Episode 4: Preface

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Hard Boys ... a psychodrama for radio

Produced by Blue Trumpet for Radio 2RRR, Hard Boys, a psychodrama for radio, is a uniquely Australian story in 10 parts. Starring Johnny Boxer of the long-running Australian TV show, Fat Pizza, he brings the same uniquely Australian voice to this production.

Episode 4: Preface

“Joe by this time is turning into a little rat. I think that’s as fair a description as I could give of Joe. He’d been on the road about two weeks. Fifteen or sixteen year old growth on the face and the hair’s everywhere. By the time we got to Mt Isa we were eating coal dust and we were probably near black with filth. We must’ve been a helluva sight. We stunk like all buggery, like rubbish tips. But by this time he’d changed. Everyone changes. I’d already changed. Long ago. I’d been through all that so I was comfortable where I was. But Joe had a lot to learn.”

The music...

Featuring Australian music of the 1960s and early ‘70s in order of play...

Black & Blue by Chain

Chain were an Australian blues band formed as The Chain in late 1968 with a line-up including guitarist and vocalist Phil Manning and lead vocalist Wendy Saddington. Saddington left in May 1969 and in September 1970 Matt Taylor joined on lead vocals and harmonica. During the 1990s they were referred to as Matt Taylor's Chain. Their single, 'Black and Blue', is their only top twenty hit. It was written and recorded by the line-up of Manning, Taylor, Barry Harvey on drums and Barry Sullivan on bass guitar. Here they are performing the hit single on Move, taken from the 1971 album 'Toward The Blues'.

Death of a King by Masters Apprentices

The Masters Apprentices were an Australian rock band fronted by Jim Keays on lead vocals, which formed in 1965 in Adelaide, South Australia, relocated to Melbourne, Victoria in February 1967 and attempted to break into the United Kingdom market from 1970, before disbanding in 1972. They had numerous popular singles in Australia. The band launched the career of bass guitarist Glenn Wheatley who later became a music industry entrepreneur and an artist talent manager for both Little River Band and John Farnham. Here they are performing on Hit Scene the hit track 'Death Of A King', taken from the 1971 album 'Choice Cuts'.

The poem...

Men’s deeds are surpassed by imagination
Within the passage of memories

The atomic age was not seen by our eyes alone
But dreamed
By those who gave the past to carve into present

Let us regain what we have lost in our soul’s blindness
Our sin of holiness renounced

The pyramids
The sphinx, with a whisper on her lips
The transcripts of Greece, Egypt and Tibet
All long to cry their songs of creation

It’s hard for a man to resist his blind pursuits
The dark boundaries of his evolution
The unknown places
Lie in his most obscure imagination

An obsession to possess
To acquire
Get knowledge of a future course
Analyse it, dissect it
Reconcile it with the past

Life’s a mystery
And life hereafter


Produced by Blue Trumpet Productions for Radio 2RRR
Written and realized by James Benn
With Johnny Boxer in the title role
Original story and poetry by Greg Young
Original tunes by James Benn, performed by Johnny Boxer, James Benn, and Terry Darmody
Voices in order of appearance…

  • Chris Virtue
  • James Benn
  • Johnny Boxer
  • Gas Wylde
  • Sue Liolio

Introductions and credits by Amie Maguire