Singer, songwriter, actor, TV presenter, politician, father, writer, philanthropist. You name it, Gary ‘Angry’ Anderson has probably done it, and almost certainly done it with an explosion of energy and a dash of controversy. One of Australia’s most recognisable faces (and voices), Angry Anderson and his throaty growl have been shaking floors and ruffling feathers since the seventies. Showing no signs of stopping at 68 years of age, Angry will return to the Gold Coast with a stellar line up of Aussie rock stalwarts including The Angels and the Choirboys in the Oz Rock Roadshow, which hits Jupiters on Saturday 19th March. We chatted with him in the lead up to the show.
Tell us about some of the musical projects you’ve been working on lately!
I’m always working, mainly weekends, musically speaking, these days I’m doing pubs, corporates and the odd extravaganza eg. OZ Rock Show and the bonus is that I’m doing a lot of these with good mates.
Are you still heavily involved in children’s charities?
I’ll always be involved in contributing, wherever I can, so yes I’m still involved in a number of charities, eg. I am an Ambassador for the ‘Save our Sons Foundation’, raising monies for research into finding a cure for Dechene Muscular Dystrophy.
Go Back To Where You Came From seems to be a bit of a life changing experience for many of its participants. What are some of the longer term attitudes you have carried with you as a result of the show?
There has to be solutions to these problems that are as free from politics as is possible, if that is at all possible; and that the sovereignty of our borders is paramount to our internal national security.
You have been brutally honest about some of the horrors of your upbringing. Do you think that having those experiences has made you a better parent?
I am the person I am because of all my life experiences, good and bad or not so good, pain is our greatest teacher and our constant companion.
I can’t even imagine what it has been like to lose five band mates to cancer over the years. Has it changed your approach to health at all?
The birth of our daughter changed my lifestyle and attitude towards my own health, I gave up my addiction to drugs and alcohol to be a better father for her. The deaths of those so close to me only supported that decision; at the end of the day we are who we want to be, in every sense.
What’s next for you in the political arena, if anything?
I’m done with politics as far as running in an election for a seat goes. My short lived experience as a candidate taught me a lot; I wanted to enter politics to serve my country and my fellow Australians but I can do that in other ways.
If you could pick any musical experience that you haven’t had yet, what would be?
To record an album of love songs.
I have to admit my favourite project of yours was, believe it or not, as Herod in the 1992 Aussie JC Superstar. It was the first “concert” I was allowed to go to as a young impressionable teenager, and it’s always stayed with me. In your long and diverse career, can you pick a couple of highlights?
Reading Festival when after our performance we were told that we had won the crowd so convincingly that we were now accepted by the English Heavy Rock audience; another high light was playing Iron Bar in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Touring America with ZZ Top and then Areosmith is right up there too.. oh and to have Guns and Roses cover one of our songs felt good too.
Your can catch Choirboys, Rose Tattoo, Stars, Ted Mulry Gang, The Angels, Billy Thorpe Band and Matt Finish at Jupiters on Saturday 19 March 2016. Tickets are available here.