Then Tommy & Phil would come out together to do an acoustic set which was always something really special.

Steve Flack

What Chicago Taught Me about Australia’s Music Scene in the 80’s.

In the early 80’s I lived for 2 years in America.

I spent 2 years in Chicago and it was obvious why it was one of the worlds great cities. There was just so much going on there. When it came time for me to return to Australia my expectation was that it would be a bit of a backwater after Chicago. “But”!

What I learned From The Emmanuel Brothers at The Musicians Club.

When I got home to Sydney my friends were telling me about all these greats that they wanted me to see. Bands like Cold Chisel and The Angels that I hadn’t heard of, a lot had happened while I was away.

One of my friends insisted that we go to the Musicians Club in Surry Hills one Friday night to see Doug Parkinson with the Emmanuel Brothers on guitar.

I remembered Doug Parkinson and his hit “Dear Prudence” but I didn’t know of the Emmanuel Brothers so I was in for a very pleasant surprise. They were great and I could see that the standard of music in Sydney was very good and it wasn’t such a backwater after all.

Another friend told me that the Emmanuel Brothers played at the Paddington Green Hotel every Sunday so I would go regularly. They’d do 3 sets, the first was with the whole band.

Then Tommy & Phil would come out together to do an acoustic set which was always something really special.

Tommy and Phil Emmanuel
The Emmanuel Brothers

Then they’d come back for the 3rd set with the electric band, you could have put them on any stage anywhere in the world and they would have impressed.

One night Tommy came out on his own and played “Lady Madonna”. I was astonished at how he could play the melody, the chords and the bass all on one guitar all by himself.

My Original Arrangement – A Tribute to The Emmanuel Brothers – Lady Madonna

My arrangement of Lady Madonna came about by me trying to piece together what I’d remembered of Tommy’s version. I’ve since seen Tommy doing it on YouTube and it is quite different but here’s my arrangement anyway.

I felt very honoured later when I put my “Guitar Heroes” show together and Phil would be a regular feature. It was always magic when Phil was on stage and my proudest memories are of standing on stage trading licks with Phil Emmanuel. I’m also very proud of the recording I did with Phil of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”.

So Lady Madonna is my tribute to Tommy & Phil Emmanuel.

They had a very big impact on me and I’m so glad I went that night to see Doug Parkinson at the Musicians club.

Arrangement Giveaway

This month I would like to give my Original Tab Arrangement of Lady Madonna free of charge.

Please leave a comment below or on our Liverpool Academy of Music Facebook page if you would like this Arrangement.

enjoy.

Steve.