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Michael Smith (The Atlantics & The Drum Media)

Later in 2018, we employed Michael Smith, (former Atlantics bassist and head editor at The Drum Media), to mentor Blue Mountains musicians by getting him to perform and rehearse with six local players. On New Year’s Eve, the newly-formed group performed hits and covers collected through Michael’s 50 years in music at a packed event at The Baroque Room in Katoomba.

“I had the pleasure of working with Willem Hendriksen on an event he put together for New Year’s Eve 2018, titled the Beached As Boogie Down. [Apart from honouring my six years in Australia’s premier surf rock guitar band, The Atlantics, with a colourful beach theme], Hendriksen also recognised my 50 of years experience as a musician in bands…as well as my 25 years as Associate and Contributing Editor of Sydney’s most influential cultural street press magazine, The Drum Media. He brought me on board as a media and music mentor, putting me with [emerging and experienced] musicians across generational lines. So Beached As was much more than a night of beach-themed rock’n’roll in the Baroque Room at the Carrington in Katoomba – it contained recollections drawn from across my musical and journalistic experience; insights into professional performance, presentation, musical arranging, publicity, promotion, management and recording experience. Hendriksen even brought in a young local journalist to interview me for The HAZE Magazine, a free and local music and arts quarterly, as well as for a piece he would publish in the Blue Mountains Gazette, and a young photographer looking to expand her experience of photographing musicians, on and off the stage. Hendriksen himself interviewed me for his Retro Rehash program on community radio. With all that in mind, I have no hesitation in endorsing Willem Hendriksen in any venture he may choose to develop or promote.”

~ Michael Smith (The Atlantics/The Drum Media)