Andy Dawe – Guitarist
4 Sandpiper Avenue, Seaford Rise, SA 5169
Well, I love country music but I’m not exactly “dyed-in the-wool” country. Here’s why……
After studying violin as a child under Lyndall Hendrickson I took up guitar in my late teens. Having grown up in a family of classical musicians - national recording artists and concert soloists, choristers, and orchestral musicians - and participating in junior orchestras and choirs, I developed a love of all things musical. My teenage years were spent in front of a record player going through an ever-increasing pile of progressive rock and jazz/rock records. Some teenagers get together with their mates and hoon around in cars, smash letterboxes or kidnap garden gnomes……we had record afternoons!
Soon after leaving school and starting my nursing career I found the force of rock 'n' roll was too strong to resist and, much to the disappointment of mum and dad (mainly dad), I moved over to the dark side! I packed up my violin and bought an electric guitar. My first band called “Macrophage” was made up of nursing colleagues (boys can be nurses too you know!) and my cousin Rich, an engineering student, on bass. We tackled (....some might say strangled!!!) Neil Young, Doobie Brothers, Cold Chisel, Dire Straits and Little River Band covers as well as whatever our playing ability at the time would allow us to play. The closest we got to country was Lynryd Skynrd or Eagles. Not long after forming the band, my biggest fan - mum - passed away suddenly from heart disease at the ripe old age of 47. I was her biggest fan – I hope she knew it. God bless you mum.
During a conversation one day with Riverland vocalist Rick Porter, himself a nurse, I suggested he join our band as lead singer. Rick’s reputation as an amazing singer with a lot of experience had somehow filtered through the grapevine. His credits included runner-up with his band The Crescents to Glenn Shorrock & the Twighlights in the Hoadleys Battle of the Bands in the late 1960s. Rick could sing anything from soft ballads to heavy rock and although he was a Roy Orbison specialist (his versions of “In Dreams” & “Crying” were sensational) I reckon he was really at his best belting out a bit of Bob Seger or John Fogarty. The band changed its name to “Double Vision” (after the hit song by pop band Foreigner) and we were on our way. Rick and I performed consistently in that band for over ten years with the odd line-up change here and there until we decided things had run their course and we should go our separate ways. Rick was the best friend a guy could ever have, a real “people-person” and family man, and his passing at such a young age (55) from cancer was devastating and mighty unfair to say the least. R.I.P. mate!
Since then I've been lead guitarist for many Adelaide bands, covering a range of styles including rock, pop, blues, jazz, folk and country, supporting the likes of Brian Cadd, Glenn Shorrock, Beccy Cole and the late Ray Charles. Some years back , and through good friend Katy Veldt (of KT&Co), Carole Sturtzel asked me to be MD for her support band for Beccy’s outdoor concert at Murray Bridge - an “all-star” band including Phil Cuneen on piano and Trev Warner on fiddle. What a blast! On my way home from that gig I tuned in to John Nutting’s Saturday Night County on ABC radio just in time to hear Keith Urban’s instrumental “Rollercoaster” for the first time – man can that guy play! I was suddenly hooked on country music. At the same time I was part of award-winning original song-writing duo “Whoosh!” with Jane-Marie Evans.
Marie Hodson - a little lady with an awesome voice – asked me to be guitarist and MD for her and we spent 3 years performing both as a duo and with the Deep River band. We had many, many enjoyable gigs together. Marie went to Nashville to record her second album and has since moved permanently to Tamworth.
Lately I have been MD and guitarist for young singer Michael Venner who is rapidly making an impression on the Adelaide music scene.
So there you go………Some guys take up guitar and never grow out of it!
Count your blessings………………..Catch you on the dance floor!
Muzotek Enterprises (ABN 37 664 642 025)
0408 814 127