One Night of Genius
The musical maverick of modern America, Van Dyke Parks is coming to Adelaide in a Festival showcase.
Van Dyke Parks was last in Adelaide at a fantastic concert at the Governor Hindmarsh in 2011. He can’t wait to return.
“We were all tired because it was the last day in a six week tour,” he says, ”but we came in over the sea, and I looked out and I could see the bottom through this beautiful clear water, and the hills, oh, the hills, it reminded me of Hollywood. Adelaide felt like a rare place, and the concert was amazing. I was touring around with another social misanthrope, the great Kinky Friedman. He’s a great example of everything that’s great about America. He’s a rusty nail that won’t be hammered down.”
As if Van Dyke Parks can say this of others. Beginning with Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys, in his own quiet way Parks has had the cream of the music industry lining up at his door ever since. Not that you’d know it.
“I was so honoured when I was asked to put a concert together for the Festival,” he says, “So I thought, if they’re going to do me this honour, then I want to give them something that won’t be boring and will be courageous, and the idea of a three way collaboration with a couple of fantastic artists came to mind.”
A couple of artists, eh? Like Daniel Johns, of Silverchair fame. Only Parks could possibly coax the reclusive genius to appear with him in Adelaide on this one-night-only bonanza.
“Quite frankly, Daniel dazzles me,” Parks muses, “He doesn’t need to do anything. He can sit in a hammock. But when I suggested this gig, he agreed to come to the other side of the world for a single concert. What Daniel has is speed.”
The other guest is the amazing Kimbra. “She’s divine,” he enthuses, “She’s got it all. I did some arrangements for her but I knew straight away she didn’t need me for a minute! She’s a musical dweeb! She knows every note.”
“And having the chance to work with an orchestra is a blessing,” Parks says eagerly, “and it really energises me so I’ve been writing new charts for the past month.”
New charts? A one-off? For three artists of this quality, you’ve got to be there.
One night only, Friday 8 March, at the legendary Thebarton Theatre. Book at Bass.