Paul McDermott is one proud ex-Canberran who isn’t afraid to do his bit to stick up for the city.
“I never think stereotypical criticism is a bad thing—it’s what comedians thrive on,” Paul said. “I find it all comical, almost like fighting fish in a tank, but I have exploited it over the years. Canberra cops a lot of flack, but every city does. Every single city has a neighbour next door that it makes fun of. It’s just like that carbuncle on our arse, that ‘outer suburb’ of Canberra, Queanbeyan.”
Paul is heading our way for Monday’s Centenary birthday bash, where he’ll host the Canberra Rocks stage at Regatta Point from 4 to 9pm.
“I would like to celebrate with the city, to cavort and carouse and enjoy the wonderment of this great city,” Paul said. “I’d also love if the Bogong moths came to the party, it’d be like a blessing from Mother Earth to recognise Canberra’s special day.
“I’m very excited for the 11 March birthday. Many of the performers on the day, such as The Gadflys and The Falling Joys are old friends from when I was at art school. It’ll be a reunion.
“I still remember going to a party in my first year of art school in Canberra and seeing Mick and Phil Moriarty playing all these punk rock songs in a lounge room. It was mind-blowing to be a kid and see that kind of energy. The Gadflys have on and off been part of the framework of my world ever since.
“It’s a great honour to be part of the Centenary celebrations. We are still a city in its infancy when you compare it to all the great civilisations of the world. In a way, it feels almost like our 1st birthday—we’ve still got a lot of growing to do, and that’s really exciting.
“I’m looking forward to having a bit of fun on stage with all my old mates and reminiscing about 100 years of Canberra,” Paul said.
Aside from his many adoring fans who remember Paul and the Doug Anthony Allstars busking in the 80s, Paul will have a few familiar faces in the crowd. “I still come back to Canberra, especially at Christmas Times,” Paul said. “My family’s still there—the McDermotts will certainly be coming to the party on 11 March.”