Ep 23: 1994 – Magic Dirt, Meanies, Max Sharam, Rebecca’s Empire – show notes

Show notes, links, music and other stuff for Ep 23: 1994

Magic Dirt

It’s actually kind of amazing how when you look at the numbers, Magic Dirt didn’t really have a hit in the 90s. No songs in the Hottest 100. Yet they were everywhere, everyone knew them, and they played every festival.

And yup – they were part inspiration for the podcast artwork. I just love the cover to the Life Was Better EP. They just looked so damn cool, and for my money, it was the best designed cover of Australian music of the 90s.

You Am I covered the song Ice, from the same EP.

It’s interesting that there isn’t a ‘best of’ for Magic Dirt. It would be great – put their early noisey stuff in context of their blaring guitar pop of later years. It’s all on different labels so it might be hard.

The Meanies

Just thinking of The Meanies makes me happy. They were kind of done by the time I hit the all age scene, but everyone still talked about them. 10% Weird is a fantastic album.

The film clip to that title track was filmed outside the old Au Go Go shop.

Link went on to form the underrated Tomorrow People, who only made one album. It’s more poppy, and when I was a little older, I really got into it.

Wally went on to join Even, and we will definitely get to that band. He also now runs the wonderful Cheersquad Records And Tapes, which has released reissues and new music from legends like Underground Lovers, Jodi Phillis, Phil Jamieson, Adalita, Hard-Ons and many more.

Max Sharam

Max Sharam was a beautiful moment in the middle of the 90s. I mean this in the best possible way – she was an example of the wild and weird people who were getting major deals around this time. The door for that would soon close.

Here she is on Hey Hey

And then kind of more famously, New Faces

She went on Recovery and talked about going overseas, with big plans. But that seemed to be that. Although when I talk to people they still remember her, and I still hear Coma on the radio (or even in shopping centres). It was a rock solid hit.

Rebecca’s Empire

It was hard to even find a photo of Rebecca’s Empire. It didn’t help that curiously, Rebecca Barnard often appeared alone in publicity photos and album covers. They were kind of the opposite to Magic Dirt – every single they released made the Hottest 100. Numbers wise, they really stack up. But their reputation seems to have fallen away.

You can get a better look at them from their Recovery performance.

The Rockwiz producers sure thought Empty was a hit. The Rockwiz drummer, Peter Luscombe, was in Rebecca’s Empire so he probably just knew it. He’s a killer drummer.

The charts

Music heard

  • Idiot Box I by You Am I
  • Redhead by Magic Dirt
  • Supertear by Magic Dirt
  • Ice by Magic Dirt
  • Sparrow by Magic Dirt
  • Dirty Jeans by Magic Dirt
  • Daddy by Magic Dirt
  • Pull The Switch by The Meanies
  • Gangrenous by The Meanies
  • 10% Weird by The Meanies
  • Proof by The Tomorrow People
  • Punchin’ Air by The Meanies
  • Ton Of Bricks by The Meanies
  • Is It Ok To Call You Mine by Max Sharam
  • Coma (live on New Faces) by Max Sharam
  • Huntinground by Max Sharam
  • Coma by Max Sharam
  • Lay Down (Candles In The Rain) by Max Sharam
  • Be Firm by Max Sharam
  • Way Of All Things by Rebecca’s Empire
  • Atomic Electric by Rebecca’s Empire
  • So Rude by Rebecca’s Empire
  • In Deep by Rebecca’s Empire
  • Empty by Rebecca’s Empire
  • Daddy Long Legs by Tumbleweed