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Cowboys In Cyberspace - May 2002

"SURFING the alternate highway"

No, you are not seeing double and you haven't stumbled by mistake into the column of my esteemed colleague Keith Glass. This month I present a companion piece to his CRUISING the alternate highway series (as read in Capital News magazine) and we'll surf around some of the Web sites of many of the artists Keith has featured and more.

WILLIE NELSON lives most of his life on Honeysuckle Rose III (his current bus) literally cruising the alternate highway. Musically you'll find him anywhere but the middle-of-the-road and even when he turns his hand to pop, you won't find him walking a straight line. At Willie's site you can check out his latest album The Great Divide and read the enticing opening to his new book The Facts of Life and Other Dirty Jokes.

KEVIN WELCH (right) with Keiran Kane at The Basement, 2001KEVIN WELCH (pictured far right) with Keiran Kane.
(photo Bob Howe)

At first the KEVIN WELCH site will appear to take over your computer screen, but don't panic! If you are nervous and close the 'full screen' effect you will still get the opportunity to view the site inside a conventional browser window. If you do stick with the initial dimensions you'll get the full effect of the striking design. There is plenty of unusual content too, including poems and puzzle games. In keeping with the latest CD. Millionaire by Kevin Welch and the Danes, you can read about Kevin's first trip to Denmark in the 'Stuff From The Journals' section.

Songsmith is the home site for Sydney based singer-songwriter MARK LUCAS. Remembered as the as the leader of 'urban and western' exponents The Parwills, his second solo album The Ghost Of Lost Creek Road is creating a lot of interest.

Cavalier Music is a Melbourne based recording studio and record label. Listen carefully and you may hear the tweet of 'virtual' birds outside the studio window. Here you can sample the slide-driven music of ANDY GORWELL from his Uprooted album and many other artists.

There are plenty of other new and updated sites for you to check out this month. Here are just some of them:

CATHERINE BRITT at the 2002 Golden Guitar Awards CATHERINE BRITT is one of the purest talents to emerge in recent times. Many wonderful things have been written about her and they are all true. Rush out and buy her album Dusty Smiles and Heartbreak Cures and then visit her Web site. Be thankful that the mainstream Australian Country Music scene is wide-ranging enough to embrace such a gift without pigeonholing it as alternate. It is, after all, the real thing.

(pictured) Catherine Britt at the 2002 Golden Guitar Awards (photo Bob Howe)

STEVE DOYLE was a graduate of the Australian College of Country Music and as a lead guitarist he has played with Brent Parlane and Adam Harvey. Now you can follow his career and find out about his songwriting success at his Web site.

KCee is an Australian Country singer who writes and performs her own music. Based in Perth, Western Australia, KCee has her focus set on a forthcoming American tour and the release of her debut album I Feel, I Breathe.

Also from WA, CAHOOTS are 'Cajun Down Under', spreading their love of the Cajun music up and down the West coast. Fiddle player Dave Cornwell is also distributing the FunkySeagull range of video 'How To Play CD-Roms' for those interested in mastering banjo, fiddle and flatpick guitar for old time and bluegrass music (look for review next month).

THE JOLLY RANCHERS from Michigan describe their music as 'insurgent country punk USA'. You can't get much more alternate than that! Their CD Six Pack can be downloaded for free.

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Far Side Of The World


JIMMY BUFFETT has been doing some serious travelling, as anyone who has followed his adventures via would know. On this his 33rd album and first studio recording for his own Mailboat label, his main inspiration is Africa. This is no Graceland though. The music still veers marvellously between Caribbean-tinged, New Orleans funk with a healthy dose of acoustic country styles. The influence is apparent however in the ever-insightful lyrics and stories and in the seven-and-a-half minute video clip of the title track that is included on the CD. It begins with the band warming up in the studio and once the song gets underway, we are treated to stunning visuals of Africa and it's people interacting with Jimmy, illustrating the song perfectly.

Jimmy Buffett fans, 'Parrot Heads' as they are affectionately known, have always been served well by his Web site. It includes Radio Margaritaville, a dedicated Internet Radio station that Webcasts practically every concert that he and the Coral Reefer Band play and much more! Here in the real world, the 'Parrot Heads' won't be disappointed by Far Side Of The World, and neither will you.


Mailboat MBD2005 distributed by MRA Entertainment Group.

If you want to share the location of an interesting site you've seen or request a topic for discussion in future columns, why not E-mail me.


Don't forget to listen out for cyberBob each month on the radio waves with Belinda Miller of Murri Country, 4AAA (98.9 FM in Brisbane) and Barbara Morison on 2SER (107.3 FM in Sydney). Until next time, happy surfing.



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