I had the opportunity to be present for an interview between Olive Knight and 3CR’s Rhythm and Blues journalist Werner Martin for his Hot Damn Tamale show aired Saturday nights between 7 – 8pm. The interview is jammed full of interesting information as well as tracks and discussion about her latest album Heroes and Lamentsproduced by Desert Feet Records.
Below is the audio of the last half of this fascinating interview for listening pleasure. Full interview below.
Kankawa Nagarra (Olive Knight) is an Indigenous elder from the Wangkatjungka community in a remote part of the Kimberly. Among her many attributes, Kankawa is a powerful gospel blues singer / songwriter.
Olive is in Melbourne for two major reasons. Firstly, she is employed as a teacher and mentor at Wesley College for the indigenous students.
Secondly, Olive is currently preparing for her performances with Hugh Jackman in the national concert tour of his new show Broadway to Oz which will be premiering at Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena on the 24 November.
This is the fourth concert tour that Olive has performed alongside Hugh Jackman.
Not long after she produced her first album Gospel Blues at the Edge of the Desertwith her Blues mentor Ivan Zar she was invited to debut in Jackman’s 2011 sell-out hit concert Back to Broadway.
Brash’s one-woman play is a knock-out. Staged at the brand-new Alex Theatre in Fitzroy Street St Kilda, ‘The Voices of Tali’ is inspired psycho-autobiography.
Ms Brash certainly inspired me, with a full flush of talent on display. She sings, she dances, she writes her own jokes, what more could we want? But there’s more …
The play uses Voice Dialogue (a technique pioneered by Drs Hal and Sidra Stone in the 1970s) to create a cast of characters drawn from within Brash’s own psyche. She performs them with captivating spontaneity and convincing range.
Yentl, the first alter-ego we encounter, makes herself known with grandmotherly jokes, before introducing Ms Broadway Brash, a personality surely made to play Velma Kelly in ‘Chicago’. I was dying to see her in jazz heels to go with her all-over satin body-stocking, but before she could lead us too far astray, 5 year-old Lisa was here with news from the early schoolroom, which she conveyed with finely comedic truth.
Continuing in this spirit, more voices appear and deliver slices of teenage and early adult life as lived in suburban Melbourne and beyond with powerful references to her impressions of Israel as Tali seeks and finds her dreams. Then Yentl steps deftly to the centre of the labyrinth.
Directed by Peter Seaborn with the creative efforts of a roll-call of others whom Brash acknowledged and thanked, ‘The Voices of Tali’ was an outstanding event. It received a standing ovation.
I first met Damon Smith while accompanying Western Australian Blues legend Ivan Zar to Damon’s home.
We were there to discuss a documentary that Damon is currently producing on Ivan’s life and times.
I was immediately impressed by Damon’s well polished appearance, polite manner and straight shooting honesty.
As a stay at home dad of a three year old and chief carer of Jerry Lee his sixteen year old dog and equally old cat Hannah, I quickly realised that this is a man that does not waste his time!
His home is immaculate and his beautiful native garden leads to a tiny, yet impressive recording studio designed and built by Damon in his spare time.
I discovered that Damon Smith is a man of many, many talents.
As a singer/ songwriter/ musican/ performer and producer Damon has created a space for a diverse selection of songwriters to come to perform one original song and one cover of an artist that inspires them. The 29 artists currently on his website come from all over the country and overseas to record their original songs in this extraordinary environment.
Every artist plays on the studio guitar named Zach Glickman and the music is performed in ‘one take’ in an effort to capture the raw, unbridled, essence of a song, including all the wobbly bits, which help to make a song truly memorable.
The Retreat Hotel in Sydney Road, Brunswick Melbourne, hosted a very special event with performances by long time friends, Western Australian blues artists’ Ivan Zar and Olive Knight.
Singer / songwriter, deadly guitar and harp musician Ivan, first encountered Olive when he was touring the Kimberly through the Aboriginal communities during the 1990s.
Back in the 1990’s Olive Knight whose tribal name is Kankawa Nagarra was already a Gospel singer and leader in her community. She was so inspired by Ivan’s high voltage energy, abundant raw talent and knowledge of the Blues, particularly Delta Blues, that she tracked him down in 2010 to be her mentor and produce her first album.
In 2011 Olive Knight was discovered by Hugh Jackman, who helped propel Olive to achieve worldwide fame performing in Hugh Jackman Back to Broadway along side her son, artist / singer Clifton Bieundurry and Nathan Mundraby playing didgeridoo.
In November this year Olive Knight will again be part of a national tour in his latest stage production Hugh Jackman from Broadway to Oz again accompanied by her son Clifton and Nathan.
Ivan and Olive are both powerful blues artists, both with extraordinary and rich histories. They are the real deal when it comes to Blues and they both continue to touched and inspired people from all walks of life.
THE CARLTONIANS established in 1964 is the original and longest serving coterie of the Carlton Football Club. It is also considered the most prestigious in the game and boasts a unique mix of leading business identities, corporate executives and entrepreneurs.
I was invited to the 2015 end of season celebrations held at Aerial Dockands to capture some highlights of the evening .
images by Kerrie Pacholli
The night’s entertainment was headlined by Lucy Gale, Dominic Ross and their band The Extremes. Also sharing the stage was the very dynamic standup comedien Bruno Lucia and the formidable and talented magician the amazing Anthony De Masi.