Last night I found myself with a couple of mates enjoying a concert at the Central Club in Richmond. It started with the support to the support: a band I’d never heard of and have now forgotten the name of. John and I were listening to each song, trying to decide which other act they were trying to sound like.
Then the support came on: the legendary Paul Kelly. A bunch of classic songs, but given that the date was the 21st of December, the one the crowd was waiting for was "How To Make Gravy", which includes a line about it being the 21st of December. It’s Paul’s Christmas song. The way he tells the story of how he wrote it is interesting.
Apparently he was doing a song for a Christmas charity album. He was going to do a traditional song, but someone else had bagsied it. So he wrote his own. When he was finished, he rang up the organiser.
"I’ve got this song for the Christmas album. But it’s got no chorus and it’s about a bloke in jail."
"I think I’d better come over and hear it."
And they let him do it.
Then it was time for the main act: the soon-retiring Weddings Parties Anything. They came on, and for the first thirty seconds or so everyone was quiet as they started with a slow bit of music. Suddenly they burst into action, and so did the crowd. We found ourselves in the middle of a hot and sweaty pub crowd, moshing, crowd surfing, singing along and jumping up and down and just generally having a geat time.
You have two choices in this situation: withdraw to a quieter part of the pub, or get into it. Well, Raoul disappeared somewhere into the background, but John and I got into it. By the time the night finished at 1am, we were worn out, sweaty, shoes thoroughly unshiny, and had enjoyed ourselves thoroughly.