I wanted to become a comedian when I first heard Bill Cosby. I felt the same when I was introduced to the Doug Anthony All Stars (D.A.A.S.) in the late ‘80s. We used to sit late at night at boarding school and listen to their album Icon while nibbling contraband biscuits, giggling furtively while reciting the lyrics, hoping we wouldn't get caught. I relished the Tuesday nights when we were allowed to watch The Big Gig on TV and I would have given my left pinkie toe to have seen them live.
As fate would have it, I didn't have to relinquish my squishy little digit to see them perform. I had moved to the Telfer Gold Mine on the edge of the Great Sandy Desert in Western Australia for vacation work after school had finished and, while sweating profusely and eating errant flies, I saw a poster for a D.A.A.S. show at the local town hall. $20 a ticket and free booze! I was over the moon. Of course, the seasoned comedian I am now would have shuddered at the thought of a bunch of miners drinking free grog but I didn't care.
I snagged a seat right at the front (what an idiot!) and enjoyed the energetic 20 minutes set D.A.A.S. put on before the miners started brawling and the lads left the stage. I also scurried out of the venue in fear of getting a can of beer to the noggin. I was lucky enough to meet Tim, Paul and Richard at the rear of the hall just after relieving my stomach of its contents. They seemed genuinely glad that I was a fan and shook my hand and gave me a warm beer from their rider. As I stumbled off into the vomit-spattered spinifex I clearly remember Tim screaming, "Keep reading books! There are a million worlds out there for you to immerse yourself in…"
At least, that's what I think he was saying. I was busy spitting out flies. Thanks for the inspiration D.A.A.S.