As I'm sit here writing this thinking that I can't believe that Graham and I are on the eve of releasing our 25th CD, "Mumbo Jumbo"! It's been a long road getting here certainly, and I never could have imagined the career that we have been allowed to enjoy for such a long time.
I was born in Melbourne in Victoria, Australia on June the 15th 1949 to my parents Mal and Bette having my sister Gail preceded me by four years. We lived in the suburb of Brunswick close to an iron foundry and a brick works and although we were not wealthy, we were provided for to the best of my parent's abilities.
My childhood was a happy one and there was always music in the house, my Dad was a singer in his younger years and my sister had a great voice too! My early school years were uneventful save for being struck by a truck when I was seven years old and on my way to school. My mother said I was never the same after that (joke!).
I really became interested in music when my sister bought a record
player and I got to listen to her 12 inch long play records. Frank Sinatra,
Tony Bennett and Tony Bennett were among the great voices that I
was exposed to. It wasn't until I was in High School that music really
became important to me when one of my good friends handed me
a single recording. He said, "You have to listen to this, it's a new
band called The Beatles." I was amazed at the raw, exciting
sound, the vocals, everything. I was hooked!
In 1964, my cousin presented me with tickets for us to go and
see The Beatles perform in Melbourne. They played six songs I
think, and of course I could barely hear them above the
screaming thousands that attended the concert. From that
moment forward, I lived and breathed The Beatles, and to this day
I believe that they are the greatest band that has ever existed.
I dropped out of high school when I was sixteen and worked in retail for
some years and of course earning an income, as meager as it was,
allowed me to purchase my own records which were basically everything
The Beatles released and anything else that caught my ear, The Bee Gees
were the most recognizable and local bands including The Twilights,
The Purple Hearts and my favorite voice, John Farnham were
all in my collection.
"I am a child of inner-city Melbourne who grew up very poor and who, fortunately, now gets to sing some of the greatest songs ever written." — Russell Hitchcock