John Williamson - Winding Back - Celebrating 52 Years

20 Apr 2022 - Town Hall

Presented by Artist Network & Fair Dinkum Road Co

True Blue himself at the 50th anniversary Tamworth Country Music Festival

In 2022 Australian music icon John Williamson will celebrate his 52nd anniversary in the entertainment industry, which will coincide with the celebration of the Tamworth Country Music Festival’s 50th anniversary.


When John Williamson wandered into Richmond’s GTV9 studios in 1970 with a guitar under his arm, little did the Mallee farmer realise he’d make a 50+-year career out of singing and performing. His performance of Old Man Emu, the first song John had ever written, on Channel Nine’s popular New Faces program resulted in a number one single and a record deal. It also marked the appearance of a striking new talent: an unofficial custodian of Australian stories. Perhaps John’s greatest legacy is making Australians proud of their country and of who they are.


Half a century on, John Williamson has made an art of expertly capturing Australia in song. From boabs to billabongs and snowy mountains to sandy beaches, the Mallee-born songwriter’s 52 albums ­– including 20 original studio albums – have traversed Australia like a dust-covered road train, deftly moving between larrikin humour and touching pathos.


The Winding Back Tour takes in more than 40 dates across Australia, most of these postponed in 2020 due to the pandemic but will now see it through to early 2022. This tour will foresee an end to John’s regular regional touring, but not before he returns to the stage on Friday 21st January at the Tamworth Town Hall, one of his favourite venues. Not only that, but a highlight of the festival will be the unveiling of a life-size bronze statue of John, sculpted by renowned artist, Tanya Bartlett, recognising John’s contribution to the nation through his music and especially, Australian country music.

‘While I’m not looking to retire just yet, once I’ve completed my Winding Back Tour, I’ll be scaling down my live appearances.  I’ve always loved the connection I receive when performing, so you’ll still see me popping up at festivals and special events. I’m looking forward to spending more time in the garden and less time away from home.’ - John Williamson

With his honours including the ARIA Hall of Fame, an Order of Australia, 28 Golden Guitar Awards, Australian Roll of Renown induction, not to mention over 5 million albums sold and thousands of shows performed, it’s hard to begrudge the 75-year-old a less hectic schedule.


So, don’t miss him, True Blue himself at the 50th anniversary Tamworth Country Music Festival.



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