It’s not overstating it to say that John Schumann is one of the most important voices in Australian popular music of the last 40 years.

With the band Redgum, John powered into our consciousness in 1983 with the unlikely hit “I Was Only 19″

I was 16 at the time and just starting in radio. The song touched me the first time I heard it. It was so raw.  The song was released in March 1983 as a single.  It topped the Australian chart for two weeks.  It remains in the Australasian Performing Rights Association’s Top 30 Australian songs of all time.schumann

Vietnam Vets love this bloke because for the first time, through this song, their story was told.

John is performing on Thursday night (October 23rd) at the Southern Cross at Woden.

I spoke to him on my radio program earlier in the week.

John Schumann talks about his career and that iconic song.

I asked him if he gets frustrated with ‘that song’ because it so dominates his CV.

He replied that he feels like the father of half a dozen children, one of whom happened to be an AFL footballer.  He said that “everyone asks me about my footballing playing son, and I’m happy to talk about him, but I’m just as proud of my other children.”

Canberra has always been a wonderful market for John and Redgum. They were more popular here, per capita, than anywhere else and I’m sure this will be a good fun show.

It’s 6.30pm for dinner and show and 8.30pm for show only.

Details here.