Well, we are supposed to be retired but find our lives seem to be busier than ever. At last I am able to sit down and write of our adventures over the past year.
Firstly the Caboolture Concert was a huge success with thanks going to Neville Kirkett and the volunteers and listeners of Radio 101.5 Caboolture who put on a great afternoon tea and raffle. Paul enjoyed getting back into concert mode and thrilled the audience with his performance.
Then came the Slim Dusty Festival in Kempsey which we enjoyed immensely and to Paul’s utter surprise, he was presented with the “Living Legend Award” of 2018.
This Award is presented to artists who have travelled Australia, recorded and sold numerous CDs and for a lifetime contribution to Australian Country Music.
Paul was absolutely stoked and couldn’t even speak. He treasures this Award along with his many other accolades.
Another exciting surprise came about in January when we at the Tamworth Country Music Festival where Paul performed with the other living legends: Chad Morgan, Terry Gordon, Reg Poole, Owen Blundell, Slim Newton, Steve Newton, Rex Dallas and more to a packed house of enthusiastic fans.
We visited the Country Music Hall Of Fame there to behold was Paul displayed in a window in his outfit of years gone by. What a credit to Eric Scott and his helpers to have all this information about our Country Music Artists available. So well worth a visit!
Paul was invited to sing at Leeton Country Roundup last October along with a host of great artists. This was a great festival enjoyed by all.
Finally Paul was able to go into Redbak Studios in Leeton and with much help from Mark Hillier and Sharon Benjamin put down the vocals for his latest release “Remember Me”. Peter Horan, who produced the CD, had recorded the music a couple of years ago. Marcus Hooper did the mastering on the final mix and 3XL had the new product ready to release at Hartwood Festival 2018 and we thank all immensely.
Christmas this year was very relaxing and spent at Hervey Bay with my brother, John and wife, Lucille and enjoying a seafood Christmas Lunch. A family BBQ was held at home afterwards and was great to catch up with some of our Brisbane family.
It was with mixed emotions that we headed back to Hartwood for the first time after selling the farm and retiring from the festival, but we thoroughly enjoyed our visit and being back with old friends, family and fans. The changes that have been made are working well. It was always Paul’s plan to move the main stage down to the camping area and Chrys, Tom and their many helpers have built a magnificent stage out of timber from the property. Congratulations to you all.
Paul thoroughly enjoyed performing on the stage at Hartwood again, and although he is still battling PMR, has a renewed zest for singing. There is talk of a possible tour with Reg Poole down south in November. Look out for that one.
Recently Paul received a phone call inviting him to perform at Nanango Country Music Festival in September 2019, so we’ll be looking forward to that one next year.
In the meantime we are enjoying a bit of home time before travelling to Bouldercombe for the Bouldy Bush Bash with Keith Jamieson towards the end of May. See Paul’s gigs.
Happy and safe travels to all,
Hele & Paul