Dickheads back on the airwaves reviving fun times

Three decades past prime, but enjoying revival

EMILY BEAUMONT
Last updated 07:48 11/02/2014
Daggy and the dickheads
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ON THE ROAD: Filling up the back seat during those hazy halcyon days for Daggy and the Dickheads are, from left, Mark Kennedy, Tim McCartin, Paul Kennedy and in the front is Dan McCartin. Neil Mickleson is obscured.

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Three decades past their prime, Taihape band Daggy and the Dickheads are enjoying something of a revival thanks to a famous fan.

Sports broadcaster Hamish McKay's Sunday show on RadioLive features the band's single Sometimes Nothing as its theme song.

"It's a nice little reminder of the fun time we had back 30 years ago," said Tim McCartin, who played guitar for Daggy and the Dickheads.

The country-oriented song was written about a relationship but McCartin said it could also apply to anything in life.

"Sometimes nothing is better than not enough. Could even apply it to the drought. We didn't get enough rain, getting no rain can be better than getting a little bit."

A native of Palmerston North, McKay said he had been a fan of the band since he first heard them on radio station 2ZA.

A year 11 student at Palmerston North Boys' High School at the time, McKay said the band was "hugely popular" in the early 80s in the city.

"They just had all the ingredients. Farmers, lots of energy. Mark Kennedy was a [Rolling Stones frontman Mick] Jagger-like figure. The romantic notion they'd be dagging fat woolly romneys by day and on stage at night was somehow appealing."

McKay said Daggie and the Dickheads were a serious band who at the same time did not take themselves seriously, like his radio show.

Last year he made a plea on Twitter for somebody to find him a copy of their lone EP, Brothers.

Daggy and the Dickheads were one of the great rock bands to come out of heartland New Zealand in the 1980s, albeit briefly.

Two sets of brothers, Mark and Paul Kennedy, and Dan and Tim McCartin, joined bassist Neil Mickleson, writing songs about the isolation of rural life.

"We'd always loved music and we thought ‘why don't we just start a band?'," McCartin said.

After their formation outside the New Taihape Hotel in late 1980, the band went on to play a number of gigs and festivals throughout the country. Their "high country rock" struck a chord with students. One Orientation tour saw them play at every New Zealand university.

Brothers, released in 1982, featured five original songs but double that number were performed and never committed to tape.

With bandmates' lives taking different directions, they soon broke up.

The band have played together on only two occasions since their heyday, most recently the wedding of Tim's daughter, Anna, in 2011, and he is not ruling out another reunion.

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- Manawatu Standard

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