“This will explain everything”: The Jeff Duff autobiography

Posted on 9th March 2016

jeff_duff_autobiography_cover_b_1The long-awaited Jeff Duff autobiography has finally been published—to be released in May 2016.

Crafted by Duff over many years, dubbed, for a time, “The Naked Singer”, this new release from Melbourne Books now has a provocative promise as its title: “This will explain everything“.

That should catch all cats looking for answers to the nature of things (mee-ow), and so the Duffological. And nobody will be disappointed (everyone’ll be enlightened) once giving this 248 page tome a finger-flick, let alone cherishing it, bosom-wise. And real humans will do that for sure, once espying the foreword, for a start …

From the Foreword by Molly Meldrum:

molly_meldrum_4

 Jeff Duff once hosted Countdown dressed as a sausage. Unique is an over-used word in showbiz. But Jeff Duff is unique.

 When I first met Jeff, he was wearing a wedding dress. That was just a usual day in the unusual life of Jeff Duff. He’s been arrested in Ballarat and outside Number 10 Downing Street in London, banned by Ray Martin’s Midday Show, appeared in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby, and sung some unforgettable songs.

 And no man looks as good in a leotard.

 Flamboyant, eccentric, cheeky, charming …

 Jeff Duff is one of the greatest entertainers Australia has producedMolly Meldrum

This handiwork of Duff’s is beautifully presented: hard cover printed on gold foil, 248 pages all silver-gilt, with colour throughout.

Want it in your lap right now? Pre-order here from: melbournebooks.com.au.

Meanwhile … want more Duff-stuff now …?

… know more about the Ray Martin Show incident—Jeff Duff talks about it on ABC-TV “Spicks-n-Specs”—from 7:04—here, followed by “the most controversial ending we’ve ever had”, from 23:40, as JD goes “Louie Louie” all about it:

… and then there’s Jeff Duff with Symphony Orchestra excelling on the Ray Martin Show (all forgiven):

… and Duff on Countdown, with a snippet that’s left by slackers at Rage as a Skyhooks clip:

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Jeff Duff on the Darren Sanders Show

Posted on 2nd March 2016


Darren Sanders was joined on his TV show recently by the Australian Music Legend Jeff Duff —screened on 28 Feb, including performance of “Vampire Lover” and chat about 70’s Glam Rock and his other career d’amour … in cricket.

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Duffo: Makes any record sound duff

Posted on 17th February 2016

duffo badgeBadge worn by Duffophiles in London circa 1979–1987.

Fact
reported in Zig-Zag magazine—and Golly, our model, wears the Duffo badge proudly to this day (pics and quotes pending).

Meanwhile, lotsa Euro-Duffo to espy here (music-vids) and here (1st Duffo album released) and here (Duff versus Joy Division @ The Factory) and here (Women’s Weekly/Falklands War).

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Ziggy returns

Posted on 25th January 2016

Ziggy The Songs of David BowieJeff Duff’s Ziggy: The Songs of David Bowie show returns to NSW venues in June 2016—as reported by noise11.com.

5 dates announced so far—from Newcastle to Wollongong—including a station to station dash from the Thirroul show down south on a Friday up to the Enmore Theatre, Newtown, on the Saturday. See the “Hot stuff” sidebar for dates.

Going by previous Ziggy shows, Duff might well lead the band and feed the crowd with performances of Ashes to ashes, China girl, "Heroes", Let’s dance, Sorrow, Space oddity, Starman, Young Americans and the ever-astounding rendition by Duff of Wild is the Wind à la Bowie.

With Brydon Stace on board for the high-top singing, he might also pull out Under pressure. And with Steve Balbi on board, there’s a good chance of burning off on a blistering Moonage daydream.

There are plenty of ‘tubes out there to get an early fix of the show, as performed at the Sydney Opera House, the Enmore Theatre, et al., in previous years. See the duffstuff catalogue of Duff tubes here—links to 17 tubes from the Ziggy Shows, + 31 from the Bowie Unzipped shows. For example, for starters:



Blogposts/Reviews re earlier Ziggy shows: 2014, 2013 and 2012 at the Opera House, 2012 in Adelaide, and 2011 at the Enmore Theatre.

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Vital Duff video from the vault

Posted on 24th January 2016

Fresh light of vid on long unseen Duff originals from his Lexicon and Bob the Birdman albums:

  • the dada-esque approach to Warholian themes in Sandy’s Drum:

  • and a stylish reflection on James Dean:

  • Duff’s invitation to "Come drown with me":


And there’s more …! VIZ: a contemporary version of Walk on the Wildside, and a more recent video of Duff’s Hide-and-seek, all re-released via Laneway Music.

See all Duff tubes from most recent to earliest, on youtube and vimeo, catalogued here. That’s all of about 190 tubes, or about 14 hours of viewing.

As of tonight, they’ve collectively had 270,102 views (as calculated by the Duff Rover). That’s over 60,000 down from late last year when the original Easy Street video (performed by Kush, live on the Paul Hogan Show) was pulled by youtube due to copyright issues (presumably related to a Paul Hogan retrospective on mainstream TV). Sadly, because this was by far the most viewed Jeff Duff video on youtube. But ~ an alternative copy of that vid still lurks on youtube …

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Jeff Duff, in the light of the blackstar

Posted on 12th January 2016

… at sbs.com.au, the Daily Telegraph, the Sydney Morning Herald, and 9news.com.au

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Jeff Duff’s Santa song

Posted on 24th December 2015

Santa-Rocket-Sleigh-Space-Classic-Christmas-Card-02Could this Russian Xmas card—from the US/Soviet Space Race era—have been the inspiration for Jeff Duff’s merry tune "Santa is an astronaut"?

The perfect antidote to the supermarket sound-track this season—preview via iTunes here or via GooglePlay here—off Duff’s "novelty" album Cyril Trotts to Bogna.

Here’s a small sample of the lyric …

Santa is an Astronaut

Intro announcement:

Hey! Look up into space, it’s a cosmonaut!
No, it’s an astronaut!
No! Oh, it’s only Santa’naut —
Hi Santa!

Chorus:

Forget what ya been taught
‘cos Santa is an Astronaut.
Don’t believe all ya hear
‘cos Santa rides a rocket not a real reindeer.

#1:

Space! — he’s got space in his head
for a turkey instead
of a brain.

Mars! — he’s a sucker for Mars Bars,
his stockings are all chocolate stained.

[…]

#3:
Bells! — he wears bells on his head
and scrap-metal instead
of a beard.

Sing! — he can’t sing, he can’t dance,
Xmas carols — fat chance! —
this guy’s weird.

There’s a swag more of these Russian space-themed Xmas cards, all copyright–free, at crazywebsite.com.

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Jeff Duff in “Polymorphia”

Posted on 15th November 2015

Maier's 1618 burning hermaphroditeJeff Duff is to appear in Polymorphia—a film by Sydney-based film-maker Edward Inchbold to be released in 2016. It’s a film of the short genre in which "an insane man meets the man in his head who makes his dreams". Duff plays the role of "Albert".

That’s according to IMDB, which also notes that the film stars one Felix Johnson as "Mr A B C", and one Nerida Bronwen as "The Dancing Girl", with music by Steve J. de Souza, among other seasoned artists of cinematography, production and costume design, etc.

Inchbold—this film’s writer, director and producer—also has the 2014 film Hard lines behind him. See also his early profile at the film-maker’s share-site mutinee.

Duff himself notes in his blog of 1st Oct 2015:

Film director Edward Inchbold, selected me to play one of the rather spooky characters in his new short movie called ‘Pollymorphia’. We filmed the movie in Sydney in September. I’m looking forward to seeing the completed film … apparently the aim is to have it screened at the Cannes Film Festival.

Pending more details, let’s ponder the above woodprint from 1618 of a burning hermaphrodite, which seems to fit in with the theme and perhaps even style of this new Duff project.

For more info about Duff in film and theatre, there’s:

  • Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby—background info about Duff’s appearances, alongside Leonardo Di Caprio, here, with screenshots of Duff’s cameos here, and the whole movie via amazon here for streaming or here by hard-copy
  • Andrée Greenwell’s The Hanging of Jean Lee here, being a post-punk opera about the last woman to be hung in Australia, Duff playing her victim
  • The cult Oz science-fiction/heavy-metal movie Sons of Steel in which JD sprightfully plays the role of a hyper-glam nerd of body/mind science, Secta
  • Duff’s record on IMDB
Jeff Duff astride the whole party, in knickerbockers, in Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby"

Jeff Duff astride the whole party, in knickerbockers, in Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby”


+ See also: Jeff Duff in the 2013 Melbourne Arts House staging of "The Hanging of Jean Lee":

~ and Jeff Duff singing "The Burn" in Sons of Steel:

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Digital Duff: Lots more to sample on Google and Amazon now

Posted on 9th November 2015

At least 17 Jeff Duff albums + extra tracks now available from Google and Amazon for MP3 preview/purchase—including albums only previously available in vinyl, and hard-to-find CDs.

For samples/purchases, go the links on the Jeff Duff Stuff TRACKS page. Just note that (1) Amazon MP3s are not generally available for purchase via Australia; (2) Google Play links are fine for both ample preview and purchase.

The two Kush albums Snow White and the Eight Straights and Nah, Tellus Wh’t Kush Means Yer Great Sausage are there (via Amazon and Google Play):

Kush album Snow White and the Eight Straights featuring Jeff Duff Kush album Yer Great Sausage featuring Jeff Duff

There’s also Jeff Duff Orchestra’s Alone & Paranoid album, and the two albums with Joseph Calderazzo.

Jeff Duff Orchestra: Alone and Paranoid Jeffrey and Joseph Holiday in Transylvania

The two late Duffo UK albums are finally available: that’s Bob the Birdman and Lexicon.

Duffo: Bob the Birdman Duffo: Lexicon




No more boxes for puss as Duff's all digitalSadly, only, as Duff goes streaming, cats will need to find another source of boxes to go strange in.

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Scott Walker on the Duff side

Posted on 6th November 2015

Jeff Duff offers a guide to the music of Scott Walker in the latest issue of the online magazine Rhythms. (Walker’s real surname is Engel — German for Angel — hence this Duff pic.)

In the article, Duff comments on several Walker albums/tracks. There’s also info on how Duff’s preparing a Walker-inspired show, collaborating with the producer of Walker’s Nite Flights album.

Which brings us to another of Duff’s inspirational associates: Bowie, who spoke in awe of this album, and recorded its title track, with a vid where mime beats paparazzi, and art survives (exploits?) its survey:

Duff recorded a Walker song himself — the classic The sun ain’t gonna shine anymore, on his 2014 Walking on Eggshells album. While Duff’s online catalogue is being updated, try sampling some Walker albums on iTunes: e.g., Scott 4, Climate of Hunter, and The Drift.

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Maestro Duffo Alitalia: Jeff Duff at the Norton Street Festa 2015

Posted on 29th October 2015

2015.10.25.01_festa

The Norton Street Festa of Italian culture in Sydney this October 25 did not miss a Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr rat-pack. Short of the Festa being all pasta workshops, pizza, screaming bambini, screaming Mammas, groaning Pappas, beautiful people and cheesy French Fries, the Festa sported its own Rat-Pack in the form of Jeff Duff, Glenn Rhodes and Jess Ciampa on its mainstage from 1:00 p.m.

Well, at least the water-carrier was thanked by Duff for the vodka, and an appointment was made for whacky-backy with some happy bearded man in the crowd. All in good humour, of course, given Duff’s a totally clean machine. And that was really the extent of the rat-packery. The mood was merry, charitable and festive.

Some samples follow of the songs, complete with the festive sounds of the merry crowd.

2015.10.25.02_festa

Among the songs performed by the Duffo Trio were Walk on the Wildside, Walking in Memphis, Sorrow and Sailing ….

cumberbatch_1Sailing is the Chris Cross track. It’s not usually of a cool calibre. Specifically, if you were into Duffo when Chris Cross’ Sailing first came out in 1979, you’d’ve surely missed it, maybe even sneeringly. But if you’ve since expanded your tastes, thanks especially to Duff’s own evolving catalogue, it’s a cool beauty as performed by the Trio. Sure, Chris Cross’s own version is pretty nasal; he abbreviates and just about squanders every meaningful potential of his own song. In Duff’s hands, in His Master’s Voice, and the keys and beats of Rhodes and Ciampa, this song is now a musical experience of genuine and graceful optimism—primed with Duff’s elegant elocution, and the artful way he expresses melancholy as he offers hope. There is nothing so bombastic as Walt Whitman’s claim to “sing the body electric”. There is more of the angelic hope of Keats, ready to die in the wake of the nightingale’s sweet song. Optimism that soars while being deeply anchored. Sailing, indeed. Try it at the bus-stop (I did, in Blacktown, and never lived longer).

Sailing

Love the one you’re with

The Trio of Duff, Rhodes and Ciampa was popular, driven to two encores, kindly over time. Amid these encores came the only really Italian track by the trio, given its association with "Dino Martino":

Sway

The song was recorded by Duff for the 2007 So Quiet album (available on iTunes), and Duff performed Sway on the popular nationwide Kerrie-Anne Show on Channel 9 TV:

Hard to get a shot let alone a vid at the Italian Festa without the various body parts of festival goers cavorting through every circumstance. So many of the shots from this occasion miss out on Duff’s feet. One tried hard to get a shot of what looked like a pair of particularly special Duff shoes; but whenever one got a frame on them, the Maestro’s mercurial spirit took him flying off left or right, and so on, over and over again.

For another experience of the Trio: Sun 29 Nov at St Leonards Park, Miller St, North Sydney, at the Spring into Jazz Festival from 3:00 pm. Read about Duff at last year’s Spring into Jazz here.

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