Nina Lipscombe Art – ‘Witch’ Exhibition, Katoomba, March 2019

Image courtesy of Nina Lipscombe Art

Interview with Nina Lipscombe, Katoomba (NSW)

Arriving in the Blue Mountains for a few days at short notice, I consulted the font of all knowledge on what was going on in most regions (Facebook Events), and it turned up an exhibition in Katoomba called ‘Witch’ by local artist Nina Lipscombe.

The paranormal, mythological, and mystical aren’t things that normally pique my interest, but increasingly, I’ll have a look at subject matter outside of normal interests.

I’m glad I did.

‘Witch’ is an intriguing exploration of themes that may not exactly leap off the promo flyer or internet page. Speaking of our friend social media, a comment on the event page led to an exchange with the artist Nina Lipscombe, and a few days later, we were sitting in the leather-padded comfort of the guest lounge at the Carrington Hotel.

Bill Quinn: Just for my background, can you tell me a bit about how you came to be involved in art.

Nina Lipscombe: It’s an interesting story, because I didn’t do it very much in high school. I was doing theatre and television, but right after high school, I decided to dabble in it.

So I bought a kit from Hobby Lobby! It was Bill Alexander; he was the original happy painter. He’s the one that actually taught Bob Ross, with the happy clouds and the trees and everything else.

I bought this oil painting video, went to my garage, started painting, and I fell in love with it.

From then on, I started to make acrylics, water colours – mostly oils still – and it just kind of evolved from there.

I didn’t really get too involved with the arts scene in Tennessee at the time. But later in 2011, I moved to Argentina, and it kind of thrived from there.

I had exhibitions, I did workshops, I had private classes with really amazing teachers there, and I took off.

BQ: When I think about art around the world, Argentina definitely is on that list. I’m gonna say that the Tennessee art scene is not one that immediately springs to mind. What was that like?

NL: Yeah, you’re right about that! I’m not 100% sure; I never got highly involved with it. They do have some good art galleries, and really good art has come from Memphis. But the art scene there compared to Argentina and compared to here in the Blue Mountains is not quite as big.

Image courtesy of Nina Lipscombe Art

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Folk On The Road – 2019 Cobargo Folk Festival

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All images in this article by Bill Quinn

Folk On The Road

A highly irregular series reflecting on the wide, weird world of folk from the side of the stage

Back to Cobargo

Cobargo Folk Festival (CFF) in early March 2019 was a breath of fresh air for many who made their way to the beautiful green valleys and rolling hills just north of Bega, New South Wales. Not too far south of Narooma, and within a five iron of a heaven.

For this peripatetic scribe, it was a homecoming of sorts to the world of Australian folk festivals. A temporary one, as it transpired.

CFF came towards the end of a week or so in the Eurobodalla/Sapphire Coast region, just after the last member of my immediate family had left their home of almost twenty years in Bodalla, on an estate overlooking the quite stunning ranges of the Deua National Park.

But it was also a proper return to folk festivals after roughly five and a half years of continually wandering up and down the Australian east coast, from the deep south of New South Wales to the middling far north of Queensland.

(A handful of hours at Slacky Flat, Bulli in 2016 and 2019 doesn’t really count, does it?)

In those intervening years, the closest I’d come to our festival culture was random assorted gigs, and attendances, media, and volunteering/MC-ing at regional Queensland festivals in Cleveland, Stones Corner, and Boyne Island.

Though all events had minor folk elements, it was wonderful to be back among the campers, revellers, singers, musos, and so, so many familiar faces in a dedicated folk festival.

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Harry Manx – 2016 Australian Tour

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Image courtesy of Harry Manx

To tell the story of Harry Manx would take several lifetimes, and hopefully a progression of life-form hierarchies over those lives to tell the story, because the story is so mesmerising and complex that we would not be very present and in the moment of most of those lives, and that could put the telling of the tale at risk as we would not be making gradual and continuous improvement as…

Moving on…

Harry Manx performs at the 2012 National Folk Festival
Harry Manx performs at the 2012 National Folk Festival

Harry Manx has already begun his 2016 Australian tour which will take him from Sydney down to Victoria (where he is on stage tonight, Friday 23 September in Frankston) then around to Queensland, South Australia, Perth and up to Broome and Darwin, ending in the beautiful, lovely, gorgeous, I-may-be-a-little-hereditarily-biased New South Wales locales of Katoomba.

Ah, Katoomba. If there’s a more intimate, special venue than Clarendon Guest House, I want it stuffed, mounted, and hung above my fireplace – or I at least want an invite to your venue if it can go close to kicking the Clarendon into a cocked hat. Or any poultry millinery for that matter.

And finally wrapping it all up at Club Saffire in Merimbula.

So it’s a very eclectic path Harry treads, and look, I’d draw you a picture if I had a free hand, but imagine a much-twisted paper clip that’s been sitting on your desk all day on a slow Friday when you’ve been watching the clock since 9:36am – now you’re in the ballpark.

OR picture a moose that somehow wandered into your yard, found your sippin’ liquor in the shed, and is now making a bedraggled, loquacious, and somewhat winding stagger back to the forest by a circuitous route, two-thirds of it sideways.

You got it! Continue reading

[VIDEO] The Great Overheard Productions Train Tomfoolery Continues: Tuesday Updates, September 2016

 

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Overheard Productions and the Queensland Police Service: trying to get our ducks in a row

This ongoing police procedural drama/situation comedy is sponsored by the makers of the Matt Barker Radio interview on Overheard Productions: 

https://overheardproductions.com/2016/09/12/audio-interview-with-matt-barker-radio-podcasts-and-digital-radio/

I’ve said it before and will keep saying it: you just cannot make this shit up!

Three days after the Friday night police incident where a whole passenger train was detained for ten minutes while members of the QPS swarmed around me at the Lota train station, and after many phone calls, I’m still in the dark.

I’ll give you the Wednesday updates later, but for now, here is where Ankerss Ahrr-Whey tracks down a neighbour of mine to find out what the heck is going on.

Garry briefs us for a short while until his meal starts to go cold and his accent ships off from north England to…. we’re not quite sure where.

And for those of you who saw the teaser, you know want some more of this:

(A little tip for amateur video-ers, Youtubers: if you’re recording a live performance, be sure to include even just a little of the applause at the end. Otherwise, it’s a bit like a door slamming shut in your face when you stop talking with a friend. I was going to go with a butt cheeks analogy; aren’t you glad I didn’t?)

And now that we’ve gone there, let’s go here. Muggins is there, front and centre at about 0:10. A time of my life when song just took me somewhere I’d never been before.

ENDS hopefully this century…

Police Halt Overheard Productions For 48 Hours: Saturday Updates, September 2016

On Friday 9 September 2016, at approximately 23:40, officers of the Queensland Flying Peleton Brigade boarded the train to Cleveland (which had been held at Lota station) and removed Bill Quinn.

Mr Quinn is current head of logistics for the Overheard Group, including big cheese of Overheard Productions and Tawp Dawg at Bill The Housesitter.

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Mr Quinn was spotted later that night in the comfy chair at #36.

Right now he’s talking Braille, so please check back at 11pm on Sunday 11 September (London time), 8am Monday 12 September (Brisbane time) or call +61-555-000-000 (for a good time).

 

Bill Quinn
Overheard Productions
Capalaba, Redlands Council District, Queensland, Australia

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Michael Johnathon talks about the Woodsongs Front Porch Association and Gathering, August 2016

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Image courtesy of the Woodsongs Front Porch Association

The Woodsongs Front Porch Association (WFPA) is an amazingly and elegantly simple creature.

Based in Lexington, Kentucky and the brain child of Michael Johnathon, singer-songwriter, performer, producer, tour organiser, and 36 other roles, it’s spreading its tendrils across the USA and the world.

I’ll not steal any WFPA thunder by block copying and pasting here, but please follow the links and your rewards shall be many and bountiful.

The Cliff Notes, as MJ would say: it’s a cheap-as-chips member association which opens everyone up to a world of musical information, resources and networking, opens its arms, and invites the world of art and artists in to share, share, share.

On Friday 23 and Saturday 24 September 2016, the WFPA is holding its second annual Gathering in Shaker Village, Pleasant Hill, Kentucky – see main picture for all the salient details of the ‘wheres’ and ‘whens’.

Full details at www.songfarmers.org

It’s the ‘how much’ that’s the real news story here. And it’s a good, good news story at a time when good news stories are pretty gosh-darned thin on the ground.

Choose your preference: click on a hyperlink or click on the audio file link below, and listen in as Michael explains WFPA and the Gathering in his signature succinct, clear, resonantly-voiced vocal stylings (even over the tech equivalent of two cans and a 9063 mile piece of string).

*** Audio file will be removed by the end of March 2020 ***

*** Audio file will be removed by the end of March 2020 ***

Some basic notes for the interview… which I never referred to.

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Talk With Everyone – Even With Limited Head Space, November 2015

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Sitting like The So Not Littlest Hobo on Oxford Street, writing a story about an indie band.

This is Limited Head Space.

It’s fairly descriptive of how I feel right now!

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Image courtesy of Limited Head Space

Dashing up Oxford Street tonight to get to the BWS bottle shop by 9.55pm, because NSW liquor licensing doth sayeth thou shalt not serve takeaway alcohol one second after 10pm.

Google Maps said I had 3.2kms to cover in 45mins. Yeah, try roughly a kilometre. I stopped and asked a Security dude outside The Paddington Inn at about 9.27pm how far it was, and he said, about 100 metres!

And it was at Paddo BWS that I met Denis serving behind the counter, and he told me about his band, Limited Head Space.

And he wrote the band name down on the back of a docket.

Right now, Denis and his mate, also in the band, have just shut up shop. It’s 10pm and the grille went down at 9.55pm. NSW Liquor Licensing laws: thou shalt not vend takeaway alcohol after 9.55pm. I may have mentioned that before.

BWS are all over this like a cheap suit. I have been that guy who stormed away at 9.56pm, stormed back at 9.57pm, then fumed off into the night before the sweep hand had time for another full revolution.

BWS St Leonard’s, April 2014. Ah yes, I remember it well.

The original text above cut out because in the 36 minutes that I was sat there outside Astton Shoes and some indie Bed, Bath and Table shop, my browser had fallen over nine times.

Ten times. I’m going to embed their video then make this thing pretty later.

Eleven times. Farouk!

My wine 🍷 is getting warm!

Bill Quinn with “Neville” the Labrador
Oxford Street, Paddington
22:22 Saturday 21 November 2015

12 times!

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Check the water and oil! Lime and Steel on the road, October 2015

Image courtesy of Lime And Steel
Image courtesy of Lime And Steel

A shorter version of this article appeared on Timber and Steel on 14 September 2015.
This article appeared in full in the September edition of Trad and Now magazine.

To tell the full tale of this article would be to sing you a mournful ballad of disappearing Facebook event shares and a 12 minute interview, ambitiously recorded on a Nokia dumb-phone so old it needs hand-cranking.

Suffice to say that the audio of that chat between the artist (in Katoomba, NSW) and the interviewer (in Nelson Bay, NSW) is available now on eBay on a listing called ‘Marcel Marceau’s Greatest Hits’.

Technology is a fickle mistress, sharing pain and pleasure in equal measure, and my thanks to Paddy Connor from Lime and Steel for his assistance and good humour.

Blue Mountains-based folk band Lime and Steel have hit the road, making sacrificial offerings to the gods of automobile reliability and ‘keepgoingability’ from Melbourne’s CBD up the east coast to Brisbane (with a stop-off in the nation’s capital).

Lime and Steel began as a rootsy folk duo of Paddy Connor and Ben Scott, but over the years their composition has changed, and indeed, their compositions have changed. Continue reading

Interview: Ann Vriend (Canada) 2015 Australian Tour, January 2015

Image courtesy of Ann Vriend
Image courtesy of Ann Vriend. Photo by Brad Gibbons.

Ann Vriend is always a popular visitor to Australia at about this time every year.

The contrasts between frozen Alberta, Canada and sizzling Australia are rarely more stark than in January/February. So Ann can hopefully leave the tissues and cough syrup behind, and look forward to sandy beaches, dazzling coral reefs, and the inside of a string of popular Australian venues on her ‘For The People In The Mean Time’ tour.

On an afternoon when frying eggs on the pavement in rural Queensland was definitely an option, Bill Quinn spoke with Ann from her sick bed in Edmonton, as she was putting the final touches on her tour, and readying to hop on a plane the following week.

It was a baking hot day in Queensland’s Sunshine Coast hinterland, and the only place to get a half-decent phone signal was from the front deck at Maleny Hotel, battling the sound spill from rumbling trucks and other traffic on the main road through town.

*** Audio file will be removed be the end of March 2020 ***

*** Audio file will be removed be the end of March 2020 ***

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Image courtesy of Ann Vriend

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The Woodford Files 2014-15: Goodbye, Farewell and Amen (for 347 days…), January 2015

Woven Cloud. Image courtesy of Woodford Folk Festival.
Woven Cloud. Image courtesy of Woodford Folk Festival.

“I always judge a festival by its program. If a festival can’t attract big name acts, it’s not much good and I’m not much interested.”

I listened to my host as they spelt out their assessment criteria of whether a festival is deserving of attention.

Without much in the way of any comment from me. Certainly no critique or counterpoint.

I’f I’m living temporarily under someone else’s roof, I listen and nod a lot. Even if I have strong opinions to the contrary, it usually takes a team of wild horses to extract them.

Here’s a case in point of initially ignoring the program before embarking: The 2014-15 Woodford Folk Festival. Continue reading