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What ever happened to Canberra’s punk?

By Hacketthead - 10 October 2012 36

Does anyone remember a guy who used to call himself Snotty, he was a fixture on the Canberra scene from 1990-1992 which is when I remember him being around.  He was a hard core punk, perhaps Canberra’s only punk.  He was a bit of a loser but a character nonetheless.  I wonder what ever became of him, does anyone know?

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36 Responses to
What ever happened to Canberra’s punk?
Overheard 9:29 am 11 Oct 12

If you’re a Farcebooker, this page will have much that may resonate:

https://www.facebook.com/CanberraPunkandBeyond

Antagonist 8:52 am 11 Oct 12

Hacketthead said :

… He had a mohawk, multiple piercings, tatts, studded leather jacket etc. …

Did the leather jacket have ‘Punk Not Dead’ (sic) handwritten on the back? I don’t have any major revelations to contribute to the thread, but this guy does ring a bell as a character I used to see around the city bus interchange circa 1990/91.

Thumper 8:43 am 11 Oct 12

There was a smallish punk scene that emerged from Dara in the early/ mid 80s.

Boover boots, stovies with rolled up cuffs, studded leather jackets and tufted spiky hair.

These guys used to drink at the Tradies and then move onto civic.

Rough bunch really but okay if you knew them although they used to scare the hell out of people 🙂

colourful sydney rac 7:57 am 11 Oct 12

Hacketthead said :

Listers Cat, I started hanging around the ANU Bar which was the focal point of the Canberra “alternative music” scene (alongside Radio 2XX and Impact Records) when I was 17 in 1989. There were a few bands we used to follow, The Real Gone Lovers, Mudrac, Space is Ace, The Pheremones (which had Helen Razer, the radio journalist, on vocals). I came to know Snotty the punk in about 1991. He was a uni bar habitue, and you’d see him hanging around Civic, just being well, punky. He had a mohawk, multiple piercings, tatts, studded leather jacket etc. Once when I was drunk at the ANU bar he and I had a conversation about music and he liked a lot of the same stuff I did (Radio Birdman, The Specials, The Pogues). After that whenever he saw me he would cadge a drink off me but as he didn’t overdo it I was always happy to buy him a beer and have a chat.

MUDRAC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How could I forget them?

colourful sydney rac 7:52 am 11 Oct 12

Listers_Cat said :

Care to give us some extra details for context Hacketthead? It’s great that your question was answered almost immediately, but this is a public forum. Tell us more about the early 90s punk scene (or lack thereof).

I was invovled in the late 80’s early 90’s scene – it wasn’t a punk scene as such as there weren’t many people who would have been classified as punks, it was more a punk/goth/mod scene with a few skinheads and rockerbillies thrown in to the mix.

Days were spent at the Uni bar, Terrace bar or Terminus; nights were at the Manhattan night club, the Arena and later the Circus. Police harrassment was pretty common.

There were a few bands based in Canberra that were always worth seeing at the Arena or the Civic Youth Cafe; the Crack and Daddy’s Coming Home spring to mind. Happy days.

Predictably the scene fell apart as drugs, backstabbing and bashings (by bogan yobs) took their toll.

Snotty and I were pretty close for a while but he had a habit of burning through friends, as I mentioned, last I heard was that he had shot through to Perth and had cleaned himself up a bit, got a job and had some of his more ridiculous tattoos removed.

Hacketthead 7:45 am 11 Oct 12

Listers Cat, I started hanging around the ANU Bar which was the focal point of the Canberra “alternative music” scene (alongside Radio 2XX and Impact Records) when I was 17 in 1989. There were a few bands we used to follow, The Real Gone Lovers, Mudrac, Space is Ace, The Pheremones (which had Helen Razer, the radio journalist, on vocals). I came to know Snotty the punk in about 1991. He was a uni bar habitue, and you’d see him hanging around Civic, just being well, punky. He had a mohawk, multiple piercings, tatts, studded leather jacket etc. Once when I was drunk at the ANU bar he and I had a conversation about music and he liked a lot of the same stuff I did (Radio Birdman, The Specials, The Pogues). After that whenever he saw me he would cadge a drink off me but as he didn’t overdo it I was always happy to buy him a beer and have a chat.

Listers_Cat 12:07 am 11 Oct 12

Care to give us some extra details for context Hacketthead? It’s great that your question was answered almost immediately, but this is a public forum. Tell us more about the early 90s punk scene (or lack thereof).

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 10:19 pm 10 Oct 12

Punk pretty much died with Bradley nowell.

SpACEman 9:47 pm 10 Oct 12

I was always scared of punks because I considered them ANTI-SOCIAL. I was a kid when they were around, so anyone a little bit different frightened me.

Hacketthead 7:10 pm 10 Oct 12

I remember seeing a bunch of them heckling the Punch and Judy show at the Food & Wine Frolic in Commonwealth Park in 1985. For a twelve year old from Wagga Wagga, that was a bit of an eye opener.

Thumper 6:52 pm 10 Oct 12

Used to be heaps of punks in the mid 80s. I used to drink with a few of them on ocassions.

Duffbowl 6:46 pm 10 Oct 12

Let’s face facts; by 1990, punk was in decline. It peaked in the mid 1980s, and started evolving into new and fairly different streams. Not just musically, but as a subculture in itself. By the time I got to Canberra in 1990, it was pretty much non-existant. That said, I have heard from older colleagues of a similar bent that it was bloody massive here in the early 1980s, just as SnapperJack points out.

Hacketthead 6:45 pm 10 Oct 12

Thanks Colourful!

Sorry SnapperJack, you are right – I remember there being a few punks around when I first got here in 1985, by 1990 though I think Snotty was the only one still around. The only one hanging out in Civic and the ANU Bar, anyway.

SnapperJack 5:14 pm 10 Oct 12

“Canberra’s only punk”? Hardly. If you walked thru Civic on any Friday night in the late 1970s, early 1980s you would have seen thousands of them.

colourful sydney rac 4:21 pm 10 Oct 12

Moved to perth following Marty being stabbed in the neck with a screwdriver. Snotty (James) was a witness and basically left town in fear for his life. Knew him well.

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