The online home for Fergus Maximus (both the band and the bloke)
The online home for Fergus Maximus (both the band and the bloke)


Henley Square

Before Fergus Maximus, there was Stumbletrip. And before Stumbletrip there was Sideways Glance.

It started when I wrote Henley Square as an entry in a SCALA competition for songs about parts of South Australia. I got together with my friend Grant Shillabeer and he figured out those awesome chords. The song ended up being a co-winner in the Adelaide category and we had the opportunity to go into Mixmasters Studio and record it. Unfortunately, the session dates ended up being when Grant was away on his honeymoon (this was 1997/98, back in the previous millennium). We didn’t have any control over the recording session so I ended up recording the track with my brother Mark (who wrote the killer arrangement) and some members of Spank You Very Much, one of the many bands he was playing in at the time (Damien Steele Scott on bass, Andrew Bignel on kit and Dave Innocente on guitar).

It sounded great but I’ve always regretted listening to the producer tell me I needed to change the chorus. The song as written only mentioned Henley Square at the beginning of the first line. I caved and rewrote it as suggested and I’ve never been entirely happy with that.

Anyway, Sideways Glance the band formed out of that songwriting session. After a while we enlisted our mate Jamie Harrison on bass and the road toward Fergus Maximus really began. But that’s a story for another day.

Last Friday night at Woodstock Kym, Jamie and I pulled Henley Square out of the folder and blew the dust off it. A wonderful, balmy night was a perfect setting to reminisce:

Henley Square, 10pm Tuesday, still over 30 degrees …

This is where I belong



Stumbletrip was the second incarnation of Sideways Glance, the band I started with Grant Shillabeer back around the end of the 20th Century (1998 as best I can figure it). We had added Jamie Harrison on bass for a couple of gigs and had a few rehearsals with a hot girl drummer (she was way too young and gorgeous for us and, sadly, much to busy). In the end Kym Perry came on board as our drummer (he’s now the guitarist for Fergus Maximus and is remarkably and unnecessarily talented in either guise). I’ll write up a proper bio for both bands eventually but that’s not the point of this post.

The name Stumbletrip actually comes from Michael Rosen’s wonderful book We’re Going on a Bear Hunt. To date, only one person has made that connection independently. Well, only one person has told me they’ve made that connection (thanks, Jo, you’re an exceedingly well-read legend).

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