Camille, Stuie & Sonny French
When Tasmanian guitar wiz Stuie French was touring Australia with Merle Haggard in 1996 did he see a sign foretelling that in years to come he would fall in love with a Maori woman who sang like an angel and they would end up making beautiful music, and a family, together?
When Camille Te Nahu arrived in Australia in 1999 her vocal talents were immediately recognised by Kasey Chambers and Beccy Cole who employed her as their backing singer both on the road and in the studio. Over the years, Camille and Stuie released their own albums – Stuie with the Feral Swing Katz (Come out Swingin’, Feral Swing Katz with Peter Busher and Round 4) and Camille’s solo album (Camille Te Nahu), and their paths would often cross as they both toured with Australian country stars (Troy Cassar Daly and Gina Jeffreys). But it wasn’t until 2002 when their stars aligned and they fell in love.
“I’ll never forget the first time I heard Camille sing. It took my breath away as well as the rest of the guys in band, and suddenly our musicianship went up a couple of notches. Over the years she has taught me a new way to approach guitar playing. After all, why would you want to get in the way of a voice like that? Our different musical backgrounds over time has combined to give us a fresh yet traditional sound.” – Stuie French
2012 sees the release of their fourth, and finest, album together, Big Days & Little Years. Recorded in Sydney and financed by fan donations, the album is a gentle look at the cycle of life and the sweet sorrow of change. The album’s tone is the calm acceptance of the passage of time. You not only hear this in the song lyrics but in Camille’s beautiful singing and in the relaxed and tight groove that their band of stellar musicians creates. Except for two songs, (Waves by Sam Baker and The First Time by Fred Koller and Danny O’Keefe) Camille and Stuie honed their songwriting skills to tell the stories of their life – of the spirits of their ancestors and the joy of descendants. With loving respect Camille and Stuie acknowledge the importance of the unbreakable thread that is family (or “whanau” as Camille would say).
Stuie is a master of the country/jazz guitar-style (Les Paul invited him up to play in New York), and his smooth voice harks back to the days of Tommy Duncan singing with Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys – no pretense or exaggeration. Stuie leads his ensemble (who are more extended-whanau than hired guns) of Bill Risby (piano), Chuck Morgan (ukelele), Dave Ellis (bass), Doug Gallacher (drums), Garry Steel (piano accordion), Michel Rose (pedal steel, mandolin, dobro) and Mick Albeck (fiddle), who all play with finesse and feeling, creating the perfect bed for Camille’s gentle, velvet voice. She sounds like no other singer with a style that is effortless, a sound that is rich, deep and very easy on the ear.
Camille and Stuie are truly a musical marriage made in heaven. Big Days & Little Years is a must-have collection of beautiful moments.
For over two decades now Melinda Schneider has been a leading light of the ‘new-breed’ of Australian Country music artists both in Australia and the US.
In a career which began with a stage debut at the age of three, she has kept her family tradition alive by becoming one of Australia’s most sublime singers and popular live performers. But it is through her assured and accomplished song writing that she has really discovered her true voice.
With ten albums under her belt, she has earned two Gold records and won numerous awards, including six CMAA Golden Guitars – featuring 2008 Top Selling Album for Stronger, 2005 Album Of The Year with Family Tree, APRA Song Of The Year for the song Real People and Female Vocalist Of The Year in 2003 for The Story Of My Life.
2008 brought with it an exciting new phase in Melinda’s career, with the launch of her own independent record label, Be Music. The label’s first release was Melinda’s fifth studio album Be Yourself in July 2008, which earned her second ARIA nomination for Best Country Album.
Melinda was awarded her 6th CMAA Golden Guitar for Vocal Collaboration of The Year in January 2009 for her heart-warming duet ‘Still Here’ with Paul Kelly. Melinda’s songs have also been recorded by artists as diverse as John Farnham, Billy Thorpe, Jimmy Little, Olivia Newton-John, Ricky Skaggs and Paul Kelly.
As 2010 unfolded, the career dimensions of Melinda Schneider broadened dramatically. She dazzled with her dexterity on television’s Dancing With The Stars, and put her country music recording career on pause for a moment to indulge a passion for Doris Day that goes back decades. This passion resulted in the release of her shimmering tribute album Melinda Does Doris - A Tribute To Doris Day, which debuted at #1 on the ARIA Jazz and Blues chart, remaining there for a total of 9 weeks.
Melinda recently starred in her brand new stage show DORIS, Doris Day – So Much More Than The Girl Next Door. Co-written by Melinda and David Mitchell (of Dusty/Shout fame), this musical tribute to Melinda’s idol, could very well be the universal story of women, set to the music of the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s.
Hot on the heels of sell out seasons at Brisbane’s Twelfth Night Theatre and the Adelaide Cabaret Festival and two huge weeks at Melbourne’s Her Majesty’s Theatre, DORIS opened at The Lyric Theatre, Sydney on November 3rd 2011 to rave reviews, followed by a sell-out reprise performance at the prestigious Sydney Opera House Concert Hall in April 2012.
Meanwhile, in October 2011, Melinda also released her 9th album Life Begins At 40 – The Ultimate Melinda Schneider Collection. The double CD release marked her recent milestone birthday and celebrates over three decades of Melinda’s successful recording career.
More recently, Melinda has entered another very fantastic phase of her life with the birth in August 2012 of her beautiful baby boy Sullivan.
In November 2014 Melinda and Beccy Cole collaborated on their #1 charting album ‘Great Women Of Country - and The Songs That Made Them’. A National major theatre tour followed in 2015, including the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall.
Melinda is currently on a Regional theatre tour Nationally with a concert version of her DORIS show ‘Melinda Does Doris’ A Tribute to Doris Day and is writing songs for her new original album due out later in 2016.
“As a songwriter and singer Melinda Schneider is one of this country’s truly important artists” - Glenn A. Baker
“When she sings ballads, she has the power to make you cry” - Sydney Arts Guide
“My goodness, does Melinda Schneider shine!” - Inside Entertainment
“Schneider performs with infectious warmth and enthusiasm and is in wonderful voice” - Sunday Telegraph
Since his early childhood, Jeff Brown has had a love for Australian Bush Ballad music, having grown up in a household where some of the great old pioneers of Australian and American country was the only music played.
In 1997, at the age of 21, Jeff recorded and released his first album “I Remember Gordon Parsons” as a tribute to Gordon. Jeff’s talents were recognised when he won the Stan Coster Memorial Bush Ballad Award at the Fosters Battle of the Bush during the Tamworth Festival in 1998. This same year, Jeff toured the country with the legendary “Brian Young Show” for 4 months, an experience which helped mould him into the successful entertainer that he is today.
Jeff was placed as one of the “final five” in the prestigious Golden Guitar Awards at the Tamworth Country Music Festival in 1999 with the track “The Old GP” written by Ian Quinn. On releasing his second album “Poverty Liner” in 2003, Jeff was awarded a place in the “final five” once again, with the single “The Ghost Of Three Rivers” by Keith Jamieson.
In 2005, Jeff released his third album “Mate I’m Feelin’ Lucky” and won the Golden Guitar Award for Bush Ballad of the Year with the track “Where The Yellow Kapocks Bloom” penned by Wave Jackson.
2007 saw the release of Jeff’s 4th Album “Harvest Time Again” which won “Album of the Year” at the Bungendore Stan Coster Memorial Bush Ballad Awards. The final track on this album “In The Wings of the Yard” written by Kelly and Marion Dixon and Jeff, reached the finals at the 2008 Tamworth Golden Guitar Awards for Bush Ballad of the Year.
Jeff has now released his 5th album "Hard To Let Go" which was produced by Stuie French at Swingin Doors Sudios. The album has been a great success with Jeff winning a Golden Guitar at the 42nd CMAA Country Music Awards of Australia for "Bush Ballad of the Year" with the song "I Love Australia" written by Keith Jamieson. Jeff also won "Male Vocalist of the Year" and "Album of the Year" at the 2014 Stan Coster Memorial Australian Bush Ballad Awards.
With farming held close to his heart and personal involvement with the transport industry, Jeff relates to the songs that he sings and delivers them with confidence and sincerity. Jeff has stuck to the Bush Ballad music with a passion and his easy listening voice adds a fresh approach to them.
With the highly anticipated follow up to his #1 Country album ‘Wired’ (2015), which included two #1 country airplay singles; Travis Collins is set to shine brighter than ever in 2016 with his new album ‘Hard Light.’
‘Hard Light’ moves everything up a gear, with Travis himself digging deeper than ever before - not only with his vocal abilities, but also as a musician and most notably here, a songwriter.
A captivating and refreshingly real collection of songs that show the HARD side of sharing personal struggles but also the LIGHT in embracing them to produce incredible strength and character.
The lead single, ‘Just Another Girl’, is the first tease into the talents of Travis Collins and the honesty of ‘HARD LIGHT’. The single explores love lost and the girl that got away.
Recorded and self-produced at the legendary Rancom Street Studio in Botany NSW (Lee Kernaghan, Adam Brand, Sara Storer), ‘Hard Light’ is an album that’s unapologetically country, unashamedly Australian and relatable to people from all walks of life.
"I'm so proud of this album. For the first time in my career I'm comfortable sharing my story, scratches and all. It's taken all my life so far to realise, and accept, that 'my' stories also belong to other people. Having written 12 of these 14 new tracks, they are pages torn straight from the book of my life… They're honest, raw, authentic and unfiltered” explains Travis.
2016 has already seen Travis Collins nominated for the CMC awards and Golden Guitars, the latter of which he hosted alongside Sam McClymont. Recently a part of the country super group, Adam Brand and the Outlaws, and a sweeping national tour of almost 40 dates, Travis continues to impress audiences and listeners nationally and cement his reputation as a powerhouse artist with an ever-growing presence in the Australian music industry.
Sandra Humphries – The Real Deal.
The moment that Sandra Humphries opens her mouth and sings, you know that she as felt every emotion that she puts into her songs.
Sandra Humphries is a South Australian singer songwriter that has lived and breathed country music from a very young age. This is evident in the way she sings, some compare her to her heroes, Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette, with a little Emmy Lou thrown in.
Sandra has her own unique way of delivering a song which has gained her the nickname amongst her peers as Australia’s Queen of Country Music.
Having released 5 albums, all which have gained her awards, Independent Female Vocalist of the year twice and Independent album of the year awards and finalist spots.
All albums have had top ten hits on the Country Music charts and Sandra’s newest release I’m Stronger is no exception, with her first single release hitting the Country charts almost as soon as it went out to radio, finally making it to the number 1 spot on the Hot FM Country Charts. This new album consists of all original material, something which Sandra has been building towards, just waiting until the right time to release her own material.
Reviews for the album have been exceptional, with most of the industry declaring this her best work yet! Already the singles released from this album have all gained top 10 spots on the Australian Country Charts.
Sandra performs regularly at Australia’s premier Country Music events, and has a very strong fan base Australia wide, she has also toured in America, Europe and New Zealand.
Having performed with most of Australia’s leading Country Music artists, Sandra has a vast amount of experience in performing for the crowd!
If you like your music country, you will be guaranteed to get it with Sandra, you will have a laugh and maybe a cry, you will be entertained, you will immediately feel like you’re a part of the Sandra Humphries family, and you will most certainly put her on your list of artists to see again!
Pete Denahy is a comedian and bluegrass musician hailing from Yackandandah in Victoria, Australia. He is a songwriter and singer whose show includes everything from serious ballads to ridiculous stories and songs with a twist.
Pete wrote the "teenager song" Sort Of Dunno Nothin' which went viral on youtube and is seen as a Gen Y anthem, although people from all generations relate to the song.
Pete has toured with Slim Dusty, Sara Storer, Troy Cassar-Daley, Lee Kernaghan and has worked in the Melbourne comedy scene with Akmahl Saleh, Elliot Goblet and Flacco.
Being half Japanese, Pete draws much inspiration from his late grandfather, Kido Zenichi (木戸 全一 ) who was a well respected musician in Hiroshima. In 2013 Pete travelled Japan and played bluegrass and country with some of the finest pickers he's shared a stage with.
Pete's main inspiration in the business of entertainment is the man who wrote "I've Been Everywhere", Geoff Mack who has been his mentor since 1991 and is one of his best friends.