23 September 2005
Award winning photographer and author John Elliott is currently
working on a book about Country Music in Australia and he hopes
that it will be published in time for the 2006 Tamworth Festival.
John was responsible for the latest and possibly the best life
story of Slim Dusty plus his exhibition of photographs of Australian
icons is currently on display at the National Gallery.
He is also working on the autobiography of Lee Kernaghan but
that as been put back burner until his new project is completed.
Toowoomba based John is also Australia’s number one country
music photographer with his pictures and portraits appearing on
more album covers than anyone else.
John Elliott recently contacted me with a number of questions
asking for my thoughts on a variety of subjects for his book.
One of those questions was, Why is country music so popular in
South East Queensland ?
This is really a catch 22 question, like what came first the
chicken or the egg. Currently in our region we have a host of
popular and well run country music associations who give help
and encouragement to emerging artists, but how did it all start?
I certainly don’t have the answer to that but I do know
that it is now and ongoing thing like an endless conveyer belt
which continues to churn out an endless stream of great performers.
Examples include Brendon Walmsley, Gina Jefferies, Lyn Bowtell,
Jeff Brown and a whole lot more.
South East Queensland is also unique because the have a vibrant
well run country music talent quest festival circuit which provides
a learning curve for any one keen to make it in what is a tough
We also have the largest number of radio stations which play
country music as their main genre.
This brings us back to the question , How did it all start?
One theory (mine) is that the good lord when he created Australia
decided to put all humans interested in country music and our
heritage in one place so that he could keep and eye on them and
help them establish what is now a million dollar business.
That’s my theory and I’m Sticking to it. What do
Country Capers is available in the Ipswich Advertiser and countrycapers.com.au