- I've been accepted for the 2002 Woodford Folk Festival.
The country contingent includes John Williamson, Ted Egan, Nichole Brophy
and Jody Moore and ....yours truly.
Furthermore my backing artists will be two gold guitar winners ..Andrew
Clermont and Kelly Crosby. A boy from the country couldn't ask
Woodford is the biggest Music Festival in Australia (86,000 through the gate
last year) so thank you for your support over the years.
I have two GB's spots this year at Tamworth and one in Greg Williams arcade.
Both are early in the piece so after that I'll be a CM listener at Tamworth
- I grew up in Whyalla and was sent off to learn piano at St. Teresa's Convent at
the age of five. (No I'm not a Catholic so it was a bit of a shock to all concerned.)
I was seven when I got up with a band at the Central Whyalla Football club and sang
first in public.
Being from a mining family we moved to Western Australia where I picked
up guitar, mandolin and banjo and studied at the University of Western Australia, played
music, produced the major folk concert in the state for two years in a row and involved
myself in student theatre. I'm reluctant to say "acted" but I do recall
being in a production of "Oh what a lovely war" because they needed someone to
sing a couple of the songs. I moved back to Adelaide and completed a degree in
Theatre, Film and Visual Arts while being involved with Jug and swing bands making a few
attempts to write songs.
I then moved to Melbourne working at Crawford Productions on shows such
as Skyways, The Sullivans and Cop Shop, worked on independent films and directed and
co-produced a documentary on Dave Warner from the Suburbs touring Western Australia called
"Warner in the Wild". Dave was one of the first modern Australian
singer/songwriters to sing in his natural Australian accent and the film was the first
Independent Australian production to be brought and shown nationally by the ABC.
- Moving to Sydney I worked for five years in the Polygram
Records warehouse which enabled me to get a view of the music industry from another
perspective while playing keyboards, guitar and singing in a country music band on the
infamous Sydney "Club circuit."
- I completed graduate diplomas in Business and
Finance from the University of New England in Armidale gaining qualification as an
accountant then moved to Grafton where I was the musical director of the Grafton and
District Services Country Music Club.
- I decided to return to South Australia for personal reasons
and while travelling back broke down in Wilcannia and co-wrote the childrens gospel song
"God in Wilcannia" which signaled the breaking of the drought in terms of my
songwriting and found a place on my first CD "Good ways to break the drought"
I then wrote "George Whites Children" about child abuse which
made me the overall winner of the South Australian Country Music Festival in 1998 and lead
me into the recording studio to record my first CD. Later that year, at the Mildura
Festival I met the poet Lindsay Laurie and decided to devote my second CD to songs made
from his poems. The "Songs of Lindsay Laurie" was released in 2000 at the
Tamworth Festival and an enduring creative partnership was formed. We are in the
process of recording "This Bush Balladeer" for the Tamworth festival 2001.
Since then I have been an invited guest at the Mildura Festival for two
years as well as the Wollombi Festival in 2000.
I won the Henry Lawson Busking Championships at Grenfell in June 2000
"Where priority is given to original Australian material," and have been
selected to appear in the emerging talent section of the Woodford Folk Festival in 2001.
(After 40 years of playing music I figure it's about time I emerged!)
- I remain,
the other Dave Gray
Henry Lawson Busking champion 2000
Emerging Talent Woodford Folk Festival 2001