SINGING AUSTRALIAN: A history of folk and country music


Book extract: Introduction




Part One – Folk                          

CHAPTER ONE Constructing the folk 1

Creating the canon 2

Who are the folk? 6

Popular front politics 14

CHAPTER TWO Into the coffee houses 23

The second revival 23

Folk clubs and the folk scene 34

CHAPTER THREE Folk goes bush 41

The bush band 42

The global context: folk and rock 46

The political context: the new republicanism 49

The musical context: instrumental and Irish music 51

The new authenticity bands 56

Out of the bush 61

CHAPTER FOUR Folk, festivals and the state 63

Folk festivals 63

Folk and the state 74

Alternative strategies and the folk alliance 76


Part Two – Country

CHAPTER FIVE The birth of country 81

Who likes country music? 81

Australian hillbilly to Australian country music 85

SA 01c.

CHAPTER SIX Country and the new nationalism 97

The country scene 98

Global country 106

Country, land and nation 110

Keeping it local: awards and accents 111


CHAPTER SEVEN The voices of country 119

The new Australiana: John Williamson 119

The Boys from the Bush: Lee Kernaghan 125

Country and Aboriginality: Troy Cassar-Daley 129

New country: Kasey Chambers 133

Warming to country 138



Part Three – Crossing Borders

CHAPTER EIGHT From multicultural to world music 143

Migrants and music 144

Polyethnic bands 147

Australian a cappella 151

Cultural revivalist groups 155

World music and the cosmopolitan 159

CHAPTER NINE Between folk, country and rock 165

Folk’s return 166

Country meets folk: bush bands revisited 169

Politics and class 172

Aboriginal influences 177

In the middle: Paul Kelly 186

Song, stances and voices 191


CHAPTER TEN Imagined musical communities 193


End Notes 203

Bibliography 227

Index 245