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Image for Tim Rogers responds to bizarre Townsville review

Tim Rogers responds to bizarreTownsville review

A few weeks ago intrepid reporter Amanda Gray of Townsville Bulletin headed along to see Barnsey in the flesh on Cold Chisel’s comeback tour. She was really, really excited giddily telling her readers – “I’ll tell you how excited … almost wet my pants excited!” She enjoyed Chisel’s set but felt the need to call out the support band, You Am I, who were the “only disappointing thing about the evening”

After acknowledging that “diehard fans” would probably bombard her email with “don’t you know who they think they are?” rants, Gray felt the need to list the crimes of Tim Rogers and You Am I.

Can I just say if a band is truly driven on talent alone none of the following is required:
1. Spruiking one’s delusional belief of a high level of attractiveness to the opposite sex
2. Heckling the same crowd with jeers of “I’ll be the one your girlfriend is thinking about later on tonight, buddy”.
3. And worse, feeling the need to “F-bomb” your way through your set to distract us from the fact you really do sound so bad live.
I don’t want to be 100 per cent anti-”You Am I” – Tim Rogers can play a mean guitar and I used to love their song Berlin Chair … used to being the operative wording here.
But when Jimmy himself brought old mate out and said how great he was and how ecstatic he was to have him on the road with him, I seriously had to wonder if JB was back on the vodka again.
Sorry, Tim.



Tim Rogers’ very amusing response to the review/opinion piece was published as a letter to the editor in the paper shortly after Gray’s review and although that was a few weeks back (sorry, we don’t read the Townsville Bulletin all that often at FL HQ) we think it’s well worth a read.

MS Gray,
I was enjoying a good strong coffee whilst reading your editorial Friday (TB, Oct 21) lambasting my performance with our band You Am I, supporting Cold Chisel in Townsville. The timing was unfortunate for me because I found great coffee on tour (never particularly easy) and the folks giggling opposite the table from me had obviously read it too.

Times like this I wish I had a thicker skin however, I need to make clear to you my writing to you has nothing at all to do with whether you think our band is rubbish or that I am a complete tool.

Our band has, as our heroes, acts that were never universally loved, and at times, or for their entire ``careers’’, exist somewhere on the fringes of popular taste, and we accept gladly that occasionally sloppy rock’n’roll with a questionable singer won’t be to most people’s tastes. However, we do adore making this racket and have toured the world for 22 years with this humble self-satisfaction intact.

My concern is that your editorial could be read that I don’t appreciate our very fortunate position, and that I’m abusive to crowds.The gentleman who was shouting out to me and I responded with the line about ``paying attention or else his partner . . . etc’’ is pure hokum from Entertainment 101, and if I thought the people involved would take ``real’’ offence I’d watch my words more carefully. Possibly.

To my mind, going on stage and resuscitating standard stage banter like ``you guys are great’’ is dull and condescending. Because I look like I fell out of a garbage truck, backwards, to talk with sexual bravado is a surreal little windup I presumed that most folks would understand. If I had the chiselled looks and complexion of many of my contemporaries, the chutzpah wouldn’t at all be an in-joke between myself and the crowd, just dull.

I furthermore have no interest in pursuing someone’s partner. If that is not obvious to an audience maybe I’m better looking than I think, and will just have to reappraise my position.

My favourite memory of Townsville is flying in on a small plane (the roads were flooded) to play a show post-floods, late ‘90s. The crowd was so appreciative and, after an obviously heartbreaking week for the town, ready to let off some steam and enjoy this racket that we make. We’ve always looked forward to the possibility of coming back.

Maybe that’s why your editorial affected me. As I’ve said, we understand we’re never going to ``win over’’ many people because the men and women we look up to could barely fill a bathroom with their fans. But they play beyond their limitations and extol the virtues of sin and salvation.

The bad language I let fly is a result of complete rejoice. It is so bewilderingly exciting at times to play this music. I agree with you, f*** so often is not intelligent, and tiring, and I’ve really gotta make up some new words to promote how f***in great it feels most nights to play.

Lastly, any inference that my great friend and mentor Jimmy Barnes is slamming down alcohol right now is quite irresponsible. No man I know has worked harder to get himself to a point like this where he’s healthy, happy, and giving more than 110 per cent every night. It fascinates me and he’s rightly proud.

He is a whip-smart man who has made judgments and decisions about who he spends his time with sagely. Once again it was an enormous pleasure to play Townsville. In between the good coffee, great lil’ bookstore (Mary Who’s?) and everyone we ran into in pubs or on the street just solidifies my opinions on why our band feel privileged to play there.

Despite wanting half your money back I think it was entirely worth the money just for Cold Chisel. And I have to say, lastly, that I’m very glad music is being discussed in editorials in newspapers! But please there is no reason to ``feel sorry’’ for me, because I’m doing, and have done for 22 years, music For which I consider myself the luckiest tool around.

My best to you.
TIM ROGERS

Comments

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rwinter

rwinter said on the 10th Nov, 2011

tim must have been having a good day when he wrote that one. it's sharp!

Phen

Phen said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Thats a great little response, which stays well and truly on the right side of being over-defensive or whingy. Go Tim!

missy_el

missy_el said on the 10th Nov, 2011

perhaps if mr rogers put half as much effort into his performances than he did into his rebuttals, this would be a non-issue.

Piko

Piko said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Keep it going Timmy! Things have been hard for You Am I for the past few years I believe. Please keep playing for another 22 years.

Edit: I actually remember Tim making the same "your girlfriend...." comment at the Bar on the Hill in Newcastle in the 90's.

gumbuoy

gumbuoy said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Go Timmy. loving his work as always.

hearsz

hearsz said on the 10th Nov, 2011

The reviewer comes across as someone who's only ever taken a passing interest in You Am I, evidenced by her single reference to fan favorite "Berlin Chair", the same way someone says they've only ever heard "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana or Oasis' "Wonderwall". If she knew anything about Tim Rogers, she would have realized that he's not only in one of Australia's greatest ever rock'n'roll bands, but the guy is also one of our best ever lyricists and the quality of his rebuttal is not really surprising. Tim, you are a legend, and one funny f*cker! God bless you, and the f*cking lot of us!

JaneMelanie

JaneMelanie said on the 10th Nov, 2011

"USED TO being the operative wording here" err, I think it's just the incorrect wording. Go back to school Amanda.

hedonism gibbon

hedonism gibbon said on the 10th Nov, 2011

what sort of moron would ask for half their money back cos the support band isn't their thing or has bad sound (it's pretty rare for a backup band in a big venue like that to have good sound)? she sure seemed to dedicate quite a bit of space for what was "the only disappointment of the evening".

great reply Tim, not one bit of narkiness

DinkiDIDude

DinkiDIDude said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Classy rebuttal right there, always liked and admired this guy for his positive and humble attitude.........which in itself has probably contributed to the bands continuing appeal and ability to always put on a tops performance.

grattan

grattan said on the 10th Nov, 2011



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAB7LvgjrF8

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Yeah I also thought that ad was in a bit of poor taste.

Not as poor as the taste of the shit they're drinking though.

Piko

Piko said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Whoa don't knock Wild Turkey, As far as bourbon go's its actually rather agreeable.

jeff3002

jeff3002 said on the 10th Nov, 2011

I'm thinking this may be the first ever live gig this "reporter" has attended. Bet she'll regret picking on one T. Rogers, it'll be something she carries over her shoulders for the rest of her career. Lesson 1: Never start a fight with Timothy Rogers - he'll outwit you, out-word you and out-rock you! Keep up the good work Timmy, after 22 years you still inject some fresh air into this far too serious industry.

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Timmy was in fine form last night at the Annandale, looking sharp in his green schooldress.

Very different setlist from YAI. Several YAI songs I've never heard live before, a few covers including Astronomy Domine - Pink Floyd (have heard them play that before. They opened with it last night), Fortunate Son - CCR, a bit of Science Fiction - Divinyls, a Neil Young song (what was it berlinchair?), On The Planet of the Apes - The Mummies (with Rusty Hopkinson singing).

Didn't finish until almost quarter to 1 so I'm a little tired today.

brendenemy

brendenemy said on the 10th Nov, 2011

the gig last night was truly amazing. classic timmy.
"if only your c**k was as big as your mouth, then i'd have you backstage..."

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 10th Nov, 2011

Timmy was in fine form last night at the Annandale, looking sharp in his green schooldress.

Very different setlist from YAI. Several YAI songs I've never heard live before, a few covers including Astronomy Domine - Pink Floyd (have heard them play that before. They opened with it last night), Fortunate Son - CCR, a bit of Science Fiction - Divinyls, a Neil Young song (what was it berlinchair?), On The Planet of the Apes - The Mummies (with Rusty Hopkinson singing).

Didn't finish until almost quarter to 1 so I'm a little tired today.

The Neil Young song was Cinnamon Girl.

It was a pretty Deliverence/Convicts heavy set, but more the songs from those records they don't play too often.

Unsurprisingly I loved it.

I also liked hanging with Braveheart, cuz he's rad and stuff.

gumbuoy

gumbuoy said on the 10th Nov, 2011

The Neil Young song was Cinnamon Girl.

It was a pretty Deliverence/Convicts heavy set, but more the songs from those records they don't play too often.

Unsurprisingly I loved it.

I also liked hanging with Braveheart, cuz he's rad and stuff.

Dear god, BH, you couldn't remember/recognise Cinnamon Girl?

To be fair, I only know it because Dempsey was covering it for a time in his live shows. :D

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 10th Nov, 2011

I was more into bands like CCR and The Who in the late '60s than Neil Young.

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 11th Nov, 2011

For those interested, here's the set.

Astronomy Domine
Moon Shines on Trubble
We Hardly Knew Ye
Top of the Morn'
She Digs Her
Fortunate Son (sang by Mr Kent)
Deliverance
Purple Sneakers
I'm a Mess
The Ocean
Trigger Finger
Junk
Billy
Cinnamon Girl
It Ain't Funny
Constance George
(You Must Fight to Live) On the Planet of the Apes (Mr Hopkinson on vocals)
---
Wally Raffles
Minor Byrd
Heavy Heart
Thank God
Cathy's Clown
Mr Milk


I lot less deliverence than I remember ha ha.

I was glad to hear stuff from the last record becaused I missed it when they toured it.

Still reeling from how fun the gig was. And how sleepy I am now.

gumbuoy

gumbuoy said on the 11th Nov, 2011

That is one hell of an encore...

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 11th Nov, 2011

Yeah man, who needs Berlin Chair?

gumbuoy

gumbuoy said on the 11th Nov, 2011

thats pretty much the FL forum slogan :P

Piko

Piko said on the 14th Nov, 2011

I really enjoyed the new You Am I stuff when I heard it at PGW this year. Reminds me I need to grab a copy of that!

berlinchair101

berlinchair101 said on the 14th Nov, 2011

Their best of, The Cream and The Crock, is a good place to start.

Or just buy Hourly Daily, Hi Fi Way, #4 Record and Convicts and thank me later.

suspekt

suspekt said on the 14th Nov, 2011

i think it's refreshing a reviewer actually wrote what they thought, not pissing in their pockets. she's entitled to her opinion and frankly, a lot of people agreed with her!

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 14th Nov, 2011



She missed the point completely though. She complained entirely about his shtick as though it was serious when it is the exact opposite.

So whilst she is entirely entitled to her opinion, it helps when she gets the point before she criticises it.

postman_pm

postman_pm said on the 15th Nov, 2011

I liked it, whity explanations rather than attacking the reporter... he comes out looking like the better person.

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 15th Nov, 2011

Tim Rogers is always the better person.

Herry

Herry said on the 17th Nov, 2011

i have no idea why you all defend what he did. it was the townsville bulletin. who cares? any artist that "replies" to a critic or unfavourable review in my mind is an idiot. i don't care what they say. the better man would just ignore it.

Nosyt

Nosyt said on the 17th Nov, 2011

i would agree if the review was well thought out and intelligent, alas this is not the case here

gumbuoy

gumbuoy said on the 17th Nov, 2011



i dont know Tim personally, but from what I do now, if the reviewer hadn't made that crack about Barnes drinking alcohol, then Timmy would probably have just let the whole thing slide.

But since she crossed that line, he might have felt compelled to reply, and since he was replying about that, why not throw some other stuff in as well...

snapcrackleROCK

snapcrackleROCK said on the 17th Nov, 2011

Their best of, The Cream and The Crock, is a good place to start.

Or just buy Hourly Daily, Hi Fi Way, #4 Record and Convicts and thank me later.

Make sure you get Convicts with the bonus disc of Australian rock royalty doing guest vox with You Am I on their songs - Adalita, Ken Mitchell, Tex Perkins, Bernard's Fanny, the dude from 1200 Techniques, etc. It's one of my favourite You Am I CDs.

huck

huck said on the 17th Nov, 2011

I just got back from Chisel bizaarly. I've never been even slightly interested in You Am I until now - they were brilliant.
I don't know why he bothered responding though.

AuSqueezer

AuSqueezer said on the 18th Nov, 2011

Great response from Tim

huck

huck said on the 18th Nov, 2011

I was thinking about this over night. Who dedicates 2 to 3 hundred words of a review to dump on any band other than Hole? She's a wanker.

vividscribe

vividscribe said on the 21st Nov, 2011

"because i look like i fell out of a garbage truck, backwards....." lucky some of us like that kind of thing, tim.

Piko

Piko said on the 22nd Nov, 2011

Their best of, The Cream and The Crock, is a good place to start.

Or just buy Hourly Daily, Hi Fi Way, #4 Record and Convicts and thank me later.

Oh was that to me? Hi Fi Way has been in my top 5 favourite albums since it was released. Have been a You Am I fan for most of my life :D

Thessaly

Thessaly said on the 22nd Nov, 2011

Sure, maybe he didn't need to reply, but in the end his reply was sweet and amusing. (I didn't expect he'll be so polite.) I'd say he pretty much shamed that reporter. :)