Tag Archives: SpeedPoets 10th Birthday

The candles are blown…

and the smoke has risen.

SpeedPoets went off with a bang yesterday, celebrating 10 amazing years! Here’s a few snaps from the gig.

As always, Sheish Money opened the day with a song. Sheish has been part of the SpeedPoets family for 8 years and I just can’t imagine the gig without his distinct sound. Baron Field and I also had the pleasure of joining Sheish on stage for the opening track, Baron picking some mean banjo and me reading Max Ryan’s poem, Jim.

After a couple more songs from Sheish, I joined him on stage again to kick off the first open mic session of the day, reading the poem, Blood, from the man who coined the name SpeedPoets, Fakie Wilde.

James Waller delivered the first feature set of the day; reading a set of poems that conjured images of willows lining Merri Creek, preachers and polish poet, Czeslaw Milosz.

Brisbane troubadour, Baron Field was next up, playing a set of songs from his recently released self-titled, debut album. The room was hoppin’ as Baron was joined again on stage by Kieran Waters (banjo) & Sheish Money (slide guitar), the trio, ripping through a red-hot set featuring the tracks Writing Lines, Fallen Lighters and Month of Sundays. You can listen to all of these tracks at Baron’s bandcamp site. Well worth checking out!

And rounding out the trio of features was Fern Thomsett, who read poems about poems, poems about eggs, poems about eggs being poems, poems about writers block and poems about marrying two book collections.

Add to that the 32 Open Mic readers who each performed a poem, a closing song from Sheish and Baron and I am sure you can picture the large crowd, filtering out into the dimming light of evening, buzzing with conversation, already hungry for next month’s event.

Roll on April I say!

I will be posting more pics over at the SpeedPoets site during the week so make sure you drop by.

And finally, big thanks to Cindy Keong for all of the photos!


Filed under events & opportunities

The Curve of Forgotten Things

Last night, the world should have been at InSpire Gallery Bar taking in the wonderfully loose sounds of Sheish Money & Namedropper, who were joined on stage by a number of local poets; dropping their words in and out of the bluesy jams that Sheish & co. play so well. There was a wildness in the air last night, a sense of something urgent, that creative spark… I got up and performed a handful of my own poems and a handful of poems by one of my favourite Australian poets, Max Ryan.  It was rocking! And today the rush is bound to continue as Sheish & I head back to InSpire to celebrate 10 years of SpeedPoets, or as we like to say, 10 Years On Speed!

So to slow things down a little this morning, I watched the gorgeously filmed (and scored) short, The Curve of Forgotten Things, which takes its name from the title of a Richard Brautigan poem. If the sun is not shining in your part of the world, then ths may just bring the warmth you are looking for. Deerhunter’s ambient score pulses and soars and Elle Fanning is mesmeric. The perfect Sunday morning viewing…

And for all you Brautigan lovers… here’s the poem, from which the film takes its name.

                                   The Curve of Forgotten Things

                                              Things slowly curve out of sight
                                              Until they are gone. Afterwards
                                              Only the curve

Happy Sunday to you…


Filed under discussions, events & opportunities, poetry & publishing

Digging Baron Field

I had a chat with Brisbane country-blues troubadour Baron Field last week in the lead up to the release of his debut album and his feature at this Sunday’s (March 6) SpeedPoets 10th Birthday Gig. We talk about the albums that keep pulling us in, the writing process, how Ipswich is a fine fish & chip town, great places to check out live music in Brisbane and the curse of flat-footedness. There is also a link to Baron’s bandcamp site where you can listen to a number of tracks off the album. If you like a poetic lyric, are not adverse to finely picked guitar (or even a banjo), enjoy all the smoothness of a gravel-cured voice, then this man just may be your new favourite singer-songwriter.  You can read the full interview here.

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Filed under events & opportunities, who listens to the radio?

Countdown to SpeedPoets 10th Birthday Bash

This week is a big one… 

Tonight’s gig at Riverbend Books is almost sold out (a few tickets left so get there early!!!), tomorrow nights gig at Confit Bistro is being filmed for Channel 7’s The Great Southeast and then on Friday night I fly down to Melbourne to feature at The Castlemaine Poetry Reading (at The Guildford Hotel), hosted by Ross Donlon on Sunday, Feb 27.

Big times indeed…

And to add to that excitement, I am counting down the days until SpeedPoets celebrates its 10th birthday on Sunday March 6 at InSpire Gallery Bar (71 Vulture St. West End). SpeedPoets has kicked off the year by revamping their website and the first person to step on to the virtual stage is one of the 10th birthday features, our lovely lady from 4ZzZ’s Waxing Lyrical, Fern Thompsett. Head on over and check out our interview and read her poem Sunset on the Back Steps.


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Short & Sexy: The New Penguin Box-set

Seems like 2011 is a great year for big birthdays… SpeedPoets turns 10, this Lost Shark turns 40, Dylan turns 70 and the Penguin Modern Classic clocks up a neat half century. And they are doing it in style by releasing a box set of 50 literary hits from the likes of Saki, Chandler, Nabokov, Camus, Kafka, Woolf & Beckett. Looks like this is due to hit stores in April.

Rubbing my hands together already…


Filed under poetry & publishing

Hold Back the Water: A Disaster Relief Fundraiser

The Brisbane poetry scene is about to explode back into action with a number of gigs in late February / early March. Dates for your diary include:

Tuesday February 22:

Riverbend Poetry Series, featuring Pascalle Burton, Alan Wearne & the launch of Brisbane New Voices II, which brings together the debut collections of John Koenig & Chris Lynch. Tickets are $10. Full details here.

Wednesday Feb 23:

Confit Bistro (4/9 Doggett St. Fortitude Valley) presents The Back Room, featuring performances by this Lost Shark and poetic guitar-slinger Sheish Money + local indie-rock luminaries, The Stress of Leisure. Entry is free and doors open from 6pm.

Sunday March 6:

SpeedPoets rolls back in to InSpire Gallery Bar (71 Vulture St. West End) to celebrate its 10th birthday. As always, doors will open at 2pm and entry is a gold coin donation. Stay tuned for announcements of features artists…

And one of the things that will bind these events together will be the running of the ‘Hold Back the Water: Disaster Relief Raffle’. I have again been overwhelmed by the generosity people have shown in donating prizes for this fundraiser. So drum roll please… the two major prizes are:

Draw 1 includes:

A 60 x 95cm framed print by renowned photographer, Sally Cripps which captures the sky, just west of Blackall (Western QLD) before the rains hit (see image below)

A dining voucher for Confit Bistro
A ticket to Opening Night of QLD Poetry Festival 2011 (Friday August 26)
A $30 gift voucher for Riverbend Books; and
A double pass to the Riverbend Poetry Series Event II, featuring Max Ryan, Vanessa Page, David ‘Ghostboy’ Stavanger & Julie Beveridge (Tuesday April 19)

Draw 2 includes:

Another 60x95cm framed print by renowned photographer, Sally Cripps (see image below)

and a Book Pack, valued at over $100.

Both prizes are valued at over $400 and should be enough to get any poetry lover salivating!

Raffle tickets are priced $5 each or 3 for $10 and will be sold at all three events, with all money raised donated to the QLD Premiers Disaster Relief Appeal. The raffle will be drawn on Sunday March 6 at the close of SpeedPoets and the winner notified.

So come on people, if you are anywhere near this fine city of ours on those dates, come along and help hold back the water. With the recent floods and Yasi circling off our coast, your support is needed now, more than ever. And please… don’t be afraid to spread the word!


Filed under events & opportunities