Category Archives: music

Information Station and Levin

Information Station and Levin

Just had 5 weeks in Hokitika which was very calming; now in Wellington and on the way North again.

A lot of time spent in that buzzy little town called Hoki. I gotta write about the tour.

Finally can write another blog to you my friends who like me are interested in the state of the heart of our vanishing world of convivial places to meet and talk and play. It’s been a long time away.

The tour started with one gig in Christchurch and then just a case of going where invited. It’s a real eye opener seeing in real life the state of your own country.

Everywhere there are small enterprises closing.

Dunedin lost in the space of a few weeks three key watering holes. Nova. Dog with Two Tails and the Zuccini Brothers* and most likely more have closed their doors since. Meanwhile the corporate food giants feed on our addiction to the familiar. Don’t matter if it’s crappy just so long as it’s the same crappy. (* Eds note. Zucchini owners retired after 28 years)

Kids in our time probably don’t know the sheer joy of visiting places where the sole owner went to great lengths to create (key word there) a convivial civilised space for us to meet and greet and find true nourishment for body and soul. Real venues like Arc in Dunedin. Like The Island Of Real in Auckland.

There are still good places and I’m on a mission to find them so please if you know of such let us know.

What is going on though really?one can understand poorly patronized places going under but in the case of those Dunedin venues they were in fact thriving.

How can this be?

Could it be that the allurement of a keyboard and a screen has made the great unwashed happy to stay home on a government recreation scholarship rather than mix with our own flesh and blood Brothers and sisters in little ol real world ?

It’s astonishing.

At least my loafing experience involved something real with a box and vibrating strings and a mouth that could express my deepest longings. It involves reaching into the soul and finding your own unique take on things and not being at the mercy of an algorithm and simulations and titillating from the information stations.

I leave you with the lyrics of a song called Information Station. It’s on an album called Reha which is on look it up we wanna see you support this great facility and busy it up ok? Listen to Information Station – embedded below.

Anyway here’s a few key lines.i wrote this song 32 years ago and released it in 1994. It’s a sleeper. Wake it up ok?

“Meanwhile try to work at home
With a keyboard and this honky phone
Where is it written – Creation groans
Computer bureau bound to know”.

(i.e. what became Google and such)

i think I was bang on.

We really do have this option of vegetating in a simulation.i call it once removed living.
Do this or just get out more. Go to concerts. Go to the mountain. To the sea. Anything but tippy tippy and watching the devils eyeball .

Anything but tippy tappy and mesmerisation at a hopeless little screen…… quote the late uncle Lenny

Real life is always gonna surpass these imaginings on a screen. We gotta support the watering holes that remain.

By the way I am playing at Firebird again. It’s in Levin. Saturday 7pm

The acoustics are great. Food is wonderful and it’s not only pizza…the kitchen is being renovated and extended significantly.

Support anywhere that encourages live music. Such places are very rare.

I should give up but I simply cannot do that. There is still too much to say and it’s gotta be said. Come and join in. Door charge 20. Call me if ya want a ticket and just have a chat…otherwise doorsales is fine. The good thing about being a little guy is you get to talk to all your supporters. 021 0259 2919.

Call me if I can help or if you want to chew the fat. It’s a dying art…talking on the phone.corporates hate it. They prefer you use the tippy tippy and don’t engage at all at all.
@#%÷ them.

God bless.keep us posted.communication is love. Love is in short supply in the world of humans .

By the way. A new album or four is waiting to be posted up .help the cause. It is costly to make album.very costly.

Just to give you a glimpse of how impossible it is to recover the cost of making an album. 20,000 listens on Spotikleptofy realises 20 bucks for the artist.

It takes YEARS to get that many listens for tiny acts like this. We ain’t going broke coz we got your support right?

Woke Up Album Release

An 8 track album is being released today called Woke up.

Listen now.

Auld lang syne
This is a very early song I released on a 60 minute cassette called Japanese overdrive. It started out as an EP and became way better in production and length in its second edition.

It was a popular tape in fact. In those days no one was selling original tapes so it even got airplay on student stations and got me a spot on Radio With Pictures on account of my “epistles” to Brent Hansen that I snuck into the overnight courier bag from tvnz Dunedin to tvnz wellington..

In the end Brent phoned me and said “enough!” But added “which song do you want to do on RWP?” Which left me speechless. It happened. They flew me up and it was recorded in Avalon main studio. What a blast..that track (Japanese Overdrive) got me orientation gigs too.

Auld Lang Syne was from the same time and it’s a story about a girl from Dunedin who got Hollywoodised and removed from her people group in dear old Dunedin. The best line in the original was the bit about her pink Rolls “I hear they’re using digital clocks in them now. You can’t even hear the ticking anymore but I can”

Anyways this song from that time is a totally updated version recorded on a Takoma baritone at eieio studios. Is it as good? Who knows all i know is its quite different in feel and tone.

Caroline (Blue Sky) is about a Peter Stephen guitar (in this recording its played on a steve Barkman guitar) that took ages to make and we christened it Caroline after a friend of mine. Never got to own the guitar and never really got close to its namesake either.

Woke up – this was a song I first played on TVNZ Dunedin evening News show. Can you believe it? They actually encouraged the arts. That was before the world’s media got taken over by Santa Klaus Shwab. You really could get on local TV. It was marvellous. Hang on you still can its called channel 9 its owned by the ODT they play me often….come to think of it

Miracle cure is a new take on an oldie but its slow and down a few tones and played on a Takoma

Kings Cross – this is a version that needs to see the light of day played on the baritone takoma its caught the mood. Its a key song of mine and again…one day…the epic version will emerge

Greenfields this was title track to an album of the same name that iris productions made with me Nikki Lindsay and Dave Murphy. It’s a God song for sure. The kinda love that never can die has to be the holy spirit. The key lines opening the song were penned by Caroline Armstrong. Greenfield first two lines was inspired by a poem by Caroline Armstrong which she wrote in response to Blue Sky (alternative title for Caroline)

Its intriguing how our perception is based on such subtle circumstances ie the sky we see as blue isn’t in fact blue….nor the green painted fields.

Precious Time this I guess is the only studio version but the live one is on a tape I released called First Civilian

Far Away is the first tune I ever wrote back in the early 70s and it became a song recently. Its going to emerge again and when it does it won’t mean I am at a loss for material – it’s just that some songs regenerate and remorph

These tracks were recorded at eieio studios out in the country in a field with two cows and the engineer (who chooses to remain nameless). Back in 2018.

This project was supposed to be released years ago. There is in fact more material to be released from this elusive studio ….in fact the best is yet to come.

Jan Bille compiled this from a hard drive labeled “Roundhead” but none of the Roundhead tracks got selected so that also is yet to happen. We are a long way from catching up on releasable material.

Eieio is interesting.its a studio in the middle of a paddock that hosts two cows. The owner of the studio is a perfectionist. It was built specifically to record acoustic guitar and vocal includes handmade microphones made by another perfectionist from far away.

He doesn’t want to be named congratulated or esteemed. The most I could get was permission to mention the name of the studio eieio I wasn’t even allowed to post up a photo of the superstar cow grazing in the paddock.

So at last its emerged. it truly is an arts for arts are project for no profit.

On the subject it would be great if you were to Koha to this project. It’s hard to keep up any momentum in light of the fact that cost greatly outweighs returns. Arts for arts sake is good its all the better when it pays. Thats you debt. Ha ha.

Kaiwaka says hello

Happy Isles CD Coming

Hello friends. Hope you are well and happy. If you need someone to talk to dial 0800pizza. Or call me and I will call by and play for you 0210 2592 919. If you have an out of town gig then so much the better. The photo up top  is from Kaiwaka – Eutopia cafe last week.

Last week I played a gig at a venue designed for career drunkards and got fired for taking a long break to get some relief from a big table of of highly wasted girl gang members talking extremely loudly with their table virtually part of the stage. The people who came to hear me were dining inside out of view with no chance of enjoying the show. Depressing? What do you think?

But that’s a normal gig in these happy isles. Drunks often get to call the shots coz they generate the profits. So. I guess we have to tolerate them and learn moron as a second language

Anyways I wanna tour these Happy Isles and the world beyond please invite me somewhere or suggest places pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease. My new email for this is. Lukehurley @

By the way. The new album will be out on cd as well as record but we will be needing pre-sales.

A happy customer
A happy customer with Happy Isles vinyl

If at any stage you pre bought a vinyl record then make sure you let us know if it hasn’t arrived yet.

If you want to pre-buy a cd please do so as it makes it easier to make them to the highest quality in super jewel cases that don’t crack and fall apart.  (Ed’s Note: We are working on this and setting up a pre-sale option right now.)

I love tactile stuff even if many can’t be bothered with it. I want to hold it and put it on a spinny thing and know it cost me money and it cost me time and it cost me all the best years of my mind. You can lean on my machine friends.


Graham Reid on Elsewhere wrote a review thanks Graham.

Listen below to the whole album for free

Luke Hurley - Happy Isles

Happy Isles album Released today

Hello friends. Long time no write. I love  this simple direct old school blog way and we are  also linking instagram so it’s soon gonna be possible to add videos and stills to this blog (more easily) including your  input . Follow along on IG

Happy Isles - Vinyl - Luke Hurley

The new album which took two months to record and mix down in Lyttelton and Diamond harbour is now physically in stock and we just pushed the button on the 12 inch record release….

My first record since 1987.  This one is either a good listen or a good investment or both. The skills of producers Jan Bille and Ian McAllister exceeded expectations. Very happy with Happy Isles.

If ya wanna make an album talk to these guys first. Audio Centric IG

OK so here’s the plan. How about I  turn up and play at your place. Big house or small. Anywhere at all. Invite me and  your buddies and  let’s move these records before the bailiffs do. This project took a lot of work and a pile of loans which need to be paid.

In other words. Call me now 021 0259 2919 and invite me to launch Happy Isles at yours. It’s gonna work but only if you guys get behind it. Very confident you will!


Have a listen to the whole album below.

If you live outside NZ we can ship the album to you.  Some notes on shipping over here and bandcamp has a table for the main countries.

If you are in Auckland Flying Out in Pitt St has a small number of the vinyl albums in stock.  They can also help with turntables too. We are hoping to have copies at selected places in Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin too. Pennylane Records at 430 Colombo Street in Christchurch has stock now.

Playing at Mt Albert Market on corner of Asquith and New North Rd till about 12 noon on Sat 29th then at Diablos in Kerikeri on Sat night if you want to see the album hear some of the new songs live. Also on Sunday Morning at Kerikeri markets. Now playing at Eutopia cafe on Sunday 1st of March from 11:30am till 2pm.

If you pickup a copy of the album where Luke is playing and want to pay online this button below is the best way to pay if you don’t have cash. It misses out the delivery fees. Also – once we have your email address we can send you a download code. It still uses PayPal so we don’t see your card details and they are kept safe 🙂

Buy Happy Isles Vinyl $40 (NZD)

Luke Hurley new album Happy Isles

Happy Isles – Pre-Release

Happy Days – the new album is nearly ready. Literally at the pressing plant where the new vinyl is being made fresh at Holiday Records in Auckland.

Credits: Captured/ Produced by Jan Bille in Diamond Harbour (Christchurch) August 2019. Post production and mastering by Ian McAllister at Audio Centric Christchurch. September-October 2019. No overdubs.

Cover art by Justin Summerton. Design by
Many thanks to first edition sponsors: Holiday Records, Simon Raby, Chris Rankin, John Appleby, Dorothy Brown, Paul Hurley.

There are 8 songs. On side 1. Happy Isles, Colour of Your Skin and Alba.
On Side 2: Ting Tong, Hamilton Dome, Whero, Green Man and Diamond Friday is the full track listing.

Stay tuned for release timetable for the music and the vinyl. If you are already on the mail list we will know more about release timetable soon. We are thinking it should be ready in the first or second week of Feb but hoping it is sooner.

We are also talking with some record stores which specialise in vinyl and where you can go to see and hear the physical album. The full price is $40 but fine tuning all the logistics now.