Andrew Hassack

Andrew Hassack

1978, Hernando’s Hideaway – my first “punk” gig. We’d all heard and read the stories coming mainly from the UK and mostly about the Sex Pistols.

It was mad, crazy, violent and definitely a little bit scary. Nonetheless, there I was looking like I’d just come out of the surf. I didn’t look like a punk at all. Would I survive?

Well, the first guy I saw had a raw lamb chop pinned to his shirt and was obviously a very bohemian type, so I thought “this will be fun”, and it was.

The band I’d gone to see that night were The Orphans. They played a very good set of catchy, fast, furious and very angry songs – everything you would expect from a punk band. I was hooked.

Venues like Hernando’s, the Orient in Fremantle and Adrians in Northbridge were where I saw such bands as The Victims (the most popular of the punk bands in Perth)*; The Manikins, with their songs about the soaps on tv and their singer reading the words spontaneously from a newspaper or magazine long before we’d heard of Nick Cave; Rip Torn and The Stockings playing a fine set of up-tempo power pop songs.

*Ed. note: Hassa’s chronology is astray here. The Victims played their last gig before The Orphans ever gigged at Hernando’s, although The Victims did play a reunion gig at Adrians, notoriously invaded by rampaging skinheads – see Kim Williams’ perspective.

I recall The Scientists’ first gig in the lounge of a house in Osborne Park, with the band wearing the classic 60s uniform of white shirt and thin black tie.

There were many more bands that I haven’t mentioned or have forgotten in that very brief period, though the above-mentioned bands were the seminal Perth punk bands and some of their members went on to bigger and better things.

All in all, a great time was had by musicians and fans alike and it’s just a bit of a pity that no one comprehensively recorded or documented the moment.

Nonetheless, some dusty old recordings, photos and memories have been unearthed to amuse, delight and inform both old and young alike.

So to all the people involved back then and in this current Perth punk project – well done and thanks.

Short Bio:
Andrew “Hassa” Hassack is a rock devotee and musician, whose flirtation with punk was fleeting, as he indicates above. His preference is for 70s metal and hard rock (he mentions Thin Lizzie and Blue Oyster Cult as his all-time faves). He spends most of his time recording his originals, having honed his guitar and drum programming skills over countless hours in engagement with his computer and Pro Tools. His first CD, comprising 6 tracks and tentatively entitled “Hassa’s Imaginary Rock Band”, was completed around 2006.

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