again to Shanny and Tom from Elevenses for having us play – we had a thoroughly good time!

To see all the photos from this show, click here.

Feb
08

This video is the first in a series I’m making called ‘Mr Brady presents…’ (produced by the ever-talented Shane Dunlop).  During the series I’ll be paying tribute to my 70s pop heroes (10cc, in this case).

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