• Christine Anu is a legend in Australian music. We first met her in the mid 90’s, when her debut album Stylin’ Up came out and went platinum. It was filled with hits like 'Monkey & the Turtle and Party', and featured Christine singing in English and traditional language on a pop record. This was 1995, and while Yothu Yindi and the Warumpi band had paved the way, singing in language was far from mainstream. It was the beginning of an epic career for Christine Anu that includes music, film, theatre and TV. For this Take 5, I asked Christine to share the storytellers from the decade that had shaped her, the 90’s. Across five songs, Christine shares stories and personal history she never has before. Her love and respect for those who supported her early on, is so strong throughout too. This is a conversation full of heart and conviction.  

    Neil Murray - 'Holy Road'

    Kev Carmody - 'Thou Shalt Not Steal'

    Tiddas - 'Happy Earth'

    Dionne Francis - 'I Know'

    Janet Jackson - 'Together Again'

  • TISM were one of the biggest Australian bands of the 90’s. They were the godfathers of musical comedy, captains of satire and frankly, a band that when I listen to today, I’m still gobsmacked by. They hailed from Melbourne but played all over; masked men who would put on insane shows full of bizarre concepts and songs like “Defecate On My Face” and “Saturday Night Palsy”. TISM were the ultimate shit stirrers, and we loved it. Humphrey B Flaubert AKA Damian Cowell reminded us of why the 90’s helped a band like that flourish, and share five songs from the zeitgeist himself. From pop princesses to Brissie bands that have never played by the rules, it’s not only one of the funniest Take 5’s you’ll hear but a capture of a unique and wonderful time in Australian music. This is seriously, one for the ages.

    Caligula - 'The Bluff'

    Kylie Minogue - 'Did It Again'

    Regurgitator - 'Black Bugs'

    Custard - 'Nice Bird'

    Fauves - 'Easy (Easy)'

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  • The Big Day Out was one of our most iconic festivals. Born in 1992 when the Australian festival calendar was way less crowded, this is where many of us return when we think about discovering our favourite bands, and our tribe, in the 90’s. It’d always be hot, you’d spend ages planning your outfit and organising your friends. And even if you had a mental list of the bands you were desperate to see, there’d always be surprises… strange and wonderful experiences on the Lilypad Stage, dark and dank moments in the Boiler Room. You’d come home from a Big Day Out with a whole new bunch of artists to love. Imagine being on that traveling tour every year, looking through the lens of a camera. That was the job of Sophie Howarth – official photographer for the Big Day Out. From it’s very first year, she was there; in the pit, on the stage, amongst the crowd and backstage. Capturing some of the most iconic images of the 90’s. Sophie gave us an Access All Areas pass for her Take 5, and transported us to the first (and only) Nirvana tour on the maiden BDO, to babyfaced Silverchair and their furiously excited fans. She took us into the world of her own musical horizons expanding, and reminded us of the lasting legacy of our own incredible artists. This is one for the heart, from the heart.

    Nirvana - 'Smells Like Teen Spirit'

    Silverchair - ‘Tomorrow'

    Warumpi Band – ‘Blackfella/Whitefella’

    ASH - 'Girl From Mars'

    Magic Dirt - ‘Super Tear'

  • Tim Minchin is a bit of a renaissance man. An actor, singer, comedian, writer and the fella behind the hugely successful musical adaptation of Matilda. In between his time writing perfect songs on piano, Tim played Atticus Fetch on Californication, and has starred in Australian TV productions like The Secret River, and Squinters. After a decade away, Tim has returned home to Australia. So I asked him to join me and Take 5 with musical souvenirs. We began in London, with chance meetings at parents groups, and ended in California, with a big singalong. Along the way Tim reflected on life as an ex pat, and his return to his homeland. One for fans of Minchin, and of song.

  • Andrew W.K. is a man with a clear goal: to make the most of every moment we’re lucky to have. Through music, motivational speaking, writing columns, even starting his own political party he lives by and for the party. Beyond the glam and punk rock though, lies the heart of a fan. This is about the music that affected him from a young age, that really made him fall in love with music. From rock opera’s to heartfelt piano ballads, lesser known hits and the experience of seeing Little Richard live for the first time, these are the songs worth living for, and the songs that made Andrew who he is today.

    Andrew Lloyd Webber & Murray Head - ‘Superstar {Ft. The Trinidad Singers}’

    Carly Simon - ‘The Right Thing To Do’

    Little Richard - ‘Keep A Knockin’’

    Procol Harum - ‘Homburg’

    Diana Ross - ‘Home’

  • Neko Case is a powerhouse of song. Over twenty years she’s crafted some of my favourite lyrics as a solo artist dwelling in Americana, and as a soaring pop singer in The New Pornographers. On her own records, Neko’s songs often dwell in the outside; whether she’s singing of foxes, or wild weather, you can feel and see the atmosphere she creates in every story. But there’s a deeply human element to Neko Case’s music too, a compassion and heart. Neko is a vocal feminist and one of my favourite people to follow on Twitter. She calls bullshit on bullshit, but also lifts up those who need it, from the platform she has. And she is a huge music fan. I knew her own personal history with song would make this Take 5 special, and I wasn’t disappointed. While on paper, some of these songs were a mystery to me, when you hear Neko speak about the impact these artists had on her, as a little kid, as a teenager, and as a person finding their own way as an artist, it tells a story of where she’s come from. What has fuelled her life force. Take a moment with some troubadours, it’ll fill your soul.

    Staple Singers - 'Slippery People'

    Nina Hagen - 'Atomic Flash Deluxe'

    Les Rita Mitsouko - 'Oum Kalsoum'

    The Cramps - 'Thee Most Exalted Potentate of Love'

    Buffy Sainte Marie - 'Now that the Buffalo’s Gone'

  • Caiti Baker is one of my favourite Australian singers. I first came across her work as one half of Sietta. Then she stepped out on her own and cemented her spot as one of the great soul singers making music today in Australia. Caiti is a long time resident of the Northern Territory. As a kid she’d tag along on family road trips when her dad (also a muso) would drive from Adelaide to the Top End to play shows. They’d stick around for weeks at a time, and Caiti fell in love with the place. The Take 5 comes to you from Darwin this week. The music community is tight here, I knew Caiti would be the perfect person to take you to the Top End. Across five songs she gave us a potted history of music from the Territory, introduced me to new sounds and kind of made me want to move her permanently.

    Ted Egan and Galarrwuy Yunupingu with introduction from Vincent Lingiari – ‘Gurindji Blues’

    Birdz - ‘Testify’

    Stevie Jean - ‘Hell in Every Religion’

    Wildflower - ‘Galiwin’ku’

    Serina Pech – ‘I Hope To See The Sun’

  • Yumi Stynes is a name you know well if you grew up in Australia. She’s been on tv screens and in radio speakers for close to 20 years; as host on music network Channel V and MAX. These days she does a great podcast on sometimes taboo topics called Ladies, We Need To Talk. In between she’s also published a cookbook, written newspaper columns, and likes to do fun runs in her spare time. And, she’s a massive music fan. I love Yumi Stynes, and this Take 5 made me love her even more. Her theme was “lessons in song” and over five picks she shared some pretty incredible stories from her own time here on earth. From redefining what Regurgitator songs are actually about, to the power of representation on stage, and memories of wild times traveling around Australia making a music show. This is wall to wall great storytelling, from a living legend.

    Regurgitator - ‘Don’t Go 2 Sleep’

    Magic Dirt - ‘All My Crushes’

    Rihanna - ‘SOS’

    Dua Lipa - ‘New Rules’

    Janelle Monae - ‘Pynk {ft. Grimes}'

  • Alex Kapranos is a Scottish national treasure. As lead singer of Franz Ferdinand, his frontman swagger has kept us dancing for more than a decade. As an interviewee, he’s an absolute delight; always generous, curious and charming every time he joins you behind the mic. On his most recent visit to Australia with his band, I knew he’d make the perfect Take 5 guest. And when I gave him the theme “musical friendships”, I imagined he’d explore great collaborations and connections he’s made over his years in music. But Alex offered something far more personal, and along the way introduced us all to the songs and relationships that have made a big impact on him. This is a special conversation about music, heart, curiosity and lifelong bonds.

    Magnetic Fields – ‘Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side’

    Gina X - ‘No GDM’

    Fleetwood Mac - ‘Oh Well’

    Bunny Brown - ‘Fat Boy’

    Prodigy  - ‘Firestarter’

  • Kimbra is a musical genius. From the moment I first heard her jazz vocals on her Unearthed profile, to seeing her explore wild ideas, sounds and personalities (and of course a few big collaborations), she is always someone who's music and ways of approaching it has fascinated me. Over the years, she's also someone who I've seen who thinks intensely about the art that she makes, and that her contemporaries are putting into the ether. Kimbra is someone who doesn't do things by halves; her approach to art, thinking, pop music and creativity always floors me. So I knew she'd deliver a  brilliant Take 5. And oh boy, she sure did. Over five songs we talked about the sonic sigh of beautiful vocals, the digital connection and disconnection we all need, and the responsibility of the artist in the times we live in. What a joy. 

    Mr Twin Sister - ‘Blush’

    Silicon - ‘Personal Computer’

    Jamie Lidell - ‘Believe In Me’

    Karol Conka - ‘Boa Noite’

    Anohni - ‘Drone Bomb Me’

  • Eleanor Dixon is a born leader. I first met her a few years ago at a week long event called Bush Bands Business. It was a series of workshops for Indigenous bands throughout remote communities in central Australia, and Elly was the first woman to ever be involved, with her band Rayella. Her drive and grounded nature struck me from our first meeting, and so I wasn’t surprised to see her appear again a couple of years later in a new band, Kardajala Kirridarra. Their blend of beautiful songs sung in language, set to atmospheric beats, got a lot of attention, and by the end of 2017 they had a heap of people talking about them, and were nominated for Double J Artist of the Year. Fast forward to 2018, and NAIDOC Week, where the theme was “because of her, we can”. Eleanor joined me on the phone from her tiny community of Marlinja, and gave an incredible insight into her own musical path via the women that she looked up to. The way Elly speaks about song, story and community, is poetry in motion. From Aunty Ruby Hunter, to Nina Simone, to Emily Wurramara, this is a Take 5 that will stop you in your tracks.

    Emma Donovan & The Putbacks - ‘Black Woman’

    Ruby Hunter & Archie Roach - ‘Down City Streets’

    Nina Simone - ‘Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair’

    Emily Wurramara - ‘Lady Blue’

    Shellie Morris & The Borroloola Songwomen - ‘Li-Anthawirriyarra A-Kurija (Saltwater People Song)’

  • This is a Man’s Man’s World, sang Renee Geyer back in 1974. And despite equal numbers of women studying, making and showing a love for music, there’s still a vast inequality in the Australian music industry to this day. It’s a story often told, but in a brilliant new doco “Her Sound Her Story”, these tales are captured also as a celebration of the scene we have (both on and off the stage). Claudia Sangiorgi Dalimore and Michelle Grace Hunder are the filmmaker and producers behind this film, which may have begun as a photography project but grew quickly as soon as they saw how large and consistent these narratives still were. Everyone from Tina Arena to Ecca Vandal, Missy Higgins to Mojo Juju, Kate Ceberano to Thelma Plum feature in this brilliant doco. From backyards to baths, stages to screen, Claudia and Michelle share the stories behind Her Sound Her Story.

    Ella Hooper - 'Shard'

    Mojo Juju - 'Native Tongue'

    Ecca Vandal - 'Your Orbit (ft. Sampa The Great)'

    Kardajala Kirridarra - 'Kirridarra (Women's Song)'

    Okenyo - 'Woman's World'

  • I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who doesn’t have a soft spot for Soulwax. The Belgian band have been making us dance for years – and are known as much for their own music as their incredible remixes. Way back when I first starting doing the Take 5, they were one of my early guests. The year was 2007. They were touring Australia and I asked them to pick songs that took us on a European vacation. From the get go, they were up for it. This is such a fun co-host, and a real joy to share one of the earliest highlights of this long running adventure.

    Fred Vom Jupiter – 'Die Doraus & Die Marinas'

    Goose – 'Bring It On'

    The Cardigans – 'And Then You Kissed Me'

    Daft Punk – 'Digital Love'

    Clor – 'Love & Pain'

  • Filth. Glue. Porno. Trainspotting. All books that have made waves, and all books by Scottish author Irvine Welsh. Like many Scots I know, he has a black sense of humour. And he’s a quiet observer; you can imagine him sitting in the corner of a pub, or watching from the street just to see how humans interact. Back in 2014 he came to Australia to speak at the Sydney Writers Festival, off the back of his latest book,  ‘The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins’. Given the fact he basically wrote one of the most iconic stories of our generation, of course I wanted him to choose songs, and come in to Take 5. The theme I gave him was “songs that should be books”. He picked classics, but through the prism of his perspective, gave them new life.

    Lou Reed – 'Kicks'

    Carly Simon - 'You’re So Vain'

    David Bowie – 'Valentine’s Day'

    Duran Duran – 'Hungry Like the Wolf'

    Queen – 'Bohemian Rhapsody'

  • Zola Jesus is an unashamed goth, with a huge voice. In 2012, she visited Australia to perform at the Vivid Live Festival. I loved Zola’s art but also had an inkling she’d be a great Take 5 guest, so I asked her to come in and co-host with me. It’s been a few years since, but as we hit the depths of winter and rug up in our best black attire I thought it’d be fun to dig this one out of the archives, and share it for the first time here on the podcast. Across textured sounds, we found out how a young girl from the rural Midwest found her way into incredible music.

    El-P – 'Drones Over Brooklyn'

    Mira Calix – 'Skin With Me'

    Aphex Twin – 'Windowlicker'

    Ben Frost – 'Coda'

    KLF – '3 a m eternal'

  • Ice Cube is a godfather of West Coast Rap. He joined NWA as a teenager, and penned their most powerful song when he was 17. One album later, he left the group and set off on a solo path, and succeeded again. His first two albums are still considered to be defining records of the 90’s and while that was going on, in 1991 Ice Cube starred in his first feature film “Boys N the Hood”. Through the 90’s, and noughties, he has pivoted between film and music and everything in between. But he has never sat down in front of a live audience to look back on his creative life. Until now. With 1200 people watching on, inside the iconic Sydney Opera House, Cube shared the five songs that changed his life. From eye opening moments with Grandmaster Flash, to the hip-hop styles of James Brown. Marvin Gaye’s reflection of a community’s hurt and a pin-drop moment with a never before heard story from Cube’s family tree. We laughed, we gasped, we sat in awe of a writer, actor and legend whose wisdom, humour and fierce resolve has powered everything he’s made. This is Ice Cube, ripping the lid off the first ever Take 5, live on stage.

    Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five - ‘The Message’

    James Brown - ‘The Payback’

    Marvin Gaye - ‘What’s Going On’

    Funkadelic - ‘(Not Just) Knee Deep’

    Sam Cooke - ‘A Change Is Gonna Come’

  • Ben Quilty is one of Australia’s most celebrated artists. Whether he’s painting the portrait of fellow artist Margaret Olley, of Australian soldiers in Afghanistan, of Jimmy Barnes or even of his old Torana, his style finds a heart and depth not often seen. I first met Ben when he working closely with the Bali 9 (particularly Myuran Sukumaran) using art therapy to help Myu as he sat confined in Kerobokan prison. When the day came for Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukamaran to face death by firing squad, Ben Quilty led the charge to stand for mercy, gathering people from all backgrounds to campaign against the death penalty. It didn’t succeed. But Ben’s passion for commitment to the cause is just one of many instances where this artist and humanitarian has fought tooth and nail for justice. When he was a teenager, art was Ben Quilty’s salve. As an adult, his work continues to help and heal him and those around him. Across five songs, Ben Quilty took part in music therapy.

    Paul Kelly - ‘Firewood and Candles’

    The Lemonheads - ‘The Outdoor Type’

    PJ Harvey - ‘This Mess We’re In (ft. Thom Yorke)’

    The Beatles - ‘Blackbird’

    Jimmy Barnes - ‘Still On Your Side (ft. Bernard Fanning)’

  • I take you back in the Take 5 time machine to 2007, when Ian Mackaye did the Take 5. The frontman for Fugazi, Embrace and Minor Threat, he has been in countless bands and was – at the time – touring with The Evens. In Washington DC he heads up the DIY record label Dischord, started to support the DC bands he loved. Everything Ian does has strong ethics at it’s core. Everything he is, is grounded in his hometown. Across five songs from the capital of America, he takes you on a journey not only through the streets but the politics of this town and punk itself.

    Bad Brains -  'Banned In D.C.'

    Rites of Spring - 'Drink Deep'

    Slant Six - 'Semi-Blue Tile'

    DJ Eurock - 'This Is DC'

    Rare Essence - 'Bling Bling Bling'

  • Jonathan Zawada may not be a name you’re immediately familiar with, but his work has covered the albums of some of your favourite Australian artists. He’s behind every album, single and EP cover from The Presets, designed the iconic album cover for Flume’s second album skin, and has created the visual mood for music by Mark Pritchard, Baauer, Canyons and more. His visual art can be as small as a record cover, as tangible as a side table, or as wearable as high fashion, but in all that he does is an element of Australia in it. Across five songs Jonathan echoed the preconceptions about Australia that many of us feel, the immensity of space we have in our own backyard, the raw Australian tales some of our best contemporary artists tell, and the tangibility of sound.  

    Fabulous Diamonds - 'Track 4' (7 Songs, 2008)

    The Presets - 'A.O'

    Air Max '97 - 'Core Work'

    The Drones - 'Boredom'

    PVT - 'Morning Mist, Rock Island Bend'

  • Jenny Zhang was born in Shanghai, but raised in New York City. With a foot in each world, it’s was often a challenge to find a community and keep one. This perspective runs through her brilliant debut collection of stories, Sour Heart. It was a book that caught the attention of Lena Dunham, who chased it to ensure it’d be the first book published on her new ‘Lenny’ imprint. Seven stories, written over fifteen years cutting between public schools in Flushing, Queens to the streets of Shanghai. They’re funny, heartfelt, sometimes obscene and like nothing I have ever read before. The stories aren’t autobiographical per se, but capture the view of young Chinese-American girls growing up in New York City in the 90’s. Over five songs Jenny shares teenage mixtapes, mall hangouts soundtracked by Spice Girls, and the beauty and connection of language.

    The Promise Ring - ‘Forget Me?’

    The Spice Girls - ‘Wannabe’

    Le Tigre - ‘The The Empty’

    Jay-Z - ‘This Can’t Be Life {ft. Beanie Siegel and Scarface}’

    Cocteau Twins - ‘Heaven Or Las Vegas’