Music captures Climate

Wally from The Basics on drums Woodford 2013/14. Photograph by Sandra Conte.

Music captures Climate

Sandra Conte

1 February 2014

With Climate Change upon us it is refreshing to find festivals such as Woodford doing all they can to ‘green the world’; mass tree plantings on the Woodfordia site in the form of a mini festival each year entitled ‘The Planting’, has formed part of the annual program and landscape, providing shade to punters. In the 2013/14 Festival it had never been needed more with temperatures cranking upward to 45 degrees celsius bringing sweet relief with thunderstorms and showers. This is captured in the lyrics of M. Callaghan whose ‘Sounds of Then’ (This is Australia) was written decades ago and has never been more relevant. ‘Out on the patio we’d sit, and the humidity we’d breathe, we’d watch the lightning crack over canefields’. The band GANGgajang who made it their hit in the 1980s revived the song in the Grande venue of the Woodford Folk Festival where a cool breeze calmed the air and brought ‘a certain texture, a certain smell’. Here eARTh introduces 80’s rocker and festival punter, Jaia, who reviews The Basics.


White shirts, skinny black ties and harmonies – The Beatles references don’t stop there. These three cool cats could be straight out of the 60’s with their rendition of ‘Wipeout’. Wally De Bakker’s exhilarating drumming formed the backbone of The Basics, flawless to the point that he could be playing with Grinspoon or The Living End. Along with his stunning soprano vocals and high harmonies, he nailed it all. True to their name, The Basics are straight up rock ‘n’ roll and naughty to boot - a cross of British Rock n Roll Latino/grunge with powerful vocal arrangements. Not for the faint hearted, and probably more suited to a sweaty afternoon at The Big Day Out, it was nonetheless a class act. They finished off with a great version of ‘Proud Mary’ that (not being ageist) would bring your great grandma out of her rocking chair. In this instance she’d probably want to remove the hearing aid, but having said this, The Grande stage sound levels were spot on.

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