GURUS LEAD FESTIVAL FREE-FOR-ALL
THEIR popularity peaked in the mid to late 1980s, but the Hoodoo Gurus are certainly not living in the past.
Best known for their classic hits What’s My Scene, Bittersweet, Miss Freelove ’69 and Like Wow - Wipeout, guitarist Brad Shepherd – who has been in the band for 30 years – says the Gurus have never felt a part of a scene or culture.
‘‘We exist in our own universe. That has comfortably remained constant,’’ he says.
‘‘It feels good. We operate in an alternative universe.’’
While many of their contemporaries have ‘‘fallen by the wayside’’, Shepherd says the Gurus’ momentum has remained strong.
‘‘We were never in fashion so we never could be out of fashion,’’ he says.
‘‘I don’t need to nurture an enthusiasm for music. It’s something inside of me. It’s clean energy. It’s selfsustainable. It keeps on going.’’
Aussie rock legends the Gurus headline three days of free music on the beach this weekend for Launch It, part of the monthlong Surfers Paradise Festival.
‘‘I am always excited to play in Queensland,’’ Shepherd says.
‘‘I like the idea of an outdoors event. It’s always really good fun to be on stage as the Hoodoo Gurus. I get a kick out of playing full-tilt rock ’n’ roll.
‘‘Ultimately I do it for myself. It’s not totally driven by being a performer or entertainer. We do it for our own amusement.
‘‘I am just thrilled other people enjoy it.’’
With a ‘‘head full of memories’’, former Queenslander Shepherd says he remembers playing on the Gold Coast when the Gurus first emerged on the scene.
‘‘I remember it being a magical period,’’ he says.
‘‘We used to play there all the time at places like The Patch and Bombay Rock. I have fond memories of the Coast.’’
Shepherd says he feels fortunate to have experienced the Coast in the ’60s and ’70s.
‘‘It felt exotic and American. Everything was technicolour – so vibrant,’’ he says.
‘‘The Goldie is a different kind of cheesy now. It’s not Coon any more – it’s like a King Island double cheese.’’
The Hoodoo Gurus, Wolf & Cub, Nine Sons of Dan and The Vernons play Launch It, on Surfers Paradise beach on Saturday from 2.30-8.10pm. Entry is free.
month-long Surfers Paradise Festival features four weekends of food, film, music, arts and culture until July 15. The free festival launches with music on the beach this weekend with Sneaky Sound System tomorrow, Hoodoo Gurus on Saturday and Ash Grunwald on Sunday. The festival program includes a laneway-style street party with contemporary art, fashion and music on July 7 and an evening dedicated to short films, complete with bean bags, at Neal Shannon Park. The In Venue event, from tomorrow until July 7, includes beer tastings, special food menus, fashion parades, live music and cooking classes across a selection of businesses. Magicians, musicians, jugglers and acrobats will also perform as part of the Australian Street Entertainment Championships during the festival. The month of activities culminates in a fireworks display over the Nerang River during A La Carte in the Park, a food, wine and jazz night on July 14.