He’s a working- class man
SHANNON Noll has come a long way from quaint farmhouse jam sessions but, despite his success, this country rocker from Condobolin is determined to stay true to his roots.
Noll, who won the hearts of many when he became runner- up in the first series of Australian Idol in 2003, looks forward to the weekends when he can run around with his three kids and tend to his beloved vegie patch.
Perhaps his appeal lies in his fairdinkum nature – this is a bloke who rubs shoulders with fans in the pub between shows – but it’s also, of course, his powerhouse voice, channelling the likes of musical greats Jimmy Barnes and John Farnham, that draws the crowds.
It is to this crowd that Noll pays homage in his latest hit single Switch Me On, the lead track on his fourth studio album, A Million Suns.
‘‘ My message was to the fans and the fact they can switch me on,’’ Noll says. ‘‘ That’s what happened at a gig in Mulwala; I got there pretty early, I was a bit tired and they [ the crowd] were going off and I ended up having a great time.’’
Noll woke up one morning singing the chorus of Switch Me On, something he says he doesn’t normally do. Music virtuoso, Good Charlotte’s Benji Madden, helped develop the verses and it was an experience Noll ( pictured) won’t soon forget.
‘‘ Working with Benji was cool,’’ Noll says. ‘‘ He’s an amazingly talented guy and just so down- to- earth and lovely too, which is pretty rare these days for someone with a profile like his.’’
After spending the most part of two years writing A Million Suns, Noll says he’s ‘‘ pumped’’ to take the finished product, which is filled with his classic rock roots and even some party anthems, on the road.
While Noll will be busying himself playing plenty of live shows, he still has a penchant for busking and takes to the streets with brothers Adam and Damian every now and then.
‘‘ Any busker you come across will jump at the chance to get 20 bucks so we just go, ‘ We’ll give you 20 bucks if we can borrow your guitar for half an hour’ and they go, ‘ Yeah, 20 bucks!’,’’ Noll laughs.
‘‘ It’s always heaps of fun and it’s about the enjoyment of the music. That’s why we were all doing it in the first place when we weren’t making anything out of it.’’