A very short history of Abracadabra

The origins of us, retold as a collage of 8mm film footage taken from the seventies through to the filming of the last television commercial in 2006.

The movie tells the story of ex-advertising wizard Hamilton Du Lieu, who came to settle on the far north coast of NSW with his family of three teenage girls, and opened a small retail store in the (then) sleepy village of Bangalow.

From these small beginnings, the store expanded and evolved through various incarnations, first as a used furniture, books and bric-a-brac store to a basket store with a hairdressing salon on the side, to the happy, vibrant hippy shop (among many other things) that it is today, still owned and operated by the du Lieu family.

The history of Abracadabra is linked to the fortunes of Bangalow itself. In the seventies visitors began to trickle into town from the newly “trendified” Byron Bay – a whaling town which had undergone its own transformation, only lately reinvented as a hot tourist destination courtesy of its fabulous beaches and the alternative lifestylers they attracted. Once barely a truck stop on the highway, it was not long before picturesque Bangalow also became a destination for day-trippers and lovers of fine food and boutique shopping.

Abracadabra played its own part in making the village a desirable location. The first TV commercial aired in 1982 and its jingle became an irrepressible force, urging viewers to “come in and say g’day”. Soon everyone knew about the little town of Bangalow, just “west of Byron Bay”, as each new generation grew up learning the iconic tune. Thirty years on the staff at Abracadabra are still regularly sung at by visitors from all over the country, who remember the catchy jingle that became part of the soundtrack of their childhood.

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