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Tim Hart marches to beat of his own drum

Phil Collins did it, Dave Grohl did it, and there's no reason why Tim Hart can't do it.


Phil Collins did it, Dave Grohl did it, and there's no reason why Tim Hart can't do it.

The Boy & Bear drummer has released his second solo album, The Narrow Corner, and is proving, just like his fellow rock percussionists Grohl and Collins, that he has the skills and talent to also be a frontman.

"There is something with drummers, definitely, if you think of Levon Helm (the Band) Don Henley (The Eagles) there is that thing," Hart told AAP.

With Sydney band Boy & Bear, Hart isn't pushed to the back to hide behind his four band members. They have a diplomatic arrangement, sharing songwriting duties, harmonising together and positioning Hart towards the front.

So the record is not about getting time in the spotlight but fulfils more of a literary desire for him.

"I guess for me I love reading and I love lyrics. I love the way the English language kind of works so I love writing lyrics, so my solo project is my outlet for that," he said.

The album takes its title from a Somerset Maugham novel of the same name which inspired the theme of Hart's record.

"Somerset Maugham wrote a book called The Narrow Corner and it was set in Indonesia in the '20s or '30s and it's just all about expectations," Hart said.

This album explores the expectations put on Hart by himself but also by others, in particular his peers from Yagoona, the suburb in south-west Sydney where he grew up.

"Coming out of a lower socio-economic area of Sydney, I guess to have any level of success in music was not something that a lot of people had done in the area I was from. And I don't know that necessarily to be a musician was the coolest thing," he said.

"There's a lot of people who don't get what it is that I do from where I grew up and that's fine. There's an element of respect for it, people think 'oh that's cool' but they don't really understand it. Number one, they all think I'm a millionaire and number two, a lot of people have this perception that I think I'm too good to interact with them, but neither one of those things are true."

Hart gets the chance to have his say in a live setting as he tours the new album around the country.

"For this tour it's just going to be me," he said.

"So the onus is on me which is scary but also wonderful."

* Tim Hart will perform in Leadbelly in Newtown, Sydney on Friday and will head on to Newcastle, Melbourne, Nambour, Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

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So, we guess this means Beyonce and Jay-Z are OK then

The first couple of pop music took the world by surprise by dropping their first album together last..

The first couple of pop music took the world by surprise by dropping their first album together last weekend. As you'd expect, it's a statement.

There is arguably no couple better at controlling their own press than Beyonce and Jay-Z. When a video surfaced in 2014 showing Bey's younger sister Solange attacking her brother-in-law in an elevator, rumours of a strained marriage proliferated.

Rather than battle the tabloids, the spouses used the gossip to fuel the creation of two critically beloved, commercially successful records: Beyonce's Lemonade and Jay-Z's 4:44. And, in them, they offered just as many details about their private lives as they chose.

Beyonce and Jay-Z on stage in France for the 2014 On the Run tour.

Photo: Rob Hoffman

Now the couple have continued their domination of pop music, surprising the world last Saturday by releasing their joint album Everything Is Love, which is something of a sequel to those two solo records. Though they have collaborated for at least 15 years, this marks their first joint album, which they dropped under the name The Carters.

The record is a victory lap from a couple who have mined their relationship for universal truths and then presented them as art. It's a fierce love letter to success, to family, to blackness – but, most of all, to each other.

Artwork for the album Everything is Love by The Carters, aka Beyonce and Jay-Z.

Photo: Karl Quinn


Lyrically, it primarily focuses on two aspects of the Carters' lives: their marriage and their success. (more…)

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Rachel Griffiths: female characters are finally getting real on screen

Almost a year into the #MeToo era, Rachel Griffiths believes the likes of Mystery Road, Wentworth, P..

Almost a year into the #MeToo era, Rachel Griffiths believes the likes of Mystery Road, Wentworth, Picnic at Hanging Rock and Top of the Lake show that female characters are finally coming of age on Australian screens.

In a spirited speech at the launch of a new state government scheme to support more women directors in television, the actor-turned-director said it was exciting to see female characters move beyond "the typical tropes of 'likable, f—able, adorable'" to "more complex depictions of female experience" recently.

Happy to see "more complex depictions of female experience": Rachel Griffiths (left) with Leah Purcell at the launch of #SheDirects.

Photo: Louie Douvis

While she acknowledged there were male directors who created fresh and compelling women characters, Griffiths said the "male gaze" often reduced them to colouring the characters of their male counterparts.

"[They are created to] make him hot, make him authentic, make him empathetic, make him fatherly, make him conflicted, make him grieve," she said. "In the male gaze, we are so often not the gatekeepers; we're not the ferryman. Sometimes the mentor but usually only ironically, like Judi Dench's M…

"Under-written and under-observed, brought into our sexual awareness precociously and prepubescent in order to accommodate the male libido.


"Often in television we're used by lazy writers and producers who can think of nothing more interesting this week than 'let's have her have sex with X' or 'discover she's a lesbian – for an episode'."

Griffiths, who is about to begin editing the Melbourne Cup drama Ride Like A Girl after finishing the shoot, endorsed Hollywood star Sandra Bullock's recent comment that it was time for women to "stop being polite" about gender equality. (more…)

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Rachel Maddow breaks down on air over Trump immigration policy

US television host Rachel Maddow has broken down on live air as she delivered the latest development..

US television host Rachel Maddow has broken down on live air as she delivered the latest developments in the Trump administration's controversial "zero tolerance" immigration policy.

Maddow, who hosts her own show on MSNBC, was reading from a breaking news release from the Associated Press that revealed government officials have been sending babies and toddlers to what are being called "tender age" shelters in the US.

The youngsters are some of the 2,300 children who have been forcibly separated from their parents at the US-Mexico border since the White House announced a zero-tolerance policy on migrant families in May.

"The AP has just broken some new news," Maddow started.

"Um, this has just come out from the Associated Press, this is incredible. Trump administration have been sending babies and other young children – oh, hold on," she said, her voice breaking.


Maddow attempted to get through the breaking news piece one more time before moving the show over to a guest. "To at least three – three tender age shelters in South Texas. Lawyers and medical providers… I think I'm going to have to hand this off. Sorry."

Maddow took to Twitter shortly after the segment aired to say sorry to her viewers. "Again, I apologise for losing it there for a moment," she wrote. "Not the way I intended that to go, not by a mile."

She also tweeted out what she had been trying to say in her live read, writing out what was presented in the AP story. "Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the "tender age" shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis…" she wrote.

"Decades after the nations child welfare system ended the use of orphanages over concerns about the lasting trauma to children, the administration is standing up new institutions to hold Central American toddlers that the government separated from their parents." (more…)

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