posted on June 25, 2016 at 10:38 pm
winters minstrel

winters minstrel

i swim out of the murky past trusting blindly in the currents of fortune

roamin’ ulysses escaping charybdis’ abyss

done with snow and ice i drift into warm and soothing seas

with no money i have landed upon these promising shores

o loveliness

the cattle and calves you love


the golden lambs of Hungaria

the skin of the women all soft butterscotch

divested of my tawdry vestments i am suited in nobility

in these looming mirrors i am reflected in my angles

the apparition of some old foolish duke from yesteryear

lost in the eastern palace of biblical Sheba

man i am so worn out

that sea of treachery…

In the many mansions of our father

i bestrode those marble floors with my cold feet burning

good spirit whisper to me

terrifyingly tame devils tempt me to fall

man like any other man

gifts and flaws and all

we talk on cold mornings by the sea

Galilee in the bay baby

we threw the nazarene up the cross

(yes, you and i)

the black milk of the darkest grape

(fernet branca)

oh how it succours darkness in the candles..!

in a warm auric ray i am isolated in the night sated

pink glow surround me

in unabated tides where i hideaway every morning as i grow closer

no ordinary dolt i am the bolting baying hound bounding over the sand

when the storms swing low and the mussels flex the beaches flesh

the arachnid crabs and the limpet winkle under a pier

appear to be sleeping

i  keeping change channels with a dagger


its staggering the stars out tonight on the sidewalks of fame

like my father on leave during the war

he’s striding through Golders Green again

sweet dreamies of Joe Bellettes piano and a girl in Hastings

maybe a’wasting his time and tasting defeat

the sweetest melody blows upon a reed

genghis khan himself the seed of that cheek

you probably come from the great steppes of asia

and i can’t praise ya enough
















posted on June 9, 2016 at 10:08 pm
at last my stars

at last my stars


it is indeed hard to know where to begin with this album

it is a totally immodest thing to say

but this a double plus good record my friends

not least coz a frank kearns guitar

sounds like string sections flutes and electric piano

sounds like birds crying and sounds like violins wailing

sounds like indistinct watercolour floods that are sweet and melodic

talk about intricate talk about evocative talk about mystical

talk about layers of rich organic blah blah blah

the last word in magical guitar playing

to induce an enchanted state to imply a familiar celtic faerie thing

childrens stories and Finn McCool and weird happenings

and huge distant birds traversing the skies

and warm moments lost in some glowing autumn afterglow

and desolation and the sound of war machinery echoing in a memory

the guitar playing is so romance laden and dripping in nature sound

this is as good as it gets

no one else has gone so far into the glimmering sonic empire as FXK

this is the result of years of perfecting this sound

and a completely dreamy nature which is ever percolating with music

hes taken the electric guitar and then treating it with his old school harmoniser

which is like the box that goes everywhere with him

a box that in the hands of a dreamer like him lets out dreams into this world

his creations are ephemeral gossamer delicate pearls strung across a universe of space

an absolute master of the guitar right here

not bent his energy towards the usual stuff

instead  found a way to imply such wonderful stuff

emotional joyous both complex and simple

easy to listen to and easy to create

this music oozes out from both of us now

like planets ooze from the mahavishnu out there somewhere

music we have created…i am impressed

the bass and piano i have provided

i am no maestro like FXK

but here i play exactly the right required thing

simple piano parts with emphasis on single lower notes up loud

the bass guitars are fluid supple and elusively fantastic

i am very proud of the keys and bass

the drummers wayne sheehy and barton price are just incredible

subtle and then walloping the skins like a wrathful god

ted howard who mixed with frank the record is a sonic genius

the vocals by me  and backing vocals by frank are strong and clear and tuneful

the melodies are sinuous and insistent

the words are spells oh yeah from who knows where tho

i dont know where these words have come from

i feel frank and i tapped into something

we drilled thru a wall and druidic words and music came to us

voices dictated the words to me

i have no memory of writing most of them

is this album somehow manifested from another realm..?

yes it is i suppose you could say

there is more going on than i can understand

some once famous bards from the olden days have informed our work

ideas flew to us as we cast our nets into the unknown silences

these are my best lyrics

the zenith so far of what i have done

the songs we have created here are a series of brilliant worlds

worlds of warm emotions and blurred memory

yes feelings of other lives other times other lives other voices

as frank is creating his backdrops of orchestral guitar

the words unfurl perfectly matched to the music like husband and wife

the words describe the music which describes the words

the voices the drums the music the words all of them suggest

but suggest what what what what what what what…?

somehow we are conjuring emotions fresh from outta some pagan place

we glimpse through the combination of words and music

the splendour of great houses in decay

the clean salty spray in a secret sea cove maybe painted by Dali

the fresh air that blows out of these songs

the animals that lumber and fly forth

the warm winter evenings of tuscany and eire

in albion the druids who produced their sublime lays

we can really only imagine how truly fucking cool their pieces must have been

somehow and somewhere on this record we have captured echoes of those days

our music just invokes all this fleeting stuff

but really enough is enough

its some of the best stuff ive ever done

this time the hype the wait whatever is all justified

this is one we’ve all been waiting for

the spiritual pastoral natural deep and clean music

after all we have ever done

here is this

its nine and three quarters stars out of ten

i dont see how we could have possibly made a better record

an absolute essential crucial recording

for people who want the strange and the mercurial

here it is!

hope you’ll be listening to this for years



posted on May 22, 2016 at 12:41 am


singing david bowie numbers at the sydney opera house

with the sydney symphony orchestra

thats quite a gig i guess

i wasn’t too bad but i was not perfect either

and singing those songs right carries a whole lot more responsibility

than singing my own songs right..?

of course you know it does

because if i fuck up my own songs they are mine to fuck up

i can forget words i can play wrong notes i can get it all wrong

but the people don’t mind because its mine

so with bowies songs i didn’t get all the aspects right and ok

thats enough self flagellation

except there is room for improvement

the other singers were great

(boy tim rogers is a character on and offstage)

bowie was the best there ever was in my opinion

he was a prime mover moving beyond his own influences

to be the main man

a once in a century type

he was number one in every department

and his songs are masterpieces mostly

and for a good decade everything he touched was gold

and always flashes of brilliance too in the sometimes patchy later records

and his patchy is better than most other singers best

no one could ever underestimate how important he was to me

the symphony show will be coming eventually to a city near you

and even possibly going overseas to some strange places

it was the most exciting nerve-wracking fulfilling gig of my career

my good friends were there esp dave r, george e, chris b, mark a

natalie aurora eve and scarlet came and watched and enjoyed

after a drive home in a cab with eve and aurora and they get out

the cab driver, an old european gent says

you have fine and beautiful daughters. they are a credit to you!

and that just about ends the last of the sydney gigs

but there will be more to come

i will miss my compadres esp adalita whom i love like a sister

everyone was super nice and super pro

a bloody good gig! i am a happy customer

at least for awhile

more gigs and work on new solo album coming up!

adieu then

sk coogee bay sunday the 22 nd may 2016



posted on May 16, 2016 at 12:10 am

when evenings skin becomes brittle and breaks open

revealing a terrible night with all its hands

and the trees full of birds and a discordant song

across the fields a murmur begins

oh savage beautiful women here i stand

with a spearful of fish and my dagger of wands

i am the cripple dance man with my luggage missing in utopia

hey i am waltzing through your open gates

where a fountains spray has cooled my burning ardour

where my tumescent ambition has ripened into sweet actions

and the eyes may graze for a moment upon yonder hills

in the candle light all the lamps and buttercup runneth over

the liquid milk of midsummer midnight now long spilt

when i was once your barrow boy and rode home to my school

when i was your fletcher and arrows filled our day

when i was your little dog boy and you taught me how to jump

then your castles were only in the sand now wonderful queen

and you overlooked a battlement of haze and blue blurred horizon

no ordinary child you held future between fingers

i have returned then from my exile

in burnished silks i rode henceforth through the creaking leagues

the hymns immolated by gods true presence

of course i knelt…who wouldn’t?

i am purified on the slag heap of decades

i am exonerated by the same crocodile judges

who sent me down

i have come back now in my tosca gretel slim tone

i have come back upon coins and postage stamps

i have come back as a whisper down a long cold line

this is all nonsense why who reads such stuff as this…?

bless my martinet blanket wear you lay disrobed during your shoot

blessed the imprint of musk you made upon my faintest door

in a window you now seem to be captured upon the pane

i cherish the ash where my room burnt away letting in the sea

in a green rush we were laughing as a ship we are swallowed

in the long life of a sparrow the worm is still to appear

by that i mean europe is elsewhere now take these claws away

it seems i have been sitting on the swings forever and ever

now I’m so dizzy as the world whirls round

i clutch at the maple and myrtle and elm

i am the photo of antiquity taken by aristophanes

splinters of the one true cross i bear rivers to cross

among the tribes and cults i bring disco music trapped in a skull

unreleased from my sins i travel light the globe in my mystery suit

i spit out poetry to hounds and mynah birds

but i digress in this garden of your loveliness

with your tawny feeling thorn of softest morning

i am the dawn of an empire briefly flourished in a mirror

archived in the memory of a flash

translated into the words of the wind

the flowers that uncurl to the darknesses fingers

a sickness that preys on a pale child who walks away

a miserable dark spirit who keeps coming back again in new shapes

a malevolent shadow that lingers on even in the brightest sun

with winter shudders i approach thee now

stupid as i am i have found my way to these dreaming gardens

oh so heavy my burden of slurs

dented in an accident they beat my panels

in flannels and wool the dissolving pull of my lamb

the scramble for light that begins in a tunnel

by your lily pad ponds no doubt out grown and over fond

see me as the salmon rising for the wriggling nymph on the surface of your brook

the cold mouth river where i swam against the dam wall in the fall of man

think of me as the immediate distant taste when we kissed in my dream

the creamy edge of the land that crumbles into sand

you held me in your hand






posted on May 8, 2016 at 8:20 pm
plastic camera

plastic camera

more stuff is on its way hip hoorah hooray

the speed of the stars is finished

its the bees knees and the last word in celtic rock

frank kearns and i united in our quest for truth and beauty

have created , yes, this masterpiece

frank and his strat and his eventide harmoniser negotiate delicate misty places

a music of minutiae and cosmos

the words gleaned from dream

the record is a door to another world

what a wonderful job everybody did with it

a magical record and something unusual


we have bowie at the sydney opera house with the sydney symphony ork

wow cmon cats thats gotta be cool right

your humble hero one of 6 singers some of the best songs ever written

then back to work on solo album in june

then back to usa with furs

and more Bowie shows in other australian cities

as well as the golden greats show you may see me doing with other various people

its all happening for sure

I’m the busiest guy in the biz baby and i never stop working

being a renaissance man means you gotta keep feeding the engine

yeah yeah sure kilbey sure whatever you say

enjoy it while you still can

be appreciative of all you have

don’t look back

dare to impose your will on the emptiness and silence

such a struggle to fight with everyone who wants to change your trip

so many bumps so many humps

so many jumps into the unknown

its exhilarating its tiring its thrilling its mundanity itself

just seen the rough cut of my doco


more of kilbey jumpin’ around in slo mo

while the church cooks up a jam

and less of the old guys pontificating  (i prescribe for it)

so anyway some of it is pretty promising so far…

so thats me right there i guess for ya

and in spades

a travelling tragedian

a bohemian buffoon

a stupid genius

an ordinary joe



posted on April 26, 2016 at 7:50 am
windy city

windy city

in the grinding journeys sudden lurching halt

in the shape of an electric bass guitar

my only constant companion in sunburst body

we have made such easy work of the whole thing

2 nights more then the crusade is over for at least ever

the singing droning ringing of my ears in a silent room

always encaged in last nights music and beyond

bought 50 dollars worth off a waiter

have another coffee

the day room at night

age is officially wearying me obviously despite everything i am after all nearly 62

some nights the force couldn’t seem to be with me

then other times its all ticketty boo

the days indeed rush past with a ferocity and an awful brevity

we now done our last long drive

now we live on our bus for 2 days before flying home

it aint that bad

soon we do our meet n greet

man i better try n squeeze in some yoga

without my daily dip in the pacific

yoga is my only virtue

making up for too much weed or absinthe or chips or chocolate sponge cake

yeah i only human ha ha it takes one to know one

over n out space caddies

sk in chicago

but with no transit authority

posted on April 24, 2016 at 3:34 am
on the buses

on the buses

i fucking crack myself up

on the bus george our merch guy complains to me :

all that frickin’ weed you smoke steve is giving me a sore throat

me : shut up man …you should be fuckin’ payin’ me for shmokin’ my stash..!

wow being on tour is weird i tell you

extended adolescence popping up in new places everyday

today we are in buffalo and its cold and clear

we go down starbucks and i suck down some huge caffeine hit

wow i am dislocated and adrift

people ask me how its going

man i don’t know what to say

its totally surreal

people come along and they venerate us

we have a sold out theatre last night in PA

but buffalo aint looking so good

we meet people on dialysis who listen to the church getting their blood changed

we get surgeons who listen to the church whilst stitching up your flesh

the people clap and cheer and we get many standing ovations

the good old blurred crusade…

who woulda thunk it all that time ago in mansfield street rozelle

the good old blurred crusade

quality then quality now

real songs thought out and planned

i’m proud of my old self for dreaming it up oh so long ago

nice work too particularly by p koppes and b clearmountain

who bring such lovely musicality to the thing

well it still sorta stands up all these years later

and the people seem to enjoy it

a bit clunky in parts but still a nice valid thing

with its own aesthetic and mojo

everyday is a day of madness trying to find food and fit things in

do yoga and get in a walk and blah blah blah

the band is pretty tight now playing wise

the crusade unravels so smoothly

its sad but i hope i never have to play it again tho in its entirety

i’m pretty much over it now

so many new possibilities

so many new songs to be written

and new musical adventures to be had

its unbelievable touring and sleeping on the bus most nights

its disorienting and all that kind of thing

makes you lose track of everything

everything builds up to the show

you go on you play

you have a pre gig drink you nibble at the chips

guitar doesn’t weigh a thing anymore

my fingers whizz around the fender bass like its a toy

so ridiculously confident the damn thing almost plays itself

so there you are

walking down a quiet suburban street in kentucky

or stumbling off a stage in new hampshire

or in the truckstop urinal with the earth still moving beneath your feet

you’re singing your words you’re playing your bass

people clap boy that makes you smile

the fans are so kind and so dedicated

sometimes its better not to meet them

sometimes tired sometimes full of a wild energy and enthusiasm

you have lost your locus kilbey

you are now along for the ride

nothing makes sense and why the fuck would it?

it doesn’t matter this is a rocknroll tour

you been doing it forever forty years worth sir

plucking that old bass guitar same as ever

you meet people you see people you talk to people


a woman yelled to her husband as i dashed into the bus last night

look ! its steve kilbey and he’s escaping ..quick!

but i hit the door code and suddenly was in the quiet darkness of the bus

the driver sat there chewing on something and smiling

good evening sir and how was your show this evening?

what can you say?

the crowd stood up and applauded us heartily

and all the other implications of the nights show

but yeah gee it went good 

that will suffice for now

it makes you feel like everything and yet nothing matters

we are here to play our lovely music and thats our only purpose

4 shows left by this time next week I’m already home

where a burst water main has destroyed all my electronic gear and sound system etc

wow happy times ahead

and my teeth are in bad shape and they need more than i have

my old english teeth not doing as well as other bits

in some ways ridiculously healthy due to yoga and swimming and veg eating

in some ways I’m crumbling apart altogether

so we are all getting on you never know when its your last chance to see us

yes i am devastated by princes sudden death

i was only envying him the other day

thinking that man has more youthfulness and talent than a person should have

and now this

i was envying a man with only weeks left to live

and thats a fucking message from the universe right there folks

any of us at any time

who would have thought bowie and prince would go just like that?

their genius and youthfulness could not save them

can we mere mortals grok this tho ?

man i am so sorry because prince was a fuckin’ genius no matter what

he should have lived till he was a hundred

i feel its ludicrous he should be taken so soon

and trump and clinton battle it out out there

is this the best you got america? these two cartoon buffoons?

obviously i love bernie

yes my people i love bernie

does he still have a chance?

and prince is gone

and i’m in buffalo parked outside a club waiting to get in for me shower

us australians we love our daily shower

and man the world is crazy

and wow that shower will feel good

and wow



posted on April 22, 2016 at 7:48 am
smoky day

smoky day

we hit new orleans and ohio

and brooklyn and a load of other places

the bus creaks and rattles and glides through america by night

i wake up we are somewhere different

the gear all comes out again

all them expensive guitars and stuff

it all gets set up again

we sound check again

the vips come n meet n greet

steve pick something from the menu please

what time is the first set?

can i get some more vocals in the monitor please?

my bass booms

my voice crackles and floats

the music jangles on and on

the drums pound etc

the people clap

i remember all the  words and notes in some miraculous sequence

all that stuff i wrote some of it so long ago


playing in the usa

the bus the cafes the tr

posted on April 10, 2016 at 2:33 pm
bus bouy

bus bouy

yeah after a 14 hour flight with the most fucking screamiest kid in the world

the church hit the USA runnin’ up that hill

we play in dallas oh baby and get standing ov(ul)ations before we even start

wow those texans and all that lovely mexican food

man guaca fuckin mole man yeah i cannae getta nuff

we do tonite a festival in san antoine

and the guys from the flaming lips say they like us wow

the lips put on an incredibleshow

i say to haugie howdja compete with that?

so now its 1129 my little pigs

and we drive for 12 hours now to get to nyorleens

a very cool rasta geeza blows me out with his hash pen

mexican girls say they love the church to me on the street

boy I’m rocking reeling feeling alright y’all fuck hey

I’m a two bit fuckin roxstah and I’m in the USA

i maybe 61 but oh baby am i havin fun?


posted on March 30, 2016 at 4:00 pm
in the wake up

in the wake up

in some deterministic universe

someone is waiting out there for me to write these words

in some cafe where its morning

in some happy time before now where my memory drifts

but the present spits me out here in coogee nsw

the 1980s are finally and safely over

i appear sitting here banging away at a computer far from my native land

hey i look alright in a not too bright light

yeah i been doing music over the last few days

finishing off the speed of the stars

which is me and FXK from ireland

this man is a dreamy character

we cook up some great new tunes for our record

barton price comes in and plays some excellent drums

what a total pro!

its great seeing a brand new piece of music  come to life

my intuition is working well i guess

this very pleasant music comes out easy when it does come

anyway that was yesterday and tonight it is now

so much happening so much standing still

saturday night is still out there and happening i suppose

we can imagine it even if we do not try

one million cold beers and one hundred thousand joints

countless pills n all the rest of it

things are very foggy out there in the mental plane

the red lights of a taxi blur to a crucifix

driving around looking for parties and drugs and music

i stay at home

as hours rush by then cascading slowly

my whole life has left me tired and burnt

what need of any company have i..?

i ask myself and receiving no reply

i wonder why

from my window i hear the big engines roaring down on the seaside strip

and planes flying in to land at mascot airport

next door in a garden some cooing lovebirds their exaggerated laughter

fragments of music on the night

and the tattoo parlour where you can get skulls and roses and snakes and devils

and the massage place you put your boots under the bed…

and shop thats open in the morning but closed at night

and another which is the opposite



ok its wednesday afternoon and i just remembered this

it will remain unfinished i guess