Powderfinger to reunite for first gig in ten years
Exclusive: These days have turned out like nothing Powderfinger, or their fans, had planned.
The much-loved Australian band has shocked everyone by confirming their long-awaited reunion to play their first concert in a decade.
Frontman Bernard Fanning said they are getting the 'finger back together in our self-isolation time for the One Night Lonely concert, which will be streamed on their YouTube channel on May 23.
A reunion has topped the My Happiness wishlist of their hundreds of thousands of fans since Fanning, Ian Haug, John Collins, Darren Middleton and Jon Coghill called it quits in 2010.
Speculation they were up to something was stirred again last week when they changed the profile photo on their social media pages.
Would they headline the all-Australian Falls Festivals at the end of the year or was the band simply teasing the 20th anniversary reissue of their biggest-selling record Odyssey No. 5?
The idea to play a virtual reunion gig was hatched during their weekly Zoom meetings to plan the anniversary record expected to be released later this year.
"In these meetings, we were chatting about the (online) performances we had all seen and then thinking about what could we do," Fanning said.
"Do we have a song we could release or something like that to contribute?
"A concert just kind of became the best idea and we liked it because it was really unusual, the idea of us actually reuniting without physically being in the same room."
Like the hundreds of Australian acts who have taken their performances online since the pandemic shutdown brought the live music industry to its knees, there is also a message behind the Powderfinger reunion madness.
Besides wanting to put a smile on the dials of their fans, Powderfinger are keen to support the Beyond Blue and Support Act charities with the aptly titled One Night Lonely gig.
"When we asked ourselves why we should do it, seriously, we just wanted to try to put a smile on people's faces," Fanning said.
"And while we are doing it, find a way to try to raise some money for people who need it. All the stuff that has been put together for Support Act, it's great there's so much awareness now about the need for the arts, and music industry in our case, to be supported.
"All the measures that have been put in place with Job Seeker and all those things, have completely missed the music industry, and arts workers in general, and we thought it was something that needed to be addressed and if there was a way we could help, then we would."
The five band members will perform their greatest hits from their respective isolated locations throughout Australia - Fanning from Byron Bay, Haug from the hinterland on Brisbane's fringes, Middleton from his Melbourne home studio, Coghill from the Sunshine Coast and Collins in the empty Fortitude Music Hall venue he opened last year.
While it has been 10 years since their Sunset Farewell swansong shows, four of the members did get together during Fanning's headlining set at Splendour In The Grass in 2017.
There was some discontent among fans that drummer Coghill didn't get the call-up but the band members insisted there had been a communications "misunderstanding" and were all good with each other.
Fanning and Coghill took the opportunity to have a joke about that semi-reunion, posting audio of a phone call they had in the wake of the fan speculation about their return.
"Yeah we've had a bit of fun with that with this teaser going out of Cogsy calling me and asking if I'd heard this stuff of us having a reunion," Fanning said, laughing.
"I'm like "I don't know anything about it.'
"He says 'Well, just let me know if anything's happening.'
"And I said 'Yeah mate, it won't be like last time.'"
One Night Lonely will stream from 7pm via the Powderfinger channel on YouTube.
Originally published as Powderfinger to reunite for first gig in ten years