We’ve all heard of the classic lone ranger, the enduring fictional icon of American culture, confronting the unethical behavior of the corrupt and instill justice upon the wild American west of old.  In Australia, we have the lone drummer, a masked superhero fighting the unjust logging of Australia’s wilderness, home to some of the world’s most unique flora and fauna. The lone drummer is joining forces with a myriad of forest groups, insisting on ending logging of Australia’s native forests

What’s the story of The Lone Drummer – who is he and what does he do? 

I am an ex  Rock Star Drummer from the Australian band the Lime Spiders known for our wild punk performances in the 80s and 90s last century. I used to be at the core of our performance regularly destroying or trashing my drum kit  during the gig. It has been set on fire/thrown off stage and smashed and there is even video of it during a film shoot being thrown off a building and being played with tomahawks as drumsticks.

I’ve never protested before being of the opinion that I could not make a difference against the behemoth of big industry and government in cahoots with it. But now I am so angry and charged that I am expressing it the only way I know how

 Why is The Lone Drummer playing for forests and Climate Change? 

 Climate change is the biggest threat to our existence as a species  and I don’t want to go to protests and write letters or articulate it. I am a musician and have  problems articulating into  words the way I feel. I’m doing this the only way I know how. The essence is to maintain the rage thru rock which is what rock n roll was originally all about.

Music has been a form of protest for eons. I don’t particularly like protest music that is too literal and would rather use allegory, metaphor and art, surrealism in particular…think Dali or Christo covering landscapes

What is people’s reaction when they see a drummer playing solo in these unexpected locations? 

After I played on the side of the Princes Hwy just outside the logging entrance at Corunna Forest I have since encountered many people who happened to have been driving past on their daily business. They were perplexed, surprised at first to see some guy just randomly drumming away on the side of the hwy but then they put 2 and 2 together and recognized the issue and it …it resonated with them in a way they couldn’t articulate. 

Outside the local members office in Bega [Andrew Constance] it was incredibly loud and shocking. I was intent on shoving it in his face. It could be heard all over Bega apparently. Film crews turned up spontaneously and the engagements online in one day were over 7000


 What’s coming up next – we hear you’re taking things to a national level? 

I played at Parliament House in Canberra on Monday 3 Dec alongside Politicians, Green Groups and normal everyday people asking for native logging to be stopped by 2020…pics below



The Lone drummer has now got some powerful allies who have joined him to form a ‘Lone Band’ to fight injustice on the environmental front.
Richard Burgman [Sunny Boys], who now lives in Toronto Canada and Jon Scofield [Paul Kelly] have donned the mask and cape to play guitar and bass respectively
We did an environmental version of the ‘Bad News’ song as originally performed by the ‘Young Ones’ band spinoff
We performed live at the ‘Forest Uprising’ on Parliament House lawn in Canberra at midday on Wed Feb 13 and a live to air or pre recorded spot with Canberra ABC Radio  that morning for publicity to play the song acoustically

All enquiries to Richard Lawson


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