MELBOURNE guitar slinger Jimi Hocking’s introduction to The Screaming Jets was hot… literally.
Hocking drove north from Melbourne to Sydney to audition for the band in 1993, having listened to its songs in the car.
At that point, on the back of hits such as Better and Helping Hand, the Jets were one of the biggest acts in the country.
When he arrived at the studio on a “stinking hot, 40-degree day”, he, singer Dave Gleeson and the rest of the band ripped through three tracks in quick time.
“After that Dave just stopped and said to me ‘That’s enough, I trust you’,” he said.
It is that trust and respect that underpins Hocking’s relationship with Gleeson, one of Australia’s most charismatic front men.
“He is highly intelligent, he is very artistic,” Hocking said.
“He’s a caring guy, so good to tour with, but he’s also this foul-mouthed larrikin.
“There’s a huge dichotomy.
“We room together when we’re on the road – we could probably do it other ways, but we like each other that much.”
The road is where they will spend much of the next two months, as the Jets embark on a nationwide tour with the Baby Animals that will see them perform dates in Fremantle and Perth.
Hocking said the bands were contemporaries during their commercial peaks in the 1990s and he could not wait to be reunited.
“I find it highly amusing, and kind of delightful, that we’re 25 years down the track and here we are about to do a tour together,” he said.
“It’s a good thing that we’re viable enough to make this thing work.
“I’m just happy to be holding a guitar and doing what I love doing.”
What: Baby Animals and Screaming Jets – They Who Rock
Where: Metropolis, Fremantle and The Astor, Mt Lawley
When: Friday June 9 and Saturday June 10
Tickets: www.metropolisfremantle.com.au and www.astortheatreperth.com