Australian Prog, Rock and Folk from the early 1970s

How about Bon Scott playing the recorder? Why not?  I’m dreaming up the next Warmwaters recording & want to share some of my musical research. The tunes are written and we’re working several new ones into the show which we’ll trial in live performance. This means they’re (re)arranged for guitar and flute, even though they were written and demoed for a full band to play.
As I consider how the songs might be built in studio recordings there’s a possibility the Warmwaters might ‘go electric’, and as such I’ve been looking for musical influences from the depths of Australian rock history. There are treasures there, like Bon Scott playing the recorder. It’s very enjoyable to see him performing a different persona, and also there’s a pleasure in seeing his innate musicality in a different mode.
I’m not interested in ‘sending up’ any of this music. What would be the point of that? Instead,  this is (fun) sonic searching, listening for gestures toward genre which might offer compositions (written as neither parody nor pastiche) some audio flavours that will help the musical humour of the act translate from the live and visual to purely audio.


Seasons of Change – Fraternity

Featuring Bon Scott on vocals and recorder, Fraternity made this song in 1971. There’s another, more ‘rock’ version by Blackfeather that was a bigger hit.


I Feel the Sun – Tully

Tully (1968-78) went through several phases as a band, following their musical curiosity through a range of different styles and lineups, including this legendary surfing movie soundtrack Sea of Joy. This piano-led song is one of my favourites. Stick with it, its beauty (and naivety)  reveal themselves slowly.

Bali Waters – Tamam Shud

Newcastle’s Tamam Shud were a psychadelic, progressive and surf rock band. They’ve continued to produce music, and are particularly remembered for a soundtrack they created for surf film Morning of the Earth


She’s So Hard to Shake – Khavas Jute

Tamam Shud guitarist Tim Gaze joined this short-lived group, who produced one album, originally,  though they have re-formed since. This song is fantastic,  but for my money particularly notable for Bob Daisley’s fuzz-bass solo about two minutes in.


Girls on the Avenue – Richard Clapton

Another song with twin guitars ringing responding to the vocal line. These last  two songs have lingered longer in popular musical memory, and are a bit more mainstream.  I remember listening to this song on the radio as a kid.

There’s plenty more of this sort of music,  from Bakery,  Madder Lake, Ayers Rock and Masters Apprentices on this playlist.



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