They were six rock musicians who wanted to play rock music. But they didn't want to be part of the regular 70's style rock bands that were around at the time. So to be different they decked themselves in outrageous costumes, labelled themselves with the dumbest name they could think of and started playing in pubs, where they became hugely popular. Early in 1976 the group toured Auckland and burst on to the scene there with a strong theatrical show, taking bizarre appearances to absurd lengths.
Honing their craft during intensive rehearsals at the Dunedin City Highland Pipe Band hall, each member of the band dressed as a distinctive character; Vocalist Craig Johnston was a sailor, Marcel Rodeka was a pixie, Denis Gibbins dressed as Minnie Mouse, Peter Dickson a baby (complete with nappy), Steve Young was a ballerina and Kevin Collings a Bumble Bee.
Moving to Australia, the band started playing at Cloudland in Brisbane and at the Playroom on the Gold Coast in Queensland in late 1976. They then travelled to Sydney and began working for the Dayman Organisation. They were spotted by Garry Spry, who was so impressed by their act that he took over their personal management and moved them down to Melbourne.
They eventually came to the attention of Mushroom Records who signed them. Aided by an outrageous film clip which became popular on TV rock shows, their first single "Baked Beans" made the charts in September. In August 1977, their first album "Stuffed" was released and became Mushroom’s fastest selling album and "Baked Beans" was a hit across Australia.
Within one month sales of the LP had topped the 15,000 mark and a second single "Moonshine Lady" was released in the wake of the albums success. During August, the group also toured with Supercharge.
Late in September they returned to New Zealand to rest and get a new act together. They were back in Australia two months later and they rounded off 1977 with a national tour. At the end of the year they were voted "Best Stage Act" in Ram Magazine's rock poll.
By June 1978, Mother Goose had moved to the United States and were living in California with their own recording studio and a signed deal with Scotti Brothers Records. After five months of song writing and recording demos, they left the Scotti Brothers and relocated to New York.
Contractual battles with the Scotti Brothers unfortunately prevented the band securing another major recording contract and lead guitarist Peter Dickson left the band in February 1979. He was replaced by New York guitarist, Justin McCarthy, who adopted the costume of a toy soldier.
|Mother Goose On Stage During their ‘Catch Me If You Can 'Tour|
A single "Living In A Silent Movie"/"Alice (It's Up To You)" was released from it in December 1979.
There were considerably gaps between the next three releases, "Saving For A Rainy Day" / "All The Kings Horses" in June 1980, "I Can't Sing Very Well" / "You Take It Too Seriously" in July 1981 and "Marguerita and Me" / "Fly By Night" in March 1982. Early in 1982 founding member Steve Young left Mother Goose and was replaced by Neil Shilkin.
Their third and final album was in June 1982 and was called "This Is The Life". Along with it came the single "Lonely Girls"/"Living In A Small Town". Then followed "Tonight"/"Welcome To The Radio" in October 1982 and "Find A Way Out"/"Girls Across The Street" in July 1983.
In early 1983 Mother Goose was based in Melbourne and Pete Dickson rejoined after stints with Magic and Manlaxe. Justin McCarthy returned to New York. They continued touring Australia and Canada until they called it a day in 1985.
The original Mother Goose line-up reunited for a one-off gig in Dunedin, New Zealand, on 23 March 2007.
The guitarist Collins still lives in Anderson's Bay, Dunedin, where he occasionally plays at a coffee shop at the Terminus, a shopping strip there with beautiful views of Dunedin from the Bay. I believe Craig the singer, is now a Melbourne resident.
The Goose were one of the most entertaining and musically adept local bands I have ever seen. I still play the album a few times each year. They were the first band I saw where the drummer had 2 bass drums. [extracts from nostalgiacentral.com and sergent.com.au]
This post consists of FLACs and MP3's (320kps) ripped from my prize vinyl and includes full album artwork for CD (thanks to Micko) and Vinyl (with label scans). Although not as solid an album as Stuffed, this album still features some classic live favourites such as "Living In A Silent Movie" and "Paint It Black".
To put icing on the cake, I'm also including their 1981 single "I Can't Sing Very Well" and "You Take It Too Seriously" as bonus tracks.
With recent requests from my blog followers to post this album, I'm sure there will be a couple of of happy campers out there thinking 'Fairytales Do Come True'
01 Living in a Silent Movie 4:31
02 Saving for a Rainy Day 4:44
03 Alice (It's Up to You) 4:24
04 Once Upon a Time 5:55
05 All the King's Horses 4:10
06 Paint It Black 4:48
07 Taking a Chance on You 3:25
08 Soliloquy 1:45
09 Don't Believe in Fairytales 3:45
10 I Can't Sing Very Well (Bonus Single)
11 You Take It Too Seriously (Bonus Single)
Craig Johnston — vocals
Kevin «Dwarf» Collings — guitar
Justin McCarthy — guitar
Steve Young — keyboards
Denis Gibbins — bass
Marcel Rodeka — drums
Mother Goose FLACs Link (273Mb)
Mother Goose MP3 Link (105Mb)