Gadflys get tuned up for Murrah return

The Gadflys play at Murrah Hall on Saturday.

The Gadflys play at Murrah Hall on Saturday.

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THE Gadflys return to Murrah Hall on Saturday after a 12-year hiatus with their trademark classic line-up.

Phil Moriarty on clarinet, guitar and vocals, is again alongside his brother Mick Moriarty on double bass, guitar and vocals.

They are joined by enigmatic and stylish Elmo Reid on double bass, electric guitar and harmonies; and powerhouse Pete Velzen (Falling Joys) on drums, but who also sings harmony.

For those who haven’t heard them, the Gadflys’ sound is unique.

Neither a consciously synthesised, nor a faux-reverent, imitative grab bag approach is taken in the Gadflys’ attitude to musical genre and style.

Over a 35-year career these fellows have sailed their boat through an ocean of grooves, stopping here and there to explore blues, Irish folk, calypso, klezma swing, New Orleans jazz, Latin rhythms and more, always with an ear for the rootsy and ragged, always careful to retain their own voice and not offer up pastiche and parody, in the name of authenticity.

The Moriarty brothers have been writing and performing original music for close on 35 years.

They evince an ear for harmony and feel for rhythm that is almost tribal - at once mysterious and familiar.

Backed by Reid and Velzen they broke their teeth on dance gigs, pub shows and school formals in the 1980s, learning their licks covering everyone from Louis Armstrong to The Supremes, Slim Harpo and the Stranglers.

The Gadflys have done stints on TV, playing their own tunes and backing the likes of Neil Finn, Glen Tilbrook and Mandawuy Yunupingu.

They have five excellent albums, including the hit Out Of The Bag, to their credit and continue to write and play new material.

This is a family friendly event and a fundraiser for a Murrah Hall portable dressing room.

Doors open at 7.30pm with an entry fee of $20 (kids free).

Low-cost tasty servings of Murrah Curries, snacks, tea and coffee will be available.

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