Monday, December 20, 2021

Greeting of the Season

 Well!  Here we are, we've made it to the end of another horrid year!  Together.

Congratulations!  Just surviving has been a significant achievement.

Tallying up the year's results hasn't been as awful as it might have been with the on-again-off-again covid restrictions, lockdowns, and cancellations;

I managed to complete this list:

  • Wrote and delivered a cabaret show at the ReX in February - the "Uh Oh Review"  with Stevi Cannon, Marise Wilson, and Kathleen Newman, 
  • A fundraiser in the first half of the year to support a young woman and her studies in Kenya via Robins Nest Children's Homes
  • A book launch soiree for Table Manners mid year [that's a great gift to give yourself if you haven't read it!  Published by Pegasus publishing {UK} , you can pick up a copy at most online bookstores or  order it in at your local library 
  • Wrote and released a new album of songs - with no money but the help of a great friend.  If you haven't got a copy of Whimsical yet, why not treat yourself in the New Year?
  • Wrote and recorded another single  "Cancellation Blues" and released on the music channel
  • Completed 7 new videos for the YouTube music channel  and 10 new videos for the Sidestep Comedy Channel.   If you haven't caught up on them, the holiday break is a great time to settle in for a watch:   music channel:  maureen's music channel    comedy channel: sidestep comedy
  • ...and by the end of the year will have set up another YouTube channel to tell the stories of some of the local creatives involved in the local Newcastle Arts community - in music, art, and theatre.  The story of John Rolf is ready to load up [and join a couple that were done last year. ]
  • There's also a schedule of comedy videos in progress and waiting to be filmed in the new year...

All in all, not bad for a non-performing, covid-restricted, creative waiting for life to return to normal!

 Normal?!?! what the heck's that?!?!

Merry Christmas everyone and have a healthy, safe, and Arts-filled 2022   

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Gettin' Outta the house!

 Well that last lockdown was a stinker!  A schedule of 12 videos to film for the Sidestep Comedy channel - Troupers with their costumes and props lined up ready to go - and all cancelled overnight!   Frustrated?  just a little!!  

But everyone's got a story, haven't they?  Let's just keep fingers crossed that we can all move forward from here and find a new normal.

So if you haven't subscribed yet, let me encourage you to do so now at Sidestep Comedy   where you'll also find a new comedy track playing.

Coming up on the channel:

  • Retirement Bliss; the breakfast scene from Table Manners [the stage production - and the novel]  featuring Grant Bailey and Marise Wilson
  • the Wallycom clips {2};  featuring Jenni Hayes from the stage production
  • the Thunderbelly clips {2}; featuring Grant Bailey and John Rolph from the stage production
  • Briar and Rose; a murder investigation featuring Shaun Evans and Kathryn Russell
  • Infidelity: not what you might expect! featuring Marise Wilson and Maureen O'
  • Working Girl; with original song from the Thunderbelly production, featuring Kathryn Russell and Lenore Parker
  • Storybook Corner; another fractured fairy tale featuring the 3 blind mice
  • ...........and more still under wraps

For the time being, if you haven't spotted it yet, there's a new track up on the music channel - Wise Woman - from the Undercovered album.  Check it out here:   Wise Woman

At this stage there are no live gigs in the pipeline although I may opt to re-introduce the Sunday Soiree program in December.  2022 may be a tad kinder to Musicians and Live Gigs.  Let's hope so.

Friday, August 27, 2021

Covid, Lockdowns, and more

 So, we're all more than a bit ticked off with ongoing lockdowns etc aren't we?  So you don't need to hear any more complaints about it! Right?!

So what to do when a Creative is bored, restless, restricted, et al?........well this one writes songs, releases a new album, makes videos, and devises creative boredom busters!!

If you haven't already,  go to the Comedy page on this Blog and check out Marise playing around with the Pandemic Tango - that was a lot of fun to do!  And we just managed to squeak that one in before another lockdown was declared.  But another 12 vides lined up for the Sidestep Comedy Channel ( here: Sidestep Comedy) have been put on hold 'til we're allowed out to play again!

This week I've busted the boredom and recorded a new song [home recording cos I can't get out to a studio!]  dedicated to my muso mates who know what it's like to experience that on-off gig economy!  The song's called the CANCELLATION BLUES  and here's the vid to go with it.  Hope it gives you a smile  [and a bit of insight into what it's like in the Arts trenches].    

Thursday, July 8, 2021


the new album releasing now ....

12 brand new tracks

1. The Pandemic Tango      

 2. Autumn Magic      

3. A Quirky Little Shop     

 4. Ride-On Mower

  5. Everyday Heroes  6. Speculation

  7. The Hairy Faerie   8. The Mask    

 9. In Crowd  10. Vintage Nans in Vintage Vans    11.Tradies   

 12.Blame  (Ballad of the Independant Woman)

Recorded at Sawyers Gully with Peter Sesselmann [Recording/Sound/Bass,Lead,Gypsy guitars]

 Listen to Pandemic Tango here: Maureen 

or check out the Pandemic Tango video on the COMEDY page of this blog


Sunday, April 4, 2021

Blocking the Writers Block!

 So we're just over 12 months along since the pandemic was declared and it's been a tough year for everyone - especially those who work in the Arts.

For me, not only did all my gigs, shows, choruses, concerts, music networks come to a grinding halt in March last year, so did my social networks, incomes, and creativity!  My inspiration, imagination, and artistic vision walked out in protest.  I was feeling pretty low until I discovered that I was in an enormous lifeboat with a world of artists - and Arts-related workers - all experiencing the same thing.

Fortunately, one of the Music Industry platforms  I belong to - an International group which supports independent artists -is  proactive in its approach.  Eventually it flicked a switch which resonated with me and I took up their "Songwriters Challenge"  in March this year. 

It worked.  I blocked the "Block" and now have a heap of new material I'm working on to produce another album mid year.   No CD's though anymore.  This album - still under wraps - is going to be produced on USB for easy download to your devices.

I'll be happy to share more about the new music in the next month or so ...stay tuned.  And if you haven't joined me yet on Facebook, I encourage you to send a friend request's where I'm most active with news, updates, and events.        #note tho'...I tend only to 'friend' people that I know, or have met.  So if we haven't met yet, leave a message with your request and here's your password to let me know you're a genuine friend:  Mozmate


Settle in with a good read

 If you haven't had a chance to pick it up yet, Table Manners is worth the effort.    

You can order your copy -      direct from the Publishers:    

or most online booksellers such as:    

or ask your local bookstore or library to order it in for you.

Below are just a few of the reviews that readers have written after finishing the novel;

  • .."it felt like a holiday by the seaside, I wanted to stay longer, to dine at la jazz, to walk in the bush, soak up the harbour...."
  • "...It was hard to put it down when I should have been doing things, in fact I often succumbed to what I call the "Just one more chapter" syndrome, which often developed into several more chapters."    
  • "What a little gem this delightful book is. Originally a stage production, Maureen O’Brien has transferred the story from stage to page beautifully. The characters are engaging and relatable. You find yourself reluctant to let go of the book as you are drawn to discover a little more of the goings on at La Jazz." 
  • "...Above all Table Manners is a tale of people becoming themselves and understanding what they need to do for both themselves and for their friends.  These are serious stories told with a humorous and light touch that will keep the reader enthralled to the end. An absolute delight, highly recommended.

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Covoid Bounceback!

 After more than 12 months in the wastelands, accompanied by undelivered shows and concerts,  we're treading the boards once more in Newcastle.

With a small troupe - just 4 of us - we'll be delivering the UH! OH! REVIEW:  When the things you planned don't go to plan   ..... on  Saturday 20th February, 7.30pm  at the Royal Exchange Salon Theatre, Bolton Street Newcastle.   A ONE NIGHT ONLY  comedy review of songs, sketches, and confessional tales.

As Covoid restrictions are still with us, tickets are limited and the show is likely to be booked out.  We recommend that you get in early to secure a seat.    Online bookings can be made via   or phone the theatre direct - 4929 4969   [more information on the booking link too]