Andrew Picouleau - personal history

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At the time I met Al I was playing in a post punk rock band in Carlton called Popgunmen. The band was made up of Peter Rich (vocals), Maurie Bund (guitar and keyboards), myself on bass and Errol Senol on drums. Peter and Maurie had been members of XRayZ, one of the bands on the Suicide compilation album – Ash Wednesday was in another of the Suicide bands (Jab), but I hadn't had much to do with Ash at this stage.


I had been living in Carlton for a few years trying to get somewhere playing bass and working various dull day jobs. Before the Popgunmen I had been playing with the Secret Police, an outfit that included Roger Hart (who later on formed Little Heroes and who Al did a bit of production and songwriting with). I left the Secret Police to work with Peter Rich and some other guys – this all gets a bit complicated - suffice to say that Popgunmen survived for a year or two, and Maurie helped me out on the first metronomes single and the Multiple Choice album with some nice guitar and keyboard bits.


Sometime after the Multiple Choice album, Popgunmen ground to a halt, and after a brief but horrifying experience with a comedy/rock group called the Routinos, I ended up playing with the Sacred Cowboys. The Sacred Cowboys included Garry Gray and Johnny Crash, both of whom had played on the Suicide record (see above). Johnny had played in Jab, and as it turned out Ash also had a bit to do with the Cowboys, in a loose sort of way.


I'd like to point out here that although nobody remembers the Suicide record now or the impact the bands that played on it had on the Melbourne music scene back then, it was pretty significant at the time, and if Clinton Walker had an ounce of human decency he would have given these guys their due in his various highly idiosyncratic accounts of the popular and underground music industry, etc etc…….


By 1985, when we recorded Regular Guys, I had quit the Sacred Cowboys after experiencing profound feelings of economic insecurity over an extended period of time, and I was in the middle of an Arts Degree. I had almost stopped playing for a while, before Frank Savage lured me out to play with his Animals covers band (called Mensland). This later led to me playing with Frank in various more or less rehearsed outfits, including a brief but memorable stint with the wonderful Pete Best Beatles.


Later on, after a further period of inactivity, I came out of retirement to play with another covers band called the Real McCoys, filling in for Mark Ferrie while he was overseas (this was in about 90 or 91). Mark had returned from his trip, and I was preparing to put the bass amp under the house, when Dave Graney asked me to fill in for his bass player in the Coral Snakes, Gordy Blair, who had to go back to the Northern Hemisphere because his visa had run out or something. As it turned out, Gordy was away for about 18 months, and I ended up getting to play on the Night of the Wolverine, which turned out to be a really nice piece of work. The next musical thing that happened to me was when we started working on this album (well apart from a few things that never got anywhere).


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