This is so far up our alley it is like a gift wrapped in golden paper, secured with a bow woven from strawberries and cream dipped in a very classy liqueur. Cast your eyes over the footage here and we think you’ll agree that it falls squarely within the footy and music nexus we all love so much, and then some.
“Ugly” Dave Gray was a ubiquitous presence on Australian television screens throughout the seventies and ‘eighties, a light entertainer par excellence. He was a regular panelist on the popular (and double entendre-laden) ‘Blankety Blanks’ hosted by The King of television himself Graham Kennedy. At one point Dave advertised a nasal spray that allegedly cured impotence (apparently it didn’t…or so a friend tells us). In addition, in 2011 Ugly Dave stated his intention to be cryogenically frozen upon his death.
For reasons that we don’t need to know or understand, at the height of his fame, Dave decided that the Fitzroy FC theme song needed a bit of sprucing up. Like anyone with any sense, he decided that if a job was with doing, it was worth doing it oneself and got to work. He penned the lyrics and laid down the track ‘Come On Fitzroy’ in a couple short weeks before unveiling it to the wider public.
There’s a lot going on in this footage that has sadly been lost in the modern era of professionalism that pervades the AFL and indeed the music industry.
At the very least it’s probably been a while since anyone broke through a cheer squad banner smoking a cigar. There is also a certain charm to seeing a billboard paying tribute to that deliciously sweet and sophisticated tipple, Tia Maria, sitting behind the behind the goals. There’s not a whole lot more to say other than the fact that we love this.
Ugly Dave, if you’re out there, please get in touch. We need men like you in our lives, in football and in music again.
*Full credit to Danny Embling for making this superb piece of footage available