Ian Moss is Australian rock history. The history goes back 40 years (to 24 April 1978 to be exact) when the first Cold Chisel album was released. Ian’s solo show takes in his 40 years of history with the Chisel blues epic ‘One Long Day’ part of his current set.
The Ian Moss 2018 setlist pays tribute to his Chisel days a few times over the two hour show, including a didn’t originally sing in ‘Choir Girl’. Ian’s take on the Chisel classic takes the song in a bluesier direction than the ‘East’ version. ‘Choir Girl’ was Chisel’s first bona-fide Top 20 hit. ‘East’ got a good run, with ‘Never Before’ (written by Moss) and ‘My Baby’ (sung by Moss but written by Phil Small) spread throughout the set.
Ian didn’t write a lot of Chisel material. His best-known Chisel track ‘Bow River’ was a perfect end to the show. He also offered insight into the Don Walker song ‘Janelle’ explaining that Don wrote the song about a daughter “so far away” living in South Africa at the time. The song means so much more after Ian explained that it was about a father who never saw baby daughter because she lived in another country.
Janelle, Janelle, Janelle
So far away
Goodnight, sweet dreams
The world is well
Janelle, Janelle, Janelle
Lookin’ through your photograph
Talking through the telephone
I’m thinking through my plans for me
And you so all alone
Set two opened with the standard ‘Georgia On My Mind’, in some ways a default Chisel song as it was popular in the live shows in the 80s and did make its way to a couple of live albums.
Ian Moss had a number one album in Australia in 1989 with ‘Matchbook’. Six of those tracks were played in this set including the four singles ‘Tuckers Daughter’, ‘Telephone Booth’, ‘Out of the Fire’ and ‘Mr Rain’.
‘Matchbook’ is now an Australian rock classic. In 1990 it won three ARIA Awards including Album of the Year. Hearing these songs nearly 30 years after they were made you get a sense of what a great musician Moss is. Indeed, now at age 63, he is an Australian treasure.
At 63 Ian is also at the top of his game. When you listen to his latest work ‘Ian Moss’ you can feel the helicopter view of an amazing career. When you are playing with Chisel and a number one classic anything new better be good, and it is.
The songs from Ian Moss flow into the classics and back out again. Opening with two new songs was a risk but ‘Cold in the Night’ into ‘Down Along The Track’ into ‘Out of the Fire’ and then back to new with ‘I’m Not You’re Only Man’ made this show about just hearing Ian play as much as it was waiting for the songs you knew. The track ‘Broadway’ in the encore is as good as Ian has ever been.
‘If Another Day (Love Rewards Its Own)’, the opening track of the new album, was co-written with his drummer (and former Dragon founder) Kerry Jacobsen. Sliding out of ‘Choirgirl’ with its Chisel-like lead-in felt right. It actually feels like it should have been on a Chisel album.
Ian Moss will perform in Canberra and Sydney this Friday and Saturday and then Adelaide, Perth, Newcastle and Dubbo in coming weeks before touring with the legend Jimmy Webb.
Ian Moss setlist, Melbourne, 6 June 2018
Cold in the Night (from Ian Moss, 2018)
Down Along the Track (from Ian Moss, 2018)
Out of the Fire (from Matchbook, 1989)
I’m Not Your Only Man (from Ian Moss, 2018)
Such a Beautiful Thing (from Matchbook, 1989)
My Suffering (from Ian Moss, 2018)
My Baby (from Cold Chisel, East, 1980)
Janelle (from Cold Chisel, Twentieth Century, 1984)
Mr Rain (from Matchbook, 1989)
Georgia on My Mind (Hoagy Carmichael cover, from Cold Chisel, Barking Spiders Live, 1984)
Choirgirl (from Cold Chisel, East, 1980)
If Another Day (Love Rewards Its Own) (from Ian Moss, 2018)
A Girl Like You (from Ian Moss, 2018)
One Long Day (from Cold Chisel, Cold Chisel,1978)
Matchbook (from Matchbook, 1989)
Never Before (from Cold Chisel, East, 1980)
Telephone Booth (from Matchbook, 1989)
Tucker’s Daughter (from Matchbook, 1989)
Hold On (To What We Got) (from Ian Moss, 2018)
Broadway (from Ian Moss, 2018)
Bow River (from Cold Chisel, Circus Animals, 1982)