Tag Archives: St Andrews

Rocking down memory lane

THE “TICE” were a 1970s cult band from Eltham and are famous for being the most famous band that you’ve never heard of.
Members of Reuben Tice recently got together and played two reunion gigs in Eltham and St Andrews.
Readers may not recognise the name, but the band played a part in the history of the iconic 70s band Skyhooks.
Officially called the Reuben Tice Memorial Band (named after an American engineer who died trying to invent a machine that de-wrinkled prunes — but that’s a whole other story), the band has been likened to a local version of the Grateful Dead — or perhaps the Rolling Stones.
Warrandyte-born songwriter Greg Macainsh and Elthamite Tony Williams formed Reuben Tice in 1969.
Guitarist Mark Smith joined the band in 1975 when he moved down from Sydney, but he told the M&N Bulletin the band first started around Montsalvat, with people such as Marcus Skipper in the line-up.
“The band used to get together at Montsalvat and jam together.”
They were also on the bill for the first Skyhooks concert in April 1973, which Macainsh was also songwriter and bass guitarist for, penning such classics as Balwyn Calling, Million Dollar Riff, Horror Movie, Ego is Not a Dirty Word, Women in Uniform, Carlton (Lygon Street Limbo) and Living in the ‘70s.
Reuben Tice vocalist Tony Williams joined Macainsh in Skyhooks in 1978 when Shirley Strachan left to pursue a television career.

Flash forward to 2023, and many of the faces remain the same, as the reunion line-up featured:

  • Tony Williams (Vocal, Guitar, Harmonica)
  • Mark Smith (Guitar)
  • Roger Davies (Guitar)
  • George Kirov (Bass)
  • Jamie Slagmolen (Cajon)

They were also joined by local musicians, country singer Leslie Avril and singer/songwriter Sharin Anderson.
The reunion gig was to celebrate the release of their four-CD box set Rolling The Tice — Songs From An Unmade Road (Reuben Tice 1969–1979), which includes a mix of live and studio recordings.
“A good friend of ours, disc jockey Maurice Hurry, took a great interest in the band over the years.
“He gathered together a whole lot of recordings and had them remastered, and this is the result,” said Mark.
Maurice told the M&N Bulletin he and music producer Marcell Borrack spent the pandemic compiling the recordings.
“It’s quite interesting as a piece of lost rock and roll archive with all these 60s and 70s musicians.
“It all started at Eltham High and Montsalvat — this art rock and roll culture — we have a lost heritage, from the last 30–40 years.
“Some of the band members moved on to Skyhooks, and this incredible archive was left behind, which I have finessed and remastered,” Maurice said.
Reuben Tice performed nine songs at the St Andrews reunion gig, including originals The Way It’s Played, I Couldn’t Get High, Rock Bottom Shuffle, Down The Road I Go, as well as covers The Weight (The Band) and Emergency (The Fabulous Thunderbirds).
Guitarist Mark Smith said the reunion concert was “lots of fun — we had a lot of our fanbase turn up at the St Andrews Hall”.
However, he said he doubted there would be another concert.
“Roger Davies is 76 now, and Vic, the original drummer, can’t play anymore because he has arthritis, and Greg Macainsh is now working as an Intellectual Property Lawyer in Queensland,” 
Lead vocalist Tony Williams has released a memoir, Touched by the Tice, outlining his time in Reuben Tice and later as the vocalist for Skyhooks.
Maurice said Rolling the Tice will be on Band Camp in the next few weeks, and video of the St Andrews concert  is available to watch on YouTube and an audio recording is in the process of being produced and will hopefully be released in the coming months.
Tony William’s book, Touched by the Tice, is available to purchase from Amazon or to borrow from Eltham Library.

Photos by BILL McAULEY

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Black Saturday heroes recognised

On Saturday February 7, 2009, CFA members around the state were poised for the worst fire danger day in living memory, following sustained extreme temperatures and a forecast of 50 degrees with strong northerly winds — in short, a recipe for a disaster.

Crews gathered in fire stations across Victoria, including those around Warrandyte.

The events of Black Saturday are well known, and have almost passed into the annals of history.

However, one group of volunteer firefighters who put their lives on the line to battle the inferno that erupted that day have had to wait until now to receive the recognition they greatly deserve.

Some nine years later, the members of South Warrandyte Fire Brigade have received their National Emergency Medal, to honour the service they gave to the community on Black Saturday.

The National Emergency Medal was first issued in 2012 and was struck to recognise “sustained service during specified dates in specified places in response to nationally-significant emergencies within Australia; or to other persons who rendered significant service in response to such emergencies”.

Those events included the Black Saturday bushfires, the 2009/10 Queensland Floods and Cyclone Yasi. In a presentation at the South Warrandyte Fire Station in early October, 11 members of the South Warrandyte Fire Brigade received the National Emergency Medal in front of their families and CFA colleagues.

 

Lieutenant Warren Aikman

Responded to St Andrews and subsequently to Kinglake on Black Saturday and then responded to events in St Andrews during the aftermath for a total of 12 days service during the period.

Firefighter Alan Bastow

Responded to Kinglake on Black Saturday with a total of eight days service during the period.

Firefighter Patricia Cridland

Responded to Kinglake on Black Saturday and then responded to events in St Andrews in the aftermath for a total of nine days service during the period.

Firefighter Aaron Farr (now Captain of Wonga Park)

Responded to Kinglake on Black Saturday and then to events in St Andrews during the aftermath of Black Saturday for a total of 21 days service during the period.

Firefighter Gerard Fitzpatrick

Responded to events in Bunyip and Drouin on Black Saturday and to events in St Andrews in the aftermath for a total of 12 days service during the period.

Firefighter Chris Haggerty

At the request of Woori Yallock Captain Bendigo Bank released Chris to fulfil Communications support at Woori Yallock ICC. Chris fulfilled his Communications Support role during the evenings while still carrying out his work for the bank in the relief centres during the day, with a total of seven days service during the period.

Firefighter Andrew Hedderwick

Responded to St Andrews and subsequently to Kinglake on Black Saturday and then responded to events in St Andrews during the aftermath for a total of eight days service during the period.

Communications Officer Graham Moulden

Responded to Kinglake on Black Saturday and then responded to events in St Andrews during the aftermath for a total of 15 days service during the period.

Firefighter Kristian Nielsen

Responded to St Andrews and subsequently to Kinglake on Black Saturday and then responded to events in St Andrews during the aftermath for a total of 20 days service during the period.

Firefighter Megan Perry

Radio Operator at Kangaroo Ground Incident Control Centre during Black Saturday and the days that followed for a total of seven days service during the period.

Firefighter Lou Simonis

Operations Officer at Kangaroo Ground Incident Control Centre during Black Saturday and the days that followed for a total of nine days service during the period.

Lieutenant Warren Aikman told the gathering of the role that brigade members performed during the fires:

On Saturday February 7, 2009, South Warrandyte were at the station early in readiness for an extreme fire danger day, assigned to multiple locations we had members manning the ICC at Kangaroo Ground in management and radio operator roles, another member on Pumper Tanker Strike Team 1306 deployed to Bunyip and Drouin where significant fire suppression and asset protection activities were carried out throughout the day and night.

In addition, our members were assigned to the brigade nominated Strike Team 1364 on multiple appliances including the Warrandyte FCV and the Strike Team Leaders vehicle, North Warrandyte Tanker and of course our own Tanker.

Importantly we also had the crew in station fulfilling vital roles of protecting our own local communities and responding to incidents in our own assignment area.

We also had an ex-member at that time (now a current member) providing support to the Woori Yallock ICC.

This was a team effort by our members across many parts of the organisation. Strike Team 1364 was responded to form up at Hurstbridge fire station in readiness for deployment to St Andrews where a major spot fire from the main Kilmore fire had started, crews were deployed on Jacksons Road at approximately 4:30pm and commenced fire suppression activities and asset protection, at the time of the severe change in the weather conditions, crews moved to a safe zone as the fire intensified and the fire front moved through.

Once the front had passed, crews of ST1364 were re-deployed via the Whittlesea staging area where they were the first team to enter into the devastation of Kinglake.

Crews were assigned to fire suppression and asset protection in an attempt to save lives and property.

The South Warrandyte Tanker crew was specifically assigned to the Kinglake Primary School where a large number of residents were taking refuge.

The crew set up there for the night to ensure the facility remained defendable and residents were assured of their safety.

The morning of the 8th at around 6am first responding crews were relieved by our changeover crew who had already been up much of the night having been faced with the logistic challenges of getting into the fire zone.

Those crews commenced the painstaking and heart-wrenching task of recovery whilst also maintaining fire suppression activities.

During the ensuing days crews continued to be responded to local incidents in addition to responses back to Kinglake and Christmas Hills, while members also played significant leadership roles in the recovery and rehabilitation program in the Kinglake complex.

During this time, our members at the ICCs also continued to carry out important roles in supporting and co-ordinating the crews on the fire ground and much more.

Following Black Saturday, South Warrandyte members along with other Warrandyte brigades also took on the 24/7 manning and operations of the St Andrews Fire Station, this was done to allow their members impacted by the fires to go off-line and attend to their personal needs and recovery.

Those crews manning the station continued to conduct fire suppression, containment and recovery operations. St Andrews Captain, Helen Kenney acknowledged the positive impact of these crews and relief and support they provided to her members.

“Black Saturday was an unprecedented event which had significant impact in so many ways on CFA members and their families and communities we protect, on behalf of the members receiving the medal today I would like to thank the CFA and Government House for recognising the members for their commitment to protecting our communities during the 2009 Victorian bushfires.

I also pay our respects to the 173 people who lost their lives in this devastating event.

These well-deserved medals may have been a long time coming, however the depth of gratitude towards these Black Saturday heroes is no less than it was nine years ago.

Current Brigade Secretary Kim Dixon has worked for over twelve months to organise the presentation to formally recognise the service and commitment of the South Warrandyte firefighters. Readers of the Diary should be mindful that the devastation of Kinglake could very easily have played out in our own town, and remain vigilant and be thankful for the volunteers that strive tirelessly to protect us from nature’s wrath.