Tamam Shud History
Maureen Davidson and
Dannie “The Drummer” Davidson
Dannie The Early
Let me introduce myself I am Dannie Davidson the
Original Drummer of Taman Shud, who played on Evolution,
The Goolutionites and The Real People Albums.
Many people over the years have asked me to put
down the History, so I put down the raw music and surfing facts
and Maureen coloured the scene in and laid it down, so here goes,
in cut common time, ah 1 2 ah 1234.
Dannies', story begins in Newcastle NSW Australia
a working class town, a Novocastrian at heart. I was born to Bart
and Shirley. I then moved to Merton Hall Kings Cross at around 3yr
old, attended Darlinghurst Public School.
Believe it or not in the 50’s there were
lots of families in the Cross and our back lane Nimrod St was full
of kids playing handball, hop scotch, marbles and cubby houses.
There were very few cars and we all had billy carts. I recall racing
trams down William St starting in Darlinghurst Rd at Hoods stationary
spinning around the corner and chasing them nearly all the way to
the Australian Museum then having to pull the cart all the way back
up William St to the Cross then race down Premier lane past the
old ABC paddock where the Leopard Gang hung out with their slug
guns trying to shoot at us flying by in Tortoise 2.
I lived in Victoria St opposite the Fire Station
you could say right in the middle of the Cross. Saturday afternoons
at The Kings Cross Theater (later turned into Surf City) or the
Darlinghurst Odeon (later to become the Mandala Theater). It wasn’t
the sleazy place then like it is now. The Cross was full of Artists,
Musicians, Actors, Bongos, Cardsharps and of course Gangsters, but
over all Bohemian and Avant-garde. The Cross was full of Artistic
free expression a far cry to what it is now, with all this going
on still very safe for the likes of the local kids.
School band with Dannie Davidson
Mum and Tom seemed to know everyone, Rod Taylor
(actor) nursed me on his knee, Jimmy Caruthers (Australian
World Bantam Weight Boxing Champion) was a family friend and from
there to boxing lesson with him at Woolloomooloo Police Boys Club,
and trying to wear his Giant World Champion Belt, Jimmy had a big
heart for the local kids, not only did he have a knock out punch
he could make a good drop of pineapple crush. I was into physical
activities, loved swimming, I used take a short penny tram ride
to Redleaf Pool Double Bay, with mates Ian and Sidney, playing handball
and doing laps around the pool with “The Whale” who
was the legendary Beach Inspector at Bondi.
In the Winter I played Rugby League with the school
and weekends with South Sydney Juniors.
Mum had a job with Lee Gordon the famous
US Promoter and we used to always get front row seats at The Sydney
Stadium Ruscutters Bay. I saw Johnny Ray, Betty Hutton,
Sal Mineo, Tab Hunter, Bud Abbott, Lou
Costello, Spike Jones, Frankie Lane and number
1 drummer Buddy Rich; he did this roll with matches on
a match box with his shadow cast over the wall of the stadium unreal,
Buddy made a big impression on me. I saw Bill Haley and
his Comets at the Stadium, what a blast and Johnny
O’Keefe (Catfish on drums) who was just as exciting,
I was now hooked on this new Rock and Roll Music.
There was Music all around, Mum loved Music and
was a pretty good Jazz Singer. Mum used to take me to the Tivoli
Theater afternoons session, and loved sitting above the Pit Drummer
with all his Drums, Glockenspiels, Vibraphones, Bells, Shakers,
Gongs and Tambourines. I was memorized by this fabulous Musician
whose name I don’t know, but later became friends with a similar
fabulous Musician Noel Gilmore, that reminded me of the
Mum loved Jazz so we used to go to this little
basement coffee lounge called The El Rocco in Brougham St Kings
Cross, I was around 12yr old. Bebop Jazz played by these wonderful
inspiring young Musicians Judy Bailey, Dick DeGrey, Errol Buddle,
Col Nolen, (it was a privilege to at last do some gigs with Col
this year just 50yrs later) John Sangester Drummer(who became a
friend and an inspiration doing plenty of concerts and turns together,
he once told me he thought I played good drums and always greeted
me as the fabulous Dannie Davidson Ha) we learnt not to sit to close
to John when he was drumming as he would hit anything, coffee cups,
walls, seats he was hilarious, he also played great Vibraphone.
The Drummer that I loved was Lenny Young, he’d sit behind
his little set of Ludwig’s, eyes closed wearing his ivory
league shirt button up, playing this wonderful Bebop Freeform Jazz,(what
Newcastle Junior High 1960
I was in first year at Paddo High School. My childhood
friend Ian McIntosh who was 4yrs older than me and right into drums
and vibes, he started to show me how to play Bongos which were all
the go with the Beatniks and their large straw hats. I then moved
on to sticks doing rudiments, rhythms and syncopation. Ian had a
good technique; he was tutored by the great Allen Geedies the Drummer
of Graham Bell All-Stars and was passing it onto me, thanks mate.
I moved back to Cooks Hill Newcastle when I was
14 attending Junior High and joining Newcastle Surf Life Saving
Club and starting a new life playing drums in the School Band. There
was 1 drum, 1 Guitar and heaps of piano accordions (it took me years
to get over them). I joined the Wickham Police Boys Club Brass Band
not on drums but Tuba as they had Snare and Bass Drummers. I leaned
to play Seventy Six Trombones then left, Meanwhile still chasing
the physical side of life I got back into swimming representing
Junior High at the State Titles 800 meters long distance at North
Sydney Olympic Pool, I came last, but my good friend Jeff Dawson
cleaned up. Jeff was the best swimmer of his day, when he was still
a junior he took out the Junior and Senior Australian Surf Life
Saving Titles a real legend, when we had our Sunday morning Club
Swimming Jeff would give us out to the buoy start and by the time
we got back to the beach he would be having a shower “unreal”
along with another good mate Jeff “spy” Sargent. I joined
South Newcastle Junior Rugby League playing with Keith Smith, Dave
Morley, John “Sniffles” Sneddon and Les Feighan.
I started a Boilermaking apprenticeship, but all
I wanted to do was be a Drummer, I spent my spare time listening
to other Drummers. I have this great Jazz LP, Pete Fountain presents
Drummer Jack Spearling and Take Five Dave Brubeck with Joe Morello
on drums and discovered Gene Krupa, Louis Bellson, Elvin Jones,
Roy Hayes, Tony Meehan, Art Blakey, Shelly Manne, so many great
individual styles all swinging. All these players influenced me.
I did my first TV appearance 1962, Howard on Piano and Myself on
Drums, we did “The Baby Elephant Walk” live on NBN 3
Saturday afternoon Teen Show. I had a drum lesson with Al Vincer
he was fantastic Musician played Drums, Violin and Vibs a local
Now we come to the beginning of a fantastic Musical
ride, starting with the The Strangers, The
4 Strangers, The Sunsets and Taman
Shud with plenty of surfboard riding along the way.
I’m writing this history to reclaim my musical
identity and credits that belong to me as well as Zack. I’m
going to set the record straight.
It started in late 1962 when Keith
Smith my school friend told John Murray,
who lived opposite him in Laman St Cooks Hill, that the kid making
all those drum noises was me. John has broken his arm and was looking
for a Drummer to take his place with Lindsay Bjerre
and Alex “Zack” Zytnik. Lindsay
and Zack turned up at my Grandmother’s house and asked if
I would come around to the “Furries” and have a play,
We got on really well but we needed a Bass player,
I told Lindsay and Zack about a Bass player who I worked with, Eric
Connell (we were apprentices together). Eric said yes so I
arranged for a get together at John’s the “Furries”
Murray’s place and it was a blast, and from that the band
was formed. I recall our first song was “The Savage”
by The Shadows. We name the band “The
Our first singer was John Noble, John
didn’t stay long as he was snapped up by a top local band
“The Cannon Balls” who had a great
drummer Bryan Bronner, we backed John on later show. I
am not sure how we came across Paul “Square” Webber,
he jumped in as a singer for a short while, like most young bands
at the time we were doing Cliff and The Shadows
and Instrumental Music by The Ventures, Duane
Eddy, The Astronauts and surfing instrumentals
such as Pipeline.
Zack right from start had no trouble playing all
these tunes, to be quite honest if it wasn’t for Zack there
wouldn’t have been a band.
The Band started hanging out together, surfboard
riding was starting to play a large part in our lives, and we were
all good mates about to start this wonderful journey through our
youth of Music and Surfing. In the beginning we started doing a
few gigs at Church and Community Halls and at this stage we were
an instrumental band.
Our first publicized gig was at The Fiesta Room
corner of Hunter and Newcomen St Newcastle, 21/04/1963. At these
Fiesta gigs we were backing guest singers such as Mike Rounce,
Frances McAlister, Gillian Baird and the shows
were compared by John Kodas who doubled as a Hypnotist.
Around May of 63 Maurie Hunt became our Manager. His Father
Jim Hunt was a Drummer leading his own 16 piece Orchestra
“The Jim Hunt Hit Paraders”. Jim
Hunt ran Friday nights at “The Palais” in Hunter
St and Saturday’s at Maitland Town Hall. When Jim wasn’t
feeling well I used to do our set and put on Jim’s coat and
take his place on the drums in his Orchestra, I was just seventeen.
At this time Newcastle had a healthy live music
scene, bands in every Club, Pub, Town Halls, school dances and Community
Halls, the town was a buzz, plenty of musicians to learn from, everyone
wanted live music, not like today, when DJ Twiddle with our records
and call themselves musician's what a joke.
Gary Johns joined as our singer and was
a friend of Maurie. Jim started to organise “Stomp Dances”
featuring the band with the help of Maurie and within months we
were becoming Newcastle’s Top Band.
Maureen Davidson and Reg
Alex “Zack” Zytnik
Around this time we became part of the surfboard
riding community. With Jimmy Newburn’s dad encouragement,
Jimmy, Robbie Woods and Ross Bailey to form the Mereweather Surfboard
Club along with Mick Eggleston, Ross “Rammer” Ramsay,
Zot, Phil Winney, Don “Brains” Sinclair, Cricket Johnston,
Noel Jackson, Pongo Nixon, Mick Bickley, Wayne Hogg, Wally Walton,
Dennis Bath as well as the Band. All these characters were trend
The Strangers played at the Clubs
first couple of presentation nights and they used to brag they were
only Board Club with its own Band, nice one. One of the top surfers
in the Club Ross “Dewey Webber” Bailey, nicked named
after the top US surfer Dewey Webber. Ross and I became good mates.
I’d been using this little old Pearl kit with no floor tom
so I decided to order a real drum kit, a Ludwig with a super sensitive
brass and chrome snare with Zildjian cymbals. I waited 3 months
for them to arrive from America to Suttons in Newcastle, couldn’t
wait to get them home. Ross used to ferry me around to the gigs
in his V8 Ford Customline.
Late 1963 Reg Mason, the manager of Rayford’s
Record Shop in Hunter Street had met Lindsay and a meeting was teed
up at my place in Cooks Hill. Reg became our manager, we looked
up to Reg and he was our own Brian Epstein (we never looked back).
Through Reg we meet Tom Delany a 2HD radio
announcer who was putting on Stomps (surf dances). Reg Mason
really set the scene for us, booking the band on all the Newcastle
Shows such as Johnny O’Keefe show, Col Joy
spectacular (doing our own set plus backing The BeeGee’s),
US legend Marty Robbins, 50/50 Shows at the Century
Theatre Broadmeadow and the Mattara Festival.
Reg arranged our first recording attempt, an instrumental
which we wrote called Surf Panic, mainly written by Zack who had
been studying classical guitar for a year or so and could read a
little music. Eric had played trumpet and also read music, I had
lessons with Ian and had a good grounding in drum rudiments, reading
and rhythms. Lindsay was the least competent on his instrument and
as far as I remember never read music and still doesn’t. Zack
said he used to take Lindsay to guitar lessons at Wallsend by doubling
him on his bike, it was miles away (what an effort). It was Zack
and Eric that worked out chords showing him what to play, Lindsay
had natural rhythm so it all worked out just fine.
The 4 Strangers
Our next attempt was two more instrumentals The
Rip/Pearl Diver. Zack with the help of his mum (who was a great
musician, she played a number of instruments) wrote the melody line.
I played a large part in the rhythm and arrangements with Eric coming
up with his bass lines and Lindsay with his rhythm guitar, it was
all so instinctive. This was the start of all of us becoming co-writers.
Because of the Melbourne band The Strangers we
changed our name to The 4 Strangers. Gary Johns
was not seen as part of the band and wasn’t involved with
all this stuff.
Gary Johns and the Strangers
Reg organized The Rip/Pearl Diver, our first 45
record release, thru Astor 2/4/64. Reg did the deal through Hilary
Melick (who always stamped his documents with “The Arab Lawrence
of Arabia”). I think we were the first NSW band to be signed
up to Astor a Melbourne recording company and as far as we know
the first Newcastle band to release a record through a major record
company in our era.
Even though Zack and his Mum were the main composers
Lindsay put his name on it, a sign of things to come. 2UW radio
station in Sydney used the Rip for years to introduce its surf report.
The record sold well in Newcastle out selling The Beatles
Reg moved into gear arranging concerts publicity,
talking us up to everybody’s magazine editor Maggie Makeig.
Tom Delany and 2HD Beach Shuffle at Nobbys beach was attended by
huge crowds featuring Ray Brown and The
Whispers (Ray was a mate of mine and probably the most
overlooked artist in Australia, something like 7 No 1 hits in a
row. In the 70’s I played in his band Arunta) plus Max
Merritt and the Meteors, The Missing Links
and a local band The Sky lighters Combo and us.
We went over big and got mobbed when we got off stage, we were having
our own Beatle mania “ha”. Maggie was so impressed by
the band at The Shuffle, Everybody’s magazine called for a
petition to get a new recording contract for us, the magazine received
Judy Stone and the Strangers
Dannie, Zack, Eric and Lindsay
The 4 Strangers and Gary Johns singing
Reg got us a residency at the Orana Hotel Blacksmiths
(12/7/64) Friday Saturday and Sunday. It was a fabulous pub, Eileen
Healy was a top publican, Most of Newcastle were there at the weekend
and the locals made us their own and still do. It was a great opportunity
for the band we became a tight outfit and it was a fun time. At
this time we all started to do vocals with Lindsay on main vocal,
Gary was need less and less so Gary moved on. I thought Gary was
a great singer and had a terrific stage presence.
While doing the gig at the Orana in walked Maureen
(Mo) the love of my life, my muse, it was love at first sight, Maureen
just bowled me over I nearly fell off my drum stool, so hip, way
ahead of her time, my inspiration, a classy Sheila.
With 14,000 signatures in hand Reg got us a recording
contract with Festival. We came up with an original song, Sad and
Lonely. Lindsay wrote most of the lyrics and we all put the music
to it, as with everything we did a joint effort. The B side was
a cover by The Hollies, You’ll be mine.
We started a Residency at The Belmont Hotel, Friday
Saturday and Sunday on the 4/6/65, we were now a comfortable Quartet,
the place was packed. The owners Mr and Mrs. Richardson were great
to work for, giving us time out to do concert’s etc.
Reg had arranged a spot for the band on The Under
21 Gala Night of Stars at the Sydney Stadium 7/7/65. This was a
massive event and all proceeding going to Legacy. All the top acts
were on the bill, Johnny O’Keefe, Billy
Thorpe and The Aztecs, The Easybeats,
Little Pattie, The Atlantics and
Reg was now moving us into Sydney and Surf City
with the John Harrigan Agency. We did a gig at Long Johns at the
Cross, Reg reminded me that management still owe us the 40 pound
fee. That night Col Joye lent us his little vocal PA, Col came in
and set it for us and away we went. Thanks Col.
We were right into surfing, The Beatles,
Beach Boys and the Stones so it
was time for a name change. Late 65 2HD held a competition to rename
us, The Sunsets was the winner.
Under Reg’s management it was time to move
to Sydney. We arrived at Fiztroy St Surry Hills with gigs in hand,
Star Club, Surf City, Hawaiian Eye suburban town hall dances plus
surf clubs. Next stop Coogee, a band house joined the Coogee surfboard
club, more surfing mates and band supporters, Spider, Sam LJ, Nuggets,
Mick, The Earl, Jim, Les, Col, Charlie, Reggie Young, Brian Waite,
and Robbie Harris (Robbie later did the beaut art work on our band
Kahvas Jute LP cover and my bass drum skin also
Ray Brown’s LP cover). Started doing Sunday nights at Clovely
surf club and the odd night at Bronte surf club. The Sunsets were
adopted by the eastern suburbs surfing community from Bondi to Maroubra.
Life was good as The Sunsets.
We went on a John Harrigan Surf City tour with
Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs (Johnny Dick was Thorpe’s
drummer, one of the best stick man around), taking in Lismore and
Murwillumbah with a 1 mth gig in Coolangatta and the Gold Coast
joining up with Max Merritt and The Meteors, John
Rowles and surfing.
Another 45 single release with Festival, Bye Bye
Goodbye/It’s The End written by us, then another 45 When I
Found You(ours)/Don’t Get Around Much Anymore an Ellington
composition, I played a big part in the rhythm and arrangement.
No1 DJ 2UW’s Ward “Pally” Austin
dug The Sunsets, he used the band to open his nightspot
Ward Austin Jungle in York St City playing most Thursdays and Saturdays.
Morna Point 1969
Morna Point 1969 with Paul Witzigs Silver Teardrop Surfboard
Morna Point 1969
Reg was a business friend of Paul Witzig, Reg screened
his Surf movies in Newcastle Reg helped him out quite a lot. He
introduced the band to Paul and from there we started to create
theme music and background music for his great surf movies. 1966
Life In The Sun/Windansea (famous boardclub) instrumentals written
mostly by Zack and our only chat success No18 15/3/66: Hot Generation/This
Is What It’s All About and later as Tamam Shud
The Sunsets started to do TV shows
such as Saturday Date, Billy Thorpe’s “It’s all
Happening and a special on Normie Rowe for NBN3 featuring Ray
Brown and The Whispers, April Byron, Sandy
Edmonds also with the ABC “Be My Guest featuring Jackie
Paul’s “Life In The Sun”
surf film was released to a great reception. Our single in the charts
“Theme from A Life In The Sun”, good show all way round.
Our next single was “Loves Face/I Want Love.
Coogee surfboard member Bill “fossdick” Harrower
played flute on Loves Face. Bill went on to have a great professional
career, he could wail and surf.
Around this time Max Merritt asked me to fill for
Bruno “in the pocket” Laurence at the Hawaiian
Eye for a week, It was a fabulous experience, Billy Christian
bass, Pete Williams guitar and of course Max what a legend.
In May of 67 we accepted a 3 month residency on the Gold Coast at
Digby’s nightspot owned by Digby Wolfe a local TV personality
who went on to produce TV show “Laugh In” in America.
Dannie, Zack and Maureen
The 4 Strangers
Ward Pallys' Jungle
We shared a house on Broadbeach and had a ball,
lots of surfing and playing every night to GI’s on leave from
A new era was about to begin, opposition to the
Vietnam War, Height Asbury, shorter Surfboards. Paul’s movie
“Hot Generation” came out
around this time featuring Midge Farrelly, Nat Young
(we wrote a song about him “Animal”), Peter Drouyn,
Bob McTavish (famous surf innovator and board shaper) Robert
Conneeley, Rodney Sumpter, Ted Spencer, Keith
Paul, Russell Hughes, Bobby Brown and good
friend Kevin “The Head” Brennan, both Bobby
and Kevin who were innovative surfers died in tragic circumstances,
a great loss to Australian surfing. A great film but our single
Hot Generation didn’t do so well, no air play, typical, Australian
original music was very rarely supported by the Radio stations.
I thought it was a top record.
Arriving back in Sydney Sept 67 with a new musical
direction, Lindsay and Zack moved to Manly, Eric, Maureen and I
backed to Coogee. We did a gig at the Bronte Charles Hotel doing
all this new material, West Coast sound, Jefferson Airplane,
Love, Paul Butterfield, Credence
Clearwater and the Doors, the crowd loved the new sound
and direction even though we put our slant to it.
Eric had expressed to me in Qld that he was not
happy and was thinking of a career change, it was shock when he
left, a big loss as drummers love great bass players. Eric was one
of the best, we were a tight unit. Eric’s contribution paved
the way for Tamam Shud. Eric ended up a principle
of a College. Eric has sadly passed on.
With a new direction and material we became Tamam
Shud late 67.
Lindsay had met this surfie guy Peter Barron
who mucked around on bass but had this beach image but was strictly
4 notes to the bar. Zack and I we not impressed as we had to work
a lot harder to compensate for his lack of skills as a musician
and he really didn’t get any better. I missed Eric. The positive
was Lindsay had become an excellent Rhythm player (although Lindsay
couldn’t and still can’t play a scale, melody or solo
on guitar). Peter being a weak bass player, Zack and I were able
to blow our hearts out. My drumming became more expressive and dynamic,
giving me more freedom for the bass drum to punch out syncopated
patterns, in some strange we made it all work out.
The Shud moved into the emerging underground clubs,
10 Cunningham St and Vibes. We did this gig at Maryland’s
dance and DJ Aussie legend Donnie Sutherland (who in my opinion
did more than anyone else to expose Aussie talent) tipped us as
the band to watch. We played at the 1st Underground Lightshow Concerts
(UBU and LSD Fogg at Paddo Town Hall and other venues.
1968 we recorded some music in a lounge room at
Whale Beach for Bob Evens surf film called “The
Way We Like It”. Our reputation was growing
I traded in my Ludwig kit for a Champagne pink Rodgers Londoner
5 piece with 20 inch bass drum. As soon as I sat behind it I loved
the feel of a smaller bass drum, it had a rough stony coating on
the inside which gave it plenty of volume, the size lowered the
toms allowing me to get around the kit with more ease, at this time
I was practicing up to 4 hrs a day, my physical childhood certainly
came into play.
Paul Witzig contacted us to do the total music
score for his latest movie “Evolution”.
Just before we started on the soundtrack we had special friend Kevin
Platt who would inspire and assist us to write some of the songs
for the movie and LP. We all became co-writers. Kevin was great
with lyrics and had a lovely soul. He later passed away, to early
For the soundtrack on the movie we brought in Michael
Carlos (keyboards and Richard Lockwood (reeds) from
Tully (they weren’t on the Evolution LP or
Except for a few songs, 95% of the music was improvised.
The movie was projected on a screen set up at Unisound Studios at
Pyrmont, we just played along with the movie dropping in the songs
here and there. The Shud was to repeat this in live showings of
the movie at the Union (Footbridge) Theater at Sydney University.
I believe this hadn’t been done since the silent movies. It
was a great experience playing in the pit along with movie, a sell-out.
Another adventure, another first. Zack and I came into our own,
(making the music suit the surfers riding waves and their antics,
the music was the narrative) improvising all the way with very little
vocals. “This What We Were All About” (sic).
Tamam Shud Concert
Tamam Shud Concert
Evolution LP Deal
The commercial deal with Paul in 68 was that if
The Shud did the music for his Evolution
movie, Taman Shud would own the recording of the
Evolution LP as payment. The LP plus cover artwork and photos was
given to the 4 of us, in other words I own 25% of the artistic and
copyright license of this LP. As we weren’t commercial enough
for the major Record Company’s this was one way we would get
an LP. In exchange Paul could screen his movie without payment of
royalties. Win win for all, as agreed Paul got the music for his
movie with no strings attached and we got the ownership of the recording
of the Evolution LP.
The album was recorded at Unisound in Pymont we
treated it as a live show being recorded, it took 2 ½ hrs,
vocals and band together no overdubbing except for the train at
the start and the footsteps and door closing at the end.
The Movie and LP release in April 69 was a great
The LP sold out in weeks, 10,000. Back then 10,000
sales was a gold LP.
We also believe this was the first Australian
Original Rock Album. We won The CORE Awards 1969 best LP “Evolution”.
The band was 7 years in the making and it was full
Our 1st trip to Melbourne was a big success, doing
a showcase industry gig at Burties with a young Molly Meldrum
and reporters of the Melbourne Music Press. Making friends and doing
gigs with The Chain “Pig” Morgan (piano) Big
Goose (bass) Little Goose (drums), along with The
Masters Apprentices with Jim Keys, Zoot
with Rick Springfield (guitar) Darrell Cotton
(vocals), Company Cain, and Spectrum.
We had a ball.
Back in Sydney sharing the stage with Jeff
St John and the Copperwine (Harry Brus bass),
The Questions with Doug Parkinson later
as In Focus with one of my favorite bass players
Duncan McGuire, family friend Reggie Young’s
Turkish Electric Green Band, Heart &
Soul, Flying Circus with mate Warren
Ward on bass, The Nutwood Rug Band with Scott
Maxey one of my favorite bass players. All these bands had their
own great sound, the town had a thriving musical environment.
Derek Fairbrass and his lovely wife Inger
came into our life.Maureen was pushing me to look for drum lessons,
Derek was a top drummer from England, he was the drummer for the
Don Lane show TCN 9. I loved the way he played, a good reader, his
bebop jazz drumming was unreal. I started weekly drum lessons and
he opened up a whole new perspective on drums (later I was on the
teaching staff at Derek and Inger’s drum shop Drum City along
with Don Gibb and Tony in the 70’s) Derek was Hip with Dignity,
a great musician, a good bloke and family man. Between Jackie Dugan
another great English drummer and Derek they guided me to study
with Max Abrams London school of Percussion which I did later along
the track for 3 yrs, it was good advice.
Tamam Shud Concert
Noosa Heads Concert
Noosa Heads Concert
Max had a impressive career as a professional drummer
and was very influential in the English music scene, a top teacher,
tutoring many drummers, Stuart Copeland (The Police),
Simon Phillips, Tony Meehan (The Shadows)
with many American top drummers visiting his studios. Max guided
me into many top gigs in London, Savoy Hotel, Qualino’s Cabaret
Club Mayfair, Playboy Club, Miranda Club Soho, Ronnie Playdell Orchestra
playing a Summer Season in Cornwall, with intense studies and just
26yrs Max put me on the top rung in the London professional circuit,
also playing The London Palladium and touring American Bases with
an American quartet the IG’s and a fab tour with Charlie
Pride, I also had lots of fun on country western circuit.
Without the help and the understanding from Enzo
Plazzotta a renouned sculptor from Chelsea whom I worked for, gave
me time off for drum lessons, Enzo was a great bloke, with Maureens’
support we had fun and games, our London stay was enjoyable and
productive. Both Derek Fairbrass and Jackie Dugan died too early,
Max has also passed on I was lucky our paths crossed.
Gigs such as the East Coast Rock Festival, Domain
Open air shows, Mad Mel’s 2SM Happening under the Sydney Harbour
Bridge, Mandala Theatre (a hive of jamming free expression with
W.C. Fields movies thrown in for good measure) Whisky A Go Go, Here
Disco, Arts Factory, Hornsby Police Boys Club, Spinning Wheel Narrabeen
and the Millers Hotels. We also seemed to be doing at least 1 or
more gigs a week in a University, Collage or High School. The anti
war movement was gathering strength and The Shud played at the Moratorium
rallies on and off campus. All our gigs were on the East Coast.
We appeared on TV shows such as ABC GTK, Don Lane and early morning
ATN 7 breakfast show, we did Manic Depression (Hendricks) live 7am,
yes Zack could handle Jimmy Hendricks no trouble. I recall a big
show with Tamam Shud on equal billing with The
Beach Boys at Wonderland in Wollongong, we were well liked
in “The Gong” and My Place disco. Great working class
town like Newcastle and good surfing spots like The Farm.
Mad Mel Giant Stir
Mad Mel Giant Stir
Mad Mel Giant Stir
Back to Melbourne in November 69 we pre-recorded
about 5 TV shows, these shows were live not mimed, we couldn’t
mime most of our material as we never played the same way twice,
this was before Video clips even before cable TV. They were shown
in Sydney a week later.
Late 69 I married my sweetheart Maureen at Birchgrove,
walking up the isle to the music of The Turkish Green Electric
Band (Mick, Muffy and the boys) with Derek best man and
Inger matron of honor then around the corner to our backyard with
walls of silver foil and a big green silk parachute filtering down
sunlight we all had an aluminous psychedelic day. 44 yrs and still
in love with 6 tin lids in tow.
Maureen is a classy Shelia who knows the ropes
and economics of the music industry, chicken one week feathers the
next, a fore runner to managing our band Kahvas Jute, when the agent
insisted on the royalties of Jutes LP he threaten the band you’ll
never work in the town again. By the time Maureen finished with
the Agent he was dead in the water, he backed off after she had
put on a few big concerts at Paddo Town Hall to full houses people
hanging out the windows and all the Musio’s made plenty of
money it was back business as usual, Maureen won the day she’s
a champion a wharfies daughter born out of the ashes of the Hungry
Mile. Maureen paid the running costs of our band Kahvas
Jute and was the mover and shaker taking Jute to England in 71 minus
the bass player and picking up bass players in London (that’s
The sales of the Evolution LP had sold out and
the royalties had come in, it was than that we found out that Lindsay
had put all the songs in his name including Kevin Platt’s
contribution, not recognizing we were all co-writers. With Lindsay
receiving all the songwriting royalties and the band only receiving
performance royalties (a pittance), Lindsay had become a rip-off
merchant, this was a shock for Zack and myself especially as we
had always shared no matter what, always a band effort.
When Zack and I complained Lindsay told us he had
given half of his money from the royalties to a Music Magazine Editor
for personal publicity and a van for his gear. The personal publicity
did happen, the magazine was full of Lindsay and he’s ego
was growing week by week.
We had a blue about the royalties and it was
agreed all credits and royalties would be changed on the Evolution
LP including the next LP which was in the pipeline through Warner
All the music and lyrics were developed over a
period of time, lots of jamming and improvising at gigs etc, we
all contributed to the melodies and words. As a drummer I had a
major input in the beat, arrangement and added a few words and hummed
out some melodies. Zack’s major contribution was to the melodies
as Lindsay couldn’t string two notes together on his guitar
(still can’t) plus some words. Lindsay’s major contribution
was some good ideas and lyrics and a large part of them by Kevin
Platt. Peter had very little input mostly doing as directed but
the principle of the band was in for a penny in for a pound, share
and share alike.
Unbeknown to me Lindsay visited Zack in his East
Sydney terrace and told Zack he didn’t want to play with him
anymore, with that Zack resigned. This was a major blow. Lindsay
was starting to malfunction, believing his own publicity. This was
the beginning of the end. The rift couldn’t be mended I approached
Lindsay with all the goings on and I told him that the agreements
we made about equal credits and royalties for both albums that agreement
still stood and he agreed.
We needed a guitarist, I thought we would have
to have auditions but Lindsay had this young Tim Gaze already
lined up (how convenient). Tim was good for his age 16 yrs old,
fast but lacked the art of free form improvising and lacked the
soul. The music was missing Zack as his playing played a big part
in The Shud. Just before Zack left we were working on original music
for the next LP. I must say that Lindsay came up with the name for
this LP “The Goolutionites ( the polluters/ rip-offs, that’s
Lindsay) and The Real People (the anti polluters/the good people,
more of Lindsay’s bullshit), Zack wasn’t keen on the
concept so out you go. A lot of credit should go to Zack for this
LP he had already worked on a lot of the music especially Stand
in the Sunlight most of the lyrics by Kevin Platt. Tim had been
given the ball over the try line, lucky but undeserving. The LP
was a flop and our fans missed Zack, to me it wasn’t The Shud
anymore, we were becoming a pop band, the improvising was limited
When the LP came out Lindsay had once again put
the credits in his name and instead of a photo of the band there
was a full cover size image of Lindsay’s big head and little
pictures of the rest of the band members along the bottom. Lindsay
turned up at my place in Balmain with Peter in tow I fronted him
about the credits and royalties and he told me he only agreed to
keeps me in the band so I would play on the Album. I told him he
was Fucked in the head, a savage betrayal and I resigned. I told
him I would do the rest of the gigs that were on the books so as
not to let the agency down as I had done most of business with them
for the band.
Dannie Davidson at the
East Coast Rock Festival
The 4 Strangers Concert
Speak Easy London
That very afternoon we were booked to play at The
Back of the Moon Oceanic Millers Hotel Coogee, I turned up, the
other 3 didn’t so Reggie Young who was there called
up some of his Coogee band mates who I knew. Reggie
Young on guitar, Darrell Braithwaite “yes”
on vocals, Bruce Worrell on bass. We had a ripper gig with
management wanting to re book us, it was to remain a one off.
At this point as far as I was concerned I had
been ripped off again by Lindsay the biggest Goolutionite.
The promoter in Melbourne Colin Turner was informed
that I wasn’t in the band he rang me and pleaded that I do
the shows which he had invested in at The Dallas Brooks Hall, 22,23,24,25
June 1970 which I did, he was happy as he had a lot to lose, Colin
took me up to the snowfields playing Oklahoma all the way which
I loved, always willing to please a good promoter. The concerts
was the Evolution movie with us playing the soundtrack live, it
hit home Zack was gone, the vibe had gone the magic of the formula
was broken, Tamam Shud was over. Lindsay tried
to keep The Shud going but its been a dud outfit.
In my view it was a musical ride, for the love
of music, surfing and mateship, meeting in late 1962, flushed with
youth. Zack Lindsay, Eric and myself. Starting with The
Strangers, The 4 Strangers and The
Sunsets finishing with Tamam Shud. We
lost Eric in 67 in came Peter and the band made Australian musical
rock history recording the first Original Rock LP Evolution which
is owned lock stock and barrel by Zack Dannie Peter and Lindsay.
This was the legendary TAMAM SHUD.
Over the years I’ve had issues with Lindsay’s
dud Tamam Shud, after I read an interview on Tamam
Shud in Drum Media by Stuart Coupe in 94 I sent a letter
to Drum Media on my concerns of plagiarism. Stuart’s story
mentioned a lot of blokes from Kogarah turned up at a Shud gig at
Palm Beach with copies of the Evolution LP, the interview quoted
Lindsay stating “We autographed the albums for them on the
night”. This implies that Tim Gaze (guitar) and Nigel Macara
(drums) were signing their names over Zack and my artistic creation
on the Evolution LP. If this is the case the albums are now devalued.
Down the track Zack and I had to send a solicitors
letter to the promoters to A Long Way To The Top concerts demanding
that they remove the false advertising on their web site regarding
the Tamam Shud lineup. Lindsay and Peter are still
trying to pass off Tim and Nigel as original Shud members. Tim walks
in Zacks shadow, he will never make the grade and Nigel plays drum
like a bad amateur fullstop. The web page was taken down. I was
interviewed by The Daily Telegraph to inform the public that it
was not the original Shud, only the dud Shud, Zack and I weren’t
in the band.
The 4 Strangers
Maggie Makeig Strangers write up
Normie Rowe Special
I had a hostile phone call from a woman, telling
me she was from The Long Way To The Top concerts. She said how dare
I complain, your only an original member, the shows not about that
and I’ll make sure you’ll never work in the industry
again. My reply “Big Deal”. What an egg roll, god help
the music industry, no wonder it’s stuffed. I watch The Shud
on Long Way to the Top it was embarrassing, what a joke what a con.
Lindsay, Peter, Tim and Nigel have the tall poppy
syndrome. It’s freaky that Tim Gaze and Nigel Macara are so
self adsorbed in this masquerade of being original members, using
Zack and my identity to justify themselves as part of the music
industry. They would have to be in their 60’s to be original
members, they are phonies.
It doesn’t matter how long they have been
in the dud Shud they can never be considered as members of the original
legendry Tamam Shud which ended after the Evolution
album. 0ringinal members are Lindsay Bjerre, Alex “Zack”
Zytnik, Dannie “The Drummer” Davidson
and Peter Barron.
Most interviews Lindsay has given over
the years about the original Tamam Shud they have
been full himself, giving no credits to me and Zack as
co-writers on our musical history. Lindsay always manipulates
the journalist by keeping them in the dark, pulling the wool over
their eyes and hoodwinking them as he intertwines and confuses the
original history passing off Tim and Nigel as
the original members, I heard Tim Gaze on TV when asked
if he was an original member of Tamam Shud he stated
YES. He’s a bullshit artist he was about 14 yrs old when we
did Evolution, no wonder I had to sack him from our band Kahvas
Jute for stealing the lead guitarist riff and using it
in his solo break on the track Parade of Fools on Jutes LP. Tim
will never make it, he hasn’t got the soul.
For the Australian Music Industry to prosper we
musicians depend on the journalist to do their homework otherwise
the impostors dominate and the true talent is lost, they should
interview all members of the group insuring that they get the whole
story. Most articles written on Tamam Shud and
Kahvas Jute in magazines, websites and music history
books are incorrect.
Still to this day The Original Tamam Shud
history is confused. When the dud Shud is doing business
on the back of the Evolution album the business and the public is
1st Update - Dirty
Business of the Music Industry in Regards to Licences and Royalties.
Up to this time 3 CD's have been released, 2 x
Double CD's Evolution and Goolutionites and the Real People and
a Japan CD Evolution plus so-called bonus tracks.
The first CD I became aware of was a Double CD
released in Germany released under 'licence' from Candle Music Ltd
(Free Records) London 2000.
Who are they and who gave them a Licence?
The other Double CD release was in 2002, indorsed
by the Dud Tamam Shud, Essex Music and Warner Chappell Music.
What right has the Dud Tamam Shud, Essex and Chappell
Warner Music to reproduce, digitize Evolution from LP to CD and
sell my intellectual property without my knowledge? I am a part
owner of the recording and images on Evolution. I am stakeholder
with the Goolutionites. I was not contacted and as the drummer,
did not give my permission for them to digitize my performance.
How can Nigel Macara (drummer of Dud Shud) indorse these CD’s?
He didn’t play on either CD.
What point in time did Essex Music and Chappell
Warner Music take control of my property?
Has John Brommell (ex Essex Music) played any part
in regards to the ‘Licences’ of the double CD’s?
Under licence from Tim Gaze, a CD release of Evolution
in Japan with 3 parasitical tracks and a book filled with the images
and stories of the Dud Tamam Shud to try and make CD legitimate,
even so called surf historian Stephen J McParland has got in on
the act advertising himself. This CD was mastered (without my permission)
by Koichi Hara with Koki Emura at Magic Hour Studio, Osaka, Japan
2007. Produced by Koki Emura for EM Productions.
Who gave Tim Gaze a licence and permission to sell
the CD’s from his website? I didn’t. Looks like he is
making plenty of bickies at our expense.
As I have shown you the Original Tamam Shud’s
Evolution has been digitised on CD and has gone around the World.
This is nothing short of Piracy by Lindsay Bjerre,
Peter Baron, Tim Gaze, Nigel Macara, the Dud Tamam Shud. They have
hijacked it, piggybacked on it, confused images of themselves, hoodwinking
the public to believe that it is them who are the Original Tamam
Nigel and Tim are imposters.
Has this dirty business been aided and abetted
by Essex Music and Chappell Warner Music?
The Pirated Evolution CD is being sold through
a number of Australian Companies such as Red Eye Music Sydney.
I have written to Tim Gaze and publishing companies
for a ‘please explain’ but no answer. I have written
to Japan and to their credit they have replied, "We contacted
Tim Gaze and he gave us a licence for a CD reissue. On your enquiry
we contacted Tim Gaze and he confirmed to us he’s OK".
How much money is Tim Gaze ripping us off for,
along with Nigel Macara, Peter Baron and Lindsay Bjerre. Lindsay
Bjerre and publisher are rubbing their hands together with glee
collecting all the song writing royalties while the two original
members, Zach and I, who did all the tough yards receive not a brass
razoo, nothing. These Bastards have tried to wipe Zack and myself
out of the history (no hope). Where's our "Dough Ray Me"
We have as Artist and Musicians a big problem in
this country trying to protect our copyright. Governments need to
be proactive in protecting our copyright, at the moment it’s
a dog’s breakfast. Rip off Merchants Rule, this includes the
big Record and Publishing Companies who diddle the Musio’s
and Artist’s any way they can knowing we don’t have
the capacity to defend ourselves. The music industry is in a bad
The Evolution LP and the Original Tamam Shud, hold
a unique place in Australia musical history, the first original
Rock LP and was 6 years in the making and I’ll be buggard
to allow these creeps to take Dannie Davidson (drums) and Alex Zytnik
(lead guitar) history, credits and royalties.
The first release we know of in 2001 (Germany)
Double CD, the start of Tim Gaze deception, a sneaky act by putting
his name on a copy of the original back cover of the Evolution album,
which is part of the booklet with the CD.
The second release so called band indorsed (not
by Zach or me) Evolution, they have removed all images from Evolution
and replaced the front cover with a wave, also putting the Dud Shud
on the CD. Making out Tim and Nigel were part of the Original Tamam
Original back cover
Japanese release back cover
The third, a Japanese release, Evolution back cover
has been changed to cater for the Dud Shud parasitical rubbish bonus
tracks. The Japanese company has been conned.
All 3 CD releases are pirated CD’s with Tim
Gaze and Nigel as imposters trying to write themselves into the
history books. A low act by Lindsay and Peter pushing the deception
of the Dud Shud trying to wipe Zach and I out of the picture (no
chance) leaving it open for Lindsay’s delusions’ as
top dog (living the lie).
2nd Update - Copyright
submission to Australian Fed Goverment.
We have spent a lot of time investigating Copyright
Protection and found a closed shop for Australian Independent
Musicians and Artists.
APRA/AMCOS only looks after the big end of town.
Major Publishing and Recording Companies leaving Independent Artists
without protection. APRA, a closed shop, only looking after songwriters
and if there is a dispute over the song writing their not interested
as their dispute resolution is only voluntary. APRA/AMCOS does not
give protection for performance as its name implies. Also APRA gives
absolutely no protection for Independently owned Albums and CD/DVD's,
we are left out in the cold, easy pickings for
'tricky dickey' con merchants, due to the fact you have to be moneybags
to defend your copyright in court.
Everybody needs to be on the Bus to counteract
the situation we want a level playing field so the Independent Artist
will get their due royalties, we need the Federal Government
to run with the ball and lay down some ground rules for our Copyright
A submission has been prepared by Maureen and myself
and put together by Colin Hogan Solicitor's for a Federal
Government Funded Copyright Protection Tribunal for the
Independent Musicians and Artists of Australia.
We presented it to our local MP Jill Hall, who made representations
on our behalf to the Hon Peter Barrett MP, Minister for the Environment
Protection. Heritage and the Arts and has been handed to the Australian
Government Attorney General's Department.
Movers and Shakers stop Rafferty Rule,
start the ball rolling by contacting your local Federal Member of
|Cheers Maureen and Dannie "The Drummer"
here to watch Dannie on You Tube - Drummer over the cliff at Bondi
All correspondence to:
P.O. Box 2406
Copyright© 2009-2013 Dannie "The Drummer"
Davidson and Maureen Davidson. All rights reserved
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