She knew all these famous media people and I knew the arts and muso types.
One of her good friends was the Secretary of Justice who was getting married and she asked me to play at her wedding.
It was a grand affair and I was nervous – the Speaker of the House was there and people like that and I’d forgotten to bring my guitar tuner.
When I got up to sing Frida and hit the first chord I realised the B string was out – I looked up and saw Dave McArtney sitting there with a great big grin on his face.
I went outside for a smoke and met Dave for the first time – I mean I’d seen him play countless times with Sailor and Flamingos and all that and loved his music but just as a bloke he was on that level as well.
We laughed about my tuning and he said he was sure he was the only one who noticed and I sang in tune and he liked the song.
At that time Outrageous Fortune was huge and he told me some stories about Gutter Black.
I said “Man you have got to play that song”.
I never loan my guitar out to anyone but that day I had the great pleasure of hearing Dave play his epic song on it – all those brilliant chords. He was in fine voice and he gave it heaps. He loved the Ovation and he sort of brought the whole room together.
After that it turned into a dancing party – everyone let loose and Dave and I were both up there dancing with our lovely girls – it was a really fun night.
A couple of months later I met Graham Brazier for the first time at Bodega where he was doing a solo set. It was the same sort of thing we had a few drinks and stories – just a totally nice man with a great talent.
He told me Dave had had some sort of horse riding accident and had broken his collarbone.
Dave was a master at the three things I love most in music – songwriting, singing and guitar.
But he had this other thing too – a twinkle in his eye and swagger in his gait and I feel very lucky to have had that one time with him where he taught me so much.
You in my brain you in my heart
The Ghost of Electricity – War Stories by Jon McLeary is a new initiative at Off The
Tracks, a series of stories and
reflections from painter, writer and musician Jon McLeary