Artist Profile: Adrian Elton
By Adrian Elton:
But all that aside, I thought I’d use this fantastic little platform to talk about my musical/comedy act, Schnorer, as Schnorer (aka me) is playing this Sunday evening (15 September) at the “Taste Of Limmud” gig that’s happening at Pause Bar.
If you’ve never heard of Schnorer, Schnorer exists for one reason and one reason only; and that’s to sing comedic songs that affectionately lampoon Melbourne’s Jewish community and the beliefs and superstitions that are held most dear. From ditties about wayward rabbis getting busy with the bacon, to odes decrying the schlep from Caulfield to Doncaster, Schnorer goes boldly where no Jews have gone before.
Schnorer was originally formed in the mid 90s from a caucus of young Jewish musos including Adam Starr on bass, Simon Starr on drums and Michael Burrows on rhythm guitar. I was centre stage, appearing as my alter-ego, Rabbi Pantsteyn, playing electric guitar, singing lead vocals and writing the material. The first performances took place at the iconic, “In One Voice” (Jews On Grass) annual festival at Caufield Park. It was at this festival in the early to mid 2000s that a grand friendship was struck between myself and Bram Presser,
lead singer of infamous Jewish punk group, ‘Yidcore’. This meeting of the minds led to their recording and releasing a number of Schnorer tracks on their 2006 “Eighth Day Slice” and 2007 “They Tried To Kills Us. They Failed. Let’s Eat” albums, while I in turn played keyboards on their 2006 “Fiddlin’ On Ya Roof” album.
While the stellar musical careers of the other Schnorer members meant that there was little time left for any of us to commit to this quirky but much loved side project, I continued, undeterred, writing songs about the Melbourne Jewish scene for the amusement of my family and friends.
In 2008, I recorded and created a music film clip for my swan song, “Springvale”, which went on to win the Celluloid Soup, Melbourne Jewish Short Film Festival of that year. The track, which was written about the vexxing question of how-soon-is-too-soon when it comes to the question of dating and planning the purchase of twin cemetery plots, was subsequently featured as ‘Religious Song Of The Week’ on John Safran’s Triple J radio programme, ‘Sunday Night Safran’. You can see it here.
In 2010, I entered Celluloid Soup again with a clip for my song, “My Girl She Isn’t Kosher” where it won ‘Best In Show’ and the ‘People’s Choice’ award. In 2012 the clip was featured in the “Calling Australia Home” exhibition at the Jewish Museum of Australia – but was later, unceremoniously withdrawn from public display as it was deemed to be too controversial. You can watch the clip here.
Which brings us to the here and now where I am currently collating the full collection of Schnorer songs in preparation for what will hopefully become the first Schnorer album.
And all going well, not only will these be beautifully recorded and produced, but God willing, I’ll also get to make some more videos that will set the ”big macher’s” teeth on edge.
Adrian Elton fronts his own boutique creative agency, Adrian Elton Creative, which is located in the scenic foothills of Chapel St, Prahran.
With a background as an award winning film-maker, musician and graphic designer, Adrian divides his time between developing innovative advertising and branding campaigns (the paid work) and creating as many quirky clips, songs and memes as his spare time will allow (the unpaid work).
A kaleidoscopic skill set has allowed Adrian to shape shift across the creative spectrum, from writing food reviews for The Age Good Food Guide, to photographing on the red carpet at The Melbourne International Film Festival, to producing electronic music for a computer games developer in Gibraltar. And before he moved into the graphic design and advertising space he worked as an interior designer, designing Country Road shops in Australia and South East Asia.
He’s also played an active role on many marketing committees, most significantly as a founding member of Artbeat, the young member chapter of The National Gallery of Victoria.
Adrian has also worked on advertising and design projects for many of Australia’s leading Jewish organisations including Bialik College, Mount Scopus College, Temple Beth Israel, The Joint Australia, The Jewish Holocaust Centre and so on and so forth. Yay verily. Etcetera.
Adrian’s website can be viewed here.