Bic and I had a lot of hurried and pressured fun and amusement, working our collective asses off for the 20th Anniversary of the release of her many, many times platinum release, Drive.
Bic chose amazing female performers to accompany her onstage during her two-set performance, which also featured Shayne Carter, and her backing band of Cass Basil, Tom Healy and Kody Neilson. Bic’s performance at The Civic Theatre was welcomed by a powhiri, a powerful opening at Auckland’s loveliest venue, and a tribute to such a talented and respected music icon.
After announcing her tour on The Project, Bic appeard on the cover of M2 Woman, across all relevant local print media and featured on almost all local radio waves and many national television programmes. As she deserves to be, Bic was omnipresent.
Future Islands - 2017 Tour and PR
Future Islands arrived in New Zealand at the end of a grueling, almost nine constant months of touring, yet some amazing things happened: A super delicious and generous meal at the home of Wellington’s biggest fan, the owner of chocolatier Baron Hasselhoff’s; Against all odds, Sam came alive on San Fran’s intimate Wellington stage for two sold-out nights in a row; Two of the touring party ran a half marathon; Their sold-out Powerstation show left the masses a jubilant, quivering mess, including our then-new Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern.
Orchestra of Spheres - Management 2013- 2016
Orchestra of Spheres are unlike any other band, which most bands can’t honestly say. I mean, they might say it, but it’s just not true. Ethnomusicology meets outerspace, dancebeats meet psychedlia and prog. They have collectively exploded the minds of many international bands and confounded the brains of more Americans than I care to count.
They are exhilarating and bizarre, keeping people riveted with their mix of homemade instruments and unique stage presence.
The Residents for 2018? Beyond comparison to something even such as this? Whatever it is, Spheres are a refreshing and needed burst of genre-blending experimentation.
Bachelorette - Management 2008 - 2017
Annabel Alpers’ psychedelic space pop compositions are harmonic vocal symphonies. capturing the ears of listeners across the planet, with multiple European and United States, New Zealand and Australia tours. She has kicked ass touring with Beach House, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy, Low, and The Magnetic Fields. Her music can be found on the highly-revered label, Drag City, out of Chicago; Mistletone, in Australia, and Particle Tracks in New Zealand. Bachelorette’s music has been used in film, television and advertising in all the above territories, with several renewals.
Currently Annabel is working on soundscapes as art/music installation, soon to be premiered in New Zealand.
March 2003 was a busy month for bands! Trans Am toured Auckland and Wellington with the Fucking Champs, leaving waves of New Zealanders screaming for more of the Kiwi’s favourite Trans Am album, TA.
Trans Am was so psyched to be here that they threw the rental car keys into the bay of Opoutere from a trick swim trunk pocket and recorded their next album in Auckland.
The crowd was psyched to see Le Tigre at a tight Auckland date the day before they played their Big Day Out stadium show. There was madness at the front of stage, with people clawing through the cables - but too much! And one of the monitors became unplugged. The whole house pulled together to fix it as quickly as possible - go Kings Arms! People were brought together because of the great crumpled cable caper.
The Fucking Champs
With guitar in full metal harmony, the Fucking Champs charmed New Zealand on their first Kiwi tour. The Champs are known to make people cry with their anthemic tunes and resolution, and their two shows here were no exception.
The Fucking Champs and Trans Am were an amazing tour to produce!!
Weird War came to New Zealand not wanting any days off, which is difficult to accomplish when you don’t want the band’s jetlag to bowl them over, onstage. After forcing them to take their first night in New Zealand easy, their slack time was made up to them by performing a concert at Ponsonby Intermediate School , which was, by Ian’s account, the most difficult show he has ever had to play. Weird War performed three other shows in New Zealand in more traditional venues, and they all rocked and created some Weird Wargasm in a purely clean, sou-shaking sense.
Bonnie 'Prince' Billy
Will Oldham visited New Zealand two times under Mystery Girl Presents’s efforts: 2004 and 2006. The first run consisted of two shows in Auckland at the Dogs Bollix and one in Wellington, after spending an awesome first night in New Zealand out in the deep Waitakeres. Will’s second tour started as a small group, but grew to include Mick Turner from The Dirty Three; Kamila Thompson; Aram Stith; Gregg Cairns; and partners and children along the way. I just read that about this crazy, lengthy, NZ tour, Will said “She put together just the greatest itinerary of all New Zealand shows.” It was amazing. And pretty wild, by the end.
Bill Callahan supported Joanna Newsom at two shows, Auckland and Wellington. I always buy the bands I work with welcome to New Zealand packs, with things people wouldn’t be familiar with from outside of New Zealand.
I collected Joanna and Bill to perform at the Maidment Theatre, and Bill saw some juice he’d never heard of. He guzzled it down about ten minutes before he was meant to go on stage, and he broke out into hives. I was lamenting my choice of fruit, and Joanna was a bit freaked out. But, in his laconic way, he strolled out onto stage, played an amazing set, and returned into the green room hives completely dissipated.
Joanna’s shows were amazing! And thankfully there are a few harp players in New Zealand that happened to play on her preferred model AND lent them out! The Maidment and Paramount Theatre were both great places to see her wizardry, with a fantastic atmosphere.
Interpol were huge when they came over here in July, 2005. They played at the St James, another fantastic room that has since gone to venue heaven. Both Auckland and Wellington shows were sold out, and the amazing Demi Whores opened the show.
New Zealand was graced with one show from J Mascis, and it was a fantastic, typical, shoe-gazing, low-light, J Mascis affair. All were enthralled and the fans came out en masse!
The Violent Femmes
New Zealand loves the Violent Femmes, and they love NZ right back. With shows in creative spaces and awesome places, The Violent Femmes were a standout show for Christchurch and Wellington, alike. Auckland’s venue was again at the St James, and it suited everyone. New Zealand’s Golden Horse opened all shows.
When life leads to Canada, you choose a persona! Not Nardwar the Human Serviette in this instance, but Lederhosen Lucil!
Touring through New Zealand, stopping in small towns and taking on the norms, Lederhosen Lucil and DJ Jester brought some lighthearted musical fare to unsuspecting punters. It was a great tour filled with long, gorgeous drives and Willie Nelson singalongs - and at the venues, we were treated to accordion and lyrical acrobatics!
The Breeders played in Auckland and Wellington - the Auckland venue was perfect, the Wellington was standing room only, packed at 450, with people climbing up the walls and the fence to get in. Most hilarious moment was Kim & Kelly wondering whether or not to pay the smoking fine at check-in or wait until leaving. Or was it being allowed to check in 30 flight cases for free because the man at Qantas was a huge fan and just wanted Kim & Kelly’s signatures? Their visit coincided with America’s Cup, and we spent a bit of time sailing around the Harbour on a yacht. Awesome!
What a pleasure to tour Lou Barlow and his then-wife for four shows: Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin. As a huge Dinosaur Jr and Sebadoh fan, I stood at the very back of the room, quietly singing almost every song on the set. The rooms were packed, everyone thrilled.
For sightseeing, I set the pair off to Hanmer Springs, not knowing how carsickness might play into it. I was still told it was an amazing and picturesque drive, however.
Sleater-Kinney came to New Zealand to play two sold-out shows at the Kings Arms. “It’s like the old days” I remember Janet saying, as they were within reach of the adoring masses, who, thankfully, never crossed the line. What a fantastic show! I always feel so lucky that I get to see so much great music.
Taking them out to Piha the next day, I also did not consider the effect of the windy roads on susceptible bellies, and the sound engineer and I were the only ones who ran out of the car for a dip in the Piha ocean, before returning to Auckland. Lo siento!!
Super popular in England, it was my pleasure to bring these lads to Auckland for one show at the St James Theatre. They had been on tour for so long, and their stopover in New Zealand was just a blip on their global adventures. Their St James show was packed with fans, many of whom were British and were really excited to see one of their favourite bands, in New Zealand.
During a discussion about their rider, I asked the band if they wanted pizza, or I could personalise their rider for them with food that was more representative of New Zealand cuisine. They had no idea why they got pizza every night, but it appeared that it was their production crew’s preferred food. Consequently, their green room was filled with fresh vegetable dishes and yummy snacks.
In March, 2003, Lambchop played two sold out shows, one in Auckland, one in Wellington. I found a baby grand piano to grace the Kings Arms’ stage, which was a feat unto itself. The venue was packed, and Kurt’s smokey vocals and the band’s rich orchestration filled the at-capacity space, thrilling the hushed and reverent crowd.
In Wellington, I remember sitting on a rooftop, checking out the starts and pointing out the Southern Cross, which obviously cannot be seen from Nashville. This band was all class, polished, profession musicians and lovely southern gentlemen.
Seafood are a band who came to New Zealand ready to rock. Although Seafood weren’t well known in New Zealand, their solid, upbeat, catchy and engaging music gained many fans in Auckland, Hamilton and Wellington.
I took them on a tiki tour through the North Island, stopping at main centres along the way: Photo shoots along desert road, Ruapehu in the background; swimming in thermal water in Rotorua; one member getting lost in Taupo, discovered an hour later in a video arcade.
My favourite tour quote was “your eyes reveal that you are either very wise or you have either done a lot of drugs”.
I had the pleasure of promoting and hosting Peaches in 2004 for a sold-out side show to Big Day Out at the Kings Arms, in Auckland. Man! What a show! Performance art for this show entailed dancing dildos, costume changes, rocker shades, lighting stripes and a flying V…What else?! Everything. A mighty and raucous crowd-pleaser, a show to leave people amped for days.
While on PR duty, I brought Peaches up to some interviews where one male interviewer was clearly flabbergasted and tongue-tied, obviously intimidated by her music and the reputation of her shows, but not seeing the absolutely approachable and convivial interviewee in front of him. Tant pis!
Best tour around Auckland moment: Bringing Peaches to my favourite Chinese acupressure massage guy, whose thumbs are so strong that he has another faux thumb growing off his first, in the form of a callous. It’s pressure and borderline pain, but his results are euphoria. It’s recommended to see him once a week, max. But it was the best massage she’d ever had, and she ran back to him the next day. Locals secret!