From The Archives

The Young Charlatans

(November 1977-June 1978: Sydney/Melbourne)
The Young Charlatans 1978
 Ian 'Ollie' Olsen, Rowland S. Howard, Janine Hall and Jeffrey Wegener - 1978. Photo credit: Philip Morland.

Chronology: a chronological overview of known concert dates (some with setlists and/or ads), 
dates of (studio) recordings, all line-ups, assorted trivia and other tall tales 
related to the Australian band The Young Charlatans.
Date format is DD-MMM-YY.
-Information in grey italics is uncertain-
The year in which The Young Charlatans are founded, move to Sydney and rehearse a lot. No live gigs.

Music Around Us 15-Dec-77

AU Melbourne,ABC-TV,'Music Around Us' program

Photo: Screen capture from TV broadcast. Rowland S.Howard and Ian 'Ollie' Olson.

Note: 'Music Around Us' program, a current affairs-documentary program, this issue focussing on Pop music. Rowland S.Howard and Ian 'Ollie' Olsen are interviewed about their new Young Charlatans band and songs.

Line-up #1 (Sydney/Melbourne December 1977-May 1978):
Rowland S.Howard (vocals,guitar)/ Ian 'Ollie' Olson (vocals,guitar)/ Janine Hall (bass) and Jeffrey Wegener (drums).

North Sydney Dec-77

AU North Sydney,a squat

Note: Jeffrey Wegener travels to Melbourne from Sydney to meet Rowland and Ian with a view to form a band. They to relocate to Sydney to isolate themselves, rehearse and find a bass player. They live at a squalid squat (without any doors, nor toilet) that The Saints had occupied at some stage. Janine (living in Sydney) sits in on one session and stays. They rehearse and are writing songs like "Accident" , "Broken Hands" , "She's Not The Chosen One" , "Model Of Youth", "Seems So Distant", "My Empire", "You And/Or Her". By January 1978 they return to Melbourne.

"After Jeffrey [Wegener] came down to Melbourne [upon recommendation of Ed Kuepper] we couldn't find a bass player so we moved to Sydney and found Janine. Well, Jeffrey knew Janine and also there was some rehearsal studio in some absolutely awful place where we rehearsed six hours a day. We didn't stay in Sydney very long. What happened was that Ollie left the band and we came back to Melbourne and then he rejoined and then he left and rejoined again and then he left again." Rowland S. Howard from an interview by Ian McFarlane (Prehistoric Sounds magazine, Vol 1 #2 - November 24, 1994)

Ian is formerly of The Reals, later Whirlywird and Max Q (with Michael Hutchence); Jeffrey is ex-Saints and The Last Words, and later The Laughing Clowns (1979–84) and The Birthday Party touring band (1983); Janine is from New Zealand and would later join Chris Bailey's incarnation of The Saints (1979-1983) and Weddings, Parties, Anything (1987-1988). The Young Charlatans are managed by Bruce Milne and Philip Morland, both later Au-Go-Go Records.

Photo: The Young Charlatans (Jeffrey, Rowland and Ian) on their way to Sydney. Credit Bruce Milne.

The year in which they return to Melbourne, play live about 13 times, record a set of demos and nearly release a single, "Shivers".

Young Charlatans ad

February 1978
AU Melbourne

Ad: From Bruce Milne and Clinton Walker's "Pulp" fanzine issue #3/4 (February 1978).

Note: Rowland places an ad in "Pulp" fanzine looking for a guitarist after Ollie had left (in Sydney), but he would rejoin soon. To leave/rejoin/leave again later.

AU Melbourne

Note: They rehearse and are writing songs like "Still Burning" , "The Wrong Person", "Drowned", "Whatever It Means", "AKA", "Grand Illusions" and "I Mistake Myself". The latter four (together with "Shivers") would later become part of The Boys Next Door repertoire, after Rowland had joined them.

AU Melbourne,Bernhardt's Gay Nite Club
[with The News]

AU Melbourne,Monash University
Movement Against Uranium Mining benefit
[with News, Two Way Garden, The Proles]

AU Melbourne-Brunswick,Bombay Rock
[with Negatives, X-Ray-Z and The Boys Next Door]

AU Melbourne,Kingston Community Centre
Anti-Uranium benefit
[with Proles]

AU Melbourne,Royal Melbourne Institute Of Technology(RMIT)
Fun Factory
[with News, Proles and Two Way Garden]

Bernhardt's 30-Apr-78

AU Melbourne,Bernhardt's Gay Nite Club
[with The Boys Next Door, The News, Proles, Two Way Garden, Fiction and Spivs]
Pulp benefit

Flyer: Photo of flyer.

Note: With John Murphy (aka John Smith from the Suburbs) [later Whirlywirld] on drums.
Benefit organised by The News for Bruce Milne and Clinton Walker's "Pulp" fanzine. For some reason or other, it didn't resuscitate the ailing "Pulp" fanzine. Eventually "Pulp" issue #5 became a 'Best Of Pulp' which saw light as the book "Inner City Sound" by Clinton Walker.

Bernhardt's 02-May-78

AU Melbourne,Bernhardt's Gay Nite Club
[with The News]

Flyer: Photo of flyer.

University 07-May-78

AU Melbourne,University
[with The News and Proles]
Union night

Flyer: Scan of flyer.

AU Melbourne-Hawthorn,Swinburne Technical College
[with Two Way Garden]

Tiger Lounge 1978

AU Melbourne-Richmond,Royal Oak Hotel,Tiger Lounge

Setlist: ?/ She's Not The Chosen One/ Model Of Youth/ Broken Hands/ Accident/ ?/ ?/ ?/ You And-Or Her/ Shivers/ Drowned/ A.K.A.

Photo: From "We're Livin' On Dog Food", a documentary on the Melbourne punk scene by Richard Lowenstein.

Note: Rehearsal at the Tiger Lounge.

Bernhardt's 30-May-78

AU Melbourne,Bernhardt's Gay Nite Club
[with The News]

Flyer: Photo of flyer. Photo of another flyer. And one more flyer .

June 1978
AU Melbourne,rehearsal studio

Recording info: Broken Hands/ Beginning Of A Real War/ Drowned/ She's Not The Chosen One (take #1)/ Win-Lose/ Shivers (take #1)/ She's Not The Chosen One (take #2)/ Accident/ You And-Or Her/ Shivers (take #2)/ Retrograde.

Note: Recording demos from which "Shivers" (written on 20-Jan-77 when Rowland was 17 and in The Obsessions) was planned to be a single on the -as yet to be established- Au-Go-Go record label, but this never happened because the band broke up before the label was established. In April 1981 the "Shivers (take #1)" demo track was released on (Bruce Milne and Andrew Maine's) "Fast Forward" cassette magazine, issue #4. 2005 saw the release of the same track on the V/A compilation 2CD "Inner City Sound".

Line-up #2 (Melbourne June 1978):
Rowland S.Howard (vocals,guitar)/ John McKinnon (guitar/organ)/ Janine Hall (bass) and Jeffrey Wegener (drums).

Swinburne College 09-Jun-78

AU Melbourne-Hawthorn,Swinburne Technical College,Ethel Hall
New Wave Night
[with The Boys Next Door, News and Two Way Garden]

Ad: Ad from the Swinburne Scraglet.

June 1978. Not long after Ian had left, for the third and final time, and John McKinnon [formerly of prog rock band Madder Lake] had joined them and on the eve of an Adelaide tour Rowland the band breaks up. Rowland joins The Boys Next Door in August 1978, taking some of The Young Charlatans songs with him ("Whatever It Means", "AKA", "I Mistake Myself", "Grand Illusions" and "Shivers").

Ian 'Ollie' Olson and John Murphy went on to form Whirlywirld (1978-1979), then Hugo Klang (1980-1983), Orchestra Of Skin And Bone (1984-1985), Max Q with Michael Hutchence (1989-1990) and many others. John Murphy died on 11 October 2015, at the age of 56. Janine Hall joins The Saints (1979-1983), after Chris Bailey had returned from the UK, and later Mick Thomas’ Weddings, Parties, Anything (1987-1988). After that she trained and worked as an acupuncturist until her death in May 2008. Jeffrey Wegener goes to Ed Kuepper's The Laughing Clowns (1979–84 and 2009–2010) as well as Ed Kuepper's touring band (2007-2008) and Mick Turner [Dirty Three] (2008-2010).

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Last modified 9th of August, 2017.