BLOG: CMAA Junior Academy of Country getting to pointy end

I’m a day late with this update, sorry. Day 4, Tuesday, was the biggest day at academy thus far. I can’t believe we’re halfway through already!

Tuesday brought with it more co-writing with Allan Caswell and Aleyce Simmonds as well as the group leaders and the students have been writing with their peers. I’m amazed at the calibre of the songs these young people are coming up with. I would find it very difficult to write a news story with someone else, let along pour my emotions or my story out into a song with someone else’s input. I am truly amazed by their talents.

The highlight of Tuesday was a flying visit by Golden Guitar winner Amber Lawrence who spoke to the students and parents about her career and how to go about the business side of the music business. As well as being a talented musician and singer, Amber is also a qualified accountant, so she knows what she’s talking about. I hope everyone at academy took plenty of notes on what Amber had to say.

With the visit by Amber, it was also a flat-out media day (the reason I’m writing this a day late) with media kicking off with another visit by Madeline Kulk from NBN News, then we headed to 88.9FM with four students chatting with Jon Wolfe and Jodie Crosby, returned to academy for a visit from Haley Craig and Gareth Gardner, my former colleagues at The Northern Daily Leader and we wrapped up media for the students with a visit from Caitlin Furlong and Maddie Lewis from ABC New England North West. Then I headed to 2TM with Amber for a chat about her role at academy and her and Catherine Britt’s Love & Lies show at Wests on Saturday night in Tamworth. I’ve been working on this tour since February and this is the wrap up gig, so a special event for Hats Off.

The academy is a revered institution in country music and Tamworth and last night (Tuesday) the students and CMAA board members were invited to Country Connect at the Cattleman Steakhouse. This is a special gathering we have in Tamworth every few months to get the industry together. It usually involves local artists, media, publicists, managers, venue operators and anyone else involved in the industry and often coincides with visits from special guests. The special guests this time were students Felicity Kircher and Billie-Rose Copeland along with board members Roger Corbett and Meryl Davis. This was a great opportunity for Tamworth country music industry members to see the worth of the CMAA in the industry as well as the academy.

The CMAA board works bloody hard for the good of the country music industry for the love of it and because they believe passionately in a strong future for country music in Australia. So, for those at Country Connect to see the fruits of the CMAA’s labours was just wonderful.

Billie-Rose and Felicity did the academy proud and Roger and Meryl were able to answer any questions people had about the activities of the CMAA.



Today brings about another positive day at the academy as we get to the pointy end of the week. The students and group leaders are focused on an amazing graduation concert where the students will astound all audience members with their talents. It is hard to believe they are only aged 12-18! You don’t want to miss the graduation concert at Calrossy Anglican School Hall on Friday, July 7 at 7pm and it’s free! What more do you want? See you there!



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