“There are storm clouds on the horizon. The so-called Leader of the Free World is busy dismantling the progressive work of decades. The conduct of our own national affairs is marked by blinkered vision and infuriating self-interest.
We need these two raggedy poets.
We need songs for times like these.”
With their instantly recognisable vocal styles, their incisive but elegantly poetic lyricism and their lifelong commitment to a tolerant, compassionate Australia, Shane Howard and John Schumann are two of the most influential singer-songwriters this country has ever produced. They have created songs that changed Australia.
Shane is best known for his leadership of Goanna and his powerful, evocative statement on the plight of indigenous Australia, Solid Rock.
John is best known for his leadership of Redgum and his compelling Vietnam veterans anthem, I was only 19.
Both Shane and John continue to enjoy substantial careers, decades after their leadership of the bands that made them famous. They have recorded together on a number of occasions. Indeed, their 2017 collaboration, Times Like These, continues to get airplay around the country.
Their uncompromising stance on a wide range of important socio-political issues over decades has not endeared them to the establishment. Nonetheless, they have retained the respect and admiration of those Australians who remember when there was more to Australian music than compliant musicians warbling inconsequential ditties to the sustained applause of the conservative media
In times like these we need these two raggedy poets.