Sad news in the music industry today. Chrissy Amphlett, lead singer of the Divinyls, passed away today due to complications from breast cancer and Multiple Sclerosis. The news broke across my TV screen and I thought, "wow, that's sad, but why is this breaking news?" Well, because she was Australian, of course! I never knew this. I've played their most famous song, I Touch Myself, probably around 300 times live. I love the music game show, Spicks and Specks, because it shows me how little I actually know about world music. This got me thinking, who else is Australian?
Let's start with the big ones I already know about. You could begin and end the conversation with AC/DC. I think Angus Young has to be in everyone's top five rock guitarists of all-time. If he isn't I think you should ask yourself; a.) Am I breathing? and b.) Do I actually like rock? If your answer is no to either of these questions you should probably reevaluate if your time could be better spent than reading this blog.
Ok, still with me? Then we move to the BeeGees. Amazing songwriters. Amazing harmonies. Crazy awesome hair. Stayin' Alive. That pretty much says it all. But, did you know there were actually born in England before moving just north of Brisbane, Australia? Yeah, you probably did. Sorry, I just seem really late to this game.
Moving on in my brain we have INXS and Michael Hutchence. Brilliance in a tightly wrapped ball of rock and sexual fury. I dare you to turn on INXS "Kick" album and not dance. Seriously, I dare you.
Recently, you might have heard a little song by a little artist called Gotye. It was rather popular last year. Someone That You Used To Know. I think that was the title. They really didn't play it a lot so it's hard remembering it.
I guess I should probably mention Keith Urban too since country is basically pop music these days.
Then you have Jet asking me to be their girl, Midnight Oil burning beds down, Men at Work telling me about vegemite, Olivia Newton-John hopelessly devoted to Grease, John Butler singing about a Zebra, and those crazy Silverchair kids. That's what I know about Australian pop rock music.
Now we get into the bands I had no idea were Australian: Air Supply, Little River Band, Crowded House, Wolfmother, The Vines, Savage Garden, the Divynyls, Kylie Minogue, Leo Sayer, Natalie Imbruglia, Nick Cave, RICK SPRINGFIELD (how did I not know this), Tina Arena and probably more I couldn't find.
These are just the bands that became popular in the United States. There is a whole history of Australian music I have no idea about! There are not enough hours in the day to try to catch up. I feel like the first time my friend Jeremiah played me Led Zeppelin. I sat there trying to comprehend how my life existed before that moment. How could I live in a world where I didn't know Led Zeppelin?! It was too hard for my little 14-year-old brain to comprehend. Were there more bands like this I didn't know about? How could I possibly keep going on until I knew everything about every band ever? Yes, I think I was a crazy kid.
Now I am a crazy adult trying to play catch up. I'd better get back to listening now.
RIP Chrissy. Joan Jett once said, "Girls have got balls. They're just a little higher up that's all". Chrissy lived a balls out, fiery, female chick singer existence and the world is better for it. We will miss you.