The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music -

THE first an­nounce­ment of acts for this year’s Splen­dour in the Grass fes­ti­val in By­ron Bay, NSW, has an im­pres­sive cross- sec­tion of lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional tal­ent, in­clud­ing Sigur Ros, the Fratel­lis, Devo, the Wom­bats and Vam­pire Week­end from over­seas, plus our own Liv­ing End, Wolf­mother, the Vines and the Pre­sets. One act ex­pected to make an ap­pear­ance at the Au­gust gath­er­ing is par­tic­u­larly poignant, how­ever. Robert Forster ( see album re­view be­low) looks set to re­turn in band mode to pro­mote his new album at the fes­ti­val, a gig that will also launch a na­tional tour. Forster will be joined by his for­mer band mem­bers in the Go- Be­tweens, bassist Adele Pick­vance and drum­mer Glenn Thompson on gui­tar and key­boards. To add spe­cial sig­nif­i­cance to the show, Forster and co look likely to play on the Grant McLen­nan Stage. The stage was named in trib­ute to Forster’s song­writ­ing col­league and friend in the Go- Be­tweens, who died two years ago from a heart at­tack, aged 48. More acts for Splen­dour will be an­nounced in the com­ing weeks. The fes­ti­val is on Au­gust 2 and 3 at Be­longil Fields.

MELBOURNE journo and for­mer Painters and Dock­ers front­man Paul Ste­wart has been a tire­less cam­paigner and ac­tivist in the cause of wel­fare for the peo­ple of East Ti­mor. Ste­wart’s brother Tony was one of the Bal­ibo Five jour­nal­ists killed by In­done­sian troops in

1975. For the past 12 years Ste­wart has been part of the Dili All­stars, a band of Aussie and Ti­morese mu­si­cians who have done tours of duty per­for­mances in East Ti­mor, while lo­cally they have sup­ported Michael Franti, the Wail­ers and Maxi Priest, among oth­ers. The singer’s latest mis­sion, how­ever, is to raise funds to help the women of East Ti­mor re­ceive im­proved med­i­cal care. ‘‘ The women up there don’t get much of a go,’’ Ste­wart says, ‘‘ so it’s im­por­tant for them to get the proper med­i­cal at­ten­tion.’’ To that end Ste­wart has put to­gether a com­pi­la­tion CD called I am Wo­man, which fea­tures fe­male artists such as Lisa Miller, Vika and Linda Bull and Re­becca Barnard. It’s the fourth such CD Ste­wart has com­piled in re­cent years. Al­ready he has helped raise in the re­gion of $ 350,000 for the or­phans of East Ti­mor. The new CD costs $ 25. Prof­its from the sale will go to the Bairo Pite Clinic in Dili. The album, Ste­wart says, would make an ideal Mother’s Day present. It’s avail­able from www. afap. org.

spin­doc@ theaus­tralian. com. au

Il­lus­tra­tion: Tom Jel­lett

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