Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Space cowboy heads to Deniliquin

The legendary Steve Miller Band will spend Easter in Deniliquin, performing for thousands.

November 16, 2012 2:09pm

Some people call me the space cowboy, yeah; Some call me the gangster of love; Some people call me Maurice; Cause’ I speak of the pompitous of love.

These lyrics, from the 1973 hit The Joker, are some of the most recognisable from a song for the last century, and the delivering artist, Steve Miller Band, is coming to Deniliquin for the 2013 Blues & Roots Festival.

One of rock music’s all time greats, the Steve Miller Band has sold more than 30 million records in a career spanning more than 40 years.

Miller’s trademark blues-rock sound made him one of the key artists in classic rock radio. His band plays sold-out shows every year across the USA and is brand name rock millions have come to trust.

The Band is best known for hits like The Joker, Take The Money and Run, Jet Airliner, Abracadabra and Fly Like An Eagle.

The Steve Miller Band got its start in the 1960s when, while living in his VW bus, Miller located some like-minded musicians and, during Thanksgiving weekend when the campus was empty, put together his group in a vacant basement room on the UC Berkeley campus.

Within weeks, he landed a $500 date at the Avalon Ballroom and the Steve Miller Band was launched.

That fall (autumn) of 1966, San Francisco was a burbling cauldron of music, social change and all kinds of creative madness.

The Miller Band appeared on bills at concerts with the Grateful Dead, Big Brother and the Holding Company, Quicksilver Messenger Service and all the acid-rock bands.

Miller played on the Saturday afternoon program of the Monterey International Pop Festival in June 1967, just before the public debut of the new group by ex-Butterfield guitarist Mike Bloomfield, Electric Flag.

His performances that summer, backing ‘50s rock and roller Chuck Berry at the Fillmore Auditorium, led to a live album together with Berry which helped elevate Steve Miller’s career to new heights.

Miller’s high school pal Boz Scaggs arrived in fall 1967 to play rhythm guitar in the group before later starting his own solo career.

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