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Bill's Australian Tour 2013 - Articles & Interviews
Courier Mail - Print Email PDF 
Posted by bretta 14/05/2013


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The Goodies star Bill Oddie recalls his first visit to Brisbane in the 1970s as a long-haired comedian

 Bill Oddie in Melbourne to promote his one-man show, which comes to Brisbane on Thursday night.

Bill Oddie in Melbourne to promote his one-man show, which comes to Brisbane on Thursday night. Source: News Limited


The first time The Goodies star Bill Oddie came to Brisbane he was frisked at the airport.

The British entertainer, whose one-man show An Oldie but a Goodie kicks off his Australian tour at The Tivoli in Brisbane on Thursday night, says he was younger and hairier then.

"It was the late 1970s and I had a bit of trouble in Brisbane because I was apparently a suspicious-looking person," Oddie explains.

"I had long hair and a beard so clearly I was a drug smuggler as far as the Customs people were concerned. I was frisked and I quite enjoyed that."

That was at the height of his fame when the BBC television series The Goodies was huge in Australia where the comedy trio Bill Oddie, Graeme Garden and Tim Brooke-Taylor still has a sizeable cult following.

In 2005, the trio did a sellout tour here but Oddie, 70 and still relatively hairy, hasn't been back since.

In the UK he's better known these days as the country's best-known birdwatcher and he has made a name for himself with wildlife programs such as Bill Oddie Goes Wild and Autumnwatch. He also made headlines in 2009 when he went public about his battle with severe depression.

Here, however, he's revered as one third of what many regard as the funniest comedy trio ever.

"I think we were actually more popular in Australia than we were in the UK," Oddie says.

"Last time I was in Australia, people were always coming up to us and telling us how they grew up with The Goodies. They would go on about their favourite episodes in detail when I couldn't even remember some of them."

But who could forget Kitten Kong, in which giant kitten Twinkle menaces a metropolis, or the classic episode in which Oddie becomes an exponent of the ancient Lancashire martial art of Ecky Thump?

Then there was the episode in which The Goodies went hunting Rolf Harris's on safari, a sketch that now seems a little dodgy, Oddie confesses.

Tonight Oddie, an accomplished rock musician who wrote many of The Goodies songs (including the hit The Funky Gibbon), will be reminiscing, introducing a video featuring Garden and Brooke-Taylor, and best of all, chatting with his adoring audience.

An Oldie but a Goodie is on at The Tivoli in Brisbane on Thursday night at 7.30pm. Tickets from $62.50; phone 132 849 or visit

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