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Custom Rockabilly #1                              The Troubadour, February 11, 2006

Wes Pudsey & The Sonic Aces, West Texas Crude, The Ten Fours, DJ Lori Lee

Review by Lori Lee

I don’t know if southerners can really get a grip on just how humid it gets up here in the deep north. Last Saturday night the sweat meter was redlining at 80% for the first of the Custom Rockabilly nights at The Troubadour.


A steady stream of rockers, psychos, and full-tilt guys and gals (great to see so many new faces) filed in to the upstairs venue, taking up prime positions on the plush lounges, while DJ Lori Lee set the mood with a first grade cut of rockabilly and psychobilly tunes.


The Ten Fours were the first rockers on the bandstand and they kicked off a night of great entertainment. Front man, Pony, led these slicked-back rockers through a sometimes-tough-sometimes-traditional set of rockabilly served up with a side order of rhythm'n'blues and garage rock. Very tasty indeed.


If there was a hero that night, it would have been Bruce ‘Bruiser’ Dunlop, the drummer for The Sonic Aces. With four hours of playing already under his belt that afternoon at The Royal Mail, the hard-hitting drummer was recruited to stand-in on drums for West Texas Crude at the Troubadour gig. The marathon man didn’t miss a beat with West Texas Crude, who pounded out a killer set of revved up rockabilly.


Special guest harmonica player, Mark ‘The Colonel’ Doherty joined the Crude for a mighty version of The Paladins’ ‘Let’s Buzz’, working the audience into a sweating, bopping, rockabilly frenzy. The no-smoking deal meant that everyone was dancing right down the front, the clean air probably giving them another jolt of energy. The very vocal crowd wouldn’t let the Crude finish, but they had to eventually make way for the Sydney visitors.


With Bruiser having only enough time to wipe down his sticks and throw down a beer, Wes Pudsey & The Sonic Aces took their places for what was to be a fabulous performance. It was their last show of the Queensland tour and they saved their best till last - cramming all their toughest songs into the one set. The production at the venue is sensational, thanks to soundman Marty and the crew at the venue – these Troubadour cats really know their stuff.  


I squeezed down the front when I heard the opening licks of My Baby Looks Like Betty Page – the sound was loud and perfect – the audience was going nuts – then I see Wes do the splits on stage. Chuck Berry step aside… please. Then Casino Rumblers' dogman David Bean inverts his doghouse and hoists it over the crowd and mounts it in the audience, while guitarist extraordinaire Robert Taylor is playing his vintage axe behind his head and the Bruiser is sweating off yet another kilo behind the drum kit.


Even though it was hot and sweaty right down the front, the back of my neck had goose-bumps from the vibe that was in the air that night. This was a evening of real rockabilly, played eye to eye with real rockabilly fans and the audience was handing back everything the bands were giving out. It was that good.

Click each image to enlarge.

The Ten Fours

Andy Crude, brewed and tattooed

Jon Flynn ~ West Texas Crude

Wes Pudsey & The Sonic Aces


Up, up and away