In the 1960's Australian Rock & Roll singles were as good as those made anywhere in the World.
Recording technology being still quite primitive - all 45's were still in mono - there was no difference in sound quality between our singles and those from the UK and USA.
We had many exciting singers and our musicians could hold their own with anyone.
On the local charts Australian acts vied with overseas hits and had no problem competing with the best the world had to offer.
Billy Thorpe & The Aztecs' "Poison Ivy" even knocked the Beatles off the top of the charts when the Fab Four were touring here in 1964! John Lennon was so amazed he asked to meet Thorpe in person. This book attempts, for the task can only be attempted, to list the best 100 singles of that remarkable decade - the Sixties - by Australian artists. Australia had embraced Rock & Roll from it's very beginning in the mid-1950's.
Johnny O'Keefe, Lonnie Lee, Judy Stone, Lucky Starr and Noeleen Batley had chart
success then even against the seemingly monolithic American stars like Elvis Presley, Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent, Buddy Holly and Little Richard.
From 1958 national TV shows like "Bandstand" and "Six O'clock Rock" showed us our local stars in the flesh.
At live venues around the country local rockers wowed the crowd and were rewarded with screams from the girls and cheers from the boys.
When the Beatles changed the world in 1964 we were again ready with our local Mod Bands and Billy Thorpe, Ray Brown, The Easybeats, Normie Rowe, the Masters Apprentices and the Twilights again sold singles by the truckload and caused riots when they came to town to play.
In Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Brisbane, in Hobart and Perth, throughout the entire country, venues sprang up all over city and suburb to provide gigs for the long-haired boys playing guitar, bass and drums.
On TV "Go" and "Kommotion" showcased what local pop acts could do.
Looking at this present list, every genre of music is represented - pop, country, soul, folk, instrumental, psychedelic, ballads - all that diversity which drives our interest in pop music and glues us to our radios and record players.
There were hundreds of local singles released in this time, some of them rose and fell never to be heard of again, while others became part of Oz Music history. We've tried to showcase the best, yet we expect there will always be some song that didn't make the cut that you the reader will regard as a glaring omission. Well, that's the way the turntable spins.
We hope you find your favourite single here as well as many other great songs to listen to and enjoy again, just like the first time when you heard the deejay on the radio announce...'and now here's a great new song by an Australian artist...'
You can then, like us, remember all those wonderful times when an Australian single moved your life from the mundane to the marvelous. - David N. Pepperell
About the Author
David N. Pepperell has been a musician, songwriter, journalist, bookseller, record retailer, and writer. He was a singer with the band, The Union, in 1966. In 1971 in Melbourne he founded Archie'n'Jugheads Records (later called The Missing Link), Australia's first import rock record shop. Also in the seventies, he was a regular contributor to Daily Planet, Go-Set, and Juke (as Doctor Pepper), as well as contributing to Rolling Stone, Digger, Nation Review, Ear for Music and Metro. He presented programs…
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You'll want to buy the CD set to compliment this marvellous book.
Good summary of each song and the artist/s who performed it. Includes a photo of each artist. A great companion book to the 3cd set of the same name. Highly reccomend both the book and the cd set, especially if you love 60s music by Australian artists. Good coffee table book, conversation starter.
I love music and it's good to read what made the hit parade all those years ago, especially Australian music makers
Number Of Pages: 212
Published: 1st October 2015
Publisher: Melbourne Books
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 20.0 x 20.0