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MAY/JUNE 2021 VOLUME 46 NO 3

dean

PERRETT

LET MUSIC DO THE TALKING

john

O’DEA

A DREAM COME TRUE

THE STORY OF TAMWORTH

PART THREE: THE GOLDEN GUITARS

(INC.GST)

$ 6.00

adam harvey

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KIX

THE HOTTEST COUNTRY

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Adam

Harvey The New Album

#1 ARIA Country album Featuring the singles

Highway Number ONe, All for rum & ramblin’ fever (Feat. Lee Kernaghan)

adamharvey.com.au

Out now

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GRAEME TRAVIS ADAM CONNORS COLLINS HARVEY

AMBER LAWRENCE ANDREW FARRISS LYN BOWTELL JUDAH KELLY JASMINE RAE LUKE O’SHEA ASHLEIGH DALLAS THE VIPER CREEK BAND LIAM BREW’S 90’S COUNTRY NIGHT ANDREW SWIFT SOUTHBOUND ROO ARCUS BROCK CURTIS MIKE CARR JEREMY TURNER TWIN SHARE FROM TRIPLE FROM

SINGLE ROOM

$ 6 7 5 pp $ 6 5 0 pp $ 8 2 5

2 NIGHTS 4.5 STAR ACCOMMODATION AT RYDGES WORLD SQUARE A WELCOME DRINK PER PERSON

BREAKFAST DAILY

NIGHTLY CANAPES

INCLUDES ALL LIVE MUSIC EVENTS

O P T I O N A L E X T E N S I O N $225 p p *Extension includes an additional nights accommodation and entry to the Breakfast Sunday Country Music Recovery Cruise on Sydney Harbour featuring free flowing champagne, beer, wines, ciders and amazing Australian gourmet food.

HANG OUT WITH SOME OF THE ARTISTS AND TAKE IN THE WORLDS MOST BEAUTIFUL HARBOUR!

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OUT MAY 7

O JUN UT E 11

Two Great Albums to Warm the Soul Available online and in stores

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www.abcmusic.com.au

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editor’s NOTE Cheryl with stars of Home And Away Sophie Dillman and Patrick O’Connor.

forward O N E ST E P

In this issue, we are thrilled to have ADAM HARVEY as our cover story.

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dam’s 2020 was of course like most artists, however, the difference for him was the new album release and tour dates he and his team spent the previous year preparing was travel focused. The album had to be shelved so

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it’s just as well he has such a laidback disposition and terrific sense of humour which no doubt helped him through. Help him celebrate and find a show near you. The full list of tour dates is listed in the gig guide. There’s been a lot of positivity around the progress of festivals across the country however there’s also heartbreak with some forced to cancel for a second year. It’s like one step forward, two steps back. This is the case for Bluesfest at Byron Bay which was shut down the day before it was due to start. We feel for every single person involved knowing the impact it will have both financially and mentally. Our thoughts go with Peter Noble and his crew. Sadly, for our friends at Cruisin’ Country they too have had to postpone this year’s Super Cruise and will now set sail on November 9, 2022.

There are some noteworthy things going on and I love that Capital News can deliver these to you. We have a number of stories in this issue about people you may not be so familiar with. One such story is about singer-songwriter James Stewart Keene who has a background in videography and screenplay writing. I was invited to attend the viewing of his short film at a special event in Sydney last month aimed specifically at investors. Home And Away stars Sophie Dillman and Patrick O’Connor together with The Bachelor and Neighbours actor Tim Robards were the key characters. I wish him all the best and trust the full-length movie comes off. Yours in country Cheryl Brown cheryl@tamworthcountrymusic.com.au

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FEATURES ADAM HARVEY DEAN PERRETT TONY SMITH KEL-ANNE BRANDT SHERBROOKE DOWNS PAULA STANDING JOHN O’DEA GRAHAM SCOBIE HATS OFF TO COUNTRY TOWARDS 2022

10 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 29 30

MANAGING EDITOR Cheryl Brown P: 0407 10 69 66 E: cheryl@tamworthcountrymusic.com.au ADVERTISING Cheryl Brown P: 0407 10 69 66 E: cheryl@tamworthcountrymusic.com.au SUBSCRIPTIONS Linda Bridges T: 0439 406 136 CONTRIBUTORS Allan Caswell, Anna Rose, Bec Gracie, David Dawson, Jon Wolfe, Lorraine Pfitzner OAM, Peter Coad OAM, Susan Jarvis.

REGULARS NEWS NASHVILLE NEWS NEW COUNTRY SINGLES

PHOTOGRAPHERS Andrew Pearson, Dan Stanley-Freeman, Donna Iowe, Tamworth Regional Council and all who support Capital News.

HEAR & THERE

TRC TEAM Brad Moffett; Crystal Vero, Erin Carroll, Jess Fitzsimmons.

BEHIND THE MUSIC

ART AND DESIGN Sam Woods UPCOMING DEADLINES: July/August – 1 June Sept/Oct – 1 August

WHERE ARE THEY NOW

THE SIDEMEN ONE TO WATCH BUSH BALLADS DOWN MEMORY LANE WRITING GREAT SONGS SOUND ADVICE COUNTRY MUSIC CAPITAL

PUBLISHER Tamworth Regional Council 437 Peel Street, Tamworth NSW 2340 P: 02 6767 5555

FESTIVALS COMING EVENTS LIVE CM SCENE

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Country Music Capital News is compiled and published bi-monthly by Tamworth Regional Council, 437 Peel Street, Tamworth NSW 2340. The views and opinions expressed in Capital News are not necessarily those of the publisher. Copyright 2021 Tamworth Regional Council, ABN 52631074450. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part by any manner or method whatsoever without the written permission is prohibited. All statements made in advertising are the sole responsibility of the advertiser in respect of legal and industrial relations. Printed by Australian Community Media Printing & Distribution, 159 Bells Line of Road, North Richmond. 2754. ISSN 1440-995X. M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

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APRA MUSIC AWARDS APRA AMCOS has announced that country music trailblazer JOY MCKEAN OAM and the late HELEN REDDY will be the 2021 recipients of the Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Services to Australian Music at the annual APRA Music Awards.

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oy has had a stellar career as a performer, songwriter and manager, spanning more than 70 years and has received seven Golden Guitars. She created a lifelong partnership with her husband Slim Dusty, writing many of his most famous songs and was his manager for more than 50 years. Helen was to receive this recognition in 2020 until Covid-19 placed constraints around a shortened, virtual awards. She was hailed as the Queen of 70’s Pop with her anthemic single I Am Woman topping the US Billboard Hot 100 in 1972, immobilising an entire generation of women to fight for change. The top five nominees in the Most Performed Country Work category are Brad Cox, Casey Barnes, Melanie Dyer, Morgan Evans and The McClymonts The awards were held on April 28 at the International Convention Centre Grand Ballroom, Darling Harbour, Sydney. Winners were not known at the time of publishing.

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Sony Music Australia’s, vice president of commercial music, Tony Glover, has been stood down following an investigation into complaints of alleged inappropriate behaviour. Glover told a Nine newspaper that

BLUESFEST CANCELLED AGAIN Bluesfest was due to open the gates on April 1 for its five-day event however despite a comprehensive 150-page COVID-safety plan that was approved and reportedly commended by the NSW Government the iconic event was cancelled the day before it was due to start. Bluesfest had rescheduled the previously cancelled 2020 event working diligently to present the event in 2021. Organisers are heartbroken that COVID-19 has spread into its local community. Peter Noble, Bluesfest Director said; “This is one of the most difficult statements I have ever had to make. We really wanted to be at the forefront of the return of live music at Pre-COVID-19 level. “We feel deeply for everybody affected, the fans, the artists, and the hard-working Bluesfest team. But in the end, the health of our community must come first.” Thousands of workers were sent home, marquees and staging was disassembled, 10 kilometres of lighting was pulled down, almost 20,000 chairs and 79 stallholders were packed up. Fresh food and drinks were ready to serve 16,500 daily festivalgoers. It’s expected the cancellation will total $10 million in losses for the organisers and $100 million in economic loss for the region. Ticket buyers are encouraged to hold tickets for the rescheduled event.

he was shocked by the outcome and denies the allegations. He has been with the company since BMG and Sony Music merged in 2004.

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NASHVILLE

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The Radio Award winners for the 56TH ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS™ includes firsttime National On-Air Personality of the Year winner Kix Brooks with American Country Countdown. Additionally, KNIX-FM received two awards for Major Market On-Air Personality of the Year and Major Market Station of the Year. The announcement was revealed on the Academy of Country Music’s® official social media pages, with a series of heartfelt videos capturing winners receiving surprise gifts from the Academy. It’s the seventh overall win for KNIX-FM for ACM Major Market Station of the Year and the fourth overall win for KUZZ-AM/FM for ACM Medium Market Station of the Year. WQDR-FM received their third win for ACM Large Market Station of the Year. KKNU-FM and Buzz Jackson each received their second wins for Small Market Station of the year and Medium Market Personality of the Year, respectively. First-time winners for On-Air Personality of the Year categories include Lexi (Papadopoulos) & (Jared) Banks, Lois Lewis and Steve (Stroud), Ben (Walker) & Nikki (Thomas). The 56th ACM Awards® was held on April 18 and Capital News will deliver winners in the next issue.

PHOTO: NOLAN FELDPAUSCH 

ACM RADIO AWARD WINNERS REVEALED

CMA Ambassadors CMA Award-winning duo MADDIE & TAE have teamed up with the CMA Foundation to lend their voices and inspire music teachers and students as CMA Foundation Artist Ambassadors.

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addie & Tae have seen the positive influence of music in their own lives and are working with students and teachers to share the value of music with others. They will visit music classes virtually to discuss how music has helped them overcome insecurities and develop confidence. The duo will also take part in a discussion with female teachers about overcoming challenges and the importance of empowering the next generation of female leaders, sharing experiences about their journeys in the music industry, musicianship and why they are utilising their platforms to encourage the next generation. They join a notable group of CMA Foundation Artist Ambassadors, including Jimmie Allen, Lindsay Ell and Ashley McBryde. Maddie & Tae’s new single Woman You Got, the follow up to their #1 smash Die From A Broken Heart is out now.

NEW FROM ALAN JACKSON Country superstar Alan Jackson releases his first album of all new music in six years on May 14. Where Have You Gone is his 16th studio album – his 25th in a storied career that includes two Christmas albums, two gospel albums, three greatest hits collections, a bluegrass album and one-boxed set. Produced by longtime producer Keith Stegall, it’s packed with 21 tracks of which 15 are penned by Jackson.

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“It’s a little harder country than even I’ve done in the past,” Jackson admits. “And it’s funny, I was driving and listening to the final mixes Keith sent me, and I started to tear up. I was surprised to get so overly emotional, but I just love this kind of music. “The steel and acoustic guitar, the fiddle – those things have a sound and a tone…and getting that right, the way those things make you feel, that’s country, too.”  The album includes songs for his daughters and for his mother’s funeral, plus there’s also a bonus track, in the spirit of the album’s overall sound, That’s The Way Loves Goes (A Tribute to Merle Haggard). TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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&

BY SUSAN JARVIS

twists turns ON LIFE’S JOURNEY

When ADAM HARVEY recorded an album that was essentially a road trip, he had no idea what lay ahead on the road of life.

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“And it would have been the ultimate irony to have an album about travelling Australia’s roads, then not be able to travel to promote it. 10

dam said “The vision for the album came from an episode of a TV show called Caravan & Camping, about the explosion of caravan and camper sales and the people who are now travelling Australia.” “It’s not just grey nomads, but young families with kids, single women, pretty much anyone. “I was telling Graeme Connors about all this, and the song Highway One was written in about half an hour!” “Then I thought, ‘Why not do a whole album to inspire not only the people travelling the country now, but those who’ll do it in the future?’ Suddenly Songs From Highway One was born. But, of course, things didn’t quite go to plan. “I’d finished the album and

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was planning to release it in early 2020. Suddenly, after writing and recording a whole album about travelling, that was the one thing none of us could do,” Adam said. “I pretty quickly took the decision to hold the album back until things returned to some kind of normal – I didn’t want to release an album, then not be able to get out there and play the songs live. “And it would have been the ultimate irony to have an album about travelling Australia’s roads, then not be able to travel to promote it. “But the thing about being stuck in one place during the pandemic is that it gave everyone very itchy feet. The idea of travelling – anywhere – suddenly seemed exotic, desirable, incredibly appealing. We all want what we can’t have.” M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


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“Joy and I have become good friends since I was involved with the fundraising for the Slim Dusty Centre at Kempsey, and I asked permission to do a version of her song. Then I got cheeky and asked if I could use a little bit of Slim’s voice on the song. I still can’t believe I had the audacity to ask! 12

So by the time Adam’s album was released, he’d captured the postpandemic zeitgeist – songs about the freedom of being out on the road were the perfect antidote to a year of lockdowns, anxiety and isolation at home. “With our borders closed [apart from New Zealand, announced recently], travelling around Australia is now the only thing we CAN do – so people are getting out there in droves, travelling everywhere from Cairns to Longreach to Tassie and Broome,” Adam said. Fans had a taste of Songs From Highway One in 2019, when Adam’s duet with Lee Kernaghan, Ramblin’ Fever, was released. It was a finalist in the Group or Duo category at the 2020 Golden Guitar Awards. “The idea for that song came during the 2019 Country Music Cruise,” Adam said. “I was sitting backstage with Lee, who’s a massive Merle Haggard fan, just singing old country songs. We played Ramblin’ Fever, and Lee said, ‘We should record that as a duet!’. Once we were back on dry land I asked him again, and he was still really keen.” The song was a perfect fit for the album, which also features another legend of Australian country music,

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King of Country Slim Dusty, on Angel Of Goulburn Hill, written by Joy McKean. “Joy and I have become good friends since I was involved with the fundraising for the Slim Dusty Centre at Kempsey, and I asked permission to do a version of her song. Then I got cheeky and asked if I could use a little bit of Slim’s voice on the song. I still can’t believe I had the audacity to ask! “To my amazement, Joy said, ‘Normally no, but for you I’ll do it.’ It was a once in a lifetime thing, and for me it’s a way to tip my hat to the King – I’m sure he wouldn’t be offended.” Other members of the close-knit country community also stepped up to contribute to this superb album. Following the 2019 Young Stars of Country 20-year reunion tour, which saw Adam again join forces with Beccy Cole, Darren Coggan and Felicity Urquhart, Beccy was inspired to write a song about titled Better With Time. It’s a warm, moving tribute to friendship, longevity, music, laughter and life on the road, and Adam saw the song’s potential. “I very quickly asked Beccy if I could record it, and she, Darren and Fliss agreed to perform it as a collaboration with me,” Adam said.

“It’s a really special song – we’ve shared a lot of memories over the years, including winning a Golden Guitar for Do I Ever Cross Your Mind?, and we’re all really close friends. So to have a song that captures all that is unbelievable.” And that leads to a whole new way of looking at this album. Adam swears it wasn’t his intention, but the album has turned into something more than simply a celebration of freedom and the open road. It has become a reflection on his own life journey. That sentimental journey really begins with the warm, poignant Lindeman Again, a song Adam wrote with Graeme Connors to celebrate the life of his late father. “Dad spent a lot of his life in and around Mackay, particularly out on the islands of the Great Barrier Reef. He really loved it there,” Adam said. “It was a tough song to write because I was pretty emotional, but I’m so pleased with the way it turned out – it’s personally very, very special to me. Lindeman Again is also a love song – Lindeman Island was where Adam’s father met his mother. “Mum got quite ill at the start of the pandemic, and this song really meant a lot to her. It was hard to perform at first, but I soon realised M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


Writing sessions with (above) Graeme Connors and (below) Lee Kernaghan.

it’s a celebration of happy times, so it’s a really positive thing.” The other very personal song on this album – and one that is guaranteed to make every parent of an older teenager cry – is the beautiful Sixteen Summers. “Someone once told me when the kids were little, ‘Make the most of the time with your kids, because you only get sixteen summers.’” Adam said. “And he was right. They turn 17, get their licence, and then don’t want to go on family road trips anymore. When your kids are little, you don’t realise just how short their childhoods will be.” “These days, Miss Kathy and I can just get in the car and go places together. It’s really nice too, but we sometimes miss those times with the kids – both the good times and those disasters we can laugh about now.” Adam’s home town of Geelong provided the inspiration for Take Me Back. “I really wanted to write a song about where I came from, but the word ‘Geelong’ doesn’t really roll off the tongue. “I started to think about my childhood and the things kids can’t do anymore – like roaming the streets and just having to be home by dark, and watching TV together, M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

and neighbours dropping into each other’s houses. We took if for granted, but it was a really special time. Sometimes it’d be nice to be able to go back to that slower, easier pace of life.” Adam’s own travels all over Australia have inspired songs like Darwin Nights and Red Dirt Town. “I just love Darwin – I have done since I first went there with Beccy Cole 15 years ago. I try to go there as often as I can, and stay as long as I can. It’s still a frontier town, and there’s nothing like it,” Adam said. “And Red Dirt Town is special because my pre-music background’s in gold mining. “I wrote the song during a writing trip to north-west Western Australia. In those mining towns – places like Port Hedland, Karratha, Carnarvon – the dust permeates everything, including the people. I wanted to capture that.” Adam reckons he can’t release an album without a drinking song, but this time he’s moved from his regular beer-loving theme to rum – specifically Bundaberg rum. “I based the song on a bumper sticker I saw that said All For One, but changed it to All For Rum,” he said. “The Bundy distillery’s pretty happy about it, and I reckon I’ve got

free rum for life! We went up there to film a video clip and had a great time.” The final song on the album, Bandits On The Run, is a bookend to Highway One, and it is also a logical extension of Adam and Kathy’s child-free road trips. “I wrote the song with Colin Buchanan – I wanted a song about a couple of retired people who are footloose and fancy free, who’ve sold everything and headed out on the road to share a wonderful chapter of life together. “I love it because it captures a spirit of adventure, a sense of freedom and a feeling of reckless abandon – of being able to do what you want, without being accountable to anyone.” Like his imaginary couple, Adam’s feeling a strong sense of freedom and contentment these days. “COVID gave me time for reflection on my life. I’ve had an amazing life – a beautiful family, a career I love and Kathy and I have been able to share so many incredible memories together. “It’s been 25 years now since I took an unexpected detour into a music career, and I never expected it to have such longevity – when I began at 20 or 21 I was just living for the moment.” Songs from Highway One has clearly hit a nerve with fans. It debuted at #1 on the ARIA Country Chart, and at #9 on the ARIA Music Chart. Adam has now hit the road himself again, on a tour that began in mid-April and – all being well on the COVID-19 front – will continue through until November. “We’re doing more than 40 shows – one of the biggest tours I’ve done – and the response has been incredible. People are just loving the chance to see and hear live music again,” Adam said. “I was a little bit nervous at first, but the break made me realise just how beautiful it is to be back out there touring, and to be singing about the joy of travelling around this amazing country of ours.” TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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BY JON WOLFE

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t’s just that he is such a humble man that his talent rests easy on his shoulders and he always lets his music talk for him. Dean’s 17th album, Kind Seasons, is a testament to his talent and to the fact that he has the respect of many of Australia’s finest songwriters to both co-write with and who write songs specifically for him. “I can’t believe that I actually have 17 albums,” Dean said. “And a big thank you to those in the country music industry who have encouraged my music along the way.” Like a few albums before Kind Seasons, Dean planned to go to Nashville to record the new album. “The intention was to record a 12-track album over there with Stuie French at his new studio and utilise a lot of the great Nashville players,” he said. “Unfortunately Covid hit before we could get there … so we decided for Stuie to track the songs in Nashville. “I explained to him what I liked about the songs and how I heard them. I put full trust in him and he then set about working on them, putting his interpretation on them as well, and I then went to Lindsay Waddington’s Kross Kut Studios on the Gold Coast to record my vocals and it turned out great. “It actually gave us the extra time during the year to put extra work into the album and gave me time to record more tracks.” Quite appropriately Dean ended up with 17 tracks for the 17th album. Two singles released before work really began on the album, The Ballad Of Black Caviar and His Last Cattle Drive fared well on radio and another single, Six Decks To Darwin, has proven to be a record breaker for Dean. “It is now the holder of the all-time record for the longest time a song has remained on Australian country music’s premier Australian Country Tracks Top 40 chart - 37 weeks and still holding as of April 10.” Earlier in the year the song won Dean his fifth Golden Guitar at the

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You’d be excused if you bumped into DEAN PERRETT in a fast food joint and didn’t recognise him – no Akubra, sneakers; and a family in tow – but as one of Australia’s best bush balladeers you should be able to pick him out in any crowd. Australian Country Music Awards in Tamworth (the Golden Guitars), but as exciting as that was, Dean is proud of the fact that it also earned co-writers Kelly and Marion Dixon their first Golden Guitar – a fact that seemed to shock the whole industry, as they have written some great songs in the past, particularly for Slim Dusty. “Winning was a great thrill and it was great to see Kelly and Marion acknowledged for their contribution to that song and I see it as a just reward and acknowledgement really of the great songs, lyrics, they’ve put together for Slim and so many other artists. I was really stoked that they could be a part of that.” Talking to Kelly after the presentation of the Golden Guitar, he said before the awards he was thinking that he will be 88 this year and didn’t think he and Marion would ever win one. “We’re very grateful for this!” he said backstage. Dean says he is glad he got the chance to write two songs for the album with Troy Cassar-Daley. “Originally I had the idea for My Fire and I gave Troy a call to co-write on that one,” Dean said. “I like the perspective of a songwriter that’s not necessarily that hardcore, died-in-the-wool bush ballad writer, and it was good to write with Troy’s knowledge of the Indigenous background and it really helped make the spirit of the song. “In the process of writing My Fire, Troy sent through the song Old Hotel, which he’d three parts written and we agreed to do the duet on that once we’d finished it.” Dean also does a duet with Sharon White, the wife of Ricky Skaggs and a member of the successful family group The Whites. “It’s our take of an old Hank

Snow song, Let’s Pretend, that Hank originally recorded with Anita Carter,” Dean said. “I was trying to think of a female artist with that old style country voice and Sharon came to mind, thanks to Paul Brewster, who worked with Ricky’s band Kentucky Thunder. “Paul played what was basically my demo to Sharon and she said she’d love to do it.” As songwriter Dean says he doesn’t have an organised process at all. “Sometimes I’ll just get a line in my head from something I might see during the day or something I’ve observed someone else doing,” he said, “or some random thought from outer space! “These days having an iPhone is a very handy tool for songwriters – especially when out on a horse somewhere I often record what pops into my head. Sometimes I’ll get the melody first and then sit down and put words to it, or else I’ll have the words and find the sweet melody and just keep on with it.” With the easing of Covid restrictions in 2021, Dean has had the opportunity to travel for shows, including the Hartwood Easter Festival at Tambar Springs near Tamworth and a series of shows at this year’s Way Out West Festival in Winton in Queensland. “All things going to plan, I’ve got quite a few festival appearances in Queensland lined up, as well as organising some of my own concerts,” Dean said, “Hopefully I can get away to do some interstate weekends. “Apart from that, it’s leg over the horse and mustering cattle!” No, doubt with his iPhone ready to record the next idea for a song, and that’s why Dean Perrett’s music is as real and as true blue Aussie as it can get.

“Sometimes I’ll just get a line in my head from something I might see during the day or something I’ve observed someone else doing,” he said, “or some random thought from outer space!

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BY JON WOLFE

Just as his career was taking off nearly 20 years ago, TONY SMITH saw his musical dreams seemingly come to an end when family tragedy struck.

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“I decided to step back from the music and concentrate on working a job, bringing the family up and make sure I was there for everybody.” 16

owever, with the tenacity of a man on the land, and with true Aussie spirit, this year has seen him re-emerge with a career set to shine more brightly than even he dared to dream of. He has lived through the tough times and the good, something that has helped him weather a musical journey that saw him performing at the Tamworth Country Music Festival a couple of times before tragedy forced him to cancel a visit and rush home. “We were busking in the street,” Tony says, “and getting a lot of good feedback, selling a few CDs, and my wife was pregnant with two weeks to go before our third child was due to be born. “Ana woke up one morning, said something’s not right, and went to the Tamworth hospital. Shortly later we were on our way back to the Mildura hospital where our baby, Kelsey Roy Smith, was stillborn. About two months after that I found out I had cancer. I didn’t feel bulletproof anymore. “I decided to step back from the music and concentrate on working a job, bringing the family up and make sure I was there for everybody.” Before taking to music Tony says he was heavily influenced by John Williamson and he soon started writing original songs which resulted in his first CD 20 years ago. “I was working as a shearer at the time,” he says, “and I wanted to become a musician and tour around Australia and I had just got started doing that when the wheels fell off.” Tony still continued to write – “I always had a guitar with me,” he said – and his song Shearer, caught James Blundell’s ear and he recorded it on his Portrait Of A Man album.

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Tony was also part of the National ABC series ‘The Recording Studio’ where he recorded a tribute to his father with Golden Guitar winning producer Matt Fell. About three-and-a-half years ago the family moved to Wentworth and started running a caravan park on the junction of the Murray and Darling rivers and it wasn’t long before he was performing for visitors. “People said to me ‘You need to get your songs out there, they’re really good’ and my son said ‘Dad, you really need to get back on the trail of your dreams and do your music’.” Tony saved some money and literally found a recording studio from a phone book. “I looked up country music recording studios and Hillbilly Hut was the first one that popped up,” Tony said. “I rang Simon Johnson at Hillbilly Hut and eventually went to meet him and played some songs to him and explained the stories behind them and he took it from there.” This year saw his album, Stir The Flames, released to wide acceptance by Australian country music radio. Three singles have charted nationally - The Ghost Of This Guitar (#2), Dirt Kids (#12) and Dance On (#15) – and in January he won two prestigious awards – The Most Promising Future Star at the People’s Choice Awards and the Bluegrass Song Of The Year at the TSA Songwriter Salute Awards. Tony says his songs are probably country folk – “There’s a bit of John Williamson, a bit of James Blundell, some have a bit of Lee Kernaghan” – but they are distinctly Tony Smith songs. Songs that reflect the stories of people on the land, telling their stories, and his, with both heart and humour.

“People said to me ‘You need to get your songs out there, they’re really good’ and my son said ‘Dad, you really need to get back on the trail of your dreams and do your music’.” With a lot of time driving heavy machinery it is easy to see why there are a number of songs on Stir The Embers that reflect time behind the wheel of big mining trucks and a mighty Caterpillar D11 dozer as he showcases the analogy of strength and resilience in the hearts in the Australian bush in Caterpillar Heart or the long-distance love of those hardy men and women who work a roster of four weeks on and four weeks off, often many miles away from each other (Hit It On The Run). There’s a wonderful story behind The Ghost Of This Guitar which harks back to his father singing Slim Dusty songs and it’s easy to see Tony singing these songs around a campfire. And while the embers are being stirred in your mind, you’ll find yourself stirring up some memories of your own – both of songs and times remembered, as well as where you were when you first heard Tony Smith sing. M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


RE-LIGHTING THE M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

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BY SUSAN JARVIS

FROM

one heart TO ANOTHER As this article went to press, KEL-ANNE BRANDT was getting ready for her first live show in almost a year.

A “I decided it was a time for reflection, for considering my life and the lessons I needed to learn, and to look at what lay ahead – what I wanted for the future.” 18

s a former MO Award winner for live performance, it felt like dipping her toe in the water after a long drought. “I’m excited and nervous and unsure of what it will be like. For someone who’s focused on the live performance aspect of my career for more than 20 years, it has been quite strange not performing,” KelAnne said. Yet that’s only part of the story for Kel-Anne, who is a strong believer that things often happen for a reason. “On the face of it, all that happened last year was COVID. But then I started to look a little deeper and I realised I’d been on a whole complicated journey during the year,” she said. “It didn’t take me long to realise that COVID brought with it some real opportunities. The world had suddenly been forced to pause. This was a moment when a global reboot was possible. “So, I decided it was a time for reflection, for considering my life and the lessons I needed to learn, and to look at what lay ahead – what I wanted for the future.” Kel-Anne had just released a brand-new album, Let Music Give

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You Wings, and single of the same name at the end of 2019 and was eager for fans to hear what she had created. “I’m so proud of this album. It was produced by the wonderful Rob McKay of Pacific International Music, and it was the best recording experience I have ever had. Rob really got me and what I was doing, and the results show that.” Let Music Give You Wings is a song of healing written for KelAnne’s daughter Natalie, who was experiencing some rough times. “Natalie is an amazing, strong woman and a very talented performer, who was in the Star Maker final in 2011. She was going through some difficult things in her life, and I wanted the song to remind her of what she could do and be, and the capacity of music to lift her up and give her strength,” Kel-Anne said. The song was written with Drew McAlister, and it’s a moving expression of the joy and power of music. Indeed, the whole album is an uplifting experience. The first track, Beautiful Dream, cowritten by Chaise Flanders, is the perfect vehicle for Kel-Anne’s voice, and captures her sense of positivity. The rest of the album is a collection of songs mainly from

the 1960s and 1970s that has been carefully curated to appeal to KelAnne’s many fans. It features tracks like Downtown, Delta Dawn, You’re My World, You Belong to Me, Puppet On A String and You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me, together with some very cool versions of Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under? and Back In The USA. “I’d been asked to do a 1960s show a while back, and it reminded me of how much I loved these songs from my childhood,” Kel-Anne said. “My audience loves this era too, so it just felt right to do these songs.” “I particularly liked the Tanya Tucker version of Delta Dawn and the Linda Ronstadt arrangement of Back In The USA. M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


Everything seemed to have fallen into place for the next stage of KelAnne’s career. But in March 2020, suddenly there were no more live gigs, no more fans and plenty of time to think. At the same time, Kel-Anne was having some issues with her health that required her to stop singing for an extended period. “I battled some major health issues two decades ago that were supposed to end my career, and I fought through and overcame them,” she said. “This time it was a mix of physical and environmental factors that were affecting me, and the doctor told me to be quiet for a while. The timing seemed just right,” she said. “For a long time, I’ve had another passion – to help people cope with M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

challenging situations in their lives, to understand and to move forward. So, I figured this was the right time to pursue that seriously.” She began studying to become a qualified and internationally accredited life coach, and discovered that her passion had grown over the years. “I started a new business at the end of 2020 – Inspired Mindset Coaching,” she said. “I wondered how that would affect my musical career when I started, but then I started getting private messages from entertainers who were really struggling, who felt that I could help them – not only because I had the skills and qualifications to do so, but because I’d been in the music industry for so long and understood what they

were going through and why music meant so much to them.” So there’s this wonderful synchronicity there – the two parts of my career and meshing beautifully with one another, and COVID has given me a whole new path to pursue that is completely compatible with music. For Kel-Anne, it feels as if a whole new era is dawning – and to mark it, she has swapped her well-recognised trademark hairdo for a stunning new blonde curly bob. “It was quite a change of image –it was really just because I hadn’t seen the hairdresser for so long in COVID. I’m delighted with it,” Kel-Anne said. Kel-Anne is planning to release her version of the Shania Twain hit Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under? as her next single, and is now hoping that the opportunities for live shows will begin to emerge once more. “I am going to take things carefully for a while, to ensure my voice is strong enough to give my best. For me, singing is more than performing – it’s a healing thing in itself,” she said. “I sing from one heart to another, and I try to give 150 per cent whenever I do a show, and I want to be certain I can give that to people.” TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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James Stewart Keene, Sophie Dillman, Patrick O’Connor, Tim Robards

bushwacked BY

THE GOVERNMENT When Wollongong singer-songwriter and screenwriter JAMES STEWART KEENE needed sources for his new movie he ploughed family history.

“They acquired it by an act of parliament with minimal consultation with the residents. The more things change the more they stay the same.” 20

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eene’s movie and short film preview vividly depicted how the NSW Government seized his great grandparents farm to build the Cataract Dam at Bulli to supply the reservoirs of drought-stricken Federation Sydney. Stroke Of The Government Pen, a song he wrote with award winning fellow songwriter Allan Caswell, was a perfect dam-busting

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anthem for Sherbrooke Down: The Road To Cataract. The song, also recorded by The Bushwackers, is one of 10 James penned with peers for the movie, set in 1901-2, and a soundtrack that is preceded by his short film starring three major Australian TV actors. Sophie Dillman and Patrick O’Connor from Home And Away and Tim Robards from Neighbours appear in the 25 minute short film

that will debut in film festivals as a showcase and teaser for movie investors. “We filmed it at the Wilberforce Australian Pioneer Park,” Keene told Tamworth Country Music Capital News. “That set was there for us to use, they set up a small pioneer village with buildings from the 1850s to the early 1900s. We spent $150,000 on a threeday shoot.” O’Connor plays the lead role of Matthew Keene, Dillman is cast as his wife Evangeline, and Tim plays a character named Mace. “Evangeline and brick maker Matthew were recovering from

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BY DAVID DAWSON

“It’s the story of Matthew and Evangeline and an anger unfaded by the passing of time hard working people and the victims of crime with the stroke of the Government’s pen boys well you should have seen Sherbrooke in 1903 a Garden of Eden full of flowers and trees hard working people who were brought to their knees.” Stroke Of The Government’s Pen JAMES STEWART KEENE-ALLAN CASWELL.

bankruptcy and were able to rebuild their lives,” Keene explained. “They moved from Wollongong up to Sherbrooke where they and their neighbours had their homes possessed by the government. They were on two or three acres with cattle, fruit, vegetables and flowers to make a living. In 1877 Evangeline lost her brother in the 1887 Bulli mine explosion and Matthew became bankrupt. She was a very strong woman – this is her story of loss, grief and resilience. “They worked hard and got their farm at Sherbrooke but then faced losing it all when the government resumed their land. This film is a full dramatic story written to tell the lives of my great grandparents – it’s an Australian period drama. “History can sometimes be looked at through romantic eyes. We tell Sherbrooke not just as a tragedy but as a real place. There was a real human cost to what happened because of the resumptions but it’s also a real story of people who built M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

their lives around agriculture and the Cataract River was their lifeblood.” Keene says the saga has many modern parallels. “The point of interest to me was the injustice the government did,” James revealed. “They were going through the big Federation drought of 190102. The water level was so low in Sydney they had to pump water from the Cataract River to top up the reservoirs to feed the water into Sydney. They acquired it by an act of parliament with minimal consultation with the residents. The more things change the more they stay the same. In NSW you see what happened with West Connect and Sydney light rail – they’re still taking people’s houses for car parks with no consultation.” Keene’s co-writers on the soundtrack include Caswell on Gambling While You’re Drinking, Graeme Connors and frequent collaborator Steve McNaughton. The Gambling While You’re Drinking video was filmed in the

Soul Trap bar in Surry Hills with 12 actors in period costumes James, his cousin Janssen and McNaughton also wrote their next single Start Again for the movie that Keene says has a $5-10 million-dollar budget. “It’s a real melancholy song about having regrets and starting over again,” Keene explained. “The soundtrack will feature traditional Celtic folk Australiana style music. The proof-of-concept short film’s goal is to introduce the characters Evangeline and Matthew in the feature film and to build interest in the investors. My background is a videographer, writing screen plays and getting into cinemas a whole different thing.” Keene has directed six music videos and recorded two previous albums The Navigator and Charm Offensive that appeared on the Australian country charts. The movie will also be solace for Keene on a deeply personal modern level – when his father was diagnosed with cancer a few words from a stranger spurred him along. “I was having a moment of reflection, my dad had just been diagnosed with lymphoma and I had a chance encounter with a fellow who worked with the Adelaide Theatre Company,” Keene said. He was telling me ‘oh you can get grants, and you can do this’, and I kind of went, gees, yeah I could,” he said. “With my dad passing, the message I got from his life was don’t die wondering.” The premiere of the film was held on April 1 at the Dendy Cinema in Newtown, Sydney. TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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BY BEC GRACIE

Growing up surrounded by family and neighbours playing live music and singing was second nature for PAULA STANDING.

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“Everything on it is personal, except for the one murder ballad and a song about a bitter break-up.” 22

hen Paula’s family moved from Cairns to the Atherton Tablelands just before she was born, music became an integral part of her life. Her mum who played piano and sang was her earliest and life-long inspiration. “The people in the community where we moved to had these parties that involved a lot of the town and usually went to the early hours of the morning,” she said. “It was second nature for people to be playing music and singing, so I thought everyone did it, but once I grew up, I realised it was quite a special thing.” Paula left home and studied music formally and performed on stage and sang in choirs, but it was not until the early 2000s that she got the urge to write her own songs. “At the time, I was doing a lot of driving around the city, so I spent a lot of time in traffic singing along to songs,” she said. “I got tired of singing along to other people’s songs and I started coming up with lyrics and melodies to beat boredom - that’s where it all started. I always thought that even though I sang and knew music, I was completely convinced that I didn’t know how to write a song and thought that only special people did it.” The now South Australian artist taught herself the guitar so she could write melodies and remember her original lyrics easier and that led to performing gigs where crowds began asking for CDs. Paula began with an album of cover songs, then started recording her original offerings before the

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universe decided she should spend more time on her music career. “Work got in the way for a while but, a few years later, I was made redundant, and decided to concentrate on music, so I recorded more originals and I put out an album, but it didn’t go anywhere because I really didn’t know what I was doing.” A MusicSA music business course called Paula’s name and she enrolled. “That’s when I found out what a huge job it was and I started making more music and working with other musicians, got real guitar lessons and improved wherever I could and then went along to a few DAG Songwriters Retreats,” she said. At one of these retreats, Paula wrote a song with Jeremy Edwards and he invited her to perform it during a break at one of his gigs during the 2020 Tamworth Country Music Festival. “Lou Bradley was in the audience and heard me sing,” Paula said. “She had heard my EP that was out at the time and she suggested I needed a good producer. Lou sent Rod McCormack a copy of a song I had done and he was interested.” The rest is history, as Lou, Rod and Paula wrote together with Gina Jeffreys and Max Jackson and a group of Gina’s music students. “The music students came up with three brilliant songs and we’d come up with six, so I had nine songs at the end of the week. I was initially thinking of recording an EP but the songs were so good I wrote another song when I came home, then went back and recorded 10 songs for an album,” Paula said. The resulting album, The

More I Give, is an intensely intimate examination of the South Australian artist’s life. She revisits those raucous Saturday night parties of her childhood with I’d Go Back Again, pays tribute to her inspiration with Mother To Me, while My Heart Goes With You is dedicated to her children. “Everything on it is personal, except for the one murder ballad (Better Not To Know) and a song M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


beating THE BOREDOM about a bitter break-up (I’m Doing Fine),” she said. “In the middle of the night, the whole of I’m Doing Fine came to me as I was falling asleep – that has never happened to me before.” COVID-19 restrictions and lockdowns rearranged Paula’s release plans for singles and the album. She began by releasing Hiding Out In Tuscany. “Tuscany is a song about M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

grabbing your chances when they come and discovering yourself, so I thought it would be a good starting point. It got a really good response so I followed it up with My Heart Goes With You, then I’d Go Back Again just before Christmas. Now I’m going to release the album in June and I’m launching it in Adelaide,” she said. “I’m hoping to get a bit of attention in the UK, Europe and the US from this album. I

was privileged to top class musos on the album. Rod McCormack does most of the playing with highlights by amazing musicians including Jeff Taylor from Nashville stalwarts The Time Jumpers, Andy Leftwych from Kentucky Thunder and Pat Crawley from Mary Black’s band. I really would like it to be one of those albums that make people want to listen to a whole album again rather than just a favourite song.” “It was an amazing experience working with Rod and all those wonderful songwriters; it was such a gift,” she said. “Making this album was one of the most magical experiences of my life.” TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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aCOME dream TRUE

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BY ANNA ROSE

When JOHN O’DEA drove out of Tamworth in January 2020, he was grinning from ear to ear, having enjoyed his most successful festival in years.

T

he Orroroo (SA) based singersongwriter was taking home some excess baggage, but it was no

load to carry. During the busy festival week, Johno had picked up three awards – Bush Ballad of the Year at the People’s Choice Awards for his song, The Drover’s Friend. Then, at the Tamworth Songwriters’ Association Salute Awards, he claimed another two trophies – Country Ballad of the Year and Country Song of the Year for a song he’d co-written with Stuie French, Like My Old Man. Both come from Johno’s most recent album, A Dream and a Song, created in Stuie French’s Swingin’ Door Studio in Sydney, one of the final records Stuie made before relocating to the USA with his family. One of the things Johno most enjoyed about creating that album with Stuie was the title track. “Stuie wrote the song not long after Slim died and played it to me after we’d put down quite a few of the tracks already,” he said. “I just loved it and felt it tied the whole album together. What made it all the more special was Stuie shared lead vocals on that track with me, which is something he rarely does.” Having recorded four studio albums with Stuie over the past decade, Johno ticked off one major item from his bucket list that week in Tamworth. In an intimate, acoustic concert at the North Tamworth Bowling Club, Johno played his original songs out front of his “dream band” – Stuie on lead guitar, Garry Steel on accordion and keyboards, and Geoff Simpson on bass.

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Playing his album “live” with those who helped create it was a dream come true for the son of a son of a farmer from South Australia’s outback. Relationships mean everything in the recording studio – and his long association with Stuie has been a journey that’s brought them both a lot of satisfaction. “I was so happy with this album, as I felt it encapsulated the sound I’d been chasing,” he said. “Working with Stuie in a studio situation, he’s on top of everything. He knows who to call to get the sound just right. “And Garry Steel is such an important part of that; I can’t imagine doing anything without him on it – he’s just a master at what he does. “Playing those songs live with Geoff, Garry and Stuie was a definite career highlight for me. “Mind you, I was shitting myself for the first part of it. We got a fair way through before I could just simply enjoy the moment.” Even before Johno enters the studio, he’s thankful to have the friendship and guidance of esteemed songwriter Mike Carr with a song, a line or a verse here and there. “I’ve learnt so much from Mike. He’s always happy to help when it comes to getting a song just right,” Johno said. “For a fair while there I was in awe of him and thought I’d be a pest if I kept ringing him, but he was always happy to hear from me and pleased to help.” While 2020 presented its own set of challenges for a working musician, the enforced downtime proved a real bonus when Johno and wife Nardine moved into a new place.

They’re now streets ahead of where they’d originally planned to be in their renovation project, and the gardens are showing the results of all those months of care and attention. Johno plans to build a performance deck at his home where he and Nardine can host concerts for the travelling public and offer a venue for artists travelling through the region. One of Johno’s favourite gigs in recent years has been the Birdsville Races. A song he wrote about that joyful experience, Back in Birdsville, won a Gold Medallion Media Award in Tamworth in 2019. A welcome boost in the midst of 2020 was when Johno’s song, Where The Outback Starts was ideal to put forward to promote the 500 Miles of Music – a series of five concerts leading up to the Big Red Bash. The shows, from June 25-30, feature the cream of Australian country talent – Kasey Chambers, Travis Collins, Gina Jeffreys, Amber Lawrence, Rod McCormack, Bill Chambers, Adam Harvey, Felicity Urquhart, Kelly Brouhaha, Rosie Roberts, Kelly Menhennett, Matt James, Brad Butcher, Michaela Jenke, Andy Toombs, John O’Dea and Reg Dodd. “It’s a nice thing to be a part of. I’ve just got the one gig at Wilmington, and maybe a few satellite spots along the way,” Johno said. “The tour begins at The Barn at Wombat Flat in the Barossa Valley and winds up 500 miles later at William Creek. “It’s a great lead-up to the Big Red Bash at Birdsville and an excellent way of introducing high-end artists to South Australian fans.”

“For a fair while there I was in awe of him and thought I’d be a pest if I kept ringing him, but he was always happy to hear from me and pleased to help.”

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W After recording and releasing five albums of distinctly Australian flavoured songs, Mogendoura-based farmer and entertainer GRAHAM SCOBIE found something different to do while the country was coping with the Covid pandemic – putting pen to paper and writing poetry and then recording an album called Aussie Spoken Bloke. 26

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ny self-respecting Australian country music fan would know that poetry, and particularly bush poetry, is an important part of most festivals and a popular drawcard for many and a lot of songwriters, like Graham, will admit that many songs start out as poems. Graham’s songs, and now M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


BY JON WOLFE

PLAY ON WORDS poems have come from his vast life experiences – from working on his parent’s farm, to almost every industry you could name. “My father was a farmer all his life,” Graham said. “I wasn’t initially destined to remain on the land and at boarding school in Albury it was expected that I’d take up an intellectual profession and attended The Royal Military College, M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

Duntroon after high school – but that turned out to be a mistake. Being a free-roaming lad from the bush I didn’t take well to army life! But I’ve ended back where I started I guess, I’ve got a little farm just outside Moruya with my wife and I run a small entertainment agency.” Graham says he’s old enough to remember The Seekers and they were instrumental in his music

upbringing and his father was very strong on bush poetry and his mum was a singer. Graham doesn’t describe himself as a bush balladeer. “I’m not country rock, I’m not Americana, and technically not a bush balladeer, although the poems that I write would easily fall into that category,” Graham said. “I’m very comfortable with the word ‘bush’ in relation to my music, in fact, the first band I was in was a bush band. I’m a bush singer, I suppose, but without category!” Graham says his inspiration comes from the bush, the people around him and when you speak to him he slips in the odd historical reference, so that comes into his songs as well. He is a member of his local Rural Fire Service and in the most recent bushfire event his tractor shed was destroyed by a bushfire that he says luckily petered out before reaching his house. Graham also works in a band called the Country Pumpkins - “I don’t know where that came from,” he says” – and as a duo with his wife Michelle but like many performers, Covid meant no gigs for a while. “I really didn’t notice any isolation as such because here on the farm it’s pretty isolated anyway, but there were no gigs,” he said. “My mind kind of turned to ‘What can I do?’ and I’d written a lot of poems and at the time I was thinking they’d probably be songs, and some of them will be songs I suppose, with a new album to be recorded in May. “Anyway, during the fire season I used to de-brief myself by writing poems, maybe about what had happened on the fire line, Backburn 3am on the new album for example. I’d worked on the night shift to do a huge backburn. “When Covid struck I thought ‘I’d better do something with these, can’t play them live’, so I thought I’d record them as poems. I pulled out a few songs from previous albums and recycled them as poems, but a lot of the album is new material.” The opening poem on the new album, The Church Of Australia Is The Bush first saw the light of day on Graham’s first album, 100 Years Australia, and was a finalist for a TSA Songwriter Award in 2001 and it works extremely well as a poem. One of the poems, The Fire At Yankee’s Gap, was a semifinalist in the Lyrics Only section of this year’s TSA Awards. “That will hopefully become a song,” Graham said. “I’ve actually been trying to write a tune for it since 2018, but I’ve never been able to nail it. That was probably what prompted me to put out the poetry album, because I liked it as a poem, but because I couldn’t convert it to a song – I’m a wordsmith not tunesmith – I decided I’d just put it out as a poem.” “In August, Michelle and I are doing a duo tour of Queensland,” Graham said. “It’s a 30-date tour that goes up to Cairns and cuts across to Blackall, because my brother runs the saddlery at Blackall and we’ll perform at the saddlery, and then we’ll perform at the Gympie Muster.” If you don’t catch them in Queensland, there’s a good chance you will see them at the 50th Tamworth Country Music Festival. TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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NEW SINGLE

Running Away Tonight

OUT NOW

PROUDLY SUPPORTED BY

PHOTO OTO BY ANDREW PEARSON PHOTOGRAPHY

MAY 1 Charters Towers CMF Qld 6 The Met Hotel, Toowoomba Qld 7 Fitzys Loganholme, Logan Qld 8 The Royal, Nundah Qld 9 Malt Shovel Taphouse Sunshine Coast Qld 14 Bucca Hotel Qld 16 The Goat Cafe & Bar, Rockhampton Qld 20 Reef Gateway Hotel, Cannonvale Qld 21 Seabreeze Hotel, Mackay Qld 22 Black Nugget Hotel, Moranbah Qld 23 Emerald Star Hotel Qld 29 Elite Rodeo, Townsville Qld AUGUST 26-29 Gympie Muster Qld OCTOBER 2 Deni Ute Muster NSW 3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld NOVEMBER 12-14 Groundwater CMF Qld

ORGANISED BY

CONTACT: Star Maker | Cheryl Brown | M: 0407 106 966 | E: info@starmaker.com.au MEDIA: HSF Artist Services | Tom Inglis | M: 0432 078 084 | E: tom@hsfartistservices.com 28

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Hats Off to Country

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ith venues just starting to tip their toes back into booking artists, interested Hats Off music lovers may find a lighter program than in previous years, however, there’ll be a little something for everyone each day at various venues from Thursday July 1 to Sunday July 4 2021. Cheryl Brown, country music coordinator at Tamworth Regional Council said the festival has grown into an event for lovers of singersongwriters. “The Hats Off To Country Festival has entertained visitors and Tamworth locals for more than 20 years and it is a nice time to get together to enjoy live music in the cooler weather. “It’s also a great opportunity to

Tamworth’s mid-year festival now in its 22nd year will see a scaled down version of this cosy event when it returns in July. support our local entertainment venues that have struggled to keep doors open over the past 12 months due to such extraordinary circumstances. “They really come together each year to make the Tamworth Country Music Festival in January and the Hats Off To Country festival in July, successful.” Whilst the full program was not available at the time of printing, participating venues include Moonshiners Honky Tonky Bar, Austin Tourist Park, the Longyard Hotel, The Pub, Southgate Inn, The DAG, the Courthouse Hotel, the Tudor, Post Office Hotel, Tamworth City Bowling Club and the

Tamworth Services Club and the Royal Hotel in Quirindi. Mainstay of all country festivals is the bush ballad community and the Australian Bush Ballad Association will present its annual fundraiser which this year is for the Brian Young Bronze Bust from 1pm on Saturday, July 3 at Southgate Inn. The Tamworth Songwriters Association will be out in full force with showcases at both the Post Office Hotel and the Tamworth City Bowling Club. The DAG Sheep Station’s John and Belinda Krsulja will host their 11th Songwriters’ Retreat with a showcase for music lovers on Sunday, July 4 from 4pm to 8pm and feature Luke O’Shea, Felicity Urquhart, Kevin Bennett, Shane Nicholson, and Jeremy Edwards and others. Unfortunately, the Cowboy Crawl won’t operate this year however look out for it in 2022. Follow the Facebook page HatsOffToCountry for updates and to view the full program, purchase tickets and find out more information visit hatsofftocountry.com

SEE YOU BACK IN TAMWORTH THIS JULY!

Thursday 1 - Sunday 4 JULY 2021 Proudly supported by

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TOWARDS 2022

THE 50TH TAMWORTH COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL

THE STORY OF COUNTRY MUSIC CAPITAL: PART THREE

BY MAX BY MAX ELLIS ELLIS

The Golden Guitars are launched By the early 1970s, after years of increasing country music activity in Tamworth, we had reached a turning point.

In 2011 when we were preparing for the 40th Tamworth Country Music Festival, Capital News invited Max Ellis to write the story about Tamworth and country music. It is based on his own experience and involvement since the mid ’60s and research he undertook over many years. As we countdown to the 50th festival we bring you the story again as a reminder of just why Tamworth is the Country Music Capital. 30

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hat day, in late 1969, when Radio 2TM declared Tamworth the Country Music Capital, had changed the game forever. A conscious decision and commitment had been made which would shape the development of our city and country music in Australia for lifetimes to come. Decades into the future, “we made it happen” became a statement of fact and great pride by those of us who took part in creating and developing this exciting enterprise. But before this in the ’60s, the rock’n’roll invasion had exiled our music to the backblocks where a handful of touring and local artists had kept it alive. As country fought to survive, a fragmented collection of activities, both amateur and commercial, had developed, reflecting a real demand for country music. In the late ’60s in Tamworth, the CCMA (Capital Country Music Association) Jamboree and the 2TM concerts had shown that fans would travel long distances to see their favourite stars, while Hadley’s success with Redback On The Toilet Seat and 2TM radio programs like Hoedown had shown there was a wide audience for the genre. Suddenly there was a challenge and commitment to drag this jigsaw together into a major event with a commercial basis that would justify Tamworth’s claim to being Country Music Capital. It would involve not

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just the radio station, but every one of the local supporters, artists, musicians, businesspeople and groups that had helped build the country music foundations, working together over the years ahead under the leadership of 2TM. Hoedown was the catalyst, which drove 2TM’s promotion. Firstly, fans loved it, because John Minson was playing the sort of music they wanted to hear. By the early ’70s, they were tuning in, in ever-increasing numbers, from all over eastern Australia. It was already established and respected by the record industry, which saw it as an effective means of promoting their product to large numbers of otherwise unreachable customers. The artists saw Hoedown as a vehicle to recognise their achievements and promote their aspirations. Finally, for 2TM, it had commercial potential and almost by chance, it had a very special group of people to take the concept further. It is sometimes overlooked that the key people who created the Golden Guitar Awards and developed the festival were mostly paid employees of 2TM, working to create a commercial enterprise. We all had other jobs in the station (e.g. I was the station manager, John was a copywriter), but country music became a labour of love for most of us. Combining this team of talented, versatile and above all motivated workaholics, with the backing

of a commercial radio and TV network, put a potent force behind a fragmented country music industry, still recovering from the prolonged assault by rock’n’roll. It was incidentally, much the same 2TM team that in August 1973, staged the first Ag-Quip field days at Gunnedah, establishing another highly successful, iconic event for the radio station and the region. It was with this background in March 1972 that 2TM, after prodding from John Minson, decided that the idea of a Country Music Awards scheme might work. Support from the music industry was vital so that year John and I (by that time 2TM station manager) visited Sydney where most of the national record companies were based, to sound out their feelings about an awards scheme. We talked to all the companies, including EMI, RCA and Festival as well as music publishers like Joe Halford and John Bromell. Most people we saw were already aware of what was happening in Tamworth and, without exception, they approved our proposals. There were some reservations about holding the Awards in Tamworth, not Sydney. One enthusiastic supporter was the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA), an organisation which collects and distributes royalties for composers. Their CEO John Sturman and company secretary Glenda Callaghan, were M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


Nick Erby

right behind us from the start. They sponsored the Song of the Year award and over the years organised seminars and workshops during the festival. APRA remains a major festival supporter to this day. Encouraged, we started planning. The first thing we needed was a name. Because we had decided that the New Zealand market was an integral part of our country music market, we called it the Australasian Country Music Awards. This involvement with New Zealand continued with NZ judges and a string of NZ winners like Suzanne Prentice and Patsy Riggir until the Country Music Association of Australia (CMAA) took over from 2TM in the early ’90s. To the regret of some, the NZ connection was severed but in 2015 the link was re-established and these days New Zealanders can again enter the awards. The next thing was a trophy, a symbol or brand that would give the event a powerful identity. We had seen a presentation where the modern plastic trophy had disintegrated as it was handed over. That was not for us. We wanted something sturdy and solid that symbolised country music in an easily recognisable way. We came up with the idea of a cast bronze guitar on a solid timber base. John decided that the semicutaway, hollow-bodied, acousticelectric shape typified our music M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

Shirley Thoms

and we asked local artist Harry Frost to prepare a design. When it was completed, John, with his customary skill, prepared a pattern while Austral Brass Foundry in Sydney agreed to do the casting. For bases, John talked to Hoedown fans in northern Tasmania and through Beau Chatwin, they donated regular shipments of beautifully grained, dense Tasmanian blackwood, that have continued to be used to this day. The final decision, which has played a huge role in creating the legend, was the name. Fifty years later it seems obvious to call the trophies “Golden Guitars” but then it was a conscious decision we made. Today it is a household name around Australia. The Golden Guitars stand 24cm high (with base) and weigh 1.5kg. The rough casts were polished and prepared by John in his workshop at home in Calala and mounted on the highly polished base. Since the early ’90s this has been done by dedicated craftsman, Noel Smith. The plaques were inscribed by Tamworth jeweller Sandy McKinnon. One surprise was how rough the castings were when they came back from the foundry. How many hours John, and later Noel, have spent polishing castings is incalculable, but their labours have always been appreciated by the artists who won them. The Golden Guitar Awards, as

they have become known over the decades, became the foundation of the festival, which was shaped around this core event. The famous brand was quickly established and a national survey a few years ago, showed that some 68 per cent of all adult Australians recognised the name. Once we had settled on the name and the trophy, we had to determine when we would hold the Awards. There were many considerations. 2TM was a busy radio station and we needed a time when we could focus our resources on the event without affecting our normal business. During Tamworth’s sweltering month of January, anyone who had the means would head for the coast, so business was quiet. That meant that we could call on people who would otherwise be too busy to help. It also fitted in with the fact that the CCMA Talent Quest and Jamboree, held over the long weekend, was already attracting a country crowd. The Australia Day long weekend was important too because we wanted to promote our event as a celebration of Australian music. In those days the holiday was not on January 26, but was fixed on the first Monday on or after January 26. This seems a much more practical arrangement than a floating holiday, which it became in 1988. With the Awards on the Sunday night, visitors, especially music industry executives, could get back to work on Tuesday when school holidays also ended. The Awards ran in the last weekend of the last full week of January until 2005, when changes were made which I believe still depress attendance at the event. Another significant factor was my belief that January was an ideal time for publicity. As a journalist, I knew how slow news could be during the holiday period and was convinced we could generate lots of national media exposure with a light-hearted country music theme; and so it proved. The biggest venue in the city in those days was the Tamworth Town Hall with a capacity of about 1150, so it was booked for the big night, Sunday, January 28, 1973. (The Awards were originally held on the Sunday night, but this changed to Saturday in 1988). We sat down and wrote the rules for the Awards. That document is still the basis of the event although it has TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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Hamilton County Bluegrass Band

And we can’t forget the fans – they made the whole thing work. They were all loyal country music followers who came to Tamworth to hear the music and to catch up with their favourite artists.

Smoky Dawson & Col Hardy 1973

been modified countless times as anomalies have cropped up and categories have been altered to meet changing requirements and attitudes. Our first judging panel of 11 included prominent broadcasters, writers and reviewers. They were: Ray Brown, Sydney; Charlie Bellert, QLD; Eddie Birt, Brisbane; Barbara Dowling, Melbourne; Hedley Charles, TAS; Nick Erby 2UE; Garth Gibson, NZ; Don Maguire, 2PK; Peter Leslie, 3KZ; 2TM’s John Minson and Eric Watson, Sydney. To our surprise, nominations poured in with many notables’ names including Slim Dusty, Joy McKean, Ted Egan, John Laws, Jimmy Little, Buddy Williams, Tex Morton, the Webb Brothers, the Singing Kettles, Lindsay Butler, Col Hardy, Johnny Ashcroft and many

others; an astonishing total of 94 in all. Dr Kevin Walsh from the University of New England audited the results, a job later taken over by UNE’s Barrie Brennan. 2TM threw all it had into promoting the first Awards. We managed to snare a national company, Insulwool, to sponsor the live broadcast on 2TM and 2MO for a handsome fee of $45! As the big night approached the little group at 2TM began to appreciate what a large job we had taken on. In those early years, assistant manager, Del Foote handled all guest accommodation, truly a nightmare at times. We booked many rooms at the old Travelodge and the juggling of accommodation and Awards tickets would have driven a lesser person mad. In the early years we had a huge

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attendance of industry executives and major artists and they all made their arrangements through Del, who was always unflappable, despite immense provocation at times. In fact, for a number of years we even ran a shuttle service to the airport and often had to rouse a hungover record executive to catch the 7am East-West Airlines flight on Monday. After the first Awards, it was my task to get Smoky Dawson to the airport for a 7am flight, only to find it had been delayed. Smoky settled down to talk to another waiting passenger, Nick Erby. Every time I returned with another batch of departures through the day, they were still waiting for their flight to be reinstated and Smoky was still talking to Nick. By the time their plane departed about 4pm, poor Nick’s ears were ringing and Smoky

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Joy McKean receives the first Golden Guitar in 1973 from George Dasey

hadn’t drawn a breath. He was still talking non-stop! The script for the first Awards was a joint effort between me and Bob Lipman. Because none of us had much experience, we enlisted budding producer Bill Gleeson to bring some professionalism to the presentation. The advertising manager at Myer, Ian Fenton, had created outstanding stages for previous shows so he produced a simple but striking set with an Australian and New Zealand flag. Pretty simple by today’s standards, but it was cheap and colourful. On stage was a rostrum for the compere, mikes for the guests and strangely, by today’s standards, a couple of easy chairs for presenters to lounge in between Awards! Bob Clark was our musical director and Brian Kelly the stage manager. And we can’t forget the fans – they made the whole thing work. They were all loyal country music followers who came to Tamworth to hear the music and to catch up with their favourite artists. Most had heard about the Awards on Hoedown and often they knew and were known and respected by the stars they followed. Without today’s stringent security, they frequently had opportunities for a chat with the artists in the friendly, relaxed environment. In fact, in 1973, Tamworth was more like a convention of friends than a festival, and that feeling of camaraderie M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

quickly became a hallmark of the event, particularly as we welcomed the core of regulars, year after year. Promotion for the Awards centred on Hoedown, but we had another secret weapon on our side. Slim Dusty and Joy McKean had been well aware of what was happening in Tamworth, and when the Awards were announced, they threw their considerable weight into the campaign. Slim was even then an Australian legend and top-selling recording artist. As they toured Australia, they spruiked Country Music Capital on every stage, bringing awareness – and even more importantly – credibility to our campaign. Without a doubt, Slim and Joy’s support was a vital contribution to launching the Awards and Festival. Forty years ago, there was no air-conditioning in the town hall, so it was sweltering. Despite that, we were convinced we had to show the media and the music industry that this was not a “hick” event, so all our stage presenters were dressed, incredibly, in dinner suits! The Golden Guitars were displayed on stage and before being handed to the guest presenters. John introduced the show while Kevin Knapp, the compere, interviewed the winners for the radio broadcast. Bob Lipman handled the applause board, George Arklay announced winners and a very young Deniese Morrison, later to become a multi-Golden

Aunty Joyce Fletcher, Max Ellis, Buddy Williams, Harry Frost

Guitar winner herself, had the job of collecting the winners and escorting them to and from the stage. I crouched by the central steps with a copy of the script and prayed it would all work! The Tamworth Town Hall was not full for those first Awards. In fact, legend has it that I ducked out to see if I could find a few additional customers to fill the empty seats at the back. But we had a big contingent of music industry executives, many top artists of the day and of course plenty of enthusiastic and loyal fans who cheered and whistled whenever their particular idol got a mention. Unlike the fans, who would battle through any disaster to get to Tamworth, our special lighting man Ellis D Fogg failed to turn up, a victim of the Brisbane floods. Luckily it was only afterwards that I realised what LSD Fogg actually meant! There were five categories that first night and Joy McKean collected the very first Golden Guitar for her song, Lights On The Hill. Slim collected Best Album for Me and My Guitar and Best Single for Lights On The Hill. Another highlight was Tamworth’s own Slim Newton winning Top Selling Record for Hadley Records with Redback On The Toilet Seat. As well as special Awards guests Shirley Thoms and Smoky Dawson, we welcomed composer George Dasey representing APRA (he wrote the hit, They’re a Weird Mob). When the Hamilton County Bluegrass Band won Best Instrumental with Ring-a-Ding, we displayed our technical prowess. No such thing as satellite links or mobiles in those days and international calls were expensive. No chance of anyone like Kasey Chambers phoning a friend on her mobile, while standing on stage as she did in 2011! Hamilton County Bluegrass Band was in New Zealand, so we phoned them before the show and recorded an interview. Then on the night Kevin pretended to phone them on stage, chatting and asking questions while a technician carefully played the prerecorded answers back to the hall. It worked a treat! Slim received three Golden Guitars that night, setting a precedent, while popular Col Hardy was voted Hoedown Radio Listener winner … the only time we had that award. Another “first and only” was the cheque presented to winners. It wasn’t much, something like $100, but it quickly TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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Suzanne Prentice with the Webb Brothers

A concept sketch of the Golden Guitar by Harry Frost

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became apparent that a Golden Guitar was far more important than mere money. It was quite a night’s entertainment. Bob Clark’s Oxley Ramblers opened at 8pm with guest John Minson on harmonica. As Campbell Howard noted in his Northern Daily Leader review, his “dazzling pyrotechnics make him the Larry Adler of C&W”. The Awards’ live broadcast started at 8.30 and ran for about an hour. They were followed by Teenage Country Style, the cream of Tamworth’s up-and-coming youngsters featuring vocalists, musical director Gary Brown, Deniese Morrison, Bobby Howson, Vicki Harbison, David Gilchrist

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and the Dening Sisters (Trish and Chris), with musicians Billy Gilchrist, Robbie Gilchrist, Lawrie Minson and Bruce Field. In contrast The Golden Age of Country featured veterans Shirley Thoms and Smoky Dawson. Buster Noble then gave everyone a laugh and the evening wrapped up with some of the winners singing their songs, totally unrehearsed and spontaneous, something that would never happen today. Our official photographer that memorable night was another example of our low-cost approach. The years have erased his name, I’m afraid, but he was an off-duty policeman who either did it for nothing or a very low fee. After

the Awards, he left Tamworth and for years we thought that his great black and white pictures of the presentations had disappeared with the man to some remote outback police station. However, in 1986 when Max Ellis Marketing was staging the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) Awards and its 60th anniversary celebrations in Sydney, I discovered a full set of prints in APRA’s North Sydney archives. The Awards were a huge success. That night as we sipped our tea in the Passchendaele Room of the town hall, basking in the congratulations of the fans, artists and industry people, we sensed we had a winner on our hands. But we weren’t quite home yet. Eric Dunn, influential A&R manager at EMI, had been a key figure in gaining industry approval for the Awards. Without EMI and their major artist, Slim Dusty, it would have been difficult to give the Awards the credibility they needed to get off the ground. As we approached Eric and asked him what he thought of our efforts he growled … “You’ve done it this time, alright … but can you do it again next year?” It’s a question that has haunted us every year since.

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new COUNTRY SINGLES Get your fix of some of the latest new single releases right here. What’s your pick?

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hear & THERE

GONE COUNTRY

INXS co-founder, Andrew Farriss recently launched his first solo and self-titled country album to an invited audience at The Press in Tamworth and followed up with another full house launch in Sydney the week later. The album has been critically acclaimed around the world with one reviewer in England declaring it a masterpiece.

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hear & THERE Evie E Bushfire BRINGS HOPE AND THE

After the Black Summer fires that devastated Australia in 2019/20, BECKY WESTBROOK wrote a moving and sensitive children’s story following the loss and pain of her community experienced on Kangaroo Island.

vie and the Bushfire, was written for children aged between three and eight about a spirit girl who embodies hope. When her home is devastated by bushfire, she emerges from the shelter of her cave to discover her community has lost all hope. But Evie refuses to believe that hope can be destroyed alongside homes and livelihoods. “The fire may have taken many things, but the fire can never take everything,” Evie says. The author said; “I wanted children who have experienced disaster to know they are not alone; that hope remains.” The book has been illustrated by award-winning Queensland artist Jet James and it will soon

support and assist parents and their children through the long process of bushfire recovery. The book is available through Stormbird Press with part proceeds from the sale supporting the Kangaroo Island Wildlife Network.

WHAT A GIRL WANTS All Jayne Denham wanted in her latest music video was a plane, a mansion, a sports car and a limousine. She got them all. The video, for the new single Better Settle Up, from the upcoming new album release Wanted, was shot in Camden NSW and produced by Jay Seeney, who also made a cameo appearance. Jayne’s husband Dave Blunderfield, her makeup artist Rachel Montgomery, actor Ashley Hawkes, plus band members and good friends were involved in the shoot. “It’s tough, it rocks and it has total girl power,” Jayne said. “I’ know it is going to be a sure-fire winner live.”

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hear & THERE PHOTO: DANNY DALTON PHOTOGRAPHY

First Nations’ Sony Music artist MITCH FIRTH (also known as MITCH TAMBO) married his long-term partner, and backing singer LELE on April 8, after proposing to her while jumping out of a plane.

COWBOY INSPIRED

wedding

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he ceremony and reception were held at Mitch’s grandparent’s beautiful property in Tamworth and Mitch’s devoted mother Rosslyn and stepfather Graham Parker helped make the perfect day. The cowboy-inspired wedding incorporated cultural traditions as part of the wedding from the couple’s respective cultures – Aboriginal and West Papua – including a smoking ceremony and welcome to country, and Lele’s cousin gave her away wearing traditional West Papuan headdress. Mitch’s best man was his childhood best friend Steve and his groomsmen were Dan, Mitch and Wayne. Lele’s maid of honour was Kate, and her bridesmaids were her daughters Sofiana, 15, and Ofa, 12, and friend Dea and the flower girls were her youngest daughter Kalani, 5, and friend’s daughter Penelope. The couple and their family will continue to live in Melbourne. The Gamilaraay singer came second in season 9 of Australia’s Got Talent in 2019. He will release his new single Dreamtime Princess on May 7.

D you want access to the most comprehensive and Do ccost-efficient method of distributing your single?

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Recognised Re by radio stations across Australia and internationally as a leading source of new country co music releases. Contact Tracy & The Big D | E: crs@crspublicity.com | M: 0450 332 105 | W: crspublicity.com Co

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where

BY ANNA ROSE

ARE THEY NOW? GARRY ADAMS

MUSIC A SURE BET GARRY ADAMS was born in Paddington

Women’s Hospital, Sydney and grew up in Randwick, within a stone’s throw of the famous racecourse.

H

e began playing trumpet and cornet in a school brass band and used to tinker on his grandmother’s piano. In the early ’60s, with the advent of The Beatles and the Liverpool sound, he was inspired to pick up the guitar while attending Sydney Boys’ High. Upon leaving school he continued playing in rock bands and said there were two main bands in the Coogee area – his band, House of Bricks – and a rival band, Bright Lights, with Daryl Braithwaite out front. With Garry in House of Bricks were Doug Bligh (Goldrush/The Flood) and Bruce Worrall (Sherbet).  He and the boys went along to one of their gigs and poached Daryl from Bright Lights. Garry’s next band was Galadriel with Doug on drums, Mick Parker (Tallowood) on bass and flute, Jan (Spider) Scholtens on vocals and co-songwriter with Garry, and Gary Lothian (Cyril B Bunter and King Bees) on lead guitar. They recorded their only album at Sydney recording studio, United Sound, where Garry was working and where he met the Sheedy brothers from Currabubula – Peter and Mark, and realised they played country rock in the bush. 44

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He and Clelia Calvo met in 1970 and married in 1972, moving to Tamworth in 1974, which was close to Garry’s parents, who lived at Werris Creek. Once there they met John Minson who shared his love for country gospel with the young couple from Sydney. He later met Geoff and Gary Brown and Frank Jones and renewed his friendship with the Sheedy brothers. This was about the time Redback On The Toilet Seat became a hit for Slim Newton, and, as Garry had trained as an engineer in a recording studio, he felt there could be some studio work around Tamworth. Doors began to open for Garry, and he became involved in the local recording scene, then with the Mr Juicy concerts, which later became the Coca-Cola concerts in the park, hosted by Bob Lipman. This led to further work with the Star Maker band (which he also judged), the Country Music Awards band, and the Buttercup Last Roundup. Garry and Clelia sang harmonies in wine bars, and Garry also played in the local West Leagues Combo with Howard Smith. “It was the Friday night mating ritual in Tamworth – you could nearly do that sheepdog trick – walking over people’s heads from the front of the room to the back, without touching the floor; the place was always jam-packed,” Garry said. “They would bring in acts from Sydney – comedians, famous singers – and we’d back them. It was great experience for the band, which included over the years Howard Smith, Robbie Scott, Michael Dagg, Lou Farina, Bill O’Neill, Mason Andrews and Gary Flood.”   Garry’s musical tastes continued to evolve, and he grew to love that mixture of bluegrass, country and the increasingly popular West Coast/ Gram Parsons sound. In 1977 he formed groundbreaking country rock band,

The New England Rangers. Garry recruited Lawrie Minson and a young neighbour, Paul Jenkins, who loved Stephane Grappelli and played violin. He asked Paul if he’d like to play country fiddle, which was something the Tasmanian-born violinist hadn’t really explored up until that point. “Lawrie was still at school when we met him. He was starting to learn the banjo, pedal steel, lap steel, slide guitar and he became our multiinstrumentalist, bringing that Flying Burrito Brothers/Jackson Browne sound to the band. “Tom Galbraith was our bass player, and our first drummer was Glen Walters. Ken Ramsay and Dave Byrnes worked with the band later on.” The band played regularly at the Kootingal Hotel, the Locomotive Hotel and Inverell RSM. “Ollie Agostino was a friend and regular special guest at Rangers’ gigs. We also played at Southgate Inn, and the Town Talk, now the Tamworth Hotel, which was the breeding ground for the Rangers’ culture.” When Lawrie and Paul decided to go touring with Brian Young, the band folded, and Garry returned to Howard Smith’s band, which was now working out of Tamworth Services Club, as Cocoa. He and Clel recorded the album, Angel Band at Russ Hammond’s studio in Coffs Harbour, and went on to receive many accolades for this disc. Garry and Clel both worked on the Tamworth TV show hosted by Terry Gordon, Must Be Country.  Due to his musical contribution to so many of Tamworth’s foundation events, Garry was inducted into the Hands of Fame in 1997. In 1999, Garry married Carol, who later became an ordained Anglican minister. They left Tamworth in 2004, moving to Nambucca Heads, and later Melbourne. They’re now living in Dapto, NSW and he’s still playing music. M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


BEHIND THE

music

BY BEC GRACIE

T

racy and the Big D’s love story may have begun before they were even alive, as Tracy said their parents met before she was born. Tracy began her music career when she first climbed onto the stage at three years old, with her cabaret-singing mother. “She then got more into the country music scene and I started playing guitar and doing country music as well as a bit of musical theatre,” she said. Darryn, however was in his mid-teens when he got involved in country music, performing at festivals and talent quests before radio called his name. They lost touch in their early teens, but met up again and the rest is history, marrying at 18 and celebrating their 36th anniversary this year. “Darryn had a passion for radio, but I never wanted to get into radio, so he went and did a Diploma in Broadcasting, but work took me away in a different direction,” Tracy said. “We then ran into the president of a radio station in Caboolture and he offered us the opportunity to get involved in it through country music clubs, so we thought we’d give it a crack – being involved in radio is very addictive. “Now we love being able to share stories and there was a whole bunch of people in that community who wanted to hear independent Australian music and wanted to hear what was going on in their backyard at the grassroots level too.” “I want to be able to give back to artists and support those who are trying to give it a crack and make sure their music is being heard and is being played,” Tracy said. Darryn particularly loves the

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DARRYN & TRACY ROBINSON

storytelling side of radio. “I love the opportunity for people to share their stories, whether it’s through song or interviews; we’ve had a passion for doing interviews over the last 10 years,” he said. “It’s more than just the music and the song: it’s the background story of finding out about it all. One of the reasons we’ve been so successful, I believe, is because it’s like eavesdropping on a conversation; when they (the interviewees) become really relaxed, that’s when the gold happens.” As a continuation of their support of independent artists, they purchased the music distribution service to radio, CRS Publicity, because they said they didn’t want to see the service die. “When we were first doing radio, we went downstairs and saw all these white CDs and they said, ‘that’s NFS’, (as it was called then), so we brought them all up and put them all into the system,” Tracy said. “When we heard that it was on the market, we didn’t want to see it die off because it had been such a big part of our life on radio, and we have a really good team working with us – the biggest thing is staying updated with changes at stations and presenters.” Darryn said CRS’s point of difference was that every email address that the music went out to was active. “These are getting out to live people because we update those records all the time as we believe these artists who record their songs and pay all the costs associated with releasing singles, deserve the best representation they can get,” he said. In April this year, Tracy and the Big D also started their own country music charts via feedback, ratings and weightings and they said they want it to be a fair chart and transparent. The dynamic duo is also focused on continuing to mentor

dynamic DUO

go way back, before they were even born, in fact, and, after giving radio ‘a crack’, have built successful music radio careers. DARRYN AND TRACY ROBINSON

young artists through talent quests and pushing independent artists through their work. Celebrating 14 years on radio, you can now catch Tracy and the Big D’s show on Fraser Coast FM 107.5 on Thursday nights.

“It’s more than just the music and the song: it’s the background story of finding out about it all.

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BY ANNA ROSE

sidemen THE

KELVIN N O L AN

A

charmed

LIFE

Being musically gifted is pretty much hereditary in the Nolan family. KELVIN NOLAN, born in Mount Morgan, Queensland, was the eldest of Marlene and Bill Nolan’s four children, with Karen, Jennifer and Debbie following.

B

ill, at 85, still picks a mean guitar and remains the biggest musical influence on Kel and his siblings. Karen plays classical guitar and can read music; Jennifer passed on her musical genes to her son, Logan Brewster, drummer for Adam Brand, and her daughter Kirsten plays Shadows instrumentals like 46

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a pro – check out the YouTube clips of Kirsten guesting with Phil Emmanuel; and Debbie – the baby of the family – “just put her fingers wherever dad showed her and she picked it up better than me.” “I was pretty hopeless as a kid with guitar, but music was always around, mainly Shadows and Peter Posa; there was always someone around playing guitar,” Kel said. “One of my earliest memories was the smell of valves burning in the amplifier in the loungeroom.” When the family moved to Tamworth, Kel became great mates with Steve Newton. They’d ride bikes around the caravan park or sit on the stairs at the town hall listening to Rick & Thel before either of them thought to pick up a guitar. At the age of 10, Bill took Kel to an outdoor concert at Tamworth Base Hospital where the Geoff Brown Showband was playing. Watching Gary Brown’s effortless licks, then Eric Newton got up and played with Glenn Green, and something really resonated inside the kid from Queensland. “Eric wasn’t that much older than me, so to see another kid play like that really spurred me on,” he said. Kel watched Lawrie Minson playing at a school fete with his band, Fig, and that same night his dad took him to the Tamworth Town Hall to see Buck Owens in concert. “I still get chills up my backbone thinking of that night, seeing Don Rich and all those people you aspire to. I was lucky because Tamworth was such a great breeding ground for talent back then, chock full of great musicians.” He played in Ironbark with Ed Matzenik; had a band with the legendary Little Sharkey (Mark Sheedy); the Goodtime Band; No City Limits; The Craz Brothers; Fandango (with Kate Ballantyne); the Stephen Bunz Band and, before joining Sons of the Soil, he, Errol Gray and Lloyd Jansen did a stint with the Kelly Express – Jan Kelly’s band.

“My first band, Shine, featured Pixie Jenkins, who wasn’t even playing fiddle back then – he played a 12-string guitar and sang Michael Jackson songs like Ben. “He’d pick me up in the Morris 1100, and we’d go to the drive-in, sitting up on the bonnet eating Chiko rolls – at least I think it was a Chiko roll …” Kel would go into Paling’s music store in Tamworth, grab a guitar off the wall, and start playing it, much to the annoyance of their salesman, Lindsay Butler. Even though he spent his childhood annoying Lindsay at the music shop, it was Butler who arranged for Kel to do his first session at Hadley Studios, playing guitar on an album for Claude Woodbridge. “Lindsay even teed up for me to audition for the Slim Dusty band when he couldn’t do a tour. Michael Vidale auditioned that same day as bass player; he had this long hair and a funky Steinberger bass with no head on it. “Joy told Michael to get a haircut and get another bass – it was too space age looking for Slim’s band. When he told her it was his only one, Joy loaned him her Fender bass.” In 1979, aged 18, Kel was preparing for his first tour with Brian Young; so too was Stan Coster. “Youngie told me I had to get together with Stan and learn his songs. It was his first tour as well, so I rang Stan and told him to come to my place so we could rehearse,” he said. He’s since toured with a heap of fabulous artists including Slim Dusty, John Williamson, Chad Morgan, Terry Gordon, Jett Williams, Charlie Landsborough and countless others. Meeting and doing support for Don Williams with Jane Saunders rates as one of Kel’s musical highlights. “I met him on the stairwell, and he had the most amazing blue eyes, like Coster’s; and when Adi Burgess did support for Don McLean, I played for her. She got a standing ovation. It was incredible. “Steve Newton always told me I led a charmed life – and I reckon he’s right.” M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


watch ONE TO

BY SUSAN JARVIS

ZOEY MILLS

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oey said “I’ve travelled all my life – from when I was a little girl, right up to the start of 2020 when I was all ready to ramp up my musical touring schedule..” “So – as it was for everyone – it was quite a shock when I was suddenly grounded, and unable to go anywhere for the rest of the year.” Zoey’s love of travel is captured in her debut single, Gypsy Girl, which was released in 2018. The song is the title track from her first EP, which showcases the now 22-year-old from Mackay as a gifted songwriter. “That song really captures who I am, and what made me that way. I spent my early years travelling around Australia in a caravan. It was an amazing experience, and I loved it,” she said. “That wanderlust never left me, and I’ve travelled ever since – I really am a gypsy girl. “I was looking forward to touring in 2020 with my music, but that wasn’t to be, so despite the fact that I missed performing a lot, I decided to make the most of the time at home, and focused on songwriting.” Zoey also channelled her creativity into her other career, as a florist – a job that both gave her a creative outlet and an income, as she says people started sending flowers more often when they couldn’t see each other in person. “I was really lucky to have that in my life, and it meshed really well with songwriting. So the year ended up being a lot more positive than I thought it would be,” she said. When she released the Gypsy Girl EP, Zoey was just 19. She’d graduated from both the Junior and Senior Academies of Country Music and had participated in the DAG Sheep Station Songwriting Retreat in 2017, writing with some of country music’s finest songwriters. Her EP was produced by the talented Catherine Britt, and features five stunning songs, including the exquisite Wildflower

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PLANTING SEEDS FOR A

blossoming CAREER

Unable to pursue her passion for travel during the Covid-19 pandemic, rising star ZOEY MILLS decided to focus on being creative. Bruises, the darkly introspective Only The Devil, Bittersweet and Easy Road, a remarkable piece of writing that shows her creative maturity. That first impressive EP was one reason why Zoey was selected as a grand finalist for the 2020 Toyota Star Maker competition. She describes it as a life-changing experience. “It was a huge confidence boost just to be in the final. Then there was the chance to perform on that stage, in front of a huge audience, and with an incredible backing band,” she said. “But the best part was getting to meet and perform with the other grand finalists, and the chance to talk to and connect with the leading professionals in the industry. “Tamworth 2020 was huge for me. A lot more people came to my shows, and far more people recognised me and knew what I did. “I’d certainly like to give Star Maker another go in the future, once I’ve recorded and released some more music.”

Now, following her COVID-19 songwriting blitz, Zoey is ready to record once more. She plans to record and release a brand new single later this year, followed by several more tracks into 2022. “My songwriting has evolved a lot over the past three years. I’ve grown up a lot, and quite a bit has happened to me personally, including my parents divorcing, heartbreak and now a very happy relationship,” she said. “What people say is actually true – it’s easier to write songs when you’re heartbroken than when you’re happy, but I’ve been focusing more on storytelling, inspired by the places I’ve been and the people I’ve met, which has taken my music in a new direction. “Now things are more open, I am very excited about recording and releasing new music, and I’m particularly thrilled that soon I’ll be able to take my little caravan out on the road again and play live – there’s nothing quite like it, and I’m itching to sing on a stage again.”

“I’d certainly like to give Star Maker another go in the future, once I’ve recorded and released some more music.”

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bush BALLADS

BY PETER COAD OAM www.bushballadeers.com.au

JOY AND

celebration We all know that there’s something special about being in the bush especially now that we can kick up our boots and enjoy all the festivals and events coming our way.

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t’s festival heaven from the month of May with Capella kicking off on the sixth and the Bouldy Bash from 10-16, followed by Yellowbelly on

CAPELLA COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL Held at Queensland’s Capella Covered Arena from May 6 to 9, this very popular event will headline Chad Morgan OAM, Keith Jamieson OAM, Terry Gordon OAM, Roger Knox, Gottani Sisters, Pixie Jenkins, Jean Stafford, along with The Muirs, Dennis Morgan, Chad Morgan Jnr, Caitlyn Jamieson, Jeff Brown, Sherry Rand, Wayne Rand, Alisha Smith, Shady Mike, Wesley Kingston, Dallas Southam, Evelyn Heke, Clint Birang, Kelvin Nolan and more. There are walkups and also ‘The Chad Morgan Rising Star Talent Quest’. The event will be compered by Gary Fogarty.

VOLUME 23 RELEASE IN JUNE The Australian Bush Balladeers Association will release Vol 23 of ‘The Balladeers’ compilation album in early June. The annual compilation album contains a selection of both established and upcoming traditional artists.

BOULDY BUSH BALLAD BASH The Bouldy Bush Ballad Bash will be held from May 10 to 16 at the Bouldercombe Recreation Hall in Queensland. The Bouldy Bash caters to the heart of the traditional music fan and is sure to be another top event with 2021 artists Jeff Brown, Dianne Lindsay & Peter Simpson, Keith Jamieson

June 28 to July 4 and Tamworth’s Hats Off To Country from July 1 to 4.

OAM, Alisha Smith & Caitlyn Jamieson, Sharon Heaslip, Ashley Cook, Buddy Thomson & Lynne Bennett, Kylie Adams-Collier, and Rob Walters. Bush poets are Ray Essery and Gary Fogarty.

NEW ALBUM FOR REG Reg Poole has released a new album titled The Final Muster 2021 featuring 13 Australian story songs. Reg is a multi-Golden Guitar winner and one of Australia’s most popular traditional artists so this new album is sure to be a winner with his many fans.

MATARANKA MUSIC Stop into the Mataranka Territory Manor complex in the Northern Territory during the period May 9 to June 16 to catch Peter Coad & The Coad Sisters, Runaway Dixie and the Jim Hermel Band presenting shows each week.

DEAN SCORES CHART MILESTONE Multi Golden guitar winner Dean Perrett’s current hit single and 2021 Golden Guitar winner Six Decks To Darwin has hit a new high taking out the longest charting song on the Australian Country Music Top 40 Charts at 37 weeks. Following the Hartwood Campfires and Country Music Festival, Dean headed to the Winton Way Out West Festival where along with the huge array of contemporary artists there was a strong traditional music section featuring Keith Jamieson, Alisha Smith, Caitlyn Jamieson and Jeff Brown, all who enjoyed top attendances for their appearances and appearing with the Travelling Country Band. 48

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Brian Young OAM

BRONZE BUST FUNDRAISER Bronze Bust fundraising kicks off again in July for the Brian Young Bronze Bust Association as part of the Hats Off To Country weekend. Presented by the Australian Bush Balladeers Association the concert will be held at the Southgate Inn, Tamworth at 1pm on Saturday July 3. Host Graeme Doubleday will introduce guest artists Lynette Guest, Graeme Doubleday, Lyn & Phil Manning, Greg Bain, Rodney Walker, Rob Breese, Patti Morgan, Lorraine Pfitzner OAM, Tom Manning and Henry Hollis. Tickets are $10 at the door and all the money raised goes to the Brian Young Bronze Bust fund.

YELLOWBELLY COUNTRY MUSIC The Yellowbelly Country Music Festival is all is set to be a great week of country music right on the banks of the Balonne River at the St George Showgrounds in Qld from June 28 to July 4. Artists include Chad Morgan, Reg Poole OAM, Terry Gordon OAM, Owen Blundell, Glenn Jones, Jeff Brown, Brian Letton, John & Christine Smith, Keith Jamieson OAM, Alisha Smith, Caitlyn Jamieson, Kylie Castle, together with bush poets Gary Fogarty and Ray Essery.

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down

BY LORRAINE PFITZNER OAM

MEMORY LANE

DON MORRISON

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hroughout his lengthy musical career, he has played to audiences of all ages who enjoy his cheeky humour, and his country-blues style of music. Music has taken him all around Australia and throughout the United States. Don first came to prominence in the early 1980s with the now legendary Bodgies band with his brothers Geoff and Brian and a swinging door of bass players that included Frank Long, Mark Cornwall and Nigel Sweeting. The band released only one album deemed a successful independent LP titled The Sensational Bodgies which was re-released as a CD and sold out! He’s done gigs from Melbourne to Margaret River, from Perth to Penrith and from Sydney to San Antonio. He’s been made an Honorary Citizen of Texas has released many albums and CDs of original songs and now as Don Morrison’s Raging Thirst. Dubbed the Larrikin Troubadour Laureate of Adelaide, he is playing, singing and writing songs better than ever. His songs tell a story with humour and reality. Released and sold out two CDs Prawnhead and Prawnhead 2 featuring Don’s two sons, Jake and Eddie, in the band Prawnhead, they’re spruiking as the world’s greatest Bluebilly band. He recently released his 40+40 double CD set. Forty songs from 40 years in music. Songs going back to previously released songs from his earliest records in the 1980s with The Bodgies, The Ghetto Blasters, The fortunate Sons, The Elmores, The Lonely Cosmonauts, Prawnhead, Raging Thirst and solo songs. Some tracks that made the cut are The Rat Plague Of 66, Five Men In A Car, Back Home In Adelaide, Hay Plains Blues and I Heard The Devil Call My Name. I love the way Don writes his songs as it makes you want to listen. Don is a gifted luthier who has been making resonator guitars,

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laureate LARRIKIN

DON MORRISON has worked music his way for more than

40 years writing his own songs recording his own music together with his band. mandolins and ukuleles for nearly 20 years under the business name Donmo. More than 500 of these hand-made metal bodied instruments are being played around the world and the two guitars that Don uses on stage are constructed from remnants of his family history. One guitar is made from material found in a pile of rubble that is all that is left of his father’s childhood home in the now abandoned semidesert town of  Perponda in the Murray Mallee. The other guitar is from the remnants of his mother’s now derelict miner’s cottage in outback Broken Hill. Although his “day job” is

constructing world class resophonic guitars, he’s always been a performer. He’s seen success, and he’s seen failure and through all of this, he’s been able to balance his profession with a keen sense of humour. In 2010 Don wrote and published his autobiography titled This Could Be Big – memoirs of his “30 years at the dag end of the Australian music industry”, in which he provides tales from his colourful career, looking at the highs and lows of embracing the life of the troubadour. In 2013 Don released a self-titled CD which was awarded the South Australian Roots and Blues Best Roots recording followed up with an award for Best Blues Artist at Fowlers Live. In 2014 he released Don Morrison’s Raging Thirst followed by Fly Away in 2016. Today Don lives and works in Adelaide, South Australia where you’ll find him performing and enjoying music in pubs, clubs, halls and at festivals and you might even find him busking on the streets of Adelaide. TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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writing

BY ALLAN CASWELL

GREAT SONGS

Death by CLICHÉ For me, originality has always been saying things that people say every day but finding a new way to say them.

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lot of what I say in this particular column will be about avoiding clichés in the lyrics but, at a time when songs are being written to drum loops and electric finger snaps, making your song stand out is getting increasingly important. Streaming has had, yet another, detrimental effect on song structure with its insistence on getting to the hook early and repeating it ad nauseum till sameness wins. When a song says, “you’ve heard all this before”, as a listener, you switch off. Even though you can’t copyright a title, using a title that already exists makes it extremely difficult for your song to sound new and fresh. To be fair, a lot of young writers don’t realise the title they are using has been used before, but the effect is the same. A song like Shane Nicholson’s Harvest On Vinyl jumps out of the radio at you because it is a great original title. That the song lives up to the title, makes it a great song. A good song lyric should be a conversation between you and the listener. Unless you are a very boring person, you don’t talk in clichés … why would you use them in a song lyric?

If you let the rhyme lead you into bending the language out of shape or using clichéd phrases to fit the rhyme you will make it sound ugly and badly formed (which it is). If you are stuck with a rhyme like this, always look at changing the word you’re rhyming with “earth” with “worth” might just work better than “world” with “girl”. Sometimes you can play with it, add an extra rhyme or drop in an interior rhyme to beef it up. Just don’t be obvious. The rule is … if it sounds good it probably is.

FASHION CLICHÉS When the ubiquitous and thankfully fading Bro Country thing was at its height it was almost a painting by numbers template where every song had beer, truck, cut-off jeans and tailgates with lashings of electric percussion, autotune, six-string banjo and overdriven guitar. You soon couldn’t tell one song from another and, a few years on, can anyone remember the songs that excited us? This all goes to show that a

phrase doesn’t need to be old to be clichéd … just repeated too often. There is also a danger that trying to use current and cool buzzwords can alienate people from outside your generation or outdate your songs very quickly.

THE OBVIOUS When I’m writing a song, I almost never plan it in advance. I find the best hook I can, build a few lines around it and keep singing it until it leads me to the next idea. I don’t want to know how the story ends until I get there. Singing as you write is the key to making it work in its own voice. Preplanning where the song will go, its order of verses, choruses and bridges leaves you open to writing little “me too” songs that don’t have voice of their own and scream cliché. You don’t have to be quirky, overly poetic or obscure … you just need to find a new way to say, “I love you”. If you are being obvious or clichéd, you might still write a good song … just not a great song.

RHYME Nothing says cliché like an insistence on rhyming at all costs. When you hear “change” and know it’s going to rhyme with “rearrange “or the horrendous “brain” with “insane” you know that even before you get to the rhyme it’s going to get ugly. Rhyme is a tool not an end in itself.

If you have questions regarding upcoming songwriting workshops or my “one on one” private songwriting coaching service (based on the Gold Coast), my books Writing Great Song Lyrics, My Version Of The Truth, Secrets Of Stronger Songwriting or if you would like to host a workshop contact me on 0419 218 988 or at allan@allancaswell.com

ALLAN CASWELL

SECRETS OF STRONGER

SONGWRITING Allan Caswell’s latest book Secrets of Stronger Songwriting is available now For information: allan@allancaswell.com

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APPLY NOW FOR

JUNIOR ACADEMY The CMAA Junior Academy, is calling for applications for this year’s course which will see up-and-coming artists from all over Australia gain an experience-of-a-lifetime. In 2020, the intensive course was cancelled amid the COVID-19 restrictions, but is making a welcome return this year. Artists aged under 18 years old will join country music mentors in Tamworth from June 26-July 3. Seven-time Golden Guitar winner Lyn Bowtell leads The Academy as director with fellow Golden Guitar winner and Bushwackers member Roger Corbett as general manager. Leading the groups are Jayne Denham, Golden Guitar winner Ashleigh Dallas, and Toyota Star Maker winner Mickey Pye with Golden Guitar winner Catherine Britt as the guest songwriter and Golden Guitar finalists Liam Kennedy-Clark and Gabi Blisset as musicians in residence. Students learn from guest songwriters and industry leaders who visit The Academy for songwriting and music business-related topics. Applications are now open at academycountrymusic.com.au/ apply  The Graduation concert will be held on Friday, July 4 in Moonshiners at the Family Hotel.

NEW ALBUM

2021 Golden Guitar Bush Ballad of the Year for

Six Decks To Darwin

WHO I MIGHT BE OUT JULY 2021

5 x Golden Guitar Award Winner

NEW ALBUM AVAILABLE NOW ($28 includes postage) PO Box 54 Kingaroy Qld 4610. Call T: 07 4163 5157 Available on all digital platforms www.deanperrett.com

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WIN

A Fender Stratocaster Replica Guitar in Metallic Candy Apple Red Full details on the Destiny Band Oz Facebook page

E: destinyband96@gmail.com W: destinybandoz.com.au TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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soundADVICE

SOUND ADVICE - album reviews are the reviewers’ own opinions and do not necessarily reflect the view of Capital News or the publisher. Sound Advice will accept unsolicited albums for consideration, but cannot guarantee published reviews. Sound Advice does not review singles. Send 2 CDs together with biography or media release to Capital News, PO Box 555, Tamworth NSW 2340 and email a jpg of the cover to cheryl@tamworthcountrymusic.com.au

LYNCHBURG

HOW COUNTRY DO YOU WANT IT? KROSS KUT RECORDS

What happens when Australia’s most prolific country music songwriter gets together with Australia’s most prolific producer of bush ballad singers? Lynchburg, of course. Any collaboration between Allan Caswell and Lindsay Waddington was only ever going to grow pure country fruit and this release proves it. Not only did the boys push each other to come up with 11 co-writes but singer Caswell played plenty of guitar and musician Waddo even sings, taking the lead on Youngie, a tribute to Brian Young. Old Cas fans like me will marvel at how 1988’sGolden Guitar winning Black Jack Blues Again has become a whole new song, while Waddo shows his cops on the instrumental Cuervo. This is traditional country music at its best, with drinkin’ songs, broken heart songs, life of a muso songs, and there’s a wonderful duet with Allison Forbes on Next Broken Heart. This album is a homage to the roots of the music that Cas and Waddo have loved and played all their lives and to the charge of making real country music, Lynchburg is Guilty As Charged. KROSS KUT JON WOLFE

BEN MASTWYK & HIS MILLIONS

LACHLAN BRYAN & THE WILDES

SHRIMP RECORDS/INDEPENDENT

Social Family Records

LIVING ON GOLD STREET Melbourne’s Ben Mastwyk clearly grew significantly in the period between this album and his previous recordings, a time when he maybe questioned whether music and songwriting was his thing, and in the process of reevaluation became a masterful exponent of both. Living On Gold Street – despite the cover image of Mastwyk dressed rather spiffingly in a gold lame suit and riding a horse – is more substance than style. This is wonderfully played country music from a band of equally classy dudes. The Millions band also know how to dress for success but still play beautifully and with the restraint needed to augment and never dominate Mastwyk’s songs. Same goes for the main man who writes wonderfully crafted songs with superb lyrical observation, killer choruses and enough attitude to make you sit up and pay attention. And his is a well-rounded, deep, and knowing voice that’s perfectly attuned to the genre. Living On Gold Street is country with its heart in the tradition and its delivery in the very now. Nashville country takes a left hand turn and finds itself in Melbourne. SOCIAL FAMILY RECORDS STUART COUPE

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NEAREST MISSES – LIVE Lachlan Bryan and the Wildes craft superb, melodic and understated music of much beauty. They’re not flashy in a showbizy kind of way, nor do they bombard you with blandness and catchy but ultimately forgettable choruses. What Lachlan Bryan does is write some of the most insightful, poignant and heartfelt songs you’ll hear this or any other year. They’re sublime songs that can stand proudly alongside those written by anyone anywhere. And for their contribution The Wildes underpin the songs and Bryan’s singing with nuance, subtlety and feel. They can and do play with swagger, sensitivity and panache without ever even thinking about overshadowing the lyrics. This very fine collection of songs was culled from live recordings made during tours in 2018 and 2019 and as such is much more than a ‘what-do-we-do-during-COVID’ album – it’s a collection of some of the best songs from Bryan and the band’s four albums to date. And these recordings more than add to the existing studio versions. By the time these recordings were made the songs were road tested and lived in. They sound like old friends having a long overdue catch up in a quiet bar and we get to eavesdrop on the conversations.

ALAN JACKSON WHERE HAVE YOU GONE

CAPITOL NASHVILLE Where Have You Gone is Jackson’s first new album in five years and to make up for the time, here are 21 tracks of hard-core, real country as it used to/should be. The album opens with the title track that has him asking where has the country music gone and calling for its return, particularly to the airwaves. You’ll find songs like Wishful Drinkin’ and about, beer, whiskey and tequila balanced with a couple of songs written for his daughters’ weddings and one written for his mother’s funeral – tender and heartfelt as only real country music can deliver. There’s boot-tappin’ songs like – Where The Cottonwood Grows, Beer and A Man Who Never Cries – the reflective The Older I Get and a tribute to Merle Haggard, That’s The Way Love Goes. Jackson has written 15 of the songs and those in themselves would make a great album and the partnership with long-time producer Keith Stegall has come up with an album that is a must-have for any fan and singer of traditional country music. CAPITOL/UMA 3571607 JON WOLFE

SOCIAL FAMILY RECORDS STUART COUPE

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TROY CASSAR-DALEY THE WORLD TODAY TARAMPA

Sydney born Grafton raised singer-songwriter Troy Cassar-Daley mines melancholia on his 14-track fifteenth album. His dad Tony and mate Glen Hannah suicided and his TV and radio presenter wife Laurel Edwards dad passed between albums. But support of Laurel and their two children were sweet solace during the pandemic. Troy, 52 on May 18, survived despite those romantic ruptures softened by Valentine’s Day paean to Laurel in My Heart Still Burns For You - one of two songs penned with Paul Kelly - and Kevin Bennett collaboration Broken Hearts Can Fly. The singer entrées with another Bennett co-write on their evocative homage to this land with debut single Back On Country. Troy’s support of international peers’ persecution peaks on the title track - one of three songs with backing vocalist Katie Brianna. Equally evocative are self-explanatory indigenous liberation anthems Parole and sibling song Doin’ Time. Troy reaches back to Grafton with Too Big For This Town and metaphoric magic of Heart Like A Small Town. There’s mid-stream relief with fellow river raised Dennington co-writer Shane Howard on fitting finale I Hear My River. True testament to a major talent. TARAMPA/SONY 19439857022 DAVID DAWSON

ANDREW FARRISS SELF TITLED INERTIA

We were given a different view of the INXS musician when he released the Come Midnight single to radio in 2018 – this was a different style from Andrew that not only established his vocal chops but a new shade of country music. Many of these songs are old and a horse-riding trip along the Mexican border set the tone for the songs and when he decided to demo them the outlaw elements of the American cowboys came into focus in songs like Apache Pass and Son Of A Gun and even our Aussie icon fits well in the song With The Kelly Gang. There’s a continuity in the songs that recalls the west of the cowboy era – much like Elton John and Bernie Taupin’s Tumbleweed Connection – but with a very contemporary feel. There’s some personal reflection in Starlight, maybe a yearning for the wide-open spaces in Drifting and My Cajun Girl sets you in mind of Louisiana and New Orleans. BMG/WAR 538565412 JON WOLFE

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TAMI NEILSON CHICKABOOM! DELUXE

NEILSON RECORDS There’s nothing faint-hearted about Tami Neilson, and New Zealand – and increasingly the world – has never seen anything quite like her. This powerhouse vocalist with the big personality is cutting a swathe through the music industry. And the release of this special deluxe edition of her Chickaboom! Album shows why. Along with the 10 original Chickaboom! tracks – which pack a punch with their blues, rock and retro-inspired country – Tami’s included five new live bonus tracks recorded in Auckland’s iconic Roundhead Studios, owned by Neil Finn. The mesmerising A Woman’s Pain, the exquisite Romata (Cry Myself to Sleep), featuring Maori vocals, are nothing short of breathtaking. Tami’s also done some remarkable live version of her hits Call Your Mama and the powerful You Were Mine. While Tami can rock it out on tracks like Hey, Bus Driver! and get down and dirty on songs like 16 Miles Of Chain, she can also be utterly transcendent on songs like Sleep. XELON ENTERTAINMENT SUSAN JARVIS

RAECHEL WHITCHURCH

KORA NAUGHTON

COMPASS BROS

RED REBEL MUSIC

FINALLY CLEAR

This deeply introspective album has been brewing for some time. It reveals that Raechel’s a perceptive, thoughtful songwriter who deftly crafts her music to create songs that are personal yet universal – the mark of a true songwriter. There is an authenticity and poignancy in songs like I Found Home and My Father that is unmistakable and Raechel’s not afraid to touch on difficult issues on tracks like You Ain’t One of Us, There’s Enough to Go Around and Too Much Work To Do. Kevin Bennett appears on the delightful I Used To Think I Was An Outlaw, and the album’s absolute highlight is the powerful Country Families, cowritten with Colin Buchanan. There is also a superb version of the Julie and Buddy Miller song Wide River To Cross that showcases Raechel’s sweet, pure vocals perfectly. Raechel Whitchurch is still at the very start of her career, but this album shows she’s here to stay – and that she’ll be a force to reckon with. COMPASS/UMA SUSAN JARVIS

NINETEEN

Shellharbour singer-songwriter Kora Naughton has ignited her music career that began at high school with delicious dexterity. At 19 there is no surprise she wrote 10 of 12 sizzling songs on her Rod Motbey produced second album. Kora drives mood swings with maturity beyond her years from energised entrée Speechless that segues into optimism fuelled Lap Around The Sun and selfdeprecatory surrender in Lay Down And Lie. Alcohol laced hedonism of Till We Drop, is tempered by angst anchors of Devil On Your Shoulder and family, guitar and gin induced solace of Blessings. Kora becomes the vixen with conscience in Collateral - featuring Shane Nicholson as producer and multiinstrumentalist. Naughton urges the character in Headed Up to rise above the pack and soar, unlike the doomed damsel in Smokin’ And Cryin’. She uses a Bonnie & Clyde analogy in rebellious revolt in My Heart To Break. RRM029 DAVID DAWSON

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hands OF fame TAMWORTH’S COUNTRY MUSIC TRAIL

The Hands of Fame is one of eight locations on the Tamworth Country Music Trail.

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stablished in 1977, the park honours individuals who have made an ongoing contribution to the Australian country music industry and features over 250 handprints belonging to artists and other industry personalities.

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Legends of the industry including Slim Dusty MBE (C) OAM, Stan Coster OAM and Reg Lindsay OAM are just a few of those who had their handprints immortalised in 1977. In more recent times, names such as Keith Urban (1998), Beccy Cole (2000), Adam Brand (2001) and Adam

Harvey (2003) have all had their handprints added. It is not just artists that appear. In 2002 Max Ellis OAM added his handprint in recognition for the fundamental role he played in the Tamworth Country Music Festival’s inception 50 years ago when he was the general manager of 2TM and marketing manager of BAL Marketing. New “hands” are added each January during the Tamworth Country Music Festival. M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


cm capital

Bridget Guthrie (left) and Naomi Blakey (3rd left) Eric Scott (4th left), Kevin Anderson (far right), State Member for Tamworth, with staff and volunteers from multiple museums and collections.

Digitisation

OF AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY MUSIC COLLECTIONS

A

ustralian Country Music Collections are included as part of a $309,000 grant to digitise local historic collections and make them more accessible to the public. The announcement was made by Member for Tamworth, Kevin Anderson and Minister for the Arts, Don Harwin on April 1, 2021. “The project will provide digitisation training and support to the New England North West museum sector as part of a process of learning, knowledge sharing, sustainability M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

The Tamworth Regional Council has received State Government funding to digitise local historic collections. and digitisation to national standards,” Mr Anderson said. The digitisation of these collections will ensure the longevity and access of these culturally significant artworks, museum objects and memorabilia. Director of the Tamworth Regional Gallery and Museums, Bridget Guthrie said, “We are delighted the NSW Government is supporting Tamworth to bring significant collections to life and

preserve them for generations to come. “Tamworth has a thriving arts and cultural sector, and I look forward to sharing all that we have to offer,” Ms Guthrie said. Other museums and collections included are Tamworth Powerhouse Museum; Rocks, Gems, Minerals and Fossil Collections; Moonbi Museum; and the Tamworth Regional Film and Sound Archive.

Top left: Collections at the Australian Country Music Hall of Fame Bottom left: A selection of the Smoky Dawson collection Right: Australian Country Music Hall of Fame

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500 miles OF MUSIC KASEY CHAMBERS, GINA JEFFREYS, ADAM HARVEY, AMBER LAWRENCE, TRAVIS COLLINS and BILL CHAMBERS are among the

line-up in this years 500 Miles of Music.

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he event returns to South Australia for six days from Jun 25 to 30, 2021 taking in five shows at four venues across the state and will support anti-bullying foundation, Dolly’s Dream. The touring event is designed to bring Australia’s best country talent to those living in rural South Australia as well as making their way

to the annual Big Red Bash and the Maree Camel Cup in early July. The home to historic goldmining sites, wineries and picturesque scenery including the Ochre Cliffs and the Flinders Ranges. In support of Dolly’s Dream, 500 Miles will be auctioning off five acoustic guitars, signed by the artists. For more information about Dolly’s Dream visitdollysdream. org.au

Travis Collins

Thunder CANCELLED

Country Thunder Alberta, one of a suite of six Country Thunder festivals with a 17-year history, is making plans to return to Prairie Winds Park next August 19-21, 2022. “We understand that this is not the news that our fans in Alberta wanted to hear,” says Country Thunder Music festivals CEO Troy Vollhoffer. “But, as we have learned, and given these extenuating circumstances, the decision-making process is completely out of our hands. “Country Thunder Alberta is a special event for us. We can only thank our fans in Calgary for their support and make a promise to deliver the biggest and best festival possible in 2022.” The uncertainty for large-scale, festival-size gatherings, effective Covid 19 protocols which would ensure fan safety, and ongoing border and travel restrictions are just a few major challenges for music festival events which typically take well over a year of planning. The organisation hosts festivals in Arizona, Florida, Iowa, Wisconsin and Saskatchewan. All tickets will be automatically honoured for 2022.

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CHEYENNE FRONTIER DAYS The Wyoming event set a two-day cumulative sales record with 104,619 tickets sold for all events that includes Garth Brooks and Ned LeDoux, Thomas Rhett and Rhett Akins, Cody Johnson and Aaron Watson, Maren Morris, Eric Church and Ashley McBryde, Kane Brown and Restless Road and Blake Shelton and John King. The Professional Bull Riders (PBR) will return with its exclusive Last Cowboy Standing series July 26 & 27, and the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) Rodeo (July 24 - August 1) will return to the arena in 2021.

The 125th Cheyenne Frontier Days™ celebration is dedicated to the legendary Chris LeDoux honouring his ties to the rodeo and music worlds and his place in Cheyenne Frontier Days™ history. A bronze statue will be added to the sculpture collection on Frontier Park and a dedication will take place on July 23. There will be hundreds of vendors, a full carnival, artists, food, and music that celebrate the history and culture of the American West. To find out more go to the website cfdrodeo.com

M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


TNQ'S OWN COUNTRY MUSIC & CAMPING FESTIVAL mareeba, cairns hinterland1-3 october 2021

JOHN WILLIAMSON LEE KERNAGHAN TEX PERKINS ‘THE MAN IN BLACK’ TROY CASSAR-DALEY GRAEME CONNORS SHANNON NOLL BUSBY MAROU THE MCCLYMONTS BRAD COX THE WOLFE BROTHERS CASEY BARNES FANNY LUMSDEN JAMES BLUNDELL FELICITY URQUHART JASMINE RAE DARLINGHURST KIRSTY LEE AKERS JETTY ROAD THE BUCKLEYS SOUTHBOUND RACHAEL FAHIM MISSY LANCASTER COL FINLEY WILL DAY %/$.(2 &21125&+5Ζ67Ζ(/$0%'$9Ζ'+8'621 5$(&+(/:+Ζ7&+85&+0853+< 63Ζ*65287(721<4%$1' &$0Ζ//(75$Ζ/7+(52$'75Ζ33(56<$=0Ζ1'Ζ6$00<:+Ζ7( &$0(521&86$&.$%%Ζ()(55Ζ6&+(/6($%(50$1 -$.('$9(<)(/Ζ&Ζ7<.Ζ5&+(5-(5(0<)/(7&+(5 71475$Ζ/%/$=(56+2:&$6( 3$0$*Ζ55Ζ'$1&(56'((-$<(%8;

TICKETS ON SALE NOW SAVANNAHINTHEROUND.COM.AU 1-3 October 2021

M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

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BRAND

Adam Brand

AMBASSADOR After first performing on the Crow Bar stage at the Gympie Muster 23 years ago, country star ADAM BRAND returns as 2021 Gympie Music Muster Ambassador.

A

dam says he has a very special surprise for all his muster fans, one that’s 23 years in the making. “I am honoured to be the Gympie Music Muster Ambassador this year, and to celebrate it, I’m going back to where I started in 1998 ... the mighty Crow Bar. “I’m doing the curtain closing party with my “brothers” Cornell & Carr … the very last note, the very last drum beat, the very last hurrah for the 40th birthday at the one and only Gympie Muster, Sunday night… LOUD, PROUD & LAST!” “I remember being totally new, hardly anybody knew who I was and

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the joint was absolutely jumping,” he said. Adam has experienced 13 muster appearances and the ‘festival in the forest’ holds a special place for the star. He said being announced as the official Muster Ambassador in its 40th year was a huge honour. “It means a lot, it has always held such a high place in my mind and my career,” he said. “Once I started playing at the muster it was like, ‘now I get it.’ “It’s a piece of Australia. You can’t go there and not have a good time.” He may be the official ambassador for 2021 but the line-up joining Adam has been

unofficial ambassadors since performing at the muster themselves through the years. It’s huge and music lovers can see all these artists at the one venue – the Amamoor State Forest. They are Lee Kernaghan, Kasey Chambers, Adam Brand, Troy Cassar-Daley, Graeme Connors, Don Walker, Beccy Cole, Tex Perkins & The Fat Rubber Band, Busby Marou, Adam Harvey, Shane Nicholson, The Black Sorrows, Diesel, Travis Collins, Fanny Lumsden, Casey Barnes, Felicity Urquhart, The Bushwackers, Amber Lawrence, The Wolfe Brothers, Adam Eckersley & Brooke McClymont, The Buckleys, Jasmine Rae, James Blundell, Drew McAlister, Tania Kernaghan, Warren H Williams, Andrew Swift, Hurricane Fall, The Badloves, Darlinghurst, Ash Grunwald, The Pigs, 8 Ball Aitken, M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


festivals

Busby Marou

Mason Rack Band, Fiona Boyes, Lloyd Spiegel, Marshall & The Fro, Raechel Whitchurch, special guest Tex Dubbo and Gympie’s very own Caitlyn Shadbolt. In addition to the great music, the muster will offer side events including Nathan ‘Whippy’ Griggs, Australia’s number one whip cracker, plus the country’s best bush poets and balladeers; learn line-dancing, clogging, barn dancing and for the kids – kid’s country. Prepare to stick around on Sunday night and celebrate the muster’s 40th anniversary festival with all the hard-working organisers and volunteers and enjoy Australia’s best Kasey Chambers, Beccy Cole, Adam Harvey, Diesel, James Blundell and The Badloves and Adam Brand’s special muster finale show. Get tickets and more information at gympiemuster.com.au M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

Caitlyn Shadbolt

Kasey Chambers

Joe Camilleri TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L

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he tours will visit outback stations, enjoy entertainment by local artists, discover Australia’s best kept remote secrets, join in the campfire singalong, meet many bush poets and characters, and celebrate at a number of iconic

bush pubs along the way including a special night with Tania and friends in concert. The fully accommodated tours begin with a September 22 departure from Brisbane and an early October fun week departing Sydney. “I am so looking forward to taking

small groups outback to meet my great mates and old friends and to join them as they experience the unexpected treasures of the bush terrain in such a luxury vehicle. “It will be the trip of a lifetime,” Tania told Capital News. The Queensland tour visits the spectacular sandstone Lost City on Mt. Tabor above Carnarvon Gorge and a welcome to Bidjara Country smoking ceremony and a meeting with the indigenous elders as well as a sunset outback station tour and campfire and singalong. Experience Charleville’s ‘Dinner under the Stars’ at the multi award winning Cosmos Centre and, add to that the bushranger history in the rugged Mt. Moffat ranges plus a ride on an old restored train. The New South Wales event also takes in Canberra and the Southern Highlands Floriade with the famous tulip gardens plus a unique singalong in an underground cave at Jenolan Caves as well as a wild animals’ big night experience at Dubbo and a great concert in Wagga Wagga – plus a group photo with the dog on the tuckerbox along the tracks winding back to Gundagai. With just 22 seats on each trip you won’t want to miss these tours, all fully escorted by Tania. For more information and bookings contact Stonestreet’s Travel on 1800 673 337 or email info@stonestreets.com.au. There’s more information at the websites taniakernaghan.com and stonestreetstravel.com.au

The annual Queensland Music Awards (QMAs) announced its 2021 genre category finalists, the Billy Thorpe Scholarship shortlist, and the nominees for the publicly voted People’s Choice Awards, and winners will be presented at the Fortitude Music Hall on Wednesday May 5 in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley. After a record number of artist

submissions from all over the state, the impressive and extensive list of finalists includes emerging and established artists from the furthest reaches of Queensland’s thriving and diverse music communities. Finalists announced in the country category were Karl S Williams, Melody Moko, Vixens of Fall and Ruby Gilbert.

The 2021 QMAs promises to be a massive night of celebrating the talent, resilience, and relentless passion of Queensland’s musicians and their teams. The 2021 Queensland Music Awards are on May 5 at The Fortitude Music Hall. For more information and a full list of finalists go to www. queenslandmusicawards.com.au

Tania Kernaghan

OFF THE

BEATEN TRACK

with Tania

TANIA KERNAGHAN and her friends have joined forces with

Stonestreets Travels’ magnificent high view 22-seater fourwheel drive luxury off road explorer to put together a series of exclusive 7-day magical outback experiences in Queensland and New South Wales.

T

QMAS GO AHEAD

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COMING events MAY 2021

1-2

Australian Celtic Festival | Glen Innes | NSW | T: 02 6730 2404 | W: australiancelticfestival.com

1-2 from April 28 Weethalle Country Music Muster | Weethalle Showground, Teamster Drive | Weethalle | NSW | Contact: Gayle Clark | M: 0428 757 337 | E: allangayleclark@bigpond.com | Facebook: fb.me/weethallecmmuster 1-2 from April 29 Mayworth – Australia’s Largest Line Dance Festival | NSW | Contact: Chris & Gemma Watson | W: mayworth.com.au 1-2 from April 30 Lameroo CMF | Lameroo Town Hall | SA | Contact: Big River Entertainment | M:0408 597307 | W: lameroocmf.com 1-2 from April 30 44th Charters Towers CMF | Qld | M: 0418 717 669 | E: ctcm@bigpond.com W: charterstowerscountrymusicfestival. com 6-9

Capella CMF | Capella Showgrounds Covered Arena | 23 Hirbernia Road | Capella | Qld | Artists: Chad Morgan OAM, Keith Jamieson OAM, Chad Morgan Jnr, Dennis Morgan, Alisha Smith, Caitlyn Jamieson, Jean Stafford, Sherry Rand, Wayne Rand and more. | Fly Brisbane to Emerald 1hr 25min then drive 58.8km to Capella | Contact: John Hallam | M: 0448 438 060 | E: admin@capellaevents.com.au | W: capellaevents.com.au

10-16

Bouldy Bush Ballad Bash | Recreation Complex, Burnett Highway | Bouldercombe | Qld | Walkups Mon to Fri | Sat and Sun poets and invited guests | Facilities include camping, showers, toilets, water, food, and dogs welcome on leash | Contact Keith Jamieson | M: 0427 731 088

13-16

Music In The Mulga | Wandilla Station | 1508 Pitherity Road | Eulo | Qld | Featuring daily concerts from 10am, nightly entertainment, bush dance, Sunday breakfast, charity auction and yabby races | Contact: David and Carmel Meurant | M: 0488 333 544 | W: musicinthemulga.com.au

17-23

Phil and Christine Coad’s Annual Country Muster | Wyper Park | Bundaberg | Qld | M: 0458 728 464 or 0419 603 371 | philandchriscoadmusters.com

28-30

Tamworth Comes To Town | Rydges World Square Sydney | 1300 236 594

JUNE 2021 1-6

Kenmore Park CM Muster | 44 Hayes Road | Lower Wonga | Qld | Artists: Glen Albrecht, Terry Gordon, Matt Manning, Paul Crowder, Alan Gumm, Rob Breese, Gottani Sisters, Jeff Brown, Bob Howson, Vanessa Sanger, Pete Smith, Tony Wagner plus walk-ups, bush poet’s food and market stalls and more. Contact Glen Albrecht | M: 0458 686 740

POSTPONED

TO 2022 | CMA Music Festival | Nashville | USA | cmaworld.com

POSTPONED

TO SEPTEMBER 5-7 | The Barunga Festival | Katherine | NT | E: info@barungafestival.com.au | T: 08 8941 8066 | barungafestival.com.au

4-6

Gulf Coast Jam Country On The Coast | Panama City Beach, Florida | USA | pepsigulfcoastjam.com

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Corowa RSL Club Annual CM Round Up | Guests Tania Kernaghan and Ray Kernaghan | corowarsl.com.au

28-July 4

Yellowbelly CMF | St George Showground | Qld | Facilities include showers, toilets, power first in best dressed, food, hospital close by, motels, shops, dogs welcome on a leash | Entertainment: Walkups Mon-Fri, bush poets and invited artists Sat & Sun | Contact Keith Jamieson M: 0427 731 088

Join Adam Harvey and The Duck for this exciting new weekly radio show and podcast Covering everything country music, interviews, plenty of laughs, new songs and Adam’s favourite classics Commences Saturday 5 September 2020 7pm every Saturday following Ray Hadley’s Country Music Countdown on the KIX radio network M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

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LIVE music SCENE 8 BALL AITKEN

MAY 1 Café Guitar, Toowoomba City Qld 30 Mt Coot-tha Songwriters Festival, Toowoong Qld JUNE 26 Fraser Coast RV Park, River Heads

AMBER LAWRENCE

CHRIS MATTHEWS

MAY 6 Oodies, Bundaberg Qld

MAY 15 Port of Bourke Hotel NSW JUNE 4 South West Rocks Country Club NSW

CHRISTIE LAMB

OCTOBER 1 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

COL FINLEY

OCTOBER 1&3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

BLAKE O’CONNOR

ADAM HARVEY

w guest Raechel Whitchurch MAY 1 Norwood Live, Adelaide SA 7 Bathurst RSL Club NSW 8 Berry Showgrounds NSW 14 Memo Music Hall, St Kilda Vic 15 The Gateway Hotel, Corio Vic 21 Club Mudgee NSW 22 Forbes Town Hall NSW JUNE 5 Centro CBD, Wollongong NSW 25 CEX Coffs Harbour NSW 26 Ballina RSL NSW JULY 16 West Wyalong Services & Citizens NSW 17 Dubbo RSL NSW 23 Jindalee Hotel Qld 24 Southport RSL Qld 30 Astor Hotel Motel, Goulburn NSW 31 The Oaks Hotel, Albion Park Rail NSW SEPTEMBER 3 Glen Innes District SC NSW 4 Narrabri RSL NSW 10 Canberra Southern Cross Club ACT 11 Club Sapphire, Merimbula NSW OCTOBER 8 The Capital, Bendigo Vic 9 Commercial Club Albury NSW 22 Inverell RSM NSW 23 Armidale Ex-Services Memorial Club NSW 29 Caloundra RSL SC Qld 30 Kedron Wavell SC, Chermside Qld NOVEMBER 4 Bairnsdale RSL Vic 5 Wonthaggi Workmen’s Club Vic

ALEXIS AND SUZIE

MAY 3 Drift Bar, Caloundra Qld 14 Cooroy RSL Qld 23 Drift Bar, Caloundra Qld 28 Marcoola Surf Club Qld

ALEXIS SAWFORD

MAY 8 Coffee Cats on Kings, Kings Beach Qld 9 Kawana Surf Club, Kawana Beach Qld 16 Coffee Cats on Kings, Kings Beach Qld\21 Mooloolaba BC Qld 62

ANDREW FARRIS *w Guest Andrew Swift MAY 7 Thornbury Theatre Vic 14 NightQuarter, Sunshine Coast Qld 15 Fitzy’s, Loganholme Qld 16 Wallaby Hotel, Mudgeeraba Qld 21 Freo Social, Fremantle WA 22 The Charles Hotel, North Perth WA 28 The Gov, Adelaide SA

ANDREW SWIFT *Andrew Farriss Tour MAY 1 Neon Horse, Stanhope Vic 2 BM Music Bowl, Bacchus Marsh Vic* 7 Thornbury Theatre Vic* 14 Nightquarter, Sunshine Coast Qld* 15 Fitzy’s, Loganholme Qld* 16 Wallaby Hotel, Mudgeeraba Qld* 21 Freo Social, Fremantle WA* 22 The Charles Hotel, North Perth WA* 28 The Gov, Adelaide SA*

ALEXIS SAWFORD MAY 8 Coffee Cats on Kings, Kings Beach, Qld 9 Kawana Surf Club, Kawana Beach, Qld 16 Coffee Cats on Kings, Kings Beach, Qld 21 Mooloolaba Bowls Club Qld

BELLA MACKENZIE JUNE 12 Seabreeze Hotel, Slade Point Mackay Qld *All Ages $20 13 Hay Point Hotel Qld 24 Maguires Hotel, Mackay Qld 26 Grand Hotel, Clermont Qld JULY 1-3 Black Nugget Hotel, Moranbah Qld 11 Seabreeze Hotel, Slade Point Mackay Qld 17 Country on Keppel Music Festival Qld 23 KC’s Bar & Grill, Airlie Beach Qld 24 Grandview Hotel, Bowen Qld 25 Seaforth Mainbeach Festival Qld

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Guest on Diesel’s tour ***Full band show MAY 13 Wallaby Hotel, Mudgeeraba Qld 14 Fitzys Loganholme Qld 16 The Royal, Nundah Qld 21 Sooki Lounge, Belgrave Vic 22 Northcote Social Club Vic 28 Spring Lakes Hotel Qld 29 Bribie Island Hotel Qld JUNE 11 Mt Pleasant Tavern, Mackay Qld 12 Kirwan Tavern, Townsville Qld 13 Edge Hill Tavern, Cairns Qld 16 Allenstown Hotel, Rockhampton Qld 17 Harvey Road Tavern Gladestone Qld 18 Bay Central Tavern, Hervey Bay Qld 26 Wauchope RSL NSW*** JULY 1 Lizottes NSW*** 2 Windsor RSL NSW*** 3 Dubbo RSL NSW*** OCTOBER 2&3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

DANI YOUNG

MAY 16 Petersham BC, Sydney NSW JUNE 25 Nanango Showgrounds Qld 26 Chinchilla Showgrounds Qld JULY 3 Cunnamulla Showgrounds Qld

DARLINGHURST

OCTOBER 3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

DAVID HUDSON & THE DIDGERALIA BAND

OCTOBER 3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

BRAD COX

OCTOBER 1 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

BUSBY MAROU

OCTOBER 1 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

CAMILLE TRAIL

OCTOBER 2&3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

CASEY BARNES

OCTOBER 1 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

CASS HOPETOUN

MAY 1 White Hart Hotel (w/Hurricane Fall) – Murrurundi, NSW 7 Post Office Hotel (w/Hurricane Fall) – Forbes, NSW 8 The Oaks (w/Hurricane Fall) – Albion Park, NSW 21 Royal Theatre (w/Hurricane Fall) – Quirindi, NSW 22 Narrabri RSL (w/Hurricane Fall) – Narrabri, NSW

CHELSEA BERMAN

Rising Star Showcase OCTOBER 1&2 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

DEAN PERRETT

MAY 22-23 Wyper Park Scout Camp, Bundaberg Qld JULY 10-11 Cunnamulla Showgrounds Qld SEPTEMBER 10-12 Showgrounds, Nanango Qld

DIANNE LINDSAY

MAY 15 Bouldercombe Park Qld 21 Wyper Park, Bundaberg Qld

FELICITY URQUHART & JOSH CUNNINGHAM

*Felicity only MAY 6 Lizotte’s, Lambton NSW 7 The Music Lounge, Wollongong NSW 8 Bowral BC NSW 14 Harmonie German Club, Canberra ACT 27 The Triffid, Brisbane Qld 28 Imperial Hotel, Eumundi Qld 29 Maleny RSL Qld JUNE 3 Oodies Cafe, Bundaberg Qld 4 The Goat Cafe & Bar, Rockhampton Qld 5 Seabreeze Hotel, Mackay Qld M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1


**All subject to COVID-19 health restrictions. Capital News recommends that you check with the venue prior to attending any performance so as not to be disappointed if it’s not on.

JULY 8 Valencia Valley Soldiers Memorial Hall Vic 9 Brunswick Ballroom Vic 23 Trinity Sessions, Adelaide SA AUGUST 6 A&I Hall, Bangalow NSW 7 Wauchope Community Arts NSW 21 Candelo NSW 26-29 Gympie Muster Qld*

HAYLEY JENSEN

JULY 24 Laurieton United SC NSW 28 Lizottes, Newcastle NSW 29 Django at Camelot Lounge, Marrickville NSW AUGUST 1 Brass Monkey, Cronulla NSW 5 Heritage Hotel, Bulli NSW 6 Canberra Southern Cross Club ACT 7 Tumut River Brewing Co NSW 8 Albury Commercial Club NSW 13 Toff in Town, Melbourne, Vic

HILLBILLY GOATS

MAY 1 Wintermoon Festival, Mackay Qld 7 Casino RSM NSW 13-16 Music in the Mulga, Eulo Qld JUNE 11 Yungaburra Pub Qld 12 Cardwell Jetty Hoedown Qld 13 Palm Cove Surf Club ex Cairns Qld AUGUST 7 Casino RSM, Casino, NSW

HURRICANE FALL

MAY 1 Whitehart Hotel, Murrurundi NSW 7 Post Office Hotel, Forbes NSW 8 The Oaks Hotel, Albion Park NSW 15 Music in the Mulga, Eulo Qld 21 Royal Theatre Quirindi NSW 22 Narrabri RSL NSW

JAYNE DENHAM

MAY

1

Sportsground Canowindra NSW

JOHN ‘K’ KRSULJA

MAY 1 Uralla Central School NSW 2 Old Church Tenterfield NSW

KELLY BROUHAHA

MERILYN STEELE

MAY 30 Penrith RSL NSW JUNE 27 Caringbah Markets NSW JULY 4 Petersham RSL NSW

MICHAEL WAUGH

JUNE 25 Illawarra Folk Club, Wollongong NSW 27 South Sydney Folk Club, Carlton NSW AUGUST 28-20 Gympie Music Muster Qld SEPTEMBER 2 Memo Music Hall, St Kilda Vic 3 Music on the Hill, Red Hill Vic 11 Live at the Bundy, Bundalaguah Vic SOLD OUT 18 The Deniliquin Club NSW 23 Oodies Café, Bundaberg Qld 24 Junk Bar, Brisbane Qld 25 Wauchope Arts Factory NSW

SEPTEMBER 23-26 Texas CMF Qld

RAECHEL WHITCHURCH

KASEY CHAMBERS KATIE JAYNE

MAY 7 Anna Bay Tavern NSW 9 Shoal Bay Country Club NSW M AY/J U N E 2 0 2 1

MAY 2 Bluff Bar, Alexandra Heads Qld 16 Bluff Bar, Alexandra Heads Qld

TAYLOR MOSS SEPTEMBER 23-26 Texas CMF Qld

MELINDA SCHNEIDER: A FAREWELL TO DORIS

NORMA O’HARA MURPHY

JUNE 27 500 Miles of Music, Leigh Creek SA

SUSAN KEENAN AND ALEXIS SAWFORD WITH CONTRABAND

MAY 15 The Front, Canberra ACT 16 Petersham BC NSW 20 Oodie’s Café, Bundaberg Qld 22 Junk Bar, Brisbane Qld 27 Hamilton Station Hotel, Newcastle NSW JUNE 12 The Wheatsheaf Hotel, Adelaide SA 20 Ballara Art & Lifestyle Retreat, Warooka SA

MAY 1 Evan Theatre Penrith Panthers NSW 14 Shoalhaven EC Nowra NSW 15 Laycock Street Theatre, Gosford NSW 22 Ryde-Eastwood LC West Ryde NSW 29 Campbelltown RSL NSW JUNE 4 Wagga Wagga Civic Theatre NSW 5 Albury EC NSW 18 Goulburn Workers Club NSW 19 Dubbo RSL NSW 24 Bribie Island Hotel Qld 25 Redcliffe EC Qld 26 Casino Civic Hall NSW 27 Lonestar Tavern, Mermaid Waters Qld

AUGUST 20 NQ’s Rockin’ Country, Mackay Qld 26 Gympie Muster, Amamoor Forest Qld OCTOBER 3 Savannah in the Round, Mareeba Qld

ROSS WEBB

MAY 14 Crookwell Hotel NSW 21 Robertson Public House (Pub) NSW 28 Star Hotel, Milton NSW JUNE 11 Moss Vale SC NSW

2021 THE BUSHWACKERS

SAMMY WHITE

w Brook Schubert MAY 1 Charters Towers CMF Qld 6 The Met Hotel, Toowoomba Qld 7 Fitzys Loganholme, Logan Qld 8 The Royal, Nundah Qld 9 Malt Shovel Taphouse Sunshine Coast Qld 14 Bucca Hotel Qld 16 The Goat Cafe & Bar, Rockhampton Qld 20 Reef Gateway Hotel, Cannonvale Qld 21 Seabreeze Hotel, Mackay Qld 22 Black Nugget Hotel, Moranbah Qld 23 Emerald Star Hotel Qld 29 Elite Rodeo, Townsville Qld AUGUST 26-29 Gympie Muster Qld OCTOBER 2 Deni Ute Muster NSW 3 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld NOVEMBER 12-14 Groundwater CMF Qld

SHANNON NOLL

MAY 2 The Bridge Hotel, Forth Tas 6 Scone Horse Festival NSW 27 Centro CBD, Wollongong NSW 28 Doyalson Wyee RSL NSW 29 Club Central, Menai NSW JULY 3 Trip The Switch Festival, Ipswich Qld 6–8 Big Red Bash, Birdsville Qld 10 Music Is Life Festival, Biloela Qld AUGUST 6 Hotel Tasmania, Launceston Tas 7 Granada Tavern, Hobart Tas 13 Southport RSL, Southport Qld 14 Calamville Hotel, Brisbane Qld 20-24 Mundi Mundi Bash, Broken Hill NSW

MAY 13 Delatite Hotel, Mansfield Vic 14 The Vine Hotel, Wangaratta Vic 16 Brunswick Ballroom Vic

THE NEW GRACES MAY 7 Smokey Dan’s Tomakin NSW

TRAVIS COLLINS MAY 1 Charters Towers CMF, Showground Qld 7 Warialda Show NSW 15 Cessnock LC NSW SEPTEMBER 23-26 Texas CMF Qld

SOUTHBOUND

MAY 29 Tamworth Comes To Town Festival, Rydges, Sydney NSW OCTOBER 1 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba Cairns Hinterland TN Qld 2 VDM Festival, Biloela Qld

SUSAN KEENAN

MAY 7-8 Chill Cafe 89, Golden Beach, Qld 9 Montville Bar and Grill Qld 15 Montville Bar and Grill Qld 29 Montville Bar and Grill Qld

TROY CASSAR-DALEY AUGUST 27-29 Gympie Muster OCTOBER 1 Conargo Road, Deniliquin NSW 2 Savannah In The Round, Mareeba TNQld

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1264KM ON A TANK. YOU READ THAT RIGHT. 1

Usually when things sound too good to be true, they are. But not this headline act. Toyota Hybrid. With outstanding fuel economy you can travel an impressive distance without needing to stop to fill up. And there’s absolutely no need to plug them in because Toyota Hybrids charge as they drive by using their engine or energy captured when decelerating or braking. That means the only thing you need to worry about for 1264kms¹ is what star performer you will listen to next. Search ‘TOYOTA HYBRID’

1 Estimated distance of 1264kms based on combined ADR fuel consumption rate of 3.4L/100km. Achieved in test conditions. Actual fuel consumption may vary depending on driving conditions/style, vehicle condition and options/accessories fitted. Fuel consumption data provided for comparison purposes only. Source: ADR81/20 for Toyota Prius model. TAMw ORTH C O U N T R Y M U S I C C A P I TA L news 64

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Profile for Country Music Capital News

Tamworth Country Music Capital News - May/June 2021 Volume 46 No 3  

In the May/June issue, we are thrilled to have Adam Harvey as our cover story. We hear about his exciting new album release and upcoming tou...

Tamworth Country Music Capital News - May/June 2021 Volume 46 No 3  

In the May/June issue, we are thrilled to have Adam Harvey as our cover story. We hear about his exciting new album release and upcoming tou...

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