ARIA’s 2018 – What A Trainwreck

December 3, 2018

Image: AAP

Did you watch the ARIAs??? In keeping with the proud tradition of nearly all Australian awards nights, it was a total train wreck. I loved it. Having said that, I did struggle to think of a time when the ARIAs weren’t terrible. And to be fair, they aren’t as bad as the Logies, but then I can’t think of many things that are – except for the flesh-eating Ebola virus, my Ex-partner’s mother and holidaying with my family.

I was watching it through my hands like I do for a scary movie or when Tony Abbott used to run around in his Budgie Smugglers about 12 Prime Minister’s ago.

I love it for so many reasons! Where to begin? Talk about spoiled for choice…

Can’t go past Bob – sorry SIR Bob Geldof – taking the piss out of what a bad job poor Keith Urban was doing as MC. But still so rude… and when did he morph into Catweazle? Jaysus. The years have not been kind to poor old Bob. He said he was only there because he had an album to promote. Who knew he was even still in a band? Can anyone even name a Bob Geldof song excluding “I Don’t Like Mondays”? Nup. Me neither.

AND who does he think he is paying out Keith? Not only is he an amazing musician BUT the man who brought poor Nicole’s dead, broken heart back to life after that couch-jumping Nutjob cast her aside. Good riddance to bad rubbish I say Nicole! Not that it’s a competition (but if was) she totally won, as did Katie Holmes – Jamie Foxx is smokin’. How many Grammy’s have you won Catweazle/Bob? Zero.

I love Keith Urban. I’ve seen him play live (in fact he gave his guitar to my friend Fi when he climbed up into the audience at played at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre) he’s brilliant, great performer, can sing and play the guitar but I’m not sure what the thinking was about him as the host. I don’t do my own tax return because I’m not an accountant, but still – again – heaps worse MC’s over the years.

There’s always one saving grace at the ARIAs and this year Best on Ground for me by a mile was Kasey Chamber’s Dad Bill. Showing great wisdom, he gave Kasey the excellent advice to “not be a dickhead” when she started doing well many years ago. I think that’s brilliant – and great advice for anyone in any industry.

I’d like to see Kasey’s Dad do a key note lecture series. He has an amazing life story and clearly has his head screwed on. I’d much prefer to listen to him that some former professional athlete who earned millions of dollars blathering on about their hardships… I bet his presentation would be concise too.

Apparently, Sir Elton John hosted the very first ARIAS in 1987. I suspect he inspired the first FAQ – that’s right Dear Readers, the ARIAs site has an FAQs section.

The first question is “I’m a VIP guest. What’s the dress code?” LOL!!! Drunk Bogan or OTT ridiculous is what I thought it would say BUT it actually says there isn’t one. Thank God! It says that because it’s the music industry, wear whatever you want. Which obviously people have taken to heart.

The fashion – or lack thereof – is always a highlight. What possesses people in the music (or artistic) community feel as though they have to the dress like clowns? Jessica Mauboy! I’m talking to you!! You’re so gorgeous and talented stop wearing crazy sleeves to the ARIAs. Or some cases, people don’t really wear clothes at all. Just strategically placed bits of tape and jewellery. WHY? I have no idea.

The other FAQs are “I’m interested in volunteering” – no, go away, we don’t use seat fillers and have a list with a million names on it already and “I have a question about the ARIAs. Who do I contact?” Fill out a form.

Watching the ARIAs, I felt like I was at a distant cousin’s wedding or a work awards night. It was just not quite right. Bad speeches, hideous outfits, pissed people, unintentionally funny incidents all over the place. People were trying their best but meh… I really think we can improve the ARIAs but I don’t want to now. I want them to remain the Freak Show that they are. It could be part of what makes them great.

PS For a brilliant trip down memory lane, go to the ARIAs website and click on the past years to see the winners. Hilarious. I totes had a Wa Wa Nee cassette.

Alexandria Bernard on BloggerAlexandria Bernard on Twitter
Alexandria Bernard
With a successful 20+ year career in media and communications, Alex’s media portfolio includes contracts as a radio and television presenter (612 ABC, 4BC, Channel 9 and Network Ten) and as a feature writer for bmag and Brisbane Times.

Alex's voice and face may be familiar to you from her voiceover and television commercial work. She has been featured in national radio and TV advertising campaigns, corporate videos and has been a regular MC for major events.