Sunday 29 January 2017

The early Bush Bands October 1954 to March 1955

Click on pictures for full-screen image

Article on 
Minutes of the Bush Music Club, 14th October 1954 to 11th March, 1955

The finding of the minutes changes accepted BMC history - unchanged is the fact that our founders The Bushwhackers (1953-1957) were the first bush band & that the South Coast Bush Band (early 1954 to late 50s-early 60s) was the second band, but Melbourne's Billabong Band wasn't the third band as their foundation was announced in January 1956 in the first issue of our first journal, Singabout. 

There were at least 8 other bands formed between The Bushwhackers & The Billabong Band.

Named bands -
Overlanders (Leichhardt, formed by 28th October)
Ringers (Arncliff)
Spraggers (Lithgow)
Un-named bands -
Lithgow (2nd band, named elsewhere as the Wombat band with a live wombat as mascot),
Junior Eureka League (St George)
North Sydney
Portland (near Lithgow)
Groups hoping to start a band -
Sutherland (Mirrabooka Youth Group)
Kings Cross

The minutes of 28th October mention Leichhardt's Overlanders, with members playing Banjo, Violin, Button Accordion and Bones. Musicians at Granville were hoping to start a band soon, as were groups at Sutherland (Mirabooka Youth group), St George (Junior Eureka League) and perhaps Kings Cross & Como.

12th November minutes mentions performances by Overlanders & Rousebouts, and minutes of 3rd December note that an Arncliff factory had a group called The Ringers

By 7th January there were 2 bush bands in Lithgow, but only one was named - Spraggers (Made up mainly of miners the name refers to one of the miners occupations. A "spragger" being the man, or boy, who turns the points and guides the skips to the desired place) and a bush band was also under way in Portland.

Article from Tribune Wed 27th October, 1954 (August, 2018),
found by Mark Gregory in TROVE, 2 weeks after the initial meeting of the Bush Music Club.

Minutes of 14th January report the first performance of the Drovers and by January 21st a Bush Band had been formed in the Junior Eureka League.

18th February minutes report a that North Sydney group was being formed & by March 4th they were preforming.

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Tuesday 24 January 2017

Report on BMC & members gigs, Illawarra Folk Festival 2017

BMC gigs

Australian Tradition Concert

first the rehearsal, where
Kerry timed each item


MC Dale Dengate with Rob Willis

Editor Mike

Doug Richardson, Brian Jonathon, Nancy Nicholls, Eric Eisler, Rick Hull, Dave Moir, John Poleson, Ralph Pride, Chris Poleson


Tunes Session

Chris Woodland

Dot Newland

Nancy Nicholls, Dot Newland

Kerry Doherty

early members Ann Maher & Rose Pride (1960s)

Wally & Margaret Bolliger

Early members Chris Woodland (1960s) & Frank Maher (1950s) with Kerry Doherty

Kerry Doherty, Frank Maher
(Chris Woodland photo)

Gail Copley, Dave Moir, Moira Cowie, Ralph Pride, Brian Jonathon, Eric Eisler
(Chris Woodland photo)

Frank Maher, Chris Poleson, Doug Richardson, Rick Hull
(Chris Woodland photo)

Old Bush Songs Singalong

Ralph Pride, Dave Moir, Rick Hull, Moira Cowie,  Chris Poleson, John Poleson, Kerry Doherty, Chris Woodland

Ann & Frank Maher, Chris Woodland

Rick Hull, Dave Moir

Eric Eisler, Bob Foggin, Steve Lockwood, unknown, Doug Richardson

Dot Newland, Sam O'Brien (flute),

Dot Dawson, Beth Cambridge

Chris Maltby, Bob Foggin, Eric Eisler

Moira Cowie

Chris Poleson leading a song

Dale Dengate

Saplings Session for musicians & would be musicians 8-16 years

It was a very rainy morning ...

Dave's group

Sam's group

Beck's group

Chris's group

Dave's group

Helen & Tony's group


Selection of Member's gigs

Australian Traditions concert  

Alex Hood

Chloe & Jason Roweth

Report on The John & Dale Dengate Mug for Parody

Dale, winner Jane Scott, MC BigRuss

1917:STRIKE, a show developed as a tribute to the late Brian Dunnett.  Christina Mimmocchi & PP Cranney with Jason & Chloe Roweth

Dave de Hugard

Graham Seal, Rob & Olya Willis

Kate Maclurcan & The Loose Ends
(photos - Sandra Nixon, except where indicated)

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