Myponga, South Australia

Two unexpected names popped up in relation to this bucolic image of the scoreboard and its optimistic score at Myponga near South Australia’s famous McLaren Vale. Ozzy Osbourne and Bon Scott.

Footy was forced into the background as details of what transpired in a paddock on a dairy farm over the Australia Day long weekend in 1971. The Myponga Festival of Progressive Pop Music was an ambitious undertaking. The headline international acts were Black
Sabbath, fronted by the now even more famous Mr Osbourne, Cat Stevens, who pulled out at the last minute, and cool Hungarian jazz band Syrius.

The local line up was just as impressive. Daddy Cool put in a break-out performance. Bits of it are still seen today in much-played video clip of Eagle Rock. Spectrum were there just
after gaining success with I’ll Be Gone. And over the three days Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs, Chain, Jeff St John and Copperwine (with Wendy Saddington) and Hans Poulsen also performed, along with many others. Taking the stage before Black Sabbath was Fraternity with lead singer Bon Scott.

With just a few photos, only minutes of arty film footage and no live album like Sunbury, the festival at Myponga is not at the front of Australian rock and roll minds. But it has not been forgotten. In an interview in South Australia’s Sunday Mail in 2010 Ozzy Osbourne said: “I remember Myponga very, very well. That was the one on the dairy farm near Adelaide, yeah? Oh yeah, I’ve got great memories of that show. I remember I asked them to supply us with Marshall amps and they didn’t turn up. And there were barbecues everywhere.”

The Myponga Football Club was formed in 1946 and in 2006 merged with a nearby beachtown.  Myponga-Sellicks play in the Great Southern Football League. Hopes were high in 2010 when, after a number of lean years, the Mudlarks appointed 1997 Adelaide Crows premiership player Clay Sampson as coach. Success was not immediate.

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