Monday, February 1, 2010

Robert Forster: An Australian musician with interesting things to say

"There are people who love the moon. Its milky warmth and its brilliant gloom
They hate the day it's just too rough
They go in the morning when they've had enough
David wrote in his good-bye note"It's all different now"
And it is there's much I'll miss as I go on, as I move on
Robert Forster, From Ghost Town, The Evangelist
Australian musician and writer Robert Forster is one of the more interesting and thoughtful Australian musicians around and his music and his writings speak to important and significant issues. His 2008 CD The Evangelist was a rich collection of songs, shaped by the death of Grant McLennan, his long time Go Betweens collaborator. Songs like It Aint Easy and Ghost Town are deeply moving and affecting tributes to his friend and musical collaborator.

Forster writes an intelligent music review each month in the Australian magazine The Monthly and for me he is one of the most thoughtful writers on contemporary music. His writings have been collected in his book the 10 Rules of Rock and Roll.

Forster is coming to Perth to play during the Festival of Perth and I was interested to read his thoughts in a section of the West Australian's Saturday magazine where well known people are asked about things that are Good and things that are Bad. Usually what you get is puerile and superficial rubbish. Robert Forster manages to be interesting, insightful, profound and funny. Here are some of his comments
"Everything you need to know about life is in books. I like the feel of books, I like the idea of books, I like people who read books"

"Mornings are all about promise and possibility. There can be sadness in afternoons and evenings"

"The emphasis on sport and the space it gets in Australia is disturbing, we are drenched in it"

'The way alcohol is marketed towards a younger generation is just hideous. The alcohol industry pumps people full of alcohol and take little responsibility for the consequences"

"When you pass the mirror at 4 am and you've been sleeping for 6 hours you get up, go to toilet and pass the mirror and go "Oh my god. I look ugly. I look 20 years older than I am"

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