The Byron Shire has long had a reputation for attracting colourful, larger than life characters. Arguably, Olli Wisdom would hold the title as the most colourful, creative force of nature to immerse himself in the region. Olli began his musical journey in a punk band, The Unwanted, recording a version of Nancy Sinatra’s ‘These Boots Are Made for Walking’. Then in the early eighties as the frontman of glam goth group Specimen, he co-founded the Batcave, a weekly goth night in Soho, London, visited by the likes of Nick Cave, Robert Smith and Siouxsie Sioux.
In the mid-eighties the band split up and Olli commenced his journey through the emerging party scenes of Thailand and India. A true cosmic creator, it was during these adventures that Space Tribe was born. More than music, it was a lifestyle. He arrived in Australia in the mid-nineties, bringing the wildly psychedelic party scene to our shores. After a short time in Sydney he ventured north and made his home in the Byron Shire. He landed at the ‘banana shed’ in Yelgun, before setting up his Rainforest Space Base in Main Arm where he continued to produce his signature style epic psytrance symphonies. Many will remember his monumental DJ sets at parties and festivals in Australia and around the world. Before Byron discovered beige, the Space Tribe shop in Mullumbimby was the outlet for the Byron ‘uniform’ of the day. A lifestyle store, it was where you could outfit yourself, your children and your home with the Space Tribe signature fluoro fractals.
Whilst Olli was somewhat of an international superstar, to many in the Byron Shire, he was a dear friend. He raised his daughter Gzi here and was a beloved member of the Main Arm and Mullumbimby community. Not only did he rock international festivals, and dance floors in the bush and on the beaches, he is also fondly remembered for once stirring up a dancefloor frenzy at a Main Arm School disco at Kohinur Hall.
After 15 years of calling the Byron Shire home, Olli made London his base again where he continued to travel the globe infusing every destination with his psychedelic joy for life. Olli departed on his final cosmic journey on the 23 August 2021. He was greatly loved and will be missed by so many.