Australia’s Finest Singer-Songwriter
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After more than 40 years in the Australian music industry, 19 albums, walls and mantelpieces full of awards, you’d be forgiven for asking Country Music singer/songwriter Graeme Connors, “Why? Why continue with song writing?”.
Albeit blunt, that question is met with laughter and humility… “I know it sounds ridiculous, but the truth is, I’m still searching for the perfect song.”
The perfect song, by Connors’ definition, has the perfect combination of lyric and melody. It’s a song that has amazing impact. It connects with people- it has a unifying power for a whole crowd.
Many would argue that his ‘perfect song’ hit the airways 30 years ago in 1988 with the release of ‘A Little Further North Each Year’ from his breakthrough album North. North was a huge success and went on to sell over 140,000 units in Australia. A success that came 12 years after the release of his debut album.
In 1974, at the age of 18, Connors opened for American singer/songwriter, Kris Kristofferson during his Australian tour. Kris was so impressed with young Connors, that he took him into the recording studio to produce his 1976 debut album And When Morning Comes.
As a songwriter, Graeme Connors has written an extensive and impressive catalogue of songs for other artists including John Denver, Jon English and Slim Dusty. He became a favoured songwriter of the late Slim Dusty, who recorded 12 of his songs including the 1989 Song of the Year, ‘We’ve Done Us Proud’, winning Connors the first of 14 Golden Guitars. Connors enjoyed a long musical friendship with the Country Music great. When he passed away in 2003 Connors was invited by his Slims wife Joy to sing ‘Amazing Grace’ at his state funeral.
Unlike many modern-day songwriters, Connors has that rare ability to simplify complex ideas, reflect on serious issues with a wry smile, and combine philosophy and humour in a way that regularly produces an approving ‘yep, that’s me’ nod from the listener. The ‘yep, that’s me’ effect is part gift, part the result of a lifetime honing his craft as a wordsmith (64 years and counting) and the rest, a genuine understanding of his subject matter.
In celebration of his 60th birthday in 2016, Connors released his career retrospective album, 60 Summers: Ultimate Collection. 60 Summers is a mixture of songs from the very beginning of his career through landmark albums such as The Return, The Road Less Travelled, This Is Life, The Moment and Still Walking. The album debuted at #1 on the ARIA Country Album Chart and the lead single, also titled ‘60 Summers’, spent three weeks at #1 on The Music Network Official Country Airplay chart.
Following the success of 60 Summers, Connors was inducted into the prestigious Roll of Renown (Australia’s Country Music Hall of Fame) in 2017 for his contribution to Australian Country Music. His name immortalised in stone in Tamworth, the home of Australian Country Music.
Successes aside, Connors believes in the saying, “you’re only as good as your last show”. And it’s that mentality that has kept him driven and relevant in an everchanging and competitive industry. He treats each new album in isolation – a new opportunity to better himself in both song writing and producing.
Graeme’s most recent album, from the backcountry, produced with multi award-winning Producer Matt Fell was released in 2018 and combines Graeme’s signature Country sound with elements of rock, blues and roots.
And, in that typical unassuming Connors way, he smiles and hints that ‘the perfect song’ could very well be ‘from the backcountry’.
And When Morning Comes (1976)
South Of These Days (1989)
The Return (1993)
The Here and Now (1995)
The Road Less Travelled (1996)
One Of The Family (1997)
A Delicate Balance (1999)
And When Morning Comes (Deluxe Reissue) (1999)
The Best … ’til Now (2000)
This Is Life (2002)
The Moment (2004)
It’s All Good…More Of The Best (2006)
The Last Supperteers (2007)
Still Walking (2010)
At The Speed Of Life (2011)
Kindred Spirit (2013)
North- 25 Years On (2014)
60 Summers: The Ultimate Collection (2016)
from the backcountry (2018)
The Road Less Travelled The Best … ’til Now
1975 American Song Festival Award
1976 American Song Festival Award
1986 APRA Award “I’m Married to My Bulldog Mack”
1989 Song of the Year Golden Guitar “We’ve Done Us Proud” (recorded by Slim Dusty) 1990 APRA Award “A Little Further North”
1992 TSA Song-maker Award
1995 Song of the Year Golden Guitar “Songs from the Homeland”
1995 Album of the Year Golden Guitar “Homeland”
1995 Male Vocalist of the Year Golden Guitar
1995 TSA Media Song of the Year “Songs from the Homeland”
MO Award, Male Country Performer of the Year
1996 Song of the Year Golden Guitar “The Great Australian Dream”
1996 Vocal Collaboration of the Year Golden Guitar “Slowly But Surely”
1996 Bush Ballad Heritage Song Golden Guitar “The Ringer and the Princess”
1996 Video Track of the Year Golden Guitar “The Great Australian Dream”
1996 TSA Media Song of the Year “The Great Australian Dream”
1997 Album of the Year Golden Guitar “The Road Less Travelled”
1997 Male Vocalist of the Year Golden Guitar
ARIA Award Best Country Album “The Road Less Travelled”
MO Award Male Country Performer of the Year
PPCA Award Most Played Australian Country Artist (Radio)
1998 PPCA Award Most Played Australian Country Artist (Radio)
2000 TSA Country Song of the Year “These Uncertain Times”
2000 Victorian Country Music Awards Song of the Year “These Uncertain Times”
1998 Wrote the Cowboys Theme song “The Cowboys are my Team”
2001 Song of the Year Golden Guitar “Good Things in Life” (recorded by Adam Brand) 2004 2001 Video Track of the Year Golden Guitar “The Simple Truth”
2005 Victorian Country Music Awards Song of the Year “Hard Decisions”
PLUS eight other TSA song-writing awards.
2009 Q150 Queensland Icon Award
2011 WARP Gold Medallion Award Qld Male Vocalist of the Year
2011 Golden Guitar for Male Artist of the Year
2011 Golden Guitar for Album of the Year “Still Walking”
2017 Inducted into the Roll of Renown (Australia’s Country Music Hall of Fame)
Up Close (2004)
Graeme Connors… So Far and a Little Further (2004)
Concert to Camera (2015)
Australia’s Finest Singer-Songwriter
© 2016-20 Graeme Connors