“I made up my performing name Grim Fawkner when I worked in a factory in Melbourne. I’d catch the 6am train every morning and pass through Fawkner. The station at Fawkner was right next to the cemetery. Every morning I’d see tired and depressed-looking people getting on the train and I just sat there thinking “grim f***ing Fawkner…””
The journey to Bendigo, where he’s lived for three years now, has been a colourful one for Grim Fawkner – from Moree in NSW to the north west of Tasmania via Melbourne. In addition to the hundreds of Bendigo gigs he has under his belt he’s played some very interesting venues over the years. “Places like hairdressers and pie shops, but the most unusual music venue I’ve played in is Wunderbar in Christchurch, NZ, just because of all the mannequin legs and strange bric-à-brac around the room.” It doesn’t stop there. He recorded a live album at Melbourne’s Abbotsford Convent and a live ep in a bar in London’s Camden Town.
The influence of his father (“artists like Paul Weller, Elvis Costello and Patti Smith – my dad’s taste in music”) and wanting to impress girls at school originally drew Grim Fawkner to music. “Also my sister motivated me by telling me she thought I was talented, even when I was terrible!”
It’s easy to understand why he chose to move to Bendigo. “There are a hell of a lot of music lovers in Bendigo and they are the only people who make playing anywhere in the world worthwhile. The support I’ve had has been unreal over the past few years, and a lot of people who came to see me back in the day I’d now consider to be good mates.”