INTERVIEW: TUSK! FM PAY TRIBUTE TO FLEETWOOD MAC AT THE POLICE CLUB THIS FRINGE

Tusk! FM have gone their own way to break the chain and achieve their dreams, creating a landslide of fans.

That’s probably more than enough Fleetwood Mac IMG_4138puns for this article, but most importantly, the tribute show is back for Adelaide Fringe.

After a sell out season at last year’s Fringe Festival, the band return with a new setlist, but the same electric energy in TUSK! FM: A Tribute to the Music of Fleetwood Mac.

Drummer Peter Vawser spoke to us for our 16 for ’16 spectacular about what he, Yasmine Miles (lead vocals), Tonia Brooks (vocals/guitar/bongos), Bob Clifford (guitar), Peter Vawser (vocals/ drums) Beth Christensen (keyboard/vocals) and Greg Palmer (bass) have changed for this year’s show.

“We’ve introduced a few more songs from the Fleetwood Mac stable. We want to reinforce the story that Fleetwood Mac is a band with extreme longevity. They started in the mid ‘60s and were basically a blues band, and were a splinter group formed by Peter Green. We want to pay tribute to Peter, so we’ve introduced a couple of songs from those early years,” Peter says.

“We know people mainly think about Fleetwood Mac from the mid ‘70s to the ‘80s, so our focus is on that, but we’ve got some old ones in there too. We’ve also introduced some songs from the Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks era. There’s one called ‘Never Going Back Again’ that I get to sing; I will come out from behind the drum kit. Bob plays acoustic guitar for that one, which is a novel idea for him. He doesn’t normally, but he’s gone all out and bought a lovely acoustic guitar. It’s a lovely interlude and it’s a song that focuses on a time in Lindsay Buckingham’s life when things were starting to go well. He’s reflecting on how things used to be and he doesn’t want to go back.”

The band are excited about showing off their new arrangement of the show and performing in a different venue.

“We’re really looking forward to doing the show. There’ll be songs, then some narration, then some more songs. It’s more songs than narration, though. It’s a show in two acts. We’re also looking forward to doing it in the great venue that we only just discovered, and that’s the Police Club in Carrington Street. It’s a fantastic place,” Peter says.

The group met through the Weekend Warriors program, which is a club where musicians at a range of skill levels can meet, form bands and perform.

“We met each other through the Weekend Warrior music club, which is a great place for people who don’t know how to find other musicians to come together. Usually guitarists have still got their guitars but they’re often under the bed or in the back of the wardrobe, but the drummers have lost their drum kits because they take up so much room. I’m a bit the other way, I’ve got five drum kits!” Peter laughs.

“For the people who used to play – and some of them played quite high profile gigs, but their life circumstances changed and they drifted away from music – the concept of putting an ad in the paper saying ‘Mature age drummer with experience from 40 years ago seeking…” well, it’s not going to work. But the Weekend Warrior program is absolutely suited to people just like that.”

But TUSK!FM didn’t happen immediately, rather it grew organically from the group’s enjoyment of playing together and a realisation this was a genre they did well.

“We went through the Weekend Warrior program progressively over a number of years. We found ourselves in various different bands; I was in a band that did a tribute to Cream, and that was great, we were called Jammin’ Cream. When we came together, we didn’t set out with the goal to form a Fleetwood Mac tribute, it was more a case of wanting to do something special and we all enjoyed playing that stuff and it evolved from there,” Peter says.

“There were several line up changes over the time, but the current line up, we’re very comfortable with and that’s a big plus. It all came from a passion for what we do and enjoying each other’s company, and if we can offer some entertainment to others, then we’re very happy.”

TUSK!FM: A Tribute to the Music of Fleetwood Mac will play two nights only on February 19 and 26 at the Police Club.

Book your tickets HERE.

By Libby Parker
Photo supplied

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Libby Parker
Libby Parker is a journalist, teacher and life enthusiast.
You can follow her on Twitter at @upsidenews_lib

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