Hugo Race/Michelangelo Russo + Sean Simmons/Bronwyn Henderson (The Spoils) - sun 13 jan 2019, 5:00pm AEST

Gig Info

Doors Open 5.00pm, showtime 5.30-8.00pm (with intermission).

Located in the Ember Lounge

General Admin: $20.00 +bf

As part of the SUMMER SOUNDS OF ST KILDA series

Founding member of Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds and the seminal Australian 80s cult band The Wreckery, Hugo Race returns to St. Kilda with long-time collaborator Michelangelo Russo providing spaced out harmonica and electronics to join forces with Spoils core members Sean Simmons & Bronwyn Henderson for an evening of swamp blues and brooding ballads that tips the hat to old St. Kilda transporting you back to the days of the Crystal & Seaview Ballroom, The Venue, Prince of Wales and early days of The Espy and Greyhound Hotel.


Following the disintegration of The Birthday Party in 1983, Nick Cave fled London and returned to Melbourne with a new project, “Nick Cave – Man or Myth?” featuring fellow Birthday Party band mates, Mick Harvey and Tracey Pew plus young guitarist, Hugo Race. This lineup played their first live show at iconic St. Kilda venue, the Seaview Ballroom on 31 December 1983. The band would later become Nick Cave and the Cavemen and eventually Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds.

Hugo would later leave the Bad Seeds and form seminal Australian 80s cult band The Wreckery before eventually going solo and releasing over 20 albums and collaborating with artists from from all over the world.

Hugo Race returns to St. Kilda with long-time collaborator Michelangelo Russo providing a show full of spaced out harmonica and electronics.


Sean Simmons & Bronwyn Henderson from Melbourne’s The Spoils met as next door neighbours in York St., St. Kilda at the end of the last century. Since then they have recorded 3 albums, contributed soundtracks and toured the world. Bronwyn also moonlights as string player and arranger for artists such as Mick Harvey, The Blackeyed Susans and Marty Willson-Piper.

One of their first shows ever was at The Espy with ex-Birthday Party member and St. Kilda icon, Rowland S. Howard and recorded their debut album in the former West St. Kilda RSL in Loch St. Although now residentsin the north of melboiurne Sean & Bronwyn still have strong ties to the suburb they once called home.

About Summer Sounds Of St Kilda

Over the years many, many musos, bands entertainers and artists have called and still call St Kilda home. MEMO Music Hall would like to put the spot light on a selection of these performers and hence is presenting Summer Sounds Of St Kilda 2019.

From Jan 8 – Jan 26 we are putting together an eclectic collection of artists, who live or have lived in St Kilda, to perform at MEMO Music Hall and the EMBER LOUNGE. It wouldn’t be St Kilda unless we had a least one tourist, so Deitra Farr, ‘Queen Of The Blues’, singer out of Chicago USA will bring the Summer Sounds Of St Kilda to a close on Saturday night Jan. 27.

It’s going to have a very informal feel, the idea is you can come off the beach and check out “a local” playing at MEMO or The Ember Lounge, enjoy a beer without having to spend “a motza”.

MEMO Music Hall is a “hidden gem” of a performance venue that is quickly becoming a “must play” for a lot of musos.

It opened in 1924 as a dance hall dedicated to raising revenue for distressed soldiers and their families. Following the rise in popularity of cinema, it went on to house The Memorial picture theatre from 1927 to 1958, when it became affectionately known as ‘The Memo’.

From 1961 to 1965 MEMO Music Hall was the home of TELEFIL recording and film studios under the supervision of legendary sound engineer Bill Armstrong. Amongst its claim to recording history fame is its location for Normie Rowe’s 1965 hit, It Ain’t Necessarily So. Banned initially for its lyrics, it was the first number one record in both Sydney and Melbourne, by a Melbourne-based artist.

The stars of Channel 7’s weekly variety program Sunnyside Up, including Olivia Newton- recorded the audio at MEMO miming to the pre-records live on-air. The Channel 9 Big Band also recorded at MEMO due to its size and acoustic splendour.

Falling into disrepair in the late 80s MEMO was closed to the public, reopening in 2015, its now fully renovated and kitted out with a new stage, sound and lighting systems. MEMO now plays host to many top Australian and International touring musicians.

Summer Sounds Of St Kilda 2019 coming in January will be another bench mark in the already amazing life of MEMO Music Hall.