Kev Carmody Live

Kev Carmody – Recollections, Reflections..

ARIA Hall Of Fame inductee and legendary Australian songwriter Kev Carmody returns to The Tanks Arts Centre on Friday 8th April to showcase his latest release ‘Recollections… Reflections… (A Journey)’ and screen the short documentary ‘Songman’ which reflects Carmody’s unique philosophy on music and the making of his latest release.

Recollections…Reflections… (A Journey) is nothing short of a mountain of a release. 41 tracks over 4 CD’s with Carmody diving deep in to his back catalogue with some tracks penned close to 50 years ago. The release explores a huge range of sounds and paints a geographic picture of the rural life that Carmody enjoys. Tractors, bicycle pumps, butter knifes, pet dogs and even the farm rooster all make an appearance over the 4 disc set with Carmody and Co-producer Andy Wilmott greatly capturing the essence and  raw sound of the process.

“The family had been at me for years and every time Paul Kelly would come he’d say ‘what are you going to do with all those songs you’ve got in boxes and folders?’ (laughter). So I finally said ok and got in touch with Andy Wilmott who’s got a studio in an old fruit packing shed. I said to him I wanted to record with the concept of No Bass Guitar, No Drum Kit. So we just used all found objects around the property and made our own instruments. The hardest thing was getting a running order! (laughter) There’s a lot of different sounds and genres on their so it was hard to stick it together. We got to 40 songs and I said to Andy we’re going to have to pull up here! (laughter). We just could have kept going. There’s still a lot more songs we didn’t get to”.

Kev had a strong vision to keep the songs honest with no rehearsals and parts improvised in the studio.

“Sometimes I feel like we belt the song to death with pre-production and overdubs and things like that. So I purely wanted to capture the essence and the raw sound”.

Born in Cairns in 1946, his family later moved to South East Queensland in the early 1950s, and he grew up on a cattle station near Goranba, 70 kilometres west of Dalby in the Darling Downs. Kev had a variety of laboring jobs before in his early 30s he attend university – a time that coincided with the launch of his music journey. While he was a late starter to his music career, it had been a part of his life since childhood, something he drew upon for his own sound.

“I come from an oral tradition where I use word images as I never went to school till I was 10. I use word images to make it stick in people heads; you’ve got to have something that people will remember. Lyrics I find are not hard for me”.

Early in 1991 Carmody co-wrote undoubtedly his biggest hit with ‘From Little Things Big Things Grow’ with Paul Kelly. The song tells the historical story of the Gurindji Tribe drovers’ walkout at Wave Hill station in the Northern Territory during the 1960’s, the incident which sparked off the indigenous land rights movement.

Collaboration is something Carmody values highly and he also works tirelessly with youths around the country through workshops and development.

“I’ve done some many musical workshops out west near Burke lately and just sharing that creativity with the young ones and watching it develop to let it go where its goes is very rewarding. That’s what I like is just to do, just sit down and let it happen.”

“These days music to me has become so technically perfect with the technology we have access to. The music has become sanitised and sterile. I want to hear the whacks and the bumps and the slide hitting the guitar. So I encourage the kids to just play and let it come out, let their ideas run. It’s very natural and very rewarding”.

A consummate storyteller, Kev is considered a modern troubadour and has found himself at home playing at festivals and events all over the world. He’s performed for the National Press Club and also played alongside Paul Kelly at Gough Whitlam’s funeral. His visit to The Tanks will no doubt be a special one with the evening kicking off with a screening of the short documentary ‘Songman’ followed be an intimate performance by the man himself.

“Just me and a guitar” as Kev puts it.

Don’t miss one Australia’s most legendary songwriter at The Tanks on Fri 8th April.

Kev Carmody performs at The Tanks Art Centre. Doors open 6.30pm. Screening of ‘Songman’ at 7.30pm. Kev Carmody from 8.30pm. Tickets from Ticketlink

‘Recollections… Reflections… (A Journey)’ is available from iTunes

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