The theme for this week’s JVG Radio Method poem is “‘Greedy’ Smith“.
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Many years ago I met Andrew ‘Greedy’ Smith fleetingly, which does not qualify me to offer even the shallowest of ruminations – that is for others.
My enduring memories are as a punter, inhabiting the under-lit caverns that characterised the music scene of the day – sticky carpets, surly bouncers and shit beer, overpriced and served begrudgingly in plastic pots.
Towering PA’s, J-Bins, W-Bins, massive horns, three way, four way, matt black chipboard battlements assembled and demolished by a small army of roadies fuelled by bourbon, burgers and the odd soggy chip.
Mental as Anything – a name that perfectly reflected their music – or was it the other way around? The chicken or the egg?
Martin, Reg, Greedy, Pete; all fine songwriters – a rare broth that benefitted from many chefs.
Quirky, clever, different; laid back yet energetic – seemingly an oxymoron perhaps, though appropriate for a band that could effortlessly blend serious and whimsical.
None of the pouting affectations favoured by some of their peers; no earnest, menacing glares or strutting the stage like rutting stags.
More Robin Williams than Bruce Willis.
There in the middle, a big man in a loud suit, grinning like he had the best job in the world and knew it.
‘Greedy’ Smith – dancing like your drunken uncle at a wedding or the science teacher at the school social – and all the time beaming.
That grin warmed stages across the country for more than four decades.
That grin will be missed – yang in an ocean of yin – or should that be the other way ‘round?
In reflection, my foremost memory is not of the great songs, music and performances; it is the way I walked out at the end of all their gigs – smiling.
Hey yeah, you with the sad face, Come up to my place and live it up
You beside the dance floor, What do you cry for, let’s live it up
‘Greedy’ certainly did that
© Copyright 2019 Ian Bland
Also have a listen to “Everything or Nothing”