Here's how it happened: Dave said to Rohan, or maybe Rohan said to Sam, and Sam's pretty sure he said to Will at some stage and Will's not sure that he remembers the conversation but he doesn't deny it, and Dave definitely mentioned it to Emily but she's overseas right now and she'll probably do the next one, but Dave and Sam both talked to Brendan about it one night at the Sawmill after the bar staff brought out a bucket - a bucket, mind! - of bourbon, and then Louise got involved, probably, and what they said was this, more or less:
"Look here, the Wine Cellar is awash with these underemployed wasters slinging their violins, their violas, their upright basses and their cellos. They all seem to know what to play on all of these different songs, and when they're not playing their instruments they just drink the bar dry and holler at the customers, getting in the way and breaking the crockery so by god let's make them useful! What can we do with all these dirty folk-inflected string players, many of whom don't or can't or won't even read music, or at any rate they deny they can, with an insouciant shrug of the shoulder and flick of the quiff, oh it's all so off-the-cuff and spontaneous isn't it, this devil's music that we play? With their tight jeans and their hand-made cigarettes. Unseemly! What can be done with such people?"
So sort of in the manner of a social programme, the kind that local governments introduce to keep youths from vandalising public property, it was decided that there should be inaugurated a Wine Cellar String Section. It would be called, for the sake of simplicity and for arcane tax reasons, 'The Wine Cellar String Section,' and it would operate in the following manner: Every once in a while, at a prearranged signal, these various fiddlers and cellists, violers and bassists would gather at the Wine Cellar. They would invite along a handful of songwriters who pass one test, which is that the members of the string section have to think that they are awesome. The songwriters would sing their songs, and the Wine Cellar String Section would do what they do well, which is play strings. There are no other rules.
The first time this happens will be August the 17th. The String Section will include at least Dave Khan, Brendan Turner, Sam Prebble and Will Wood (who between them have played with Don McGlashan, The Grifters, An Emerald City, Paul Ubana Jones, The Broken Heartbreakers, The Broadsides, Reb Fountain, The Bads, Luckless, Charlie Ash, Hannah Curwood, Tim Guy, Bond Street Bridge, White Swan Black Swan, Rodney Fisher's Backyard Orchestra, and a whole bunch of other things) and probably some other people as well. The songwriters, this first time around, will be Gareth Thomas of Goodshirt, Bernie Griffen of the Grifters, and Reb Fountain. You are warmly invited to come along and see what happens; Bond Street Bridge will get things started atnine sharp and after that all bets are off.