Downunder beats #20
Mildura is done and dusted for another year and here are the winners for 2017.
Entertainer of the Year: Aleyce Simmonds
Female Vocal of the Year: Aleyce Simmonds
Male Vocal of the Year: Darren Coggan
Rising Star Female: Kora Naughton
Rising Star Male: Will Day
Album of the Year: The Wide Horizon – Darren Coggan
Song of the Year: The Wide Horizon – Darren Coggan
Heritage Song of the Year: In Like Flynn – Pat Drummond
Duo or Band of the Year: Carter and Carter for Stand Tall
Barry Thornton Memorial Award: Craig Muir
Carter and Carter - World Full Of Angels (Number one - three weeks in a row - Aussie Country Charts plus they took out the Group or Duo at the Indie Awards with Stand Tall)
I am happy and proud to say that I have featured the bulk of these artists on Down Under Beats for you as well as the nominations for this year’s Southern Stars Indie Awards.
Pat Drummond was in a tough field, but his song about John Flynn, who started The Flying Doctors’ Service in Australia – which serves the outback and has helped so many patients in remote areas over the years was a gem. Pat has been a big storyteller in Australian Music for a long time.
I haven’t featured Will Day before but I have mentioned his name. He has toured extensively with Col Finley and made quite an impact at Tamworth this year.
Craig Muir is a volunteer who worked tirelessly behind the scenes at the festival.
I have made no secret of the fact that Aleyce Simmonds is one of my favourites, in fact, she is a crowd favourite. Personally, I think that she has been robbed at the Golden Guitars on several occasions. I think that someone may set Tamworth alight this year if they don’t give her one. She’s been a tireless worker on stage and off, not just for her own career but for helping younger artists and promoting others at her motel come venue in Tamworth. She does a lot to promote both Tamworth and Mildura festivals and she is one of our finest songwriters. She has the voice, to quote many, of an angel. She has won at Mildura before and it is great to see her win again. She also won the prestigious APRA award this year for songwriting. One of the nicest, most gifted people in the business.
The crowds were up this year and everyone put on great performances. I will try and get there again next year.
I have mentioned Drew a few times before. His latest solo album (no.3), Coming Your Way, is a wonderful album. His first album was his best effort still, the follow up after his few years with McAlister Kemp wasn’t as good but this one is back to what he did best on the first album. Drew is one of our finest songwriters, co-writing with and for some of our best. Even on this album, he writes with quite possibly the cream of our songwriters: Allan Caswell, Mike Carr, Michael Carpenter and Matt Scullion, all whom I have mentioned on here before. I am sure that it will be getting lots of airplay and be up for a few awards soon. My review of this album is on CountryAs.
Peter Dawson’s new album is also reviewed on CountryAs this week. If you want to know the sound of Australia, listen to Pete’s album. All The Rivers In Between.
The Tasmanian Awards are coming up next, with a heavy focus on Indie Artists and those who may not reach mainstream radio. Tasmania, our most southern state, the one shaped like a heart, is also known as the Apple Isle. Tasmania reminds many people of Ireland, Scotland or New Zealand. It also has similar climate! More and more artists are admitting to their roots being from Tasmania, despite years on the Mainland of Australia. It is a beautiful state, known for the Tassie Devil, the Tassie Tiger and beautiful seafood, countryside and a growing cheese and wine culture. It has its own country music festival now and its awards are highly prized.
Rick Hart, Chris Williams and The Weeping Willows had a gig happening in Melbourne on the weekend which was a cracker from all reports. Gretta Ziller and Mitch Power also were busy with gigs. South Australia had a busy festival on as well.
Cruising Country’s ship left Sydney yesterday for its annual 9 day trip amongst nearby Pacific Islands, hosting many country gigs with a bevy of Australian Country Music talent. This is the 7th cruise of this kind, I think and a very popular cruise at that. Non-stop country music and lots of interaction with the cruisers.
Tamworth does not seem that far away now, with gigs being advertised for January over the last few months and many more to come.
New albums are coming through soon. I have a few gigs to go to at the end of the month which will be amazing. I can’t wait to tell you about the new albums and gigs.
Until next time,
Hooroo. Try some Aussie music, you will be pleasantly surprised how good we are downunder....