It was a little bar down the side street, part of the Cambridge hotel. Clarke Gregory had started booking bands there in the early 80s. It was semi-underground and the coolest venue in town in its time.
He brought through a wide range of bands of the day to play there and it was a healthy player in the wellington music scene.
We had a major line-up change after that – with Caroline leaving Tim had taken over on drums and now we were looking for a bass player to replace Rob. We were still on Ripper Records and ready to record again and we had a gig lined up at Cosgroves.
Wendy came along to the house to meet me. She borrowed my little Fender Mustang bass and we ran through a new song I was working on – She Danced Well. She learned Rob’s bass lines for the other songs we were playing live almost overnight and she was suddenly our bass player – up on stage at Cosgroves.
I remember thinking that night – here’s the band. We just nailed it with a totally different set of musicians yet more powerful than ever. It was a special gig for me.
There were a lot of great nights at that place – the Body Electric’s first gig, Fishschool…
Somehow I wound up being the doorman there for a spell – on Friday or Saturday night I would take the money at the door and give people a stamp on the hand so they could go in and out and smoke joints.
You got to deal with various incidents in that job and I was lucky at times.
There was a woman called Diane who did opposite shifts to me who I didn’t meet till we were double booked to do the door one night. We got along really well and made a good team – it was a rough gig and she was big and strong.
She invited me back to a party at the house where she lived. On the way she told me it was a haunted house called Inverlochy.
We danced at the party then she took me up to her room and told me to wait.
I lay there on her bed and was watching out for ghosts.
Then when she came back it was finally alright and we made love.
She disappeared and I wrote a song.
There are some comments that follow from some folk…
Clarke Gregory – Spines, Body Electric, Swerve, Unrestfuls, Double Happys, Bill Direen, Sneaky Feelings, Beat Rhythym Fashion? Eugene’s outfit (loud) and of course Bill and the Windy City Strugglers
Matthew Bannister – Punks gobbing at our bass player
Andy Craig – That gig where you and I were chatting at the entrance way, I think you were on the door, and a fight broke out in the tiny vestibule by the main doors. “Brown Taumaranui” guy and the Wainui boots were involved. It looked like a cartoon fight. Then the glass door shattered and we took refuge around the corner by the reception area. It may have been the last gig there.
Clarke Gregory – For sure the biggest brawl…I think that was the night I ended up in the bottom of the skinhead scrum and crawled out totally unscathed…just like those corny westerns
Doug Coutts – Obviously after the Bavarian Bar things went downhill….
John Pilley – A young sound engineer Nigel Stone running around the room trying to get a decent sound for The Pelicans.
Chris Whittle – Saw a lot of gigs there but unfortunately remember there used to be a lot of aggro there too, in fact I remember a lot of aggro in Welly growing up
Rachel Kiel-Taylor – Second time I met my husband to be, Leon Kiel, when he came to watch Jane and I play. We were supporting someone and he was considering joining us on bass for our Southern Cross gig, I don’t remember who. I thought he was pretty cool.