The Unforgiving60

S1E16- Who Sings Wins! The Stories and Music of the SAS Rock Band- The Externals

May 14, 2019

This is the unique story and music of the original Special Air Service (SAS) rock band, ‘The Externals’.



Do not ever, ever, ever go see this band unless your IQ is lower than the entrance price’-  David Coggin's music review on The Externals



We recommend disengagement of brain prior to listening. Just sit back and enjoy the ripping yarn and great music of The Externals.



Numerous references to beer and rock and roll.



May insult those who like to wear cardigans and/ or listen to pop music.



The Story (So Far)……..  Formed in 1991, The Externals were full time SAS soldiers who used the band as an outlet from their high pressure work in the SAS. The idea for the band was born during a SAS interrogation course and the band grew to playing most major Australian festivals, opening to iconic Australian bands and also being profiled on Triple J Unearthed.

Over time they realised, that The Externals were more than that- they became part of the rich tapestry of the SAS. Assisting during times of tragedy, including the mass fatality event of the Blackhawk disaster in 1996. They have inspired SAS operators preparing for dangerous tasks and missions.

 The band played regularly at the Hotel with many sold out performances to manic crowds of beer and sweat drenched surfers and soldiers in search of the 'four on the floor' style guitar charged rock music the band passionately played. The Externals still hold the record attendance numbers for a local Perth Band’s record release to this date.


Show Notes

-1:20 : Inspired by their SAS interrogation course – How to start a rock band!

- 06:00: Shaky starts

-  07:40 : Ben’s story about ‘I Don’t Believe It’…. The SAS theme song that inspired us to do SAS Selection Course!

- 12:10: If the Swanbourne Hotel could tell a story!?

- 20:38: The story of ‘Dick Dale’… who was caught stealing beer from The Externals esky!

- 24:39:  Moff’s story of ‘The Edge of the World’… and why it’s special to him

- 28:03:  Talking about the mortal (fictitious) enemy of The Externals- The Cardigans!

- 34:35: Opening to Powderfinger…. How to shock a crowd!

- 40:00:  Who The Externals would invite to their dinner party- living or dead

- 43:10:  Favourite Externals tracks

- 46:55: The latest album ‘Bushranger Rock’- breaking paradigms

- 50:55: What inspired ‘US Radio’ … and other aligned stories

- 54:40: Does Ben have sex appeal and stage presence? But more importantly…. the story of being inspired to do SAS selection by The Externals music on an SAS promotional video!

- From 56:00:  The importance of The Externals in getting the Unit through tough times

- 59:20: The Externals music inspiring operators while preparing for missions

- 1:01:15: The future of The Externals….




  • Dog Beach -- 1993 (4 track EP) • Anastasia's Hand -- 1994 (4 track EP) • Toolshed -- 1996 (album produced by The Celibate Rifles' Kent Steedman) • Sale -- 1999 (album) – Bushranger Rock—2018


*The Externals music is available on Spotify







- Odd Screen Printing…. Exclusive purveyor of The Externals merchandise:


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