“Ask what makes you come alive and go do it.”
– Howard W Thurman
I have a memory of visiting an old recreated village in Wilbourforce as a kid. My uncle, Brian Loughlin was singing and playing his largerphone and bones in the original Bushwackers, I think. He and his mates, John Meredith and Alan Scott started the Bush Music Club, which still survives as is one of the worlds oldest folk music clubs. They were into collecting the songs sung in Australia by all, documenting them, recording them and singing them to keep them alive.
I vaguely remember a stage.
The songs he sung were probably reinforced through the few albums we have with him singing on them. One was the Club / band putting Henry Lawson poems to music and the other was Reedy River. I did see him perform in that too, at Balmain but that is even a more shady memory.
I don’t have many memories of my uncle. More of his wife Pam, mums sister, my Aunty who was wonderful. And my cousins of course who were closer to my age.
Now-days, the closest I get to this music is going to an Irish Ukulele Jam with Pt and Gail.
How many Australians know this tiny part of our musical heritage?
I am heartened to see that the club survives in Marikville and is healthy and alive.
Emma Peel and Neaky at Old Tailem Town Poineer Village near Adelaide at Tailem Bend. Photograph copyright © Len Metcalf 2019