Lee Kernaghan reinvigorated Australian Country Music in the 1990’s, synthesising traditional country themes with his own brand of rural rock and images of an evolving regional culture. Songs like The Outback Club, Boys from The Bush, Hat Town, She’s My Ute and Australian Boy are now modern day anthems for a generation of Australians living and working on the land.
Lee has sold over two million albums in Australia with releases including Outback Club, Three Chain Road, 1959, Hat Town, Rules Of The Road, Electric Rodeo, New Bush, Ultimate Hits, Spirit Of The Bush, Planet Country, Beautiful Noise and Spirit Of The Anzacs all achieving platinum or multi-platinum status. Lee is a four-time ARIA award winning artist and in 2015 he was presented with the Australian Record Industry Award for Outstanding Achievement.
Lee has achieved a staggering 34 #1 chart hit songs over his career and has been awarded 36 Golden Guitars. He has been named Hit Maker of the Decade, twice, in 2001 and 2011. This accolade is in recognition of Lee having more chart hits in Australia than any other country music artist in the world.
Kernaghan is long-time and passionate supporter of rural and regional Australia. His Pass the Hat Around Australia Tours, Spirit of The Bush and Farmhand concerts have raised millions of dollars for drought, flood and bushfire relief, hospitals, schools, ambulance and volunteer organisations nation-wide. In 2004 Kernaghan was the recipient of an Order of Australia Medal and was named 2008 Australian of the Year.
Lee Kernaghan’s Boys from The Bush 25th Anniversary Tour launches in Tamworth on Australia Day with concerts covering the length and breadth of the nation throughout 2017.
Shannon Noll’s everyman appeal lies in his honesty, he strikes a chord with legions of music fans, tapping into a pure emotion that’s both his own and instantly relatable.
His rise to fame as the first runner-up of the initial Australian Idol series in 2003 changed his life from farm hand in Condobolin forever.
Undeniably, Shannon Noll has captured the hearts and minds of music fans around Australia and overseas with his raw, gifted rockvoice. He remains one of the most recognisable names and faces in the Australian music industry with only a few matching his success.
A loving husband and father, he is also a voice to be reckoned with. Shannon is currently working on his next album which will once again be sure to only add to his success thus far.
In recent years, the McClymont sisters have navigated changes and upheavals of all kinds: changes of address, changes in relationship status, entry into the thrilling world of new parenthood. But it’s the constancy, the endless love and support of those nearest and dearest to them that Brooke, Sam & Mollie celebrate with full hearts on their captivating fifth studio album Endless, set for release on Friday 13th January 2017.
“Family comes first,” The McClymonts say, simply, of their towering inspiration for Endless. “We’re all married – this is the first album we’ve made when we are all married!” It’s a fact that makes for the warmest, most intensely personal McClymonts release to date.
The McClymonts have never shied away from telling, in song, the stories that make them who they are: from rediscovering the simple joy of self-belief in early favourite ‘My Life Again’, to the exquisite ‘A Woman Is A Flame’, to fresh-start anthem ‘Two Worlds Collide’. It’s this authenticity – this heartfelt genuineness – that has so endeared the McClymonts to the hearts of listeners the world over since the trio first burst onto the scene in 2006.
“That’s the thing with country music: you have to tell your own stories,” Sam explains. “People can see through it if it’s not genuine. So, we try to write about what we’re going through. That’s why the lyric content on Endless is so different to when we were 20 when we were starting out! And now, it’s so different to then, with our families and our career and making it all work. We do have a lot more stories to tell on this album: we are all in a good place, and that really comes out in this album.”
Produced by Central Coast based Producer/Songwriter Andy Mak (Tina Arena, Boy & Bear), Endless crowns a phenomenal couple of years for The McClymonts. Since the release of Here’s To You & I, the sisters have celebrated two weddings, with Sam and Mollie walking down the aisle in 2014 and 2015 respectively, and the birth of Mollie’s first baby boy, Ned. Not to mention recent forays into the world of TV and film: Brooke making her acting debut in Aussie feature film Spin Out and Sam taking up hosting duties on Channel 9 phenomenon The Farmer Wants a Wife in 2016. And to top it all, The McClymonts have just completed a well-deserved victory lap with their 10th Anniversary 10 Years of Hits national tour.
Country songstress Beccy Cole has delighted Australian listeners and concertgoers for more than twenty years. The Adelaide-born star’s glowing warmth, honeyed voice, bawdy sense of humour and perpetual smile have helped make Beccy one of the nation’s best-loved and most celebrated artists. With her stunning tenth release Sweet Rebecca, Beccy colours these winning qualities with bittersweet remembrance and reflection on her life thus far – both onstage and off.
Among the most important experiences of Beccy’s career are her tours of military bases in Iraq and the Middle East, the first one being in December 2005, where Beccy performed for Australian service personnel as part of the Tour de Force program. In early 2006, in response to a letter penned by an erstwhile fan critical of what he perceived as Beccy’s tacit support for the war in Iraq, Beccy penned one of her best-loved tunes, the triple Golden Guitar-winning ‘Poster Girl’. The song earned Beccy admiration across the globe and remains Beccy’s most requested song.
Beccy’s auto-biography, Poster Girl, was released in 2015 to rave reviews. This honest and funny account of Beccy’s life to date is full of secrets and surprises. Beccy certainly allows the reader into her world and holds nothing back in terms of reporting her own history.
In May, 2017, Beccy will release her 11th studio album, ‘Great Country Songbook Volume 2’ with a good friend, Adam Harvey. The album contains some of the most famous Country duets of all time, delivered with a touch of humour as only Beccy and Adam can.
Beccy Cole is the real deal, a working mother, a comedienne, an author, a passionate supporter of Aussie rules Football and as honest, funny and genuine in real life as she comes across on stage. Her ability to laugh at herself and write her songs and stories with such brazen truth is refreshing. Her live show has an indelible impression.
Sara Storer is one of Australia’s most-loved singer-songwriters, an ARIA and multiple Golden Guitar winner whose crisp observations of the Australian landscape and its people provide the solid foundation stone for her music. She has seen all the beauty, joy and heartbreak this land can bring, living for a time in western Queensland, where she wrote her first song, and working as a school teacher in Katherine in the Northern Territory.
John Williamson best sums it up: “Sara has a unique way of seeing and expressing her observations of love and life in the bush. So she is a songwriter that will be remembered beyond her lifetime.”
And as respected journalist and book author Noel Mengel observes, “It’s Sara’s crisp observations of the Australian landscape and its people that provide the solid foundation stone for her music. She has seen all the beauty, joy and heartbreak this land can bring. Images of Australia burn through Silos with all the clarity of an outback sunset.
“Work hard, play hard is our ethic!” says Sophie Clabburn, elder sister of Australia’s favourite country duo the Sunny Cowgirls. The sisters Clabburn never fail to deliver a cutting-out party to remember, whatever the setting. Farm girls born-and-bred, Sophie and Celeste burst onto the scene with their breakout debut album Little Bit Rusty in 2005 – which peaked at No. 3 on the ARIA Country Albums Chart.
The Wolfe Brothers
The Wolfe Brothers Are fast becoming known as one of the hardest working bands in Australia. The band continues to ride the wave that started for them in mid-2012 when they captured the attention of the nation and were voted into second place in the final of the nationally televised show Australia’s Got Talent.
Tom Wolfe said “touring with Lee has been a dream come true for us. He has taught us so much and it is still a little surreal to look across the stage and realise we are actually performing with one of our childhood heroes – the great Lee Kernaghan. Taking our music all over Australia on Lee’s tours has given us the opportunity us to build our own fan base and thankfully we have all been able to make music our full time profession and we have all left our jobs – Nick was a postman, Brodie was a refrigeration mechanic Casey was a dental mechanic who made dentures and false teeth and I was a builder’s labourer”.
The Wolfe Brothers debut LP “IT’S ON” spawned three Top 10 singles, including their first #1 song and #1 video ‘The Girl, The Bottle, The Memory’. The album entered the ARIA charts at #2 on the country chart and #18 on the overall chart. It also earned them the recognition of their peers and saw the band nominated for four Golden Guitar Awards at the 2014 Australian Country Music Awards held in Tamworth. “Just to be nominated was amazing for us,” said drummer Casey Kostiuk. “To be nominated in four categories blew us away, especially being one of the finalists for Highest Selling Album of the Year. “
Caitlyn Shadbolt has been honing her craft as a singer and songwriter for almost 8 years and now at just 19 years of age, is truly a star on the rise. Caitlyn’s talent, charm and infectious, easy-going personality came to prominence in 2014 when she spent 12 weeks performing to millions of viewers on the high rating, national music show, X Factor, where she achieved an amazing Top 5 position. Not bad for a country girl from Gympie, SE Queensland.
Not one to just bask in the limelight of a television show, by late 2014 Caitlyn had recorded her debut single, ‘Maps Out The Window’ which was released at the Tamworth Country Music Festival in January 2015 and went straight to number 1 on the iTunes country singles chart. By July Caitlyn had signed her first recording deal with ABC Music, a label that has enjoyed major success with its stellar roster of country artists that includes Lee Kernaghan, Beccy Cole, Sara Storer, Travis Collins and Jasmine Rae.
By late the same month, Caitlyn had released a second single, ‘Shoot Out The Lights’ from her self-titled debut EP along with an accompanying video clip.
With demand building for live appearances, Caitlyn was approached to perform and act as ambassador for the iconic Gympie Music Muster where she shared the bill with Australian hit makers Sheppard, Adam Brand and Troy Cassar-Daley. Apart from a triumphant main stage performance at the ‘Muster’, Caitlyn left her mark on the massive event when her EP was the biggest seller across the entire festival! On the touring front, Caitlyn and ABC Music stable mate, Travis Collins, were joined by 2015 Toyota Starmaker Winner, Mickey Pye under the banner of ‘Un-Wired’, a run of acoustic shows talking in venues across Queensland and NSW from September to December. With her fan base and social media followers growing at an extraordinary rate, Caitlyn’s second single, ‘Shoot Out The Lights’, hit number 1 the Music Network Country Airplay Chart after just 4 weeks while the accompanying music video went on to achieve the top spot on the CMC National charts. In November Caitlyn was nominated for a Golden Guitar Award for Best New Talent, and released ‘Pushing Through’, the third single from her self-titled, debut EP.
And just when she thought she had enjoyed all the career highlights she could achieve in one year, in December Caitlyn was announced as the winner of the Commercial Radio Australia New Artist to Nashville Scholarship.
The award provides Caitlyn with the opportunity to perform at the American Country Music Association’s global artist showcase GlobaLive! at the world’s largest country music festival, the CMA Music Festival in Nashville, Tennessee, June 2016.
Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, said Caitlyn was a deserving winner of the scholarship, which is provided annually to a country artist by the Australian commercial radio industry in conjunction with the CMA.
“The showcase will provide Caitlyn with a platform to reach and cultivate US music fans, as well as gain attention from the music industry and press,” Ms. Warner said.
“We’re delighted to support new music talent and we believe Caitlyn will be a fantastic representative of Australian country music at the event.”
Caitlyn kicked off 2016 with a number of dynamic performances at the Tamworth Country Music Festival including an unforgettable collaboration with Lee Kernaghan at the Australian Country Music Awards. On 10th March Caitlyn took out the highly converted ‘CMC New Artist’ Award at a star-studded event held at QPAC in Brisbane before performing a perfect set to a sold out crowd at CMC Rocks the following day.
In June Caitlyn will travelled to Nashville where she performed at the CMA Music Festival and wrote songs for her debut album due for release in the first half of 2017. In November, Caitlyn was again nominated for Best New Talent in the Country Music Awards of Australia (Golden Guitars, Tamworth) ahead of her performances during the iconic festival in January 2017.
There is no stopping this hugely talented ‘pocket rocket’ whose star will no doubt continue to soar and shine brightly!
Adam Eckersley Band
The global republic of country music has long been ruled by the singer-songwriter, frequently backed by a band, but never truly a part of it. Enter East Coast powerhouse Adam Eckersley Band, here to colonize their empire with thundering, shimmering slabs of Southern influenced rock, swamp and soul.
A one-time touring guitarist with the all-conquering McClymonts, Adam Eckersley is at once consummate showman, bona fide guitar hero and notably egalitarian bandleader.
Tearaway 2013 debut The First Album, won some impressive gains for Adam and the band, on release, hitting No. 1 spot on the iTunes Country Album Chart and peaking at No. 5 on the Aria Country Chart, while single, “Give Her the World”, cracked the CMC Video Chart Top 10 while before going on to take out first prize in the country section of the 2014 International Song Writing Competition. Crowning it all, in 2014 AEB snared the Golden Guitar for the best New Talent and in 2016 the Golden Guitar for Best group or Duo at the CMAA awards in Tamworth. In 2015, AEB jetted off to Nashville to perform as part of the Global Artist Showcase at the country music’s peak industry meet, CMA Fest 2015. Veterans of Tamworth Festivals, CMC Rocks, the Gympie Muster and many other festivals, Adam Eckersley Band have undeniable festival cred to back up their impressive rap sheet.
The Second Album was tracked at the world-beating Studios 301 in Byron Bay, with legendary producer-engineer Nick Didia (Bruce Springsteen, Casey Chambers, Powderfinger)) behind the sound-desk. The record came together in a storm of live tracking, with album sessions capturing several jaw-dropping jams from the preternaturally tight outfit.
Reflecting considerable growth in the band’s outlook, The Second Album, showcases ideas both new – the inclusion of a string quartet being a stirring example – and time honoured. It all adds up to a collection of eleven tracks that are emblematic of AEB’s striking versatility, impressive range and clear camaraderie.
“It covers a fairly broad range of sounds”, Adam says of the album. “There’s definitely some jamming Southern stuff, some straight-up rock sort of songs, a bit of country, and a coupla ballads. I don’t know really how to categorize the whole thing overall!”.
It’s also an album penned by Adam and the band – with writing input from Didia on two tracks – featuring songwriting on ‘Wheels’ with former Powderfinger frontman Bernard Fanning, as well as Adam’s wife and fellow vocal power unit, Brooke McClymont.
Another trip to Nashville for Adam in 2016 saw him writing songs with some of Nashville’s finest writers, this being a great start to the process of working towards a new album, recording of which is underway again under direction of producer, Nick Didia.
Adam is always looking to challenge his music and take it to the broader fan base and in September 2016 AEB toured Europe achieving what was set out to be achieved, to be invited back by all venues and promoters across five countries toured – 22 shows in 32 days and 10000 kilometres.
2017 has had a great start for AEB with a very successful Tamworth Country Music festival, a new album underway and a touring schedule that will take AEB to many arts of Australia during 2017 and 2018 with music festivals (including the Gympie Muster and Deni Ute Muster) and the release of new singles and the new album during this time.
James Blundell with Brewn
There are many terms people use when describing James Blundell. Icon. Legend. Controversial. Rebel. The truth is – James Blundell is all of these things. He is unashamedly honest and comfortable in his own skin. He radiates an enthusiasm for everything that life has to offer and it’s this authenticity that makes him one of the most instantly likable and recognisable artists in Australian music.
In 1992, James found mainstream success thanks to the smash hit single, “Way Out West”, with former Australian Crawl front man, James Reyne. The song debuted at #28 on the ARIA charts before peaking at #2 a month later. The song was ranked #22 on the ARIA End of Year Singles Charts while his platinum selling album, “This Road”, came in at #28 on the ARIA End of Year Albums Charts above acts including Madonna, AC/DC and Roxette.
James was the first young Australian country act to sign a major record label deal in Nashville, which has since paved the way for the likes of Keith Urban, Catherine Britt and Kasey Chambers. In addition to his own success he has penned hits for Lee Kernaghan, Slim Dusty and Jimmy Little. He is also the recipient of numerous CMAA Awards, double platinum, platinum and gold sales awards and is a five-time ARIA Award nominee with one win to his name.
His early career was nothing short of phenomenal: a string of platinum albums and top 10 pop chart success turned the former cattle hand into a household name. But like so many talented artists Blundell refused to be put in a box musically and after of numerous heated meetings with then record label, he walked away from the music business, although his star turn in a high profile advertisement for QANTAS kept his face firmly in the public eye.
2014 was viewed as a rebirth of sorts. He spent the year writing new material and commenced working with a new booking agent and record label planning for the next chapter of his career.
In January 2015 James released “Hills of Brisbane” which was the first of many to be recorded using the wonders of the internet rather than recording in a traditional studio environment. This afforded James the luxury to take his time shaping the sound he wanted the album to reflect. The result was “Come On In” which includes ten stunning tracks – all unique in their own way both musically and lyrically. The album earned James a Golden Guitar nomination for Alternative Country Album of The Year.
2017 marks the 25th Anniversary of his ground breaking release, “This Road”, and Blundell also celebrates 30 years in music. February saw the release of his fourteenth album – the ARIA Country Top 10 release – “Campfire”. The concept of the album was unearthing songs with great stories and telling them in a way you would around a campfire. For the album, Blundell assembled a tracklisting including tracks originally recorded by Madonna, Bruce Springsteen, Cyndi Lauper, John Cougar Mellencamp and more. Guests on “Campfire” include The Wolfe Brothers, Anne Kirkpatrick, Tania Kernaghan, Cameron Daddo and more.
James Blundell will be joined at the Deni Ute Muster by Brewn.
Drew McAlister has long been recognised as one of the nation’s premier songwriters and performers. The former McAlister Kemp mainstay has penned hundreds of tunes, both with and for artists from Graeme Connors to Luke O’Shea to Tamara Stewart. He’s worked with U.S. songwriting royalty including Brett Jones (Jason Aldean), Brian Maher (Taylor Swift), and Dylan Altman (Tim McGraw), and performed alongside the cream of Aussie country talent: Adam Brand, Beccy Cole, Sara Storer, Adam Harvey, and countless others.
The Melbourne-‐based trio Paula and Lee Bowman (Identical Twins) and Julian Sammut are Jetty Road. They have a sound described as a tapestry of pop and country, with a hint of folk. Imagine The Corrs, Fleetwood Mac and The Dixie Chicks with a unique Australian flavour. Jetty Road is a band with a story to tell.
Travelling half way across the globe to Canada to record once more with producer Paul Shatto at the helm, the new album is
a reflection of the band’s emotional journey over the past few years.
There’s a hot wind blowing: the kind of gale that lays a field of cane down flat against the earth, whips the roadside paperbarks into a frenzy, and buffets the windows of a solitary Land cruiser sailing down a moonlit red dirt track. It’s the kind of wind that heralds the arrival of a ferocious summer storm, and at the eye of the storm is Hurricane Fall.
Hurricane Fall confirmed their arrival onto the music scene last year with the release of their debut self titled EP, which peaked at No.2 on the Itunes Country Music Chart – the bands success was immediate!
Driving home their rock edge country sound, Hurricane Fall now release their new single ‘How We Get Down’, which was recorded at Spinlight Studio’s in Newcastle, and produced by the band. This is the lead single from their second studio EP also titled ‘How We Get Down’ (out now), which debuted at No.4 on the Itunes Country Chart. Pepper Deroy says “We wanted to write a song that was about life on the road with your mates, playing music and having fun. Sometimes it feels like a dream, which is what we’ve tried to portray in our clip. Life on the road can be tough at times but having fans respond to our music makes it all worth it!
The single has been brought to life with the film clip, which was shot at Stockton Beach in NSW and produced by Gravity Films. Launching the clip on their Facebook page sent music fans clicking, with the video already amassing over 26,000 views and counting!
Regulars on the touring circuit, the band have performed at many festivals including Gympie Music Muster, Tamworth Country Music Festival, The Mountain Cattleman Festival, Hats off To Country. Hurricane Fall have also been confirmed to perform at this years ‘Rock The Boat’ cruise, sharing the line up with artists including Angry Anderson, Jon Stevens, Status Quo, Mark Gable, Jack Jones and the Baby Animals.
The Davidson Brothers are considered two of Australia’s most highly driven and well respected bluegrass musicians. Hamish and Lachie were raised in the rural Victorian town of Yinnar and began performing and recording in 1998. Since then, they’ve toured the United States, Europe, appeared on the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville and toured their band extensively across Australia.
After eighteen consecutive years performing the Tamworth Country Music Festival, three Golden Guitar Awards later, Hamish and Lachie return with their eighth studio release in April 2017, All You Need Is Music, which was recorded in Nashville and features 12 new original Bluegrass & Country tracks.
Recently, the boys were inducted by the Australian Country Music Hall of Fame into Tamworth’s prestigious Hands Of Fame monument and in 2016 they teamed up with legendary rocker Joe Camilleri and the Black Sorrows to collaborate in the studio and on stage, opening sold out shows in both Melbourne and regional Victoria.
The brothers have a uniquely Australian light hearted outlook on life which they use to showcase their musical ability to all unsuspecting audiences. Well known for their contemporary acoustic style the Davidson Brothers are destined to have a long-standing career on the Australian music scene.