#22 – Cover Bands

10 11 2009

Bogans love commercial radio. But, with the limiting nature of only liking five different artists (selected from; Pink, Snow Patrol, U2, AC/DC, Nickelback, Coldplay, Green Day or any remix of anything. The Beatles are also allowed, to convey an understanding of musical history, while some outliers like Franz Ferdinand provide extra rock cred), the bogan can quickly grow bored. Commercial radio does what it can, by playing these artists on constant rotation, but still there is a void. Particularly when it comes to live music. Pink’s constant defilement of major arenas notwithstanding, major international acts rarely venture to the antipodes.

Hey kids...Crazy Haus! Enter the cover band. You know them. They were the guys who formed a band in year nine, playing gigs at lunch to 30 kids who then got booted out of the auditorium for crowd surfing. That was, until the point they formed a cover band, the highpoint of their lives. It’s Darren, Sam and Clint, plus Clint’s younger brother who they recruited to play bass because their old bass player’s wife won’t let him out on weeknights/their old bass player got hooked on ice and disappeared in Darwin/they never see their bass player anymore. And, in a desperate attempt to reclaim the euphoria that is live performance, they go to the same pub, on the same night, every week, and play the same songs. To the same bogans.

And bogans love it. Having only five artists to listen to means that opportunities for attending live rock performances (is there another kind?) are few and far between. Sport notwithstanding, communal entertainment is usually designated as being for ‘other people’. Opera (“poofs”), dance (“poofs), non-rock music (“poofs”), comedy (“is it Hughesy? No? Poofs”) and the theatre (“poofs”) are all for a cultural subset that is not bogan, leaving only whichever Fast and the Furious film is in cinemas, or the pub with a cover band. Those five artists mentioned above can be re-created without the talent, verve or originality of their original members but, importantly, the cover band will mimic each song down to the 16th beat.

Thus, the bogans can bounce around, singing only to the chorus of ‘Betterman’ and ‘Jessie’s Girl’, while screaming for post-Californication Chili Peppers, and feel inordinately cultured. Meanwhile the boys from ‘Jet Black’ or ‘Crazygarden’ reel out “hit after hit”, and the bogans continue to regret that they jumped in to the loud bit from ‘Blister in the Sun’ one measure too soon.


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74 responses

10 11 2009
Andy

“Play Khe Sanh, Cnut”

another classic entry!

10 11 2009
Lee

Ha ha, and watch them all run up to the front of the stage and sing khe sanh in a big huddle!

10 11 2009
Lee

Don’t know about this one, the pokies fucked live music at pubs and smaller clubs so it is a bit of a novelty to see a band at your ‘local’ these days.
You can’t beat live music and when there is a decent band at a pub it is usually a great night, and there are some real good cover bands out there!

10 11 2009
Duncan

hahahaha so very true 🙂 any news on bogan fashion? Footy shorts to the beach? or their role in the proliferation of the raddler as a mainstream beverage?

10 11 2009
Duncan

Also they avoid any band with any real talent, and dislike the thought of brass, woodwind or other such unorthadox instruments utilised in rock music….are they also responsible for Britney Spears Concerts?

10 11 2009
Simon

Duncan,

You can’t blame Britts on Bogans, they aren’t that vindictive. She comes from a special section of Hell.

10 11 2009
shazza

I think Brits was an unfortunate omission from the list. She drives an SUV, with kids on lap. Drinks from large cups (see yesterdays post) I could go on. IMHO she is the definitive famous bogan chick.

10 11 2009
Matty H

Here in Sydney, you dont see much live music in small venues. Only the big BIG venues. Lee, the pokies did a number on the bogan cover bands here, your so right. Sad really. But in Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth ect. the bogan cover band is still alive and well. Ahhhh, my bogan uni days in Toorak, Melbourne, good times, good time.

10 11 2009
Lee

True Matt and I despise going to Acer to see a band its a prick of a place.
The Hordern was my favourite “big” place to see music and I was sad when they closed it but my local pub has been recently renovated and the new owners have had the wonderful idea of bringing the live music back. On a few occasions with the bigger acts they have even fenced off half the carpark, good times!
As a side note and this might just be me, I find the atmosphere to be less agro when there is live music on as opposed to a place full of people on the piss with doof doof or no music at all.

10 11 2009
GG

ahahahahahahahahahhhhhhhhhhhhhahahah
funniest thing I have read in a very loooonnnnnnggggg time.
keep it up

10 11 2009
Jodie

Haha, so true, especially the part about the semi-alternative outliers. I went to see Gomez the other week (semi-indie but palatable to the masses) and there were these bogan jocks behind us (popped collars, cause bracelets, “distressed” jeans with thongs, probably work in marketing or football) yelling at the band like they were at a football match. Ugh.

10 11 2009
Jodie

I might add, if you ever see Radiohead play (I have, and this happened) these people are the same types who are yelling, “play Creep!” Never mind the fact that the band have 7/8 albums full of songs infinitely better, nope, they just want to hear the one radio-friendly hit. From FIFTEEN years ago.

10 11 2009
Sam

C’mon Jodie, be honest now. If one of these bogans gave you the hard word your knees would have trembled with delight.

10 11 2009
berihebi

he he, get a bit of the west into ya Jodie!

10 11 2009
Fiona of Toorak

LOL. The irony of “Khe Sanh” is lost on bogans of course. Even the very pinnacle of boganhood – the Australian Cricket Team – celebrate a win with a rousing rendition of a song about a man who can no longer stand to be in Australia…

10 11 2009
r.jett

I love the irony of that one. Fiona -i couldn’t have put it better.

10 11 2009
Linda

Fiona you make me laugh so much – thank you

25 11 2009
Mark

The Australian cricket teams victory song is ‘Under the Southern Cross I Stand’. If they sing anything else it is probably for the simple reason that they just happen to like the song.

In regards to khe sahn it is a massive and fairly ignorant over simplification to suggest that the song is simply about a man who can’t stand to be in Australia any more. There may be some lost irony in your social commentary as well.

25 11 2009
Mark

Having said that yes the Aussie cricket team are bogans and yes khe sahn is a popular song with bogans.

10 11 2009
Richard Reid

Adam12 at the Geebung was just about the highlight of my later teenage years!

10 11 2009
Adam

Ah Adam-12….. every thursday night at uni in Ballarat was spent watching these guys at The Chapel….. Good times…

10 11 2009
brad

richard you are gonna be bagged for that,thats no better than seeing ‘no more chilli jam ‘ at the burvale

10 11 2009
Andy

Franz Ferdinand? Dear lord. If the intelligence, beauty, wonder and sheer awesome of Franz isn’t safe from the bogan then nothing is.

10 11 2009
Rich

Yeah, even though Franz do have a disturbing amount of crossover appeal, I think a much better example would have been the Kings of Leon. And to boot, the shittier KoL get, the more the bogans lap it up.

Which gives me a nomination idea: Triple J’s Hottest 100. The station was co-opted by bogans long ago.

10 11 2009
Rob

“Blister in the sun”… brilliant..
Too true!

Usually the guitarist does the same pentatonic scale/blues style solo on EVERY SONG as well…haha

10 11 2009
Lee

True, I went and seen the femmes at the yallah woolshed before they closed it and it was a really good gig.

10 11 2009
chris of South yarra

Oh god, can we please have a blog on how shit fox and 2day fm are terrible just terrible..

10 11 2009
brad

no 2 day fm in melbourne chris from south yarra?

10 11 2009
chris of South yarra

No there isn’t , whats your point brad ?

13 11 2009
brad

well you claim that your south yarra,what do you sit at home and listen to streamed Sydney radio all day?

15 11 2009
Ghengis

Fox FM (mentioned in post) is the equivalent of 2Day (owned by the same company)

10 11 2009
CB

I have just stumbled across this site and I have found it very, very amusing. Keep up the great work. I actually laughed out loud at the last sentence, “and the bogans continue to regret that they jumped in to the loud bit from ‘Blister in the Sun’ one measure too soon.” Too funny!

10 11 2009
berihebi

Ooohhh, I love cover bands. Don’t crap on cover bands. A night out Brisbane wouldn’t be the same without Tuffy: http://www.triplem.com.au/brisbane/access-all-areas/my-city/photos/tuffy-normanby-sundays

10 11 2009
Toony

A bogan listens to commercial radio.
An even more insipid bogan listens to Triple J……

11 11 2009
Lee

All radio stations are commercial to an extent, except perhaps the more obscure AM stations that play classical music around the clock.

11 11 2009
Goran

By definition, community radio is not commercial to any extent. It is also diverse, fascinating, educational, and widely adored by white people.

11 11 2009
Toony

How biting!
JJJ listener takes umbrage, switches on the radio, cup of chai latte and has a lay down.
Muppet.

11 11 2009
Jodie

^This. And they think listening to JJJ makes them “edgy” and “alternative”…. *snicker*

11 11 2009
Jodie

That was to Toony.

11 11 2009
Toony

Oh, they are edgy alright! Til Mum gets home and tells them to turn it down….
Back to Austereo and flicking through Audi brochures whilst wishing that Mum and Dad would trade in the Subaru….
All the while, a middle-class turtle head makes its’ appearance…

12 11 2009
pinky has a brain

Suburu is better than your dunny-door mate. My suburu kicks arse. No self respecting snob would drive an Audi (snickers) that’s what CUB’s drive….

11 11 2009
Peter of Kensington

I love when people speak on behalf of others. It must be nice to have an intimate knowledge of the intentions and motivations of bogans. Excellent contribution Jodie, well done.

13 11 2009
brad

pbs or rrr sticker equals dizzy fuck driver ie:dickhead

10 11 2009
boag

the ultimate bogan cover bands scat (lol) and captain spalding

13 11 2009
brad

Dont mess with the capt he’d rip you a new ass in a sec boy

10 11 2009
Guy

Another irony – bogans (of the “I’m not a racist, but…” variety) pumping their fists and singing along to Beds Are Burning, completely unaware that it’s about Aboriginal land rights.

12 11 2009
pinky has a brain

I don’t know how many times I’ve laughed at that…I heard a bogan at the pub once say “Those fucking abo’s get everyfink, they’re not even Aussie!” MUHAHAHAHA

11 11 2009
fz

As someone who does the cover thing as a soloist (money: the ONLY reason I do it…) I had a good chuckle at this because it’s so true.
I’m finding now that Khe Sanh, Holy Grail etc are now slowly being replaced with a new selection of ‘classics’. Enter ‘To Be With You’ by Mr Big, ‘Horses’ by Daryl Braitwaite & other daggy songs from the early 90’s which are now in vogue.
A now stock standard cover band related bogan activity includes wanting to get up on stage & sing a song because quote ‘me best mate is going to London’.
Though the prize has to go the bogan who while drunk & with tears in the eyes told me that it was his lifelong dream to go to Khe Sanh by train…
So I guess it’s not the money that keeps me coming back, it’s actually the bogans!

11 11 2009
berihebi

Nice one Fz! You ever do ‘I Touch Myself’ by Chrissy Amphlett? I’d love to hear a room full singin’ that one out loud.

11 11 2009
CB

Kz, I found your post very funny as I have played the odd gig as a solo guitarist as you have but usually only for friends parties etc. While I agree with your Mr. Big song being bogan, I find the female bogans love it haha. I am flesh and blood after all

12 11 2009
fz

Boganettes love ‘To Be With You’. It reminds me of another funny story when after I played it one night at the end of a set, a bogan comes up and shouts ‘Whatsa bloke doin’ singin’ that? Itsa chick’s song. A rool hot chick sings it in the video!’ I probably spent the next 5-10 minutes trying to explain to him that the singer in Mr Big was actually male. He still didn’t believe me…

19 11 2009
brad

Funny stories fz, i can just picture the silly bogan who wanted to go by train to Khe Sahn stumbling out of the pub,shuffling up the road and then asking for a hotdog at the near-by booze bus

11 11 2009
Lee

I agree with the Tripper J comments, it is the pits. Most of the music is rubbish, the people that host it shit me just listening to it and Triple J TV with the deadshits they get on there………. occasionally if you are really lucky you might catch the odd good song or a good DJ set ( if your in the mood for it) otherwise it’s pus.

11 11 2009
Maldini

Bit harsh to put U2, Green Day and Coldplay there, they should be replaced by Wolfmother, Black Eyed Peas and other truly talentless bands.

12 11 2009
MC Eating Disorder

going to see the Disposable Heros at the Eddy Castle hotel Friday night fuck yeah gonna get em to play “Foxy Lady”

12 11 2009
Andrew Dolt

Don’t forget muse!

18 11 2009
dizzy

I’m an MC (or “rapper” to the bogan) and I’ve been asked during the middle of my band’s set to “Fuckin’ play some khe san” by a bogan who had three teeth left in his head. He was looking very trendy in a tight pink polo shirt and torn jeans. When I politely refused he tried to pull my mic out of my hand, which resulted in security attempting to escort him from the venue, only to have him tear shit off the walls and smash glasses, all the while screaming the lyrics to said requested song. I blame cover bands for his behaviour. But I call them “rubber bands”….

18 11 2009
Freddo

Don’t blame cover bands for the behaviour of bogans. Those guys are there purely to help sell alcohol. The more the bogans sing & dance, the more money goes across the bar. That’s why they perform all the same old tired hits because those songs get the bogans all worked up.
I just don’t understand why bogans think that any band in any venue that they stumble into is their own personal jukebox & that every single one of their song requests must be perfomed immediately…

I think we blamed bogans for the behaviour of cover bands…see the name of the blog up there? TBL

19 11 2009
Jodie

Fair enough, though. Australian hip-hop is shit.

19 11 2009
Jodie

That was to dizzy.

25 11 2009
Nicki

I am confused- Franz Ferdinand and the Beatles are considered bogan music, yet the Pussycat Dolls, Britney, Kanye West and the latest Idol are not? I agree with cover bands being bogan, but I think your concept of bogan music is odd to say in the least.

27 11 2009
Matt

In regards to the Australian Cricket Team and their celebration song, these days it is ‘Under the Southern Cross I Stand’ but it used to be ‘Khe Sanh’ up until a few years ago. I think it was Steve Waugh who started it, but the reason for Khe Sanh was because it was the only song he knew all the words too.

11 03 2010
Shaun

lulz @ ‘screaming for Post-Californication Chili Peppers’.

So true, all of it.

23 03 2010
ralf

Just remember all you bogans, the chorus to Khe sanh is ‘last plane out of sydney’s almost gone” NOT last train out of sydney! I should know, i’m in a cover band hahahah

8 07 2010
MADLLIPS

… very funny blog. Bogans have now covered a couple of generations and some of ’em started with the Beatles while rock music was still developing. Then came Deep Purple, Led Zep and later ACDC etc being the birth of hard edged guitar n big balls rock.
But the Khe Sahn anthem born and bred of the hard arsed hard drinkin’ Chisels simply lives on from one bogan generation to the next.
Yep, like Ralf, I play in a covers band and have done well before the pokies fucked up the whole live scene. For those old enough, remember when you could go down Clarendon St in Sth Melbourne from the Golden Gate to the Fox n Hounds to the Star Bar to the Wayside Inn and see a great cover band in all of them!
After more than 35 years of playing in a cover band we are STILL booked, play nearly every week and still get asked to play Khe Sahn, Acca Dacca and of course the Angels – Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again!! So Dizzy, “no way get fucked fuck off”
Catch ya!

13 08 2010
;)

Note: When a bogan ‘loves’ The Beatles and other such ‘cool 80s bands’, they mean it. The average bogan can name MORE than one song; that is the ‘Little Darling’ song, and the 7 word chorus of Yellow Submarine. This flexes their evident knowledge of musical history dating back to ‘the 80s or something’, where all real music that wasn’t Stairway To Heaven or Olivia Newton-John began.

13 08 2010
;)

OH. Let us not forget how the bogan’s love of ‘old music’ is well documented by their frequent display of T shirts bearing The Rolling Stone’s trademark tongue. If you do not know what I mean, spend 10 hours at any Big Day Out. If you try this (completely blindfolded) and do not see such attire in the masses, try an outer-suburbs coffee shop – or wherever the ‘alternative’ titty blondes hang.

25 08 2010
Brett

I played in a coverband for 9 years.Towards the end of it i was constantly arguing with the punters who wanted the same old garbage that i wasn’t a Juke Box.To annoy them,we started playing Rammstein,Static-X,Disturbed & Life of Agony covers.Most of them had no idea lol. Best & most satisfying thing i ever did by joining a heavy originals band. Least i get to play the Great Northern @ Byron now…

9 12 2010
Iluca

Excuse my pedantics, ;), but the Beatles were formed in 1960, just six years after the ‘birth’ of rock’n’roll. They ought not to be grouped in with “other such ‘cool 80s bands’”.

9 12 2010
Iluca

That was directed at the winky guy three comments up. Your name doesn’t work in this text field.

17 02 2011
Victory

I do like “The Beatnix” and I am not a Bogan.

17 02 2011
Pandabater

Are they still going? I saw them a couple of times
in (oldness sign # 76) the 80’s & they were
fantastic. The only problem is that now only
half the people know the songs.
(Who? Beatels? Wots that?)

10 09 2011
Taariq Hassan

Thin Lizzy is a older bogan staple. As a jazz and blues musician I have been asked by some fully hammered bogan in a pub many times to interrupt the Miles Davis/Albert King type stuff and play “the boys are back in town”

2 04 2013
The 3rd Bass Player

Brilliant. I am completely guilty of pandering to this particular strain of boganity.

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