It is nearly 20 years since Deja Voodoo’s Matt Heath cruised down the Bay Hill, speakers blaring, saying goodbye to Caroline Bay.

In July, it will be 20 years since the cult classic song Today Tomorrow Timaru was released and as the final week of New Zealand Music Month comes to an end, what better way to celebrate than taking a look at Timaru’s unofficial anthem.

Part of Deja Voodoo’s debut album Brown Sabbath, the song was a tongue-in-cheek tribute to the Exponents and mused about a guy packing up, leaving Timaru and ‘‘heading straight up State Highway 1’’.

Heath, who now works as a breakfast host on Radio Hauraki, said it was absolutely ‘‘crazy’’ to think the song was released 20 years ago.

‘‘There’s been talk of doing a 20-year anniversary tour.

‘‘Maybe we do the Deja Voodoo experience tour where it’s me and other musicians rather than getting the band back together because it was too hard. So I’ll just do one of those really mundane tours where there is only one original member.’’

The song came about when Heath and bassist Chris Stapp were hitch-hiking from Dunedin to Christchurch.

‘‘On the way there we ended up in Timaru, we were talking about Jordan Luck being from Timaru and we ended up in front of the Washdyke [Doncaster] Tavern.

‘‘We went from one end of town to the other and it was just taking ages so we were like ‘today, tomorrow, Timaru’. We had a guitar so we started writing an Exponents-style song.

‘‘It just worked out and when we ended up back recording the album we were like ‘remember, that song that was quite good that we were singing on the side of the road?’.’’

The music video featured the band performing in front of Timaru landmarks such as the aviary, the Bay Hill wishing well and then driving down Stafford St blasting the song.

It was an interesting video to film, he said.

‘‘I remember we had a huge night in Christchurch and I had a massive hangover.

‘‘We were shooting for quite some time and we had a big van with speakers on the side and we were just driving round, blasting it and singing.

‘‘The song wasn’t out yet so everyone was just like ‘what are you doing?’. Meanwhile I had a pounding headache which is what I remember mostly about it.’’

It was great the song was still fondly remembered.

‘‘Especially when Chris yells out the order of the towns. I’ve travelled that way a long time and I was like, ‘we’ve got to get it in order or else people will be annoyed’.

‘‘He was like ‘nah, nah, it sounds better in this order’ and it was just all over the shop.

Heath thought that would have scuppered the song for South Islanders, ‘‘but no’’.

‘‘I’m stoked that anyone remembers it at all.’’

He still makes sure to visit Timaru often.

‘‘I always have to pop in and get some Denheath custard squares.

‘‘I get down a lot. Dad lives in Dunedin and I do a lot of stuff in Christchurch, so I’m often driving from Christchurch to Dunedin.

‘‘We used to holiday in Timaru a lot as well, so [I] always remember the place fondly.’’

The band began life as a fictional house band on the television comedy show Back of the Y.

It had always been a dream to be in a successful band.

‘‘Right from being a teenager I had played in bands and I always thought that’s what I’d be. I told my careers counsellor at high school that I wanted to be a rock star.

‘‘It was kind of funny to finally get that record deal but for a joke band, not your other bands.

‘‘It was awesome to experience and live that life but part of me was like, ‘I wanted to do that with a real band’.

‘‘I’ve had a book come out this week called A Life Less Punishing and I talk about the time in the band and how people fail to appreciate the good times when they’re around.

‘‘That was a classic example. Instead of being stoked I was in a band and having a good time, I found reasons as to why it wasn’t perfect despite having a record deal and touring.’’

His book was released on Tuesday. He had spent the last two years working on it.

Page-turner . . . Matt Heath is also celebrating the release of his first book, A Life Less Punishing. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

‘‘It’s a book on lessons I’ve learnt from life. There’s 13 emotions that make your life more punishing than it needs to be.

‘‘It’s basically a humiliating story from my life and then what I learnt about the neuroscience history and philosophy around that emotion.

‘‘No matter how good and exciting life gets we always find a way to not enjoy it if we’re not careful, but if you look into the emotion there are quite easy ways you can enjoy your time better.

‘‘It was really fun to work on. It helped me sort out my life and hopefully it might help others.

‘‘I hope it is entertaining and humorous as well. I’m very proud of it.’’