Sleeve Notes — UK Topic release
WHEN THE WIND BLOWS — This song was inspired by the book of the same name by Raymond Briggs. It's a chilling little book. I'd like to lend a copy to the White House Cowboy and Comrade Chernenko, it might frighten them. It certainly frightened me, and this song is the result.
HARD HARD TIMES — This song was described in Bourke as a 'trendy, left-wing, urbanised, bleeding heart, do-gooder type of song about the so-called plight of the Aborigines in Australia.' Exactly!
BIRDS OF A FEATHER — A prime minister called Hawke and an Opposition leader called Peacock! What song-writer could resist it? I didn't. You've all heard the squawk of the Great Australian Hawk From his lofty perch on high As he hunts with zeal for his favourite meal Which isn't humble pie! No, his favourite fare is minced Sinclair Served with Peacock's tongue He likes rare steak mixed with yellow-cake And he's been known to eat his young!
LOCK-KEEPER — Stan Rogers was an excellent Canadian singer-songwriter who was killed in an air crash in 1983. I had the privilege of meeting him on a number of occasions and spent a memorable night with him in Vancouver in 1982 when we swapped songs and stories and did terrible things to a bottle of Glenfiddich. He sang me this song that night, and I fell in love with it. I suppose the basic message of the song is that the grass is always greener on the other man's side of the fence, until you start evaluating the worth of what you do have.
SOLDIER SOLDIER — Rudyard Kipling put it better: It's Tommy this and Tommy that, And Tommy 'ow's yer soul? But it's The Thin Red Line of 'Eroes When the drums begin to roll. Why condemn the soldiers for firing the guns when we buy the bullets?
BUSHFIRE — When the Ash Wednesday Fires of 1983 were raging out of control all over South Australia and Victoria, I was on tour in Western Australia. I watched the graphic and horrific TV reports and worried about my friends in the Adelaide Hills, where some of the worst fires were located. Thankfully they and their homes were saved, but others were not so lucky. This song is about one of the unlucky ones.
SHINING RIVER — An ecology statement (Wow, gasp!).
THE ENIGMA — I've had one or two friends who have shuffled off this mortal coil sideways. It has always come as a complete shock to everybody involved. How little we really know about what goes on in the minds and hearts of our friends and lovers.
LITTLE GOMEZ — I wrote a song called 'He's Nobody's Moggy Now' in 1982 which alienated every cat-lover in the Southern Hemisphere, and a fair proportion in the Northern Hemisphere as well. Greedy sod that I am, I could not rest till I'd alienated all the dog-lovers as well. This should do it.
SAFE IN THE HARBOUR — A tribute to Stan Rogers, with grateful thanks for all the treasures he created from the rich seam of his talent, and in which we were all privileged to share.