Music to Reyne at the Paramount

April 30, 2018

JAMES Reyne has a long history in the music industry.

Forming Spiff Rouch in 1976 - the band that held the origins of Australian Crawl, he has now been a part of the Australian music scene for more than forty years.

It leaves him with an incredible catalogue of music, which he will be performing on his "Crawl to Now" tour in Echuca on Saturday at the Paramount theatre.

"It’s an acoustic show that will have a really good cross section of my music," Reyne said.

"It’s going to be a case where everyone who comes will know all the songs. Whether that’s Australian Crawl stuff, my solo stuff, side projects, pretty much everything that I have been involved in."

Although there may be a few surprises in the list as well.

Reyne has 13 solo albums under his belt already, but doesn’t see that as the end of the line.

He’s still writing songs constantly and says he plans to have a new album in coming years.

"I’m always writing, so I’m thinking after I get this tour finished I will be working on one," he said.

"There are a couple of avenues that have opened up in America that I am looking into. Sometimes they work out, sometimes they don’t. But I will definitely be aiming for some time late this year or into 2019."

It would extend an incredible discography that began with Australian Crawl’s "Boys Light Up" in 1980.

It was a time when the pub scene in Australian music was booming, with some of the most well-known acts in our history performing at the time.

It’s something Reyne has fond memories of, he says the other venue options were great for artists.

"You are aware of the other great bands at the time, but you also don’t think about when you are performing," Reyne said.

"There were a lot more venues where bands were playing and there was also a lot more radio support for upcoming artists. It made it a bit easier to get a following, though you still had to work incredibly hard.

"It was a different world. No computers or mobile phones. People found out about music by going and seeing a band at a pub somewhere."

Australian Crawl would produce two number one albums in a hall of fame career, before splitting up in 1986.

Reyne said while he loved his band members, the breakup was something they all needed.

"We loved performing together, but when you’re in a band for so long, especially when you are constantly touring, you’re living in each other’s pockets all the time," he said.

"It was time for us to move on and see what the next step was for all of us. For me it was a solo career."

That solo career has now lasted more than 30 years.

When it comes to what he has learnt in his solo career, he says sticking with what you think is right is the best option.

"Stay the course, enjoy what you are doing. Stay true to yourself and what you are writing. If you believe in what you are doing that’s the key thing."

For all of his works success, particularly the Australian Crawl days, he has now found a newer audience in a younger generation not even alive during his band’s peak and they have now become fans of his solo work.

Reyne says it’s incredible.

"It’s flattering," Reyne said.

"We see another generation of people at our shows. Mostly young guys, when we toured as young people it was mostly young girls. But now we love that a new generation come. We used to joke that people in the crowds were raised by their elder siblings. Now, it’s actually people who were raised by their parents on our music. It really is flattering."

Throughout his career, Reyne has no album or song that stands out as his best - in fact he thinks that would be pretentious.

"I never once thought we hit the motherlode that’s for sure! But at the same time, the last one you have written is usually your favourite because you are attached. If you don’t think you’re still writing the best you can, it’s over really."

James Reyne’s Crawl to Now show will be at the Paramount Theatre on Saturday, May 5 from 7:30pm and will run for 90 minutes.

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