FREMANTLE ARTS CENTRE
Photos by Linda Dunjey
On the first official evening of summer 2019-20, Fremantle Arts Centre was the place to be as Queenslander, Ziggy Alberts, brought his Laps Around The Sun world tour to the mild west.
Ziggy Alberts plays music for people dreaming of a gentler world.
By the time Alberts took to the stage, the sell-out crowd was well up for it, having been suitably frothed by opening act, Kim Churchill, who finished his well-received set by revving up the audience for his compadre.
Alberts prefaced his set with a video homage to WA, letting the crowd know just how steeped in the west coast his music is. It was a nice touch, but not really necessary, as the applause for the real thing showed when he loped on stage.
Ziggy Alberts plays music for people dreaming of a gentler world. His songs are post-surf music, written for beaches and holiday shacks on the coast, gatherings around campfires and life in camper vans, although not Kombis, he and his audience are nowhere near old enough for that!
Every song he played was a banger, an opportunity for a sing along. Which was good, because, as he said early on in his set, Alberts only has two rules at his shows, that people look after each other and that they sing along, “If you think you know the words.” Pretty much everyone at Fremantle Arts Centre last night thought they knew the words and it made for a gorgeous feeling of community as artist and audience shared their mutual love and respect.
The word that best captures what this night was all about is ‘gentle’. Alberts is an artist who cares, about his audience, about the environment — “We’ve got responsible merchandise for sale, organic cotton and fair trade. All this hippy stuff” — and about the music.
Playing his songs completely solo, as seems to be the thing these days for a certain sort of modern-day crooner, Alberts is a capable musician and engaging performer who translates his songs to the live context with the same apparent ease as he births them in their recorded format.
A Ziggy Alberts concert is a good place to be. No wonder people are turning out to see him in increasing numbers. He makes the world a better place, even if it’s only for the time that he has the audience in his thrall. That’s got to be a good thing, hasn’t it?