THE SHOWS AND PROS YOU CAN'T MIS AT BLUES ON BROADBEACH
I’M VERY PASSIONATE ABOUT OUR COUNTRY AND ITS HISTORY. I LOVE IT SO MUCH AND HOPE TO BRING IT INTO MY MUSIC.
He’s a No. 1-selling artist who has been inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame, but Russell Morris is as humble as they come. The Australian legend sees himself settling down in Currumbin one day.
“I found a beautiful home in Currumbin about three years ago but the timing wasn’t quite right,” he says.
“It’s a hidden treasure there but I’ve found a place in Melbourne, so I think my next move will be buying a smaller house in the Currumbin area and coming up to stay there in winter.”
It is no coincidence that his holiday house will be a stone’s throw away from Blues on Broadbeach.
“Blues on Broady is fantastic,” he says.
“I remember the good feeling and vibe playing there last year, especially of the people.
“It never looked like there was even a possibility of trouble which is a worry at free events, but the crowds are genuinely grateful for who’s playing.”
Head to the Surf Parade Stage at 8.45pm tomorrow to catch Morris doing a combination of his two blues and roots albums, which are currently No. 1 and 2 on the blues charts right now.
“I also like to get up there and have a laugh and tell some stories,” he says.
Also headlining is crowd favourite Diesel (Mark Lizotte), who Morris has paired with in the past.
“Diesel played on my first album, he’s a great guy,” he says.
“I think he’s an enormous talent, he’s not only a great guitar player and a great singer, but he looks great.
“He’s one of those bald blokes that looks good and I’m the type that looks like a frog, I feel like punching him,” he laughs.
“Only joking. I admire him so much.”
Playing alongside younger artists does not faze Morris.
“If you made cabinets all your life you’d become a master craftsman, music is the same,” he says.
“I’ve been working on my craft for years.
“You lose it if you get a bit jaded and live in the past, you need to explore different things and move with the times.
“I look at new bands and embrace them.
“That keeps me going, it inspires me.”
The 65-year-old says he has one more smash album left in him.
“I know where I’m heading musically with the Blues Trilogy album,” he says.
“My last album ( Van Diemen’s Land) needs to get out of my system first and I think it’ll happen probably around the second week of June.
“The reason I’m doing this Blues Trilogy album is I want people to look at our nation’s history, the good, bad and ugly.
“It’s all about the love of our tapestry that made us who we are as a nation. If 100 years ago you asked me if my father was a convict I would’ve panicked because the stigma was so bad and caused an Australian to cringe, so no one would talk about the past.
“Thankfully that’s changed and we’ve stepped on to the world stage and now people are hoping to find a convict in their past.
“I’m very passionate about our country and its history. I love it so much and hope to bring it into my music.”
Despite his advice for upand-coming musicians being to avoid following the crowd, he’s guilty of judging a very famous band before they hit the big time.
“A lady signing a new act played me an album and asked me what I thought of it,” he says.
“I listened to it and said ‘what a load of rubbish’, then she showed me a picture and I was on the floor laughing and said ‘why would a record company be stupid enough to sign a moronic act like that, it will never work’. It was Kiss.
“They had an idea and followed through with it, they started something that nobody else had done and stuck to what they knew.
“That’s worked for me too.”
Russell Morris plays Blues on Broadbeach tomorrow night. Diesel plays Saturday and Sunday. The free festival runs until Sunday. The full program is at bluesonbroadbeach.com
The next album by Russell Morris will feature a big slice of Australian history, but first he has to play Blues on Broadbeach tomorrow night.