I love the world that Blind Uncle Harry builds through the music he and his revolving door of musicians create. It reminds me of a wonky, rootsy past, one resurrected from weed, wisdom and wide-eyed wonder, one that combines the most infectious sing-alongs with some deep and meaningful…occasionally deep and meaningless…themes, a bit like the way that Monty Python would bang on about Schopenhauer and then the next moment be hitting each other with fish! It is a place where cosmic country cool is soaked in a hippie hullabaloo and above all, where music is made for all the right reasons.
But Christmas Day in Australia is also loaded with reflection and melancholia, a message from the other side of the world, dealing with themes of loss and longing, of new beginnings and what might have been, of the demon drink… and being the world of Blind Uncle Harry, there is just enough room for a social side-swipe at those living more glamorous lives. It would be rude not to.
It’s an interesting change of direction, lyrically anyway, reminding us that even those who are reaching for the stars can still find themselves in the gutter, to totally mis-quote Oscar Wilde, that even when trying to fathom out the mysteries of the universe, a simple thing such as love can still be baffling. Poor Uncle Harry, if it helps, we’ve all been there.