A Friendly Visitor












We were sitting in the sunshine this morning sipping our coffee and smelling the occasional waft of smoke from the bushfires when along came this lovely….

The sound of his cheeky calls were the first sign and then we had to check him out more closely, the pics on the left are mine – the one on the right is from http://birdlife.org.au/bird-profile/gang-gang – I just had to check him out to make sure I knew what he was. Sadly he had no lady friend – they are equally as beautiful.


A very nice surprise to start the day :-)

What is Folk Music?

As I eat my pumpkin bread toast this morning I can feel a rave is about to begin…

I consider myself to be a ‘folkie’ at heart…

According to http://www.australia.gov.au/about-australia/australian-story/austn-folk-music – music page – Folk music is music which originates in and is handed down by oral tradition amongst common people. In the early days of the Australian colonies, convict ballads and songs became the foundation of Australia’s later day folk music and its first original compositions… Since the 1970s, Australian folk songs have been influenced by migrants from diverse backgrounds which dominated Australia’s working life…

I am a songwriter – I began my music career in folk music – and at that time there was an amazingly strong focus on traditional music and I learned a lot about the construction of folk songs.  I learned about story-telling, about how to communicate ideas and how to be a part of a community of people who love music and sharing it with each other.

The ‘folk club’ was at the centre of that experience – what’s changed – the folk club experience is hard to find… the open mic is maybe the closest experience, which is pretty ‘heartless’ because it’s mostly about using musicians as free entertainers to promote someone else’s financial interests (eg the local pub, restaurant, cafe, winery… ).

In the 60’s folk music became part of popular music with the emergence of ‘protest’ music – today modern folk music is filled with acoustic artists who are talented musicians and songwriters who are adding to an Australian musical sound, but are not always folk artists. Acoustic music is a beautiful aspect of a folk sound but it does not mean the content of your music is actually folk based.

I believe folk music has at its heart the ability to share the story of what it means to be here in Australia at this time and speaks to future generations – ‘pop’ music is often seen as modern folk – but actually the thing that makes ‘pop’ music distinctive is that it is by its nature transient, it doesn’t praise itself for being music that will last or stand the test of time (however, there are many artists whose music clearly does).  Pop music is about generating as much music as possible, it does not necessarily mean the music is good, it just means there is a lot of it… and so the music becomes more about the personality of the artist than the content, message and meaning that the creator intended.

Folk music is also inclusive, it is music for all people… it doesn’t sit neatly – it is uncomfortable, I hope that I am producing this kind of music.  Music that makes you feel a little itchy, irritated and provoked into thinking differently or responding more humanly.  Here’s to John Lennon.

New Directions…

Recently I’ve spent some time reflecting on where the time goes and how we’re all so inter-connected.  It seems a little hard at times to stay focused on remaining true to what I believe about my art and my place in the world, especially when it seems like the world or aspects of it are in opposition to the things I hold dear.

Then I realise I am maybe taking things way too seriously and need to keep things light