My ‘British Weekend’ in Brisbane

As you know, Mrs BobinOz and my daughter Elizabeth are currently on holiday and I chose not to go with them, because I really did not want to return to England. I’ve missed them these past two weeks, of course I have, and I’m really looking forward to when they get back on Wednesday.

This weekend though, I decided to have a…

“British weekend” here in Brisbane.

I just wanted to feel a little bit closer to the country my two girls are currently in. First stop the Beetle Bar…

Beetle barIt’s my favourite music bar in all of Brisbane; bands play live every night I believe. Let’s go inside…

Inside the beetle barFour bands were playing on this particular night and they had billed it as “Revolution Rock”. 4 bands, $10 to get in? Fantastic! Who were these bands? Let’s have a look…

Who's on in the beetle barEach of these four bands though, were tribute bands, and they were tribute bands of one band.

The Clash.

As far as bands go though, you don’t get much more British than The Clash. I was already feeling closer to my family. Closer and closer with each beer and every Clash song.

Four versions of London’s Calling and it was almost as if I was there.

The StrumsSo that was Friday, Saturday I was off to the Jubilee Hotel, a quite substantial pub in Fortitude Valley…

The Jubilee, BrisbaneLet’s face it, with what went on with the Queen this year, it’s pretty British to go to a pub being called The Jubilee.

There were all sorts of weird stuff going on in this pub, I can tell you. It was all a bit “Alice in Wonderland“. In one room they had a Latino dancing night that didn’t quite take off…

Latino dancingOut the back in the garden bar there was some sort of Jamaican beach hut set up with, I think, calypso music playing, although it was difficult to tell with that Latino music also drifting across from the other room.

Upstairs they had live bands playing in the music room, mostly grungy stuff. And for some reason, two guys were wandering around dressed up in Bavarian German Lederhosen beer costumes!

Now all this, of course, isn’t typically British, that’s why I went to the sports bar to watch the English Premier League match. I had a great view at the front, although my mate Andy’s head did get in the way once or twice…

English Premier LeagueIt was the early kick-off, so the game finished at 11:30 PM here in Australia, just in time to go and watch the remaining live bands upstairs. We had all bought our tickets earlier, $12 to see 5 bands.


I had deliberately chosen this bar to watch the football, because my favourite Brisbane-based band, Sabrina Lawrie and the Hunting Party, were making an appearance…

Sabrina LawrieYes, I know, that wasn’t very British to watch an Aussie band on my British weekend, but they are a class act.

When we got back downstairs, the previously empty hall of Latino dancers had been filled with witches and ghouls for a Halloween party. The place was now heaving! I would have loved to have shown you a picture of all these witches and ghouls, but by this time of the evening I was a little bit tipsy.

I forgot.

There you have it, that was my British weekend. But I can’t end it without doing this…

“And so now I’d like to say… people can change anything they want to. And that means everything in the world. People are running about and following their little tracks – I am one of them – but we’ve all got to stop just following our own little mouse trails. People can do anything. This is something I’m beginning to learn.

People are out there doing bad things to each other. It’s because they are being dehumanised. It’s time to take the humanity back into the centre of the ring and follow that for a time. Greed… it ain’t going anywhere. They should have that on a big billboard in Time Square.

Without people you’re nothing.

That’s my spiel.”

Joe Strummer 1952-2002

Lead singer, The Clash.

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