A duck who paints rabbits? It sounds as silly as the artist is. Welcome to the life of Duckpond.
If you don’t know who Duckpond is, then you don’t really know what the Big Day Out is all about.
Duckpond is one of four stooges who is responsible for cocktails and craziness at Big Day Out central. Along with Larry Kronic Jr, Christo and Heavy G, these four goons man the festivities at Lilyworld and BDO after-parties, among other things.
They are the unsung heroes of the tour - providing good times for the artists and crew on tour. They are the men who can convince Ed Chemical Bros to come and DJ at Lilyworld while he’s holidaying in Australia (and not actually on tour). They are are the men who can get Peaches, SpankRock, 2ManyDJs and Billy Bragg to make surprise appearances at their stage. And they are the men who can revamp an old guy’s career and make him cool again (ie Kamahl).
The Lilyworld guys are also partly to blame for the infamous “rock and roll fight” - the flight from Adelaide to Perth that is mostly consumed by the BDO touring party. The Lilyworld gang always manage to keep this flight entertaining and outrageous for all on board.
It’s not really right to single one person out - especially when Larry, Christo & Heavy G are all fascinating, smart and hilariously funny people with many hidden talents. But for this blog I am singling Duckpond out. Why? No he’s not better looking. No he’s not better than the others. And no, I’m definitely not sleeping with him. But he is about to debut an art exhibition at Mart Gallery in Sydney this week.
So who the fuck is Duckpond?
He’s that guy who strolls around in his pyjamas and a wacky hat often looking lost. Sometimes he may appear with a harem of young girls following him.
(see I told you so)
Duckpond has been with BDO since it’s inception. But before that he was an acclaimed lighting director and designer for many bands in Europe including The Happy Mondays and to this day, Duckpond still travels to Montrose festival to do lighting.
I don’t really know that much about Duckpond, but here’s some fun rumours I’ve heard about the legend that is La Quackpond:
1. He once tour managed Adam Freeland. However Adam admitted he was a terrible tour manager but an awesome person to have party with him
2. Lily Allen and Duckpond share the same rabbit tattoo on their ankles. Lily also owns an original Duckpond bunny painting too - she has even tweeted about it
3. He once broke the heart of an English guitarist / singer / songwriter who was once a part of a UK band who played the BDO (she has since joined forces with another hot UK singer/songwriter who will be touring Australia mid year).
Over the past couple of years Duckpond’s wabbits have started to appear everywhere. In fact Dizzee Rascal’s MC Scope ordered a custom made bunny tie and suit from Duckpond.
These bunnies are now being brought to life in an exhibition at Mart Gallery called The Twelve Volt Solar System. It starts this Thursday. And apparently not only will Duckpond be exhibiting his famous bunnies, but he will finally be selling his iconic pyjamas too! Just in time for winter you clever Duck.
I started writing my blog about Lilyworld - but realised I would be here for hours. Despite what you have heard or seen or may think - Lilyworld is actually an extremely special little place within BDO and it deserves my full mental capacity (ironic really). So instead I’ve taken the lazy option - gossip. But the word gossip has such bad connotations. Although the below may be considered gossip, it is also true and some may say factual - maybe some are not quite 100% accurate, but let’s say there are no lies here unless openly specified). So let’s call them stories from the road. Tales. Even better, let’s make it educational and call this blog…
Did you know?
An Australian band had the largest touring party in 2010 (yes even more than headliners Muse - who by the way have a pretty amazing crew - not only are they some of the best production people in the world, they are also some of the nicest! A couple of them have even stuck around after the December Oz Muse tour to work on BDO. Lucky BDO)
Arctic Monkeys came to Australia with their girlfriends and holidayed. And then sent them home just before the tour started. What good boys. Some may say they are dedicated to picking up. But I’m going to be naive and say they are dedicated to their music and playing killer shows.
Will-I-Am once competed against Fred Durst in a running race backstage in Auckland and won
Staying with the sporting theme… Perth. Backstage. Ping pong championship. Final Zach de la Rocha (RATM) Vs Alex Kapranos (FRANZ). I think Zach won
The singer from the Horrors carried around a moleskin in his back pocket over the entire tour. He apparently wrote about people he met
M.I.A brought her brother on the 2006 BDO tour
She might be known for loving truffle fries, but M.I.A also loves cake
Lars from Metallica got lonely in his big artist compound guarded by security. So he regularly visited other bands dressing rooms and asked them to come over and play. He really liked The Strokes
My Chemical Romance’s Gerard found his own “romance” with an Aussie musician who fell from grace
Dave Grohl discovered kebabs for the first ever time on the BDO tour
Last year Rise Against guitarist Zach Blair was shredding his guitar so hard he cut his fingers live on stage. Even with blood dripping everywhere he powered on and most people didn’t even realise
Chris Lilley of Summer Heights High and We Can Be Heros fame came with Silverchair to the Sydney BDO in 2008
Dizzee Rascal went to a tea party hosted by Lilyworld’s infamous Duckpond. There was tea & biscuits. But this was no ordinary tea party
I hope you found this reading informative. I aim to educate. Education is for the nation. If you have any questions you want to ask me I will do my best to answer them. If you want me to find out something on this tour - in 2011 - send me your questions and missions! I can be like your own BDO private investigator!
Welcome to the official FUCK YEAH BIG DAY OUT blog! This is the only blog for all you BDO lovers and haters (I don’t discriminate here) where it’s not just about the music. It’s about much more - it’s about all that irrelevant but oh so much fun shit too.
The first BDO show of 2011 kicks off next Friday in Auckland so I figured I should get my arse into gear and get this blog thing happening now.
So what better way to start than sharing with you some of those golden behind the scenes moments from past tours (in no particular order). I’m sure Tony Robbins has some insightful one liner about how it’s important to remember the past to move forward into the future so I can segue into this random list but I can’t be fucked googling it. So here goes…
1. Airbourne spending all day in the backstage artist spa and then proceeding to do nudie runs around the artist compound
2. Kamahl copping a feel of Yumi Stynes when getting a photo with her
3. Meg White apparently hooking up with Cedric Mars Volta - most random but awesome rock couple even if it’s not true.
4. One of Australia’s most loved bands catching an elevator with Tom Morello who was… wait for it… eating McDONALDS!
5. Lilly Allen & Matt Bellamy having intense D&Ms on the grass of the MCA at the 100th Show After Party. Rumours of a hook up are not true. But it is true that Matt bought his gf K.Hud a Camilla kaftan when he was here on tour recently
6. Passion Pit @ Adelaide BDO. Everyone from Lily to Paul Mac were standing side of stage and loving it. Apparently Passion Pit had hit a wall prior to this tour and they credit BDO to reminding them why they wanted to be in a band in the first place
7. Devendra Banhart trying to get into one of the crews rooms in Perth because he was on the wrong level floor and thought it was his room
8. Bjork dancing with Dizzee Rascal at a BDO after party and getting her dancers to move away any other girls Dizzee tried dancing with
9. Bjork attending another BDO after party with gaffer tape across her mouth and refusing to talk to anyone
10. James Mathison dancing on stage with The Presets in Perth and fucking up the routine not once, but twice
11. Members of Spank Rock, Justice & Diplo doing a DJ superstar set at Perth after party
12. Kings of Leon have rating systems for rating women in the room
And the list goes on. But it’s not ladylike to give everything away on the first date.