Being a jobbing musician usually conjures up images of late nights in clubs and hotels, in seedy areas of cities – something straight out of film noir. In truth, there’s been probably too many late nights and the nature of the work has put me in some fantastic situations, often with really wonderful people, affording me many wonderful (and a few not so wonderful) experiences – and I wouldn’t change a minute of it!
However, one of the biggest issues I see is the lack of accessibility for younger people to live music. This became particularly noticeable with the Australian Songwriters Association gigs that I’ve supported here in Hobart for over a decade. Being a music teacher, I often have teenage students who are ready to go out and play but are under age, presenting problems for venue operators, parents and organisers alike. We get around it with the ASA, having younger performers on earlier and ensuring there are parents/guardians with them.
So, it’s really refreshing to play two shows in quick succession that are really family-friendly. Last weekend I played a very fun unplugged gig for World Record Store Day at R & R Records in central Hobart. A friend from uni brought her two young daughters along and it was really novel for them to see someone making real music right in front of them.
This Friday evening I’m playing at Cafe 54, which is not only a family space but also out of the city, at Northgate Shopping Centre in Glenorchy. Every Friday night for the past few months the proprietor, John Robb, puts on a music night, featuring various players from all over, but mostly local talent. John is passionate about music and providing good food as well as a lovely space to play.
Music Night #14 at Cafe 54 features Ben Dunk (from Denmark), local duo Zac Henderson & Rueben Reeves as well as me. The show starts at 5:30pm and as well as being licensed for BYO, there are $10 mains and $5 desserts – and kids are welcome!
I’m really looking forward to it – and hopefully seeing some of my younger friends and their parents 🙂