By Andrew Starke
If you have travelled to the Three Rivers Hotel to have a beer with Duncan but the pub had no beer then the Australian Hotels Association (AHA NSW) songwriting competition may be just the thing for you.
The AHA is searching for the next Slim Dusty and this week saw country music star, Felicity Urquhart, officially launch the Great Country Pub Song contest at the Surveyor General Inn in the Southern Highlands village of Berrima.
As country pubs celebrate 175 years as the heart of their communities, the industry association is searching for Australia’s newest pub song with the ‘Toohey’s New NSW Country Pub Songwriting Competition’.
“From simple gathering places for bushies and the first settlers in their districts, hotels have evolved to become havens for their communities and travellers in good times and bad, especially in the country,”said AHA (NSW) Treasurer and event organiser, Col Waller.
“There’s no doubt the best known songs in Australia are pub songs- three of the top five Australian songs are pub songs – everyone knows them. Whether it’s “The Pub with No Beer” or “I love to have a beer with Duncan,” pub songs – and pub music – are an integral part of our culture.”
Waller said the challenge was for entrants to come up with a new pub song that will capture the essence of the Aussie pub and write and perform it.
“It can be about your favourite hotel, an experience you have had there or just what you love about pubs in general,” he said.
“Maybe they helped your family out during the drought? Backed your footy team? Or you just had a great night out there with friends? Just write about it, we are looking for that quintessential pub song.”
The winner will be announced at the Tamworth Country Music Festival – where the winner will perform.
“The contest is open to all, the only criteria being that it is a new song, not one performed before,” Waller said. “I would urge everyone to take part.”
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