Chartbusters

What's hot

A Kangaroo Cousin Looks At The Saltire

In June 2017 Di and I left Sydney and spent two weeks in Amsterdam and then ten days touring around the Scottish Highlands. As much…

Continue reading...

The History of Roadrunner—Introduction

When Martin Sharp, the internationally acclaimed Australian artist, died in 2013, I read that the University of Wollongong had created a digital archive of the…

Continue reading...

In Search of John Maclean—part 1

Scotland has had few men whose names Matter—or should matter—to intelligent people, But of these MacLean, next to Burns, was the greatest. —Hugh MacDiarmid, ‘Krassivy,…

Continue reading...

Articles and posts

A selection of published and previously unpublished works

City fog
Pyrmont Bridge in the fog
Pyrmont from an office window
Pyrmont park
Pyrmont boardwalk
Pyrmont boats
Pyrmont warehouse
Pyrmont ferry
Removing mast from James Craig
Darling Harbour
Pyrmont wharf sunset
Sunset from Pyrmont Bridge

Pyrmont 2014

On a peninsula to the west of the city and connected to it by the pedestrian and cycle-only Pyrmont Bridge, Pyrmont has completed the transition from an industrial centre of wharves and warehouses to Sydney’s new media and communications hub. These days it is home to Google, the Seven and Ten TV networks, Fairfax Media, the 2SM Radio Super Network and Nova Entertainment as well as the government regulator, the Australian

Continue reading…

If you’re going to San Francisco …

We’re on the sidewalk at the west end of Waller St, a stone’s throw from Golden Gate Park and the final stop of our two-hour walking tour of San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district. Our genial tour guide Kurt, a chubby, moustachioed, local comedian and film maker points out a converted firehouse across the road at number 1575 where in April 1967, representatives of the local alternative community held a press conference

Continue reading…

She came in through the bathroom window

Roll up, roll up for a London rock’n’roll magical mystery tour ‘See the window on the first floor – on the left – that’s the bathroom. There’s a drainpipe on the side wall – you can’t quite see it from here—but two girls climbed up there and got in. They took two of Paul’s shirts which he was a bit annoyed about. And that’s what gave him the inspiration to

Continue reading…

One night in Stuttgart

It’s 11pm, Thursday 22 June at the Gottlieb-Daimler-Stadion in Stuttgart, Germany. The final whistle has just sounded in an astonishing game of football in which the Socceroos have come from behind twice to snatch a two-all draw with Croatia in their final group match in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. The result means the Socceroos will progress to the round of 16, where they will play Italy. The fifteen thousand

Continue reading…

The Malt Whisky Trail: Part 2 – Islay

I’d always fancied getting married in a kilt. And so, when it came my turn to tie the knot earlier this year, it was in full Scottish finery—kilt, sporran and a short black jacket with silver buttons. The wedding was a tremendous success. The bride was as beautiful as a fairy princess (I must admit to a slight bias I fear), the bagpipes rent the air, the ceremony was short

Continue reading…

The Malt Whisky Trail: Part I – Speyside

The Scots cannot claim to have discovered the chemical process of distillation, the extraction of alcoholic spirit from fermenting grains, but there are many who would agree that they have perfected it. Whisky, from the Scots Gaelic ‘uisge beatha’—literally, ‘the water if life’—has accumulated over the centuries an aura, a mystique, that sets it apart from other liquors. The origins of whisky are shrouded in Scotland’s Celtic past. The knowledge

Continue reading…

Oznost tickles Edinburgh

It’s feast or famine in Edinburgh, the ancient and beautiful capital of Scotland. Every August, in an unparalleled orgy of cultural consumption, the staid city changes pace and plays host not only to its world-renowned International Festival and associated Fringe but also to Britain’s only television festival, a film festival, a jazz festival and an acoustic music festival. While the International Festival is similar in style and content to many

Continue reading…

Punky and Western

Ever since white hillbilly music got together with black rhythm and blues to spawn that wayward child by the name of rock’n’roll, there’s always been someone, somewhere, trying to get ‘back to the roots’. Whether it’s Daddy Cool, Sha Na Na, the Stray Cats or Shakin’ Stevens, the door to the rich vault of early rock’n’roll seems to be perpetually open and inside there’s some young bucks happily plundering the

Continue reading…

The Owls and the Blades

The full moon shines balefully over the land of the Morlocks South Yorkshire throbs with mancreated power Steam hisses In the floodlights’ glare Molten steel casts its unholy glow into the night The mighty metallic conurbation procreates In an iron girdle from Mersey to Humber The Eloi slumber on in their pleasant southern land Living in a northern dream Of green fields and blue skies But who digs the coal

Continue reading…

  • 1 6 7