SBS funds doco on Aussie punks Hard-Ons
Ray Ahn (bass), Peter “Blackie” Black (guitar) and Keish de Silva (drums) stormed out of Punchbowl in western Sydney in 1981.
In their first 12 years, the band had 17 consecutive #1s on the Australian alternative charts, had album titles like Smell My Finger and Dick Cheese, and sold 250,000 records in all.
In Europe, where 1989 album Love Is A Battlefield Of Wounded Hearts went Top 5 in Greece and Top 10 in Spain, they played before crowds of 50,000.
The SBS development funding was announced last week at the Australian International Documentary Conference (AIDC).
Director and producer Jonathan Sequeira’s Hard-Ons: The Most Australian Band Ever! doco was one of four through SBS’ Australia Uncovered series which explores diversity in Australian society. SBS also has broadcasting rights.
Sequeira, of production company Living Eyes, said: “It’s important that public broadcasters recognise Australia’s cultural history, and we appreciate that SBS are championing a story so relevant to their charter.
“At the Hard-Ons’ very first pub gig an audience member shouted out ‘Channel 0 Band’ – Channel 0 of course being what SBS was known as back then, and the band comprising members of Korean, Sri Lankan and Croatian descent – so it seems the perfect home for a multicultural success story like the Hard-Ons.
“It’s very exciting and we look forward to working with SBS to move from development to being fully commissioned for broadcast.”
Sequeira also helmed Descent In The Maelstrom: The Radio Birdman Story.
As they get set to tour through Australia on the back of their 13th studio album, Hard-Ons’ impact on other musicians has also come to surface.
“I love the Hard-Ons. It was an honour to tour with them.” – Flea, Red Hot Chili Peppers
“[The Hard-Ons] opened my eyes to a whole new world.” – Ian Haug, Powderfinger
“Iconic. Totemic… The Hard-Ons are everything.” – Tim Rogers, You Am I
“They absolutely changed everything for me.” – Adalita, Magic Dirt
“I fucken love the Hard-Ons.” – Eamon, The Chats.
“Hard-Ons are trailblazers.” – Jello Biafra, Dead Kennedys
“Hard-Ons are the nicest guys”– Dave Grohl, Foo Fighters
Henry Rollins did a cover of AC/DC’s ‘Let There Be Rock’ in 1991 and joined them for four songs at the inaugural Big Day Out a year later.
As The Most Australian Band Ever! title indicates, the doco also looks at Hard-Ons’ impact as an early multicultural voice.