Well, here I go, LATE AGAIN with the newsletter! Life on the road becomes so busy at times; started our tour mid-May, the first stop being the Barham Balladeers’ Festival, which is always a good weekend – this year bringing in a record attendance for the festival and it is certainly becoming very popular on the festival circuit. At the completion of Barham, we then headed down to Warrnambool to do a show at the Warrnambool City Bowls Club, having a couple of camp-outs along the way – have to say it was not the best weather for camping – very wet and cold; would have been nice to hear that some of the rain could have made it to those in desperate need, though. Thanks to Pat & John Anscombe for helping to promote the show, we had a very successful show. It has been a few years since I last showed at Warrnambool, so it was good to return and catch up with the many fans and friends we have made down there over the years. With cold and wet weather still with us, we then headed down to Rendelsham SA where Lyn & Len Brooks organised a show for us at the Rendelsham Hall. Thanks to Lyn & Len, we had another very successful show and without the support of the likes of these people who work at organising and promoting the shows, I doubt if the shows would go on. The cold and wet continued to follow us as we made our way down to Moonta for a show at the Moonta Town Hall; again, another very successful show, thanks to Lorraine Darling for organising and promoting the show. From Moonta, it was then up to Port Pirie for an afternoon show at the NCMA Clubroom – a good afternoon, with thanks to Mary for organising and promoting.
From Pirie, hoping to leave the cold behind, we headed west. Not having any shows booked for the next three weeks, I hit holiday-mode, enjoying some wonderful camp-outs along the way with friends, Jack & Liz Wallace. Jack was not only a great ROADIE, helping set up and pack up after shows, but he also made sure the fire was going early mornings. I have no doubt that after getting into holiday-mode, this certainly has played a big part in the delay of this newsletter; must admit we thoroughly enjoyed the break. We managed to spend a few days out at the little opal field town of Yowah, Qld. What a top little spot! I ended up playing at the community club there, which turned out a great night, as some unorganised gigs often do. Lots of fun; great people- can’t wait to go back and try my luck at finding some colour.
As all good things come to an end, it was time to get back into real work mode, heading out to Thargomindah for their first Channel Country Muster. It was a great little festival, organised by Ged & Trudy Hintz, which we really enjoyed. Congratulations on a job well done, Ged & Trudy. I certainly know what it’s like organising such events; around 200 vans and I’m sure the flies outnumbered festival goers by a thousand to 1!! Man, were they bad! Otherwise, as I said, a great weekend. As this letter goes to print, we are currently up here at the Daly Waters Pub NT doing a show nightly through to 18 August. Surprisingly, there are still a lot of caravanners out on the road at this time of year, making up a good crowd each night here at the Pub.
After finishing at Daly Waters, we will then head back to Camooweal for the Drovers’ Festival to be held over the weekend of 24-25 August. This year, Camooweal will also be holding the Bronco Branding Championships over the festival weekend. The festival includes a great line-up of entertainment over the weekend, featuring Neville Anderson, Bruce Lavender, Laura Downing, John O’Dea, Tim & Christine Middleton, the Eppernara Community Band and yours truly, along with popular Bush Poet, Jack Drake, and world champion Whipcracker, Nathan (whippy) Griggs; should be a good weekend. I’ll also be doing a show at the Camooweal Pub on Thursday 22 August.
After Camooweal, we’ll then head across to Townsville for a show with fellow Balladeer, Bruce Lavender, on Friday 30th August at, believe it or not, the venue TOM’S TAVERN, Aitkenvale, then on to Mackay on Sunday 1st September at the Senior Citizen’s Hall, followed then by Rockhampton on Tuesday 3rd September at the CDCMA Hall. With those shows behind us, it will then be down to the Nanango Country Muster on 13-14 September. Following on from Nanango, we then head for the hills of home for a short break before travelling down to Mildura for their annual festival. With the year closing in, I’ll still have a couple more festivals to attend at Ariah Park on 19-20 October and the Leeton Country Roundup on the weekend of 2 November. Busy times ahead still!
Update on the New Album – REFLECTIONS is selling well, along with some positive feedback, and the new website is all good, at last. A reminder to those wanting to purchase the album, you can order online or print out the mail order form. Simply go to the website www.tommaxwell.com.au
Well, folks, I hope this has bought you up to date with the latest happenings. Once again, I must apologise for the delay in getting this newsletter to print. I’ll look forward to catching up, somewhere, sometime soon in the great outdoors.