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04 January 2011

Australian Radio Comic Vic Davies Passes Away, by Eva Rinaldi - 4th January 2011

Vic Davies was a classic. Some might even say a legend - too many of his mates and listeners "legend" did fit the bill.

Now we only have memories of Vic with the sad news of his passing away on Saturday.

He had been fighting a courageous battle with with lung cancer for a number of months.

The internet including websites, forums, portals, YouTube and a range of social media has been running hot with the news, with Vic downloads and news scoops in hot demand.

Davies and his radio sidekick Malcolm Lees were fondly thought of larrikins via Sydney's airwaves throughout the 80s and 90s, bursting the way for a range of funny dude pairings including Roy and H.G., Martin and Molloy and Merrick and Rosso.

Their partnership started out JJJ from 1984 before hitting the big time on Billy Caralis 2SM in 1986 (when the station was hot), then onto to Triple M, helping the team win a number of radio awards and commendations.

Their sucked-in phone calls were notorious, and a ratings hit, almost always everyone say the funny side of the Club Veg mayhem. They also co created The Yuppie Rap, Product Name Beer and Vinyl Pants. God knows what they worked on together that never quite beet whatever was the censorship protocol. Many of Vic's funniest works never made the air, and they were seen as "too good", or basically would have offended a few too many types, which could have thrown radio licences and jobs into jeopardy.

On-air legends and mates including Doug Mulray, Andrew Denton, Dave Gibson, Mikey Robbins, Rob Duckworth and WSFM's Amanda Keller and Brendan Jones paid tribute to their colleague at Rozelle's Bridge Hotel, giving the sold-out crowd a nostalgic glimpse of the champagne comedy which used to define Sydney's FM airwaves.

"God I'm going to miss Vic. Australian radio has truly lost one of its finest voices and comedic minds. We had brilliant times throughout our 25-year friendship and there was never a bad word between us, there was always laughter," Duckworth shared.

"His wife Jodie deserves a medal for her love and care of a great friend till the end."

Publicist Rina Ferris was one of Vic’s closest friends and had the hard task of announcing the Vic’s passing.

"It is with overwhelming sorrow that I have to announce that Vic Davies passed away on Saturday, 7 November at 1.30pm after a short, courageous battle with cancer," she said in a statement.

“Vic was loved by many and we were honoured to call him our friend. We will always miss him and he will remain in our hearts forever”.

"Vic is survived by his beautiful wife, Jodie; his children, Harmony, Carrie, Rick and Jamie; and his grandchildren, Domenic, Jaxson, Thomas and Mia".

“Rest in peace, my friend”.

“7 June 1954 to 7 November 2009”

Rina was not only a close friend of Vic’s, for many years his wife Jodie was her business partner in her company Ferris Davies PRM.

You would have to go a long way to find anyone who didn't see the funnyside of Vic.

Satirist - funnyman Billy Birmingham also saw Davies' infectious laugh as one of his greatest gifts, declaring it the sound of sheer, unbridled joy.

Birmingham championed Davies under-rated singing and songwriting skills as demonstrated by the 'Suburban Songs' series and his nice-guy rapport with his audience.

"He was a great radio man, a very clever musician and his suburban songs' sketches on Triple M were a perfect example of his great sense of humour, his musicality, his very under-appreciated singing voice, and his willingness to put in the hard yards to get his material sounding just right," Birmingham shared.

Rina Ferris has kindly put a great amount of information covering her late friend in the public domain as a tribute. With special thanks to Rina and her company...

VIC DAVIES IN A NUTSHELL

1984 to 1987 - Triple J (took weekend shift to No. 1 within 6 months)

1987 to 1989 - 2SM (started in nights went to No.1 and did the same for Breakfast - also had the highest rating share recorded in Nights)

1989 to 1993 - 2MMM (started in nights and within the first two surveys jumped 7 points - took over breakfast after Doug Mulray, increasing the breakfast share by 3 points over 12 months)

1993 to 1994 -96.1/ Triple M Perth (increased breakfast share by 3 points over 12 months)

1995 - 1998 : Worked with Mike Carlton on the award-winning Mix 106.5 Breakfast Show.

1998 to Nov 2002 - 2MMM (started doing mornings and out-rated John Laws within 2 surveys - moved to drive where we took the shift to number 1 in 2003 as Sydney’s No. 2 FM drive program)

2002 to present Recorded 2 albums “Rugby Rockers” and “Sik Vic’s Naughty Songs for Naughty Kids”. Currently performing live concerts as well as doing radio comedy spots for John Laws at 2UE. Sammy and Jason on MIX 106.5FM, 96.1FM PERTH Breakfast Show as well as radio and TV voiceover work and singing for, voicing, and producing “Australia’s Greatest Bloopers” and Stupid Behaviour Caught On Tape” specials for Channel 7.

Vic Davies has been at the forefront of Australian radio comedy for 20 years with his massive success on the legendary Club Veg and his work with Mike Carlton, John Laws and other radio luminaries.

His love of fishing brought him to the Central Coast in 2003 in search of his “Holy Grail” - the perfect Flathead. Confused and luckless, he worked at Star 1045 studios in 2005 till 2007

The details of Vic’s funeral will be announced in the next day.

*The writer is a Sydney based artist, photographer and regular contributor to arts and entertainment news websites.

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