Summer music: Hello Sailor - Dave McArtney

We asked Dave McArtney of Hello Sailor, who is one of the many local music stars hitting the beach pub circuit in the coming weeks, to discuss the joys of touring and what it's like to have a job keeping the holidaying hordes entertained.

Dave McArtney. Photo / Richard Robinson
Dave McArtney. Photo / Richard Robinson

Your preferred transport for summer touring?
A Lincoln Continental modified by Neil Young, called the LincVolt. It doesn't run on petro-fuels. If we can't get that we will settle for a couple of Previas. If it's down to personal we take the Beemer and the Volvo V70, because they're safe.

Who does the driving and who's not allowed to drive?
Harry, because he's our Rock Captain Sensible. Second question, Graham, because he's never held a driver's licence; me, because I won't allow driving to interfere with drinking, and when the Captain's desensitised, we give the job to Paul, because he doesn't drink.

What's on the car stereo?
Oh dear, there's always a fight. Graham will have a variety of strange folk music and lots of Kiwi stuff - his current fave is The Unfaithful Ways. Paul and Rick listen to Donald Fagen, Bob James, Lykke Li, Foster the People, and Ticket (they're trying to remember how the songs go).

If you had a talking GPS in the vehicle what famous voice would you want?
Joan Collins, because she says stuff like, "I only have breakfast if I'm staying at the Ritz".

Your favourite summer venue?
The Mudhouse Winery, Waipara Valley, North Canterbury, because it has the most stunning sunset, and Wrighty will show up if he's not on the road with the Black Caps.

Favourite spot on your tour itinerary which isn't a venue?
The spot which says you're staying at the Ritz, Carterton; then you can have breakfast.

What's the difference between a summer pub crowd and a winter city pub audience?
One is a crowd, the other is an audience I guess. Both are demanding, but enormous fun, within the two traditions bound up in those two seasonal events.

What's this year's likely encore song. Is it the same as last year's?
We've become quite traditional, so expect something similar, although on the shows we headline, we'll be doing longer encores for sure.

Can you really call this work?
Of course. There are certain professional considerations. But, it is great fun, and a great privilege to be a part of the chemistry in this band.

Dates: Station Village, Lower Hutt Dec 28 (with Jimmy Barnes and Dragon); Riwaka Hotel, Dec 29; Ascension Wine Estate Matakana, New Year's Eve; Coroglen Tavern, Whitianga, Jan 2; Butlers Reef, New Plymouth, Jan 4; Waihi Beach Hotel, Jan 6; Brewers Field, Mt Maunganui, Jan 7; Mangawhai Tavern, Jan 8

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