Todd Rundgren Hermit of Mink Hollow

That Time Todd Rundgren Predicted a Failed Auckland Mayoral Campaign

It’s local election season here in New Zealand. In my home city of Lower Hutt, we have the now standard blend of people running for mayor. Some pleasant community-minded citizens, interspersed with a few conspiracy theorists – a bush-faced gentleman who opposes fluoridation and a guy who is still angry at Dr Fauci.

But noone in our pool of candidates is as bizarrely entertaining as Auckland’s Leo Molloy. Molloy is a qualified vet who made his name in hospitality. He’s extremely brash and outspoken, and recently pulled out of the Auckland Mayoral race after a bizarre and controversial interview. He referred to interviewer Guy Williams as “woke”, “a soft c*ck” and a “retard”. The interview clearly showed Molloy as a bully, unfit for public office, and he withdrew from the race shortly afterward.

Meanwhile, in 1978, Todd Rundgren released the impressive one-man band album, Hermit of Mink Hollow. Inspired by his breakup with Bebe Buell, the mother of Liv Tyler, Rundgren recorded an album of short pop songs, expressing his heartbreak on tracks like ‘Can We Still Be Friends’ and ‘Hurting For You’. Impressively, Rundgren produced the album at his home in Mink Hollow Road in upstate New York, playing all the instruments and singing his own harmonies.

The opening track and third single was ‘All The Children Sing’, a singalong ditty with large smudges of darkness in the lyrics – “The angel of the Lord/Just declared we aren’t worth a thing/The galaxy is null and void/All the children sing.”

The second verse concerns a Mr Malloy. The spelling is different but otherwise the portrayal fits Mr Leo Molloy uncomfortably well:

Of Mr. Malloy
He’s always seen himself as one of the boys
He thinks that men are tough and women are toys
But a bell in his head will ring

All The Children Sing, Todd Rundgren

Molloy’s interview with Guy Williams was very much Molloy positing himself as “one of the boys”, with its locker room talk and boxing match.

Regarding the “women as toys” line, Molloy’s attitude towards women appear problematic. His attitude toward prime minister Jacinda Ardern has been pure condescension, while he’s also harassed waitresses and offered to feed a female vegan customer rabbit food.

The Spinoff reported that five weeks ago, Leo Molloy “rang the bell” and exited the contest to be Auckland mayor. 

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Graham Fyfe is probably the only music blogger to appreciate Neil Diamond and Ariana Grande. Aphoristic Album Reviews features reviews and blog posts across a growing spectrum of popular music.


  1. I’m starting to think some of these politicians deliberately want to shock. At least where you live the fringe assholes pull out of the race. Here in the states they’re elected. As for the album, I love it. A real comeback for Runt.

    • We have lots of weird little fringe candidates, but I doubt any will get in in the big cities. Maybe in some more conspiracy-prone rural areas.

    • In my city of Lower Hutt we had a big changing of the guard last election. Lots of the older generation (in their 60s) got dropped and replaced by people in their 30s and 40s. I’m assuming we’ll see much the same people in again, which is fine by me.

  2. I do think some do want to shock like green pete said. I just want to see moderate politicians and not so one-sided in either way…just common sense which seems to be in short supply. That idiot you are talking about…no there is no way he needs to be in any power.

    I like that song… gotta love that era’s video effects…it was certainly different.

    • I think Leo Molloy is pretty charismatic, and could have been a success if he could reel in the bad behaviour.

      Our current mayor, who’ll probably be reelected, is only in his early 30s, which is good IMO.

  3. Ha ha. Sounds like the politics over here. Both parties have been taken over by either woke SJW types or Trump fans, both of whom I despise. I hate both the left and the right so I wouldn’t vote for either if you paid me a gazillion dollars.
    It’s weird cuz I actually heard Can We Still Be Friends early this morning cuz it came up on autoplay, except it was the Robert Palmer version. And then you just talked about it in your story. That’s totally weird.

  4. Interesting parallels between the tough-talking and now withdrawn local mayoral candidate and that Todd Rundgren tune, which I didn’t know. I guess I should also check out the album. Rundgren has made some interesting music.

    As far politics is concerned, sadly, the bar for candidates seems to have been lowered permanently. That’s what happens once you get a lunatic to lead a country. Add to this all the misinformation that is spread via social media and you have a perfect storm!

    • Hermit of Mink Hollow is good – pretty much the most tuneful and straightforward album that he ever made, I reckon.

      Misinformation is pretty worrying – I know people in real life who’ve been sucked in.

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