Tim Rogers (musician)
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|Birth name||Timothy Adrian Rogers|
|Born||20 September 1969|
Kalgoorlie, Western Australia, Australia
|Associated acts||You Am I, TnT, The Bamboos, The Hillbilly Killers|
Tim Rogers (born Timothy Adrian Rogers on 1 September 1969) is an Australian musician, actor and writer, best known as the frontman of Australian rock band You Am I. He has also recorded solo albums with backing bands. As of July 2013, Rogers has released 12 albums with You Am I and five solo albums.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Music
- 3 Film
- 4 Theatre
- 5 Television
- 6 Writing
- 7 Other projects
- 8 Controversy
- 9 Personal life
- 10 Guitars and equipment
- 11 Backing bands
- 12 Discogprahy
- 13 References
- 14 External links
Born in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia, Rogers moved between towns multiple times during his adolescence, including Adelaide and Canberra. Following his primary school years in Applecross, a suburb of Perth, Rogers later became school captain at Sydney school Oakhill College. Rogers studied law at the Australian National University in Canberra, aged 18, though did not complete a degree. While at ANU, Rogers lived at Toad Hall residential accommodation, and worked part-time at Canberra Theatre. During this time, Rogers met Andy Kent, who later became the long-term bass player of You Am I.
Tim Rogers regards Keith Richards (The Rolling Stones), Pete Townshend (The Who) and Paul Westerberg (The Replacements) as his three formative musical heroes, becoming aware of each of those artists as a teenager. Throughout his career, Rogers eventually supported all three of these heroes as a musician: You Am I supported The Rolling Stones in 2003, The Who in 2004, and The Replacements in 2015.
You Am I
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Rogers formed You Am I with school friend Nick Tischler and older brother Jaimme Rogers in 1989. Although the line-up regularly changed during the band's early period, Andy Kent and Mark Tunaley eventually settled on bass guitar and drums, respectively. Kent had previously been the band's sound mixer before joining as a musician. After the recording of their debut album Sound As Ever Tunaley was asked to leave the band and Russell 'Rusty' Hopkinson joined. Second guitarist Davey Lane, initially part of The Twin Set touring band, joined in 1999.
Rogers released his first solo album What Rhymes With Cars And Girls in 1999 after his relocation to Melbourne. Rogers later provided a brief background for an album that was recorded over a three-week period on an eight-track digital recorder: "I had some time alone and I found myself writing some songs and then I just thought, well it looks like You Am I's not going to be recording for a while, while we're waiting for albums to come out overseas, so I wanna make a record…" Recorded at the home studio of Weddings Parties Anything band member Jen Anderson, the album mostly consists of country/folk-style songs, even though Rogers hesitated at the idea of a country sound. Rogers used the name The Twin Set for his backing band, as well as for the corresponding tour. He later won an ARIA award for Best Male Artist for the album. On 29 September 2007, Rogers released his fourth solo album The Luxury of Hysteria, the first album for which his name is the sole performing credit, although The Temperance Union performed on the album. Rogers also created his own record label, Ruby Q, to release the album.
Writing for The Age newspaper (Victoria, Australia), Michael Dwyer wrote in an October 2007 review:
Tim Rogers never sounded as lost as on this strange, beautiful album .... The first three songs are troubled inner monologues. A Quiet Night In and When Yer Sad infuse the act of being alone with Shakespearean gravity. Much of the rest is like personal correspondence, written late at night when feelings are raw and references obscure. There's no mistaking the mood, though: regret and bewilderment bounce off each other like booze and smokes.
Australian music writer Ed Nimmervoll described The Luxury of Hysteria as: "Reflective, brutally honest and painful- but never self indulgent …"
Ten years after the release of What Rhymes With Cars and Girls, Rogers, together with musicians from the original recording sessions, played several live performances in the Australian cities of Sydney and Melbourne during April 2009 for a limited tour that involved the album played live in its entirety. The concerts lacked Stuart Speed, the album's bass guitarist, who had died. Anderson reflected upon the album's significance prior to the commencement of the shows, "Moving to Melbourne for him [Rogers] was a fresh start. He didn’t choose to talk about it [the relationship] and I didn’t bring it up. It was a healing, moving on process for him. And it was best to leave it at that—let him work through what was going on in his life and introduce him to some new musical buddies in Melbourne."
For Rogers's fifth solo album, his second without a backing band, he signed with FOUR FOUR, an imprint of ABC Music. Entitled Rogers Sings Rogerstein, the album was released on 24 August 2012 and was produced by long-time collaborator Shane O'Mara. The album's title refers to Shel Rogerstein, an American whom Rogers met on a train in Southern France. Rogers revealed in 2013 that Rogerstein does not appear on the Google search engine and is averse to touring. In the corresponding press release for the album's launch, Rogers wrote, "Quite where the percentages lie in lyrical/musical contributions on this album is unclear ... Shel claims he's as baffled as to his contributions as I am to mine. Subjects are close to my bones, but as our lives within this loose ramble have become so confluent, quite who's leaning on whose shoulder is unclear."
The initial release of You Am I's fifth album Dress Me Slowly also contained a bonus disc entitled The Temperance Union EP that consisted of eight songs Rogers had recorded and written, mostly in solo format. He later used the name of the EP, based loosely on that of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, to name his backing band for two subsequent albums, starting with Spit Polish in 2004. The release of the second Temperance Union recording, a double album entitled Dirty Ron/Ghost Songs, occurred in 2005, and the recording features various special guests, such as Missy Higgins, Donna Simpson and Rebecca Barnard.
In 2006, Rogers collaborated with long-time friend Tex Perkins to form T'N'T, eventually releasing the album My Better Half, a collection of acoustic originals and cover versions. The album received mixed reviews for its minimal production values and "tongue-in-cheek" covers, such as Rod Stewart's "Tonight's the Night".
Along with a You Am I cameo appearance in the film Dirty Deeds, Rogers has made various forays into acting. His first acting experience was a small cameo role in Jane Campion's Holy Smoke!, while his television acting debut was released on 28 July 2005, an episode of ABC TV's medical drama series MDA in which Rogers played Joel Palmer, a rock star who donates a kidney to a daughter he did not know he had fathered. Rogers also acted in the Michael Weisler short film Hunter Finkelstein that was shown at the 2005 Melbourne International Film Festival.
In January 2013, Rogers and Australian musician Megan Washington worked as actors on the musical/thriller film The Boy Castaways. Filmed in Adelaide, Australia, the film was directed by Michael Kantor, who also directed the 2009 theatre production Woyzeck (in which Rogers also starred). Filming took three weeks and the premiere occurred at the Adelaide Film Festival in October 2013.
In February 2009, Rogers made his professional stage debut at the Malthouse Theatre as the Entertainer in its production of Woyzeck, a play directed by Kantour, with music composed by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis.
In 2012, Rogers composed the score for Marion Potts' production of Federico García Lorca's Blood Wedding at the Malthouse Theatre. During the production's run in August 2012, Rogers described the score as "impressionistic" in a media interview and revealed that his initial method involved producing large pieces of music and then discarding 95 percent of it: "If it's not needed to have music there, or complementary, just leave it out. So at times we have sounds emanating from the stage that are only vaguely tonal."
In 2012, Rogers also acted in and composed the music for The Story of Mary MacLane by Herself, by Ride on Theatre‘s Bojana Novakovic (script adaptation) and Tanya Goldberg (director). Rogers performed original compositions for the play, accompanied by musicians Dan Witton and Andy Baylor. Sydney's Griffin Theatre production occurred in early 2012, while the Melbourne season was held at the Beckett Theatre of the Malthouse Theatre complex during November and December.
Rogers has frequently appeared as a television guest on programs such as RocKwiz, Rove Live, Talkin' 'bout Your Generation and The Fat. He appeared as himself in the second season of The Micallef Program and in the "Be a Rock Star" episode of Lawrence Leung's Choose Your Own Adventure, and also appeared in several episodes of the ABC television series MDA as a rock musician. Rogers' interview on Andrew Denton's Enough Rope coincided with the September 2008 launch of You Am I's eighth studio album Dilettantes.
In 2013, Rogers hosted the music performance/interview show Studio at the Memo during July and August. Guests on the show included Martha Wainwright, Tex Perkins, Kate Miller-Heidke, Bernard Fanning and Don Walker. The six-part series was produced by the Renegade company that also produces SBS Television's RocKwiz series. Writing for the Australian news outlet, Graeme Blundell concluded his review with the following sentiment:
There's no one else like him on TV and this show, like RocKwiz, should run for decades, especially as Foxtel has allocated a multi-million-dollar fund to record local performance. Rogers is seriously cool, in the sense that the word means calm, stoic, intriguing and impressive, and suggests reserved confidence, a self-conscious aplomb in behaviour that distances itself from authority rather than directly confronts it. A way of fitting in while standing out, maybe.
Rogers has written for Australian publication The Monthly on two occasions: a review of Don Walker's musical memoir Shots from March 2009, and a small non-fiction piece in December 2010. Rogers also wrote the cover feature article of the inaugural edition of the Australian bicycle magazine Treadlie in 2010, in which he covers topics such as baskets, songwriting and cycling outfits: "Just as I festoon myself in full North Melbourne kit circa 1975 to challenge both my hamstrings and mid-life plight at footy training of a Wednesday and Sunday, so shall my treadling brethren furnish themselves for celerity." Rogers published his literary memoir titled "Detours" in 2017.
In late 2004, Rogers wrote a jingle called "Our Time Begins Again Today" for the Australian Cricket Board's summer promotional campaign "Long Live The Weekend". Rogers was the face of the Australian Football League (AFL)'s 2012 finals series, starring in a television commercial and print advertising campaign. The advertisements, featuring the slogan "This Is Greatness", consist of Rogers recounting some of the greatest final moments in AFL history.
Rogers has been involved with soundtracks for Australian films over the course of his career: the Idiot Box soundtrack, together with Nick Launay, in 1999; the Dirty Deeds soundtrack in 2002; and Wish You Were Here, a 2012 film starring Joel Edgerton.
In 2003, a drunken Rogers taunted Australian Idol judge Mark Holden in an Adelaide airport terminal. He claimed that You Am I were told to "make way" by their record label for new Idol winners. A physical altercation ensued and both parties were reprimanded by airport authorities.
At the 2004 Falls Festival, in Marion Bay, Tasmania, You Am I were one of the headline bands. However, Rogers apologised midway through the band's performance and walked off the stage. Guitarist Davey Lane tried to stop Rogers, but the lead singer became aggressive and continued on his way. The Age newspaper reported:
Rogers threw his guitar onto the stage mid-song, saying he couldn't continue, and stormed off, pushing another band member who also walked off-stage looking upset ... Rogers also was involved in an incident backstage with singer Missy Higgins which left her visibly upset ... But Higgins recovered and joined Melbourne band The Beautiful Girls on stage to entertain the crowd when Rogers stopped playing.
Less than a week later, Rogers posted on the You Am I website, "I fucked up and take total responsibility for my actions. I've got some problems with intoxicants that I haven't dealt with in a long time and it's come back and bit me." Rogers returned to Tasmania two months later to perform in the A Day on the Green series at Tolosa Park, alongside the Waifs and Pete Murray.
Rogers has a daughter. He was married to Rocio Garcia Rodriguez, his daughter's mother, between 1999 and the early 2010s. They met in Madrid, Spain, and later lived together in Melbourne. Rodriguez worked as a Spanish philosophy teacher, and was the founding director of Melbourne's La Mirada Film Festival. In August 2012 Rogers reflected on their divorce by explaining, "To my great shame I took my marriage for granted."
Rogers draws income from various artistic projects such as music, soundtrack composition and acting, as well as other ventures like gardening.
Rogers experienced mental health issues such as anxiety during his twenties, including panic attacks. He chose to openly disclose this information from the 2000s onwards, to help others experiencing similar symptoms. Rogers revealed in 2012 that he is much happier at the age of 42 years than he was in his mid-twenties:
I’m far more excited about anything currently, I’m enjoying more, I’ve read more, I’ve seen more. No nostalgia at all. A couple of good records … that I heard. Did some great travelling, but I travel better now, I was really sort of medicined up. I didn’t enjoy touring as much, we were doing some touring through Europe and the States and I enjoy doing those tours more now. I enjoy everything about touring and being in the band more now. I don’t think back on it anything less than fondly, but I’m so much happier at 42 than I was at 26.
Rogers has also been involved in relationships with Australian musician Megan Washington and Serbian-Australian actor Bojana Novakovic. In an August 2012 interview, Rogers revealed that a significant number of his relationships were broken due to attention from the press.
His current partner is known only as "The Hurricane " as written about by Rogers in his book Detours.
An avid sports fan since childhood, Rogers enjoys the game of Australian rules football, and played in the 2005 and 2009 Community Cup charity matches for Melbourne, Australia's Sacred Heart Mission charitable organisation. Rogers is a supporter of North Melbourne and joined in the resistance against the AFL's effort to relocate the club to the Gold Coast, Queensland. As part of the protest, Rogers hosted the "Roo-sistence" benefit concert that featured You Am I, T'N'T and other popular Australian rock bands.
Rogers has lived in the Melbourne, Australia, suburb of St. Kilda since 1999, and has referred to the "crepuscular ambience of St Kilda". In late 2012, Rogers briefly explained his perspective of St Kilda:
Winter is particularly great … Backpacker culture isn’t as obvious, so you tend to see folks you haven’t seen for the rest of the year all clamouring for hot toddies. I was away for two months doing theatre in Sydney and was then in the States for two months. It’s pretty good when you come home from a trip that’s been rather eventful and if you’re really excited to be home.
Guitars and equipment
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Over the course of his career, Rogers has been most associated with a series of Rickenbacker 360F copies made by Sydney luthier Piers Crocker, known as "Crockenbackers". Rogers owns four of the five Crockenbackers made, including a 12-string, bought after borrowing Brad Shepherd's Fender Coronado 12-string to record Hourly, Daily. Rogers bought his first Crockenbacker just before the recording of Hi Fi Way and has used them ever since. Prior to Hi Fi Way, his main guitar was a Gibson ES-345.
Rogers has used various guitars in addition to the Crockenbackers, predominantly Fender Telecasters, including a '52 Reissue, a 70s Telecaster Deluxe and a '72 Thinline Reissue. The latter was given to Lane shortly after Lane joined the band. During the recording of Dilettantes, Rogers also began using Fender Jazzmasters, using them on all subsequent tours to date, in addition to the Crockenbackers.
For acoustics, Rogers predominantly used a Guild JF30 and a custom-built Piers Crocker acoustic. He has also been seen playing Cole Clark Fat Lady and Maton acoustics at various times.
While recording Sound As Ever, Rogers became enamoured with Lee Ranaldo's Fender Tonemaster amplifier, and shortly thereafter bought one for himself; he has used this amplifier for all You Am I work since the recording of Hi-Fi Way. For Rogers' work with the Temperance Union, he has used a Sunn combo amplifier.
Rogers uses an overdrive pedal and a tremolo pedal, the latter custom made by Colin Bloxom, as well as a wah pedal and, occasionally, a Route 66 overdrive/compression pedal. Rogers also uses an overdrive pedal that was built by Ramblin' Guitars.
Rogers has stated that one of his most important musical tools is a capo: "Probably 90 per cent of every song I've ever written involves a capo ... When first using one, the possibilities of things become realisations, and you could write in different keys and things. I think I want to be buried with one."
Over the course of his solo albums, Rogers has utilised the support of two main backing bands; however, membership between the two has overlapped.
The Twin Set
|Past members||Tim Rogers (vox/guitar)|
Davey Lane (guitar)
Ian Kitney (drums)
Stuart Speed (upright bass)
Jen Anderson (violin)
The Twin Set
Formed from the recording of What Rhymes With Cars And Girls, The Twin Set was country and folk-influenced. The band featured Jen Anderson (from Weddings Parties Anything), Lane (who would shortly afterwards join You Am I on lead guitar), as well as Stuart Speed and Ian Kitney, who would go on to form the rhythm section for the Temperance Union.
The Temperance Union
|Labels||Festival Mushroom Records, Ruby Q|
|Members||Tim Rogers (vox/guitar)|
Shane O’Mara (guitar)
Ian Kitney (drums)
Pete Lawler (bass 2006–)
Louis Macklin (piano 2007–)
|Past members||Stuart Speed (bass 2004–2005)|
The Temperance Union
Consisting of The Twin Set's rhythm section, together with guitarist, Shane O'Mara (from Rebecca's Empire and Paul Kelly's band), the Temperance Union maintained the country influence of the Twin Set, but added a rock 'n' roll element. After the recording of Dirty Ron/Ghost Songs, Speed died and was replaced by Peter Lawler (a.k.a. "Dr Pump").
|Title||Album details||Peak chart positions|
|What Rhymes with Cars and Girls||
|Spit Polish (with The The Temperance Union)||
|Dirty Ron/Ghost Songs (with The The Temperance Union)||
|My Better Half (with Tex Perkins)||
|The Luxury of Hysteria||
|Rogers Sings Rogerstein||
|The Rules of Attraction (with The Bamboos)||
|An Actor Repairs||
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- Australian Guitar Magazine, Vol 62
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