We thought we would leave it to Michael Dwyer to tell you how our Production at this year's Hall of Fame went. What. A. Show. Super proud of this one. Our Mums loved it too :)
Article printed in The Age by Michael Dwyer, The Palais Theatre, November 20.
There is a happy place where John Farnham and AC/DC are equal in the eyes of God. One of them had a bigger gig to play on the night of their welcome to The Age Music Victoria Hall of Fame, but Angus Young sent a nice note from Adelaide and Farnesy sang the school pants off It's a Long Way to the Top.
That's the way these lifetime honours shows roll: classic memories, absent friends, curious contrasts and always, always a big sing-along finale. Eventually.
You couldn't say RocKwiz ringmaster Brian Nankervis didn't give his all to keep things moving. He went from zero to Mick Jagger in sixty seconds as he whipped the stalls into an all-handclapping Acca Dacca overture.
Vika Bull and Kingswood's Fergus Linacre did a cracking job of Highway to Hell, too. Angie Hart sang a winsome version of inductee Olivia Newton John's A Little More Love, as our Countdown sweetheart accepted her statue from Barry Gibb — Barry Gibb! — in a video from Los Angeles.
With his mate Paul Kelly playing harmonica, inductee Archie Roach represented himself, and so much more. A mighty surge of affection and, yes, gratitude greeted a simmering performance of his landmark ballad, Took the Children Away.
Funny, pithy and passionate, Jack Charles' induction of his old friend was the salvation of the evening's inevitably overlong speechifying.
No less evocative of our very long, strange history, the Seekers were remembered in terms of mother country triumphs and royal honours. Kate Ceberano sang for them with pride and gusto, though the harmony that melted our hearts was relegated to a poignant memory on this occasion.
Another giant from the '60s and '70s, Brian Cad gleefully fronted to tickle his own ivories. Virtually a royal presence himself under a great swathe of white hair, he commanded that every one of us take joint credit for the chorus of A Little Ray of Sunshine, magically ensuring the moment transcended the good old days.
Rock history seemed to grow longer still with tributes to the Thunderbirds, the Sunbury Festival, DJ Stan Rofe, record producer Bill Armstrong and the Palais Theatre itself, which was inducted into the mythic Hall in a hammy short film starring Tex Perkins.
And still not a whisper from Jack. That was left for Act Two, the exclusive domain of the perfect storm of relentless showbiz grit, undiminished lung-power and Aussie household hits that is John Farnham. His inductor, Sony CEO Denis Handlin, acknowledged that the word "legend" is overused in rock'n'roll, then raised it to "icon" and named You're the Voice our "unofficial national anthem".
Anything less than an iconic legend might have found that a hard pitch to follow. But when Farnham and his slick Vegas-styled ensemble finally drove the anthem home, it felt official enough to draw the patient audience to its feet and stay there for the surely unprecedented thrill of hearing two bagpipe-rock songs in a row. If only Angus could have been here to see it.