Mark Ronson at Metros City, 22 July 2015
one thing i like to do is have two musics playing at the same time. today it’s a song called ‘the gold hall beckons’, by a local band, and an album called ‘pensée d’automne’ by jean lumière. you just put two songs on pretty loud and let them slow dance together, or just let them be in the same room with their own thoughts, perhaps unaware of how they’re affecting one another, but definitely affecting one another.
i was thinking that maybe that’s what he likes too, mark ronson, putting two musics together. this morning i woke up with the words “what is a ‘mark ronson’” in my head, and a bruise on my nose, and i’ve been turning both things over in my mind. it’s fine to not know who someone is or anything about them, in fact, it’s very normal. so yes, when i went to the show last night, i didn’t know what a mark ronson was. i was lifting my body to see what was happening on stage, but the man singing had long curly hair which was a surprise to me. i’d seen a photo of ronson on my friend’s phone and his hair was slicked back and not like this at all. who was this man with a high slung guitar and what had he done with mark ronson?
so this morning it reminded me of meeting a no-home man from deep in the wheatbelt who taught me how to throw a spear – crack a stick to make the animal move, then throw. and he mentioned eating ‘bardies’ to me, and i asked “what’s bardies” and then he had a funny look on his face and we both started giggling and i said “is that like asking ‘what’s eggs?’” and he nodded and grinned. i’ve told this story before.
so i don’t really know what happened at the show, except that a beautiful man with slicked back hair who apparently is a type of soft genius sat up on top of a big screen, words flashing over, as in big lyrics, and underneath him people sang in the way of him putting music together, weaving the thought of someone’s voice into a song by some other one, and a glorious sound coming out. at one time when kevin parker was singing, and kirin callinan was playing guitar and mark ronson was puppetteering them, or more like life coaching them from the side, i danced so ferociously that i banged my nose on one of metro city’s many shiny silver poles that hold the whole place up, hold all the people in, away from each other, close to each other.
so that’s really my review, to sum it up: “i have a little red bruise across the top of my nose from mark ronson.” i showed kevin, to prove that i’d enjoyed the performance, but really, a few thousand people glued to his voice and the rest of the band is proof enough of something special, this time.
it was a lovely thing, just floating around in that room watching people watching the stage. everyone singing along – that was the best part. a whole crowd of people who didn’t seem to be sleazy or fucked up, just very glad to be there. and a stream of famous singers and players who were like bardies to me or eggs to a martian that hasn’t spied on us for long went on and off the stage being energetically optimistic and wonderful.
i went upstairs sometime, right, right upstairs, to some sky bar that was just a big open space of tiles and the night sky, wide open, and you could still feel the music lifting you up up there and so i went running and sliding on the tiles with my friends jules and freddy, dancing across the big black space with no-one to bother us, except the hundredth person of the night going up to freddy to ask “how tall are you?” or to make the unbelievably vapid comment “hey, you’re tall”. being tall or being famous, it’s a daily small burden until you’re on a desert island, or maybe deep in the wheatbelt where everyone knows who you are but in a very different way.
up at the sky bar The Big told me ‘go now, find your friend, he’s downstairs outside’, which was very helpful as the friend didn’t have a phone. and that’s the main thing i think about these days, how there’s these two songs going on the same time, getting helped to find my friend by a large cosmic voice, and all sorts of nasty things happening to lovely people everywhere, every moment. like, maybe one day you just have a tiny bruise on your noise from saucily dancing into a pole, but then the next day someone from the next town who wants to live in your town comes and smashes you and all your family and burns down your crops…
well, the last thing is, at soup kitchen this week i met a man who was really hanging out to talk. he had the big grey fluffy hair of someone who has no-one to look after him, and the real sad look in his eyes. but we got talking about music, and he can play everything, guitar, mandolin, piano, harmonica, some drums, but found it hard to make his own songs. “i’d get to a certain point and then at the end, it was just really hard to finish.” he lived at a place called ’55 central’ that sounds like something from a book about down and out people, but is a real place that real people actually live. anyway, we talked for a long time and he told me about his real dream he’s working towards, even while things are rough, and it’s some way to help kids on the street in malaysia and also developing an app to help people start their own small businesses, people who are down and out, a real comprehensive but easy way to get things going. i asked him why he cares about kids on the street in malaysia and he said how he’d once watched a program about children in rwanda, after the genocide, and just seeing one little kid crying, alone, parents gone, and he decided on that spot that he would do something for children who are in that predicament. malaysia is closer than africa, so he’s planning to start there.
try not to be cynical. listen to some mark ronson over the top of some mendelsohn, and just see how it all fits in. mark ronson and pond at metros city, 5 stars.