CASEY BARNES Casey’s music has made an impact around the world. He’s had hits in Europe, written songs in America, appeared in a top-rating TV show in Australia, and played alongside many international stars. Casey’s Flesh & Bone EP, was recorded in Nashville, produced by Rick Price and mixed by Grammy Award winner Jason Lehning. […]


By Lachlan Bryan When I first began writing for Country Update, I’d just returned from a whirlwind trip to the USA (my first as a musician, though I’d been a couple of times before as a tourist).  Now, almost three years later, I find myself again at the tail-end of a US visit, and again […]


By Gareth Hipwell. “Support the support,” was the masthead and catch-cry of a recent live music campaign spearheaded by local winemaker – and long-time arts supporter – Cake Wines. The sole purpose of the initiative was to encourage concertgoers to arrive at gigs in time to enjoy the opening acts, thereby fostering support for upcoming […]


By Hamish & Lachlan Davidson A good place to start this column about the finest music in the world might be to talk about the winner of the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Album of the Year, Noam Pikelny. Also crowned Banjo Player of the Year this year by IBMA, Pikelny’s new album, Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny […]

Issue 73

Hi and welcome to Winter – and didn’t it arrive with an unwelcome abruptness! The temperature dropped about ten degrees overnight here the first week of May – no small shock to the system! Before that, thankfully there was some long-overdue lovely rain and after good follow up falls, all around is green and lush. […]

Graeme Connors

In April I was privileged to attend the 25th Anniversary of North concert at QPAC in Brisbane, and what a wondrous night it was. 1500 of us were treated to a superb show that resonated with spectacular songs, glorious music, rapturous applause and several standing ovations. Graeme Connors performed the entire North album in the […]

Adam Brand

Although the multi-award winning Perth born singer-songwriter doesn’t have his own line of Tequila and cheese burgers he can serve up a nice liqueur if you’re passing by Brandy’s in Palmer Street, Townsville. “It’s a pizza-pasta restaurant,” Brand, 44, told Country Update on the eve of the launch of My Side Of The Street. “I’ve […]

The McClymonts

The writer first encountered the songs of Grafton sisters The McClymonts in 2010, approaching the group exactly as might be expected of a 23-year old punk fan having–at that stage–little more than a passing interest in country music. But something shifted in my outlook a couple of tracks into Chaos & Bright Lights that I […]

Rodney Crowell

Crowell has said that in the genetic mingling of his articulate, word-loving mother and his volatile, country musician father, he believes he was born to write songs. The best songwriters reveal themselves as vulnerable visceral human beings who’ve been scared, scarred and small just like the rest of us. Their candour and transparency of soul […]

Harmony James

Harmony James blew onto the scene in 2006 on a column of hot desert air. Her debut single ‘Tailwind’ took out first prize in the country category of the International Songwriting Competition, winning the singer enduring industry attention in the process. A self-titled EP, hit single ‘Somebody Stole My Horse’, and breathtaking full-length debut Tailwind […]


A handful of you might recognise a shift in bluegrass music where overqualified musicians from other worlds are joining our ranks (even actors/comedians like Steve Martin, Ed Helms & John C Reily) – and sticking around! Our own current band members Jacob McGuffie and Louis Gill have done the jazz course at the Victorian College […]


Set in the Depression-era American South, the Coen Brothers’ celebrated caper O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000) is one of those rare, two-headed beasts: a film that is at least as worthy of attention for its score as it is for its cinematic charms. The official motion picture soundtrack to the film was, and remains, […]