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Next Friday, August 25, sees the release of their fifth album, Backseat Rhythms. Their AC/DC-infused sound is keeping the tradition of Aussie rock alive.

“Australia certainly has a great vibe and tremendous rock legacy,” Casanovas bassist Damo Campbell said.

“We’ve all grown up on that, with some absolute legendary bands that have come before us.

“I think that is something that Europeans and Americans have always been attracted to as well.

“You still see that now when you tour overseas.

“There’s just something that comes across as very raw and honest, which is very attractive in rock ’n’ roll.

“You can’t really fake that”.

I first caught the band playing live around Melbourne numerous times in the early 2000s. They were part of the early 2000s rock revival contingent that saw bands such as Jet and The Vines take Oz guitar rock to worldwide success. Though surprisingly, The Casanovas never managed to achieve that same outcome.

“We didn’t get signed to a major [label], it’s that simple,” Campbell said.

“We were playing in London and Europe the same time as those guys and had all the momentum through the NME and various other media.

“Around that time, we were groomed by Electra A&R just after Jet had been signed, and by the same guys that signed them.

“This was a very encouraging time and I remember being in New York where we played a couple of showcases for the A&R guys and local press.

“But they decided to pass on us, citing that they had just signed one Aussie rock band, which at the time was unknown as to whether or not it would work.

“So that was it for us on that level.

“However, we’ve played the longer game and, while we’ve experienced much more obscurity, we’ve managed to get five albums out and are probably enjoying our live shows more than ever with the current line-up.”

The group are looking forward to being back out on the road, so any chance of shows in regional areas?

“For sure!” Campbell said.

“It’s been way too long since we’ve gone to Shepparton, Ballarat, Warrnambool etc.

“The new album and subsequent launch will be the best excuse to get a good tour going.”

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Music news

Could we see Queen + Adam Lambert back in Australia for one last tour in 2024? The band have just announced a tour for Japan in February 2024, which could see Australian dates added to the schedule as well.

Nineties alt-rock favourites Weezer have announced a handful of Australian shows for October. Last in the country in 2018, the band will be performing headlining shows, as well as playing the support act for the final farewell concert by KISS.

Congratulations to Aussie country music star Keith Urban, who will be inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in October. Urban is at work on a new album, which will be released next year.

Joe’s editorial

The passing last week of American folk-rock singer-songwriter Sixto Rodriguez at the age of 81 brought much cause for pause. For many who may not be familiar with Rodriguez, he only ever released two studio albums: 1970’s Cold Fact and 1971’s Coming from Reality. Recorded while still in his 20s, both went unnoticed upon release and forced Rodriguez to return to a life of relative obscurity and labouring work.

That is until more than 40 years later when a 2012 Oscar-winning documentary, Searching for Sugar Man, shone a light on the man, to discover his music had slowly been gaining popularity over the decades in countries such as South Africa. In the wake of the documentary his music suddenly gained favour and spread across the globe, the aftermath seeing his albums finally making the charts. All at the age of 70! And so began his ascension to mass acceptance.

What his death has brought home is how important it is to never give up on one’s art. Rodriguez’s unwavering passion and dedication to his music was gold. He showed that through thick and thin, and a tenacious persistence, the value of one’s craft will always win out, regardless of fame or fortune. And most importantly, that one is never too old to achieve their ambitions. But it takes hard work and an unshakable faith in oneself and in what they’re doing. Rodriguez was the finest example of what gets bandied about so much these days: an inspiring mentor. And with the music industry being one of the toughest to navigate, we can all learn something from the values of Rodriguez’s life.

This week on the ARIA charts

On the Top 40 Country Album Chart, holding firm at #1 is Taylor Swift with Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) while on the Top 50 Singles chart, at #1 is Billie Eilish with What Was I Made For?.

Fun fact

Did you know that music, along with painting, poetry, literature and architecture, was an Olympic event from 1912 until 1948? During that period, 17 medals were awarded for music.

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Written by: Soft FM Radio Staff

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