Old friends connect for winery tour gig

By Amy Shanks

Getting back to his Kiwi roots and catching up with old friends is rock legend Jon Toogood's idea of a great summer holiday.

The Melbourne-based musician gets to combine the two on an up-coming Classic Hits Winery Tour, which is stopping off at Church Road on Wednesday, before performing in front of a sold-out crowd at Black Barn in Havelock North on Saturday.

Taking a side-step from his role as frontman of Shihad, Toogood will take the stage with his side project - The Adults, featuring Julia Deans (Fur Patrol) and Shane Carter (Straitjacket Fits/Dimmer).

"The Adults just fit that winery tour bill, the music's fun, it's groovy," he says. "The bonus is that we know everybody."

By everybody he means the other two acts rounding out this year's line-up, including Fat Freddy's Drop and Anika Moa, Boh Runga and Hollie Smith, who will perform music from their new album as a trio.

Having formed a set list, which he sent to Deans and Carter to practise separately, the three came together last week to rehearse in the flesh.

"We just all get into a room together and smash it. The other two are totally amazing musicians who play every single instrument, so we pick it back up pretty quick."

After a couple of years, "collecting musical ideas," Toogood created The Adults in 2011, as a celebration of his work with some of New Zealand's brightest talents. A truly collaborative affair, the project began with a wishlist of artists whom he "loved, admire and respected".

"It's so different from Shihad, but I love it. We are all big personalities, we are all front people. But there is something quite lonely about being a front person, [in The Adults] we all sing the songs, we're all involved."

On June 1 last year, The Adults joined forces with Christchurch Symphony Orchestra at the CBS Canterbury Arena, for a one-off concert covering their entire album, including the hits Nothing to Lose, One Million Ways and A Part of Me. Each track was performed as new ensemble pieces, accompanied by a 48-piece orchestra.

Tickets to the Church Road gig on Waitangi Day are $78.85. Call 0800 111 999.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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