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Cowboys In Cyberspace - September 2006


Reading, 'Riting, and 'Rithmetic and Ready to Roll...

There are any number of learning resources out there these days for everyone from beginners, to professionals who need to polish up their skills.

THE AUSTRALIAN COLLEGE OF COUNTRY MUSIC is an initiative of the Country Music Association of Australia and is aimed at developing professional careers in country for singers, songwriters and musicians aged between 18 and 35. This two week intensive live-in course has prepared many of the emerging names in the field and they all learnt from the previous experience of current stars and business leaders. Likewise the TAMWORTH CAMERATA is a formal annual Country Music School for young performers and musicians aged 18 or younger, and involves six days of extensive workshops and training in all facets of the industry.

Multiple Golden Guitar winner DENIESE MORRISON has helped guide many artists in their pursuit of stardom and she has now formalised that experience into STAGECOACH, a program of Performance Tuition and Workshops for aspiring singers and musicians. The emphasis is on developing a well-rounded and dynamic live stage artistry so that even a previously introspective songwriter can "...make their songs sparkle in performance...". If it's the songs you're having trouble with, you are probably already reading the articles fellow Caital News columnist ALLAN CASWELL with great interest. At his site you can find out about his book Writing Great Song Lyrics and his songwriting courses which a former student likened to "...a golfer having regular sessions with Tiger Woods or Greg Norman...Mindblowing!"

Redd Volkaert lends a hand to Rita Macdonald
Redd Volkaert lends a hand to Rita Macdonald.
Photo courtesy of
Terry Phillpot - Eyeball Photographic Services and Tomkins Guitars

When I was a young 'un, we had to slow down the crank on the wind-up gramophone to try and figure out how those fancy guitarists played those clever lines. These days it's easier; for starters you could get a copy of STOLEN LICKS the new DVD by REDD VOLKAERT. Filmed on the same stage as his companion concert DVD (see adjacent review), Redd plays a dozen elaborate and classy electric guitar licks, tells you who he stole them from, plays them slow and shows you the secrets with a split- camera revealing his left and right-hand techniques. The accompanying booklet contains the guitar TAB and the standard notation for the licks.

To celebrate nine years of COWBOYS IN CYBERSPACE and in the spirit of this month's column, budding performers can CLICK HERE to download a free copy of
Big Bob's Top Ten Tips for Aspiring Artists.

barbed wire
barbed wire


DVD cover


When Merle Haggard needed a new guitar picker a few years back, five out Merle's eight band members suggested REDD VOLKAERT as the obvious man for the job (Redd once quipped he was "...still getting even with the other three..."). A little further down the road, this DVD finds the Canadian-born six-string wizard in top form with his own band at the Continental Club in his adopted Texas home city of Austin. The show is filmed simply and elegantly and the sound is crisp and clean. Along with Nate Rowe (bass) and Chris Gilson (drums), Cindy Cashdollar (ex- Asleep At The Wheel) on pedal steel guitar is greatly featured, both as a soloist and as a harmony foil to Redd's guitar lines.

The repertoire showcases some of the best vocal and instrumental tracks from Redd's solo albums including tunes like She Loves Anything That Swings, Telewacker and You're Still On My Mind, plus classics like Bubbles In My Beer and Twin Guitar Special. This is a honky-tonk celebration and a must-have for country guitar fans.

95 Mins


Bob talked to Barbara Morison on 2SER 107.3 FM about this month's column and more...

Until next time, happy surfing!

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
Barbara Morison
on 2SER (107.3 FM in Sydney and on the Web)
and listen for Big Bob from Bondi every Saturday night with
John Nutting on Saturday Night Country (your Local ABC Radio and the Web).



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