When one of my best mates, M, was about to turn 30, I decided she deserved a real treat for this special occasion. So I forked out the money to get gig tickets to “a famous, international act”. But I told M she’d need to wait for the Big Day to find out who we were going to see. Luckily for me, a few big names were playing in town on that same night, so there was no way she was going to figure anything out.
One thing she forgot, though, is that it’s not in my nature to take things too seriously. Especially when you’re meant to behave in a grown-up kind of way. So she was a little shocked but hugely amused when she found herself celebrating her 30th B-Day at a Backstreet Boys concert.
PART 35 OF “AM I EVER GONNA SEE YOUR FACE AGAIN?” A RANDOM COLLECTION OF UNKNOWINGLY OBVIOUS FACTS ABOUT AUSTRALIAN MUSIC SCENE
Everybody has their “Guilty Pleasures”. I mean, EVERYBODY. Be it food (I’d kill for sweets), movies (I’ve watched ‘Dirty Dancing’ at least 30 times) or the language we use (I defo abuse ‘defo’). The same applies to music.
So this week I’m sharing my “Guilty Pleasures” playlist with you, made up of Australian songs that I wouldn’t normally admit to even knowing in public. Don’t get me wrong – they’re not bad but I just wouldn’t necessarily listen to them all in one place unless I’ve been quarantined for over a month 🙂 Some of them might even be on your “repeat” every day, who knows…
But instead of giving everything to you on a silver platter, see if you can guess the song titles and artist names based on the clues below first. There are fifteen of them.
- THE ACT: A Brisbane duo that no longer performs together but one of them continues a solo career. They were an international hit throughout the ’90s. The name of the band was taken from The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice.
- THE SONG: It’s NOT the tune with three adverbs in the title.
- THE ACT: A Sydney-based band with a number in their name. The boys became famous with YouTube covers. They run a charity called Friends of Friends. In 2018 they won ARIAs for Best Aussie Live Act, Best Group and Song of the Year.
- THE SONG: The title of the track is a British musician’s stage name as well (although spelt differently).
- THE ACT: Like many of her peers, this artists debuted in the Aussie soap opera Neighbours. She has been a model for L’Oreal and Gap campaigns. Her last name indicates Italian descent. She has three singers, the youngest of which sings as well.
- THE SONG: Her first and best-known hit to date is, in fact, a cover of a song by an American band from the 90s, Ednaswap. Its title is a past participle of the verb whose synonym is “rip”.
- THE ACT: Even though they were formed in Melbourne in 1985, the band’s singer is Kiwi. They’d already disbanded once in the late ’90s and have changed members several times. Inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2016, the band were meant to play Byron Bay Bluesfest with a new line-up this year.
- THE SONG: It’s NOT the track about the weather.
- THE ACT: As tiny as her famous older sister, this artist performed in musicals and theatre plays as well (i.e. Lady Macbeth). Having begun her career in a talent show, she has frequently served as judge in music competitions in Oz and the UK.
- THE SONG: Although not her most famous one, the track garnered over 2.5 million streams on Spotify so far.
- THE ACT: Known primarily for country music, this artist is married to one of Australia’s most prominent actresses. He was born in New Zealand and lists Mark Knopfler as one of his guitar gurus.
- THE SONG comes from the 2018 “Graffiti U” which is the tenth album in his career.
- THE ACT: A singer of Italian-Albanian heritage, she boasts a distinctive contralto. Her style is often compared to Anastacia’s or Amy Winehouse’s. She won 6 ARIAs in 2008 after releasing her first album.
- THE SONG: Her most famous tune was released in Simlish – the language of the popular game Sims and includes the word “sweet”.
- THE ACT: This is one of Australia’s most popular and successful performers who started his career already in the ’60s. Recognised with the Order of Australia and numerous music awards, he has also starred in musical productions. He holds the record for the highest-selling Australian album of all time.
- THE SONG: His iconic song was unlawfully used by an anti-Islamic group.
- THE ACT: Both a singer and actress, she briefly dated Nick Jonas, amongst other celebrities. Her name is shared with an American airline. The singer battled cancer and has her wax figure at Madame Tussaud’s in Sydney’s Darling Harbour.
- THE SONG: The track comes from her fourth album and is, allegedly, very similar to Arcade Fire’s song Rebellion (Lies).
- THE ACT: This Melbourne-born rock/pop singer currently lives in Los Angeles. On 20 April 2020, during the coronavirus quarantine, she released a song, suitably called Isolation. Her last name is Italian. She performed at both the opening and closing ceremonies of the Sydney Olympics in 2000.
- THE SONG: 4 different music videos were made for her hit from the first album to specifically cater to markets where it was most well-received.
- THE ACT: This popular singer, who is now 71, started his career in 1970 as the lead singer of the band Sherbet. He went to school with Olivia Newton-John. In 2017 he was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame by Jimmy Barnes himself.
- THE SONG: His signature tune is a must-sing at any proper Aussie party and is closely related to the singer’s other profession, equestrianism.
- THE ACT: This Melbourne-born singer now resides in London where he achieved great success with his debut album from 1989. He has starred in the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and numerous TV and film roles since 1980. He has also taken part in various TV competitions for celebrities and has hosted his own show on Heart Radio.
- THE SONG: On the track, he is accompanied by one of Australia’s most famous pop princesses.
- THE ACT: Signed to Warner Music Australia, this actress/singer/model has released one solo album to date. Formerly in a pop girl group called Bardot, she has also expressed interest in country music whilst performing with Kasey Chambers at Byron Bay Bluesfest in 2017. In the last 5 years, she has been mostly seen on TV shows, most recently hosting Love Island Australia.
- THE SONG: This is her first solo single, including two antonyms in the title.
- THE ACT: Although only 23, he has released 3 albums already. Discovered on YouTube doing Justin Timberlake and Jason Mraz covers, he has won or been nominated for several kids awards over the years. His first proper single features rapper Flo Rida. He is currently dating Miley Cyrus.
- THE SONG: It has over 90 million streams on Spotify already.
- THE ACT: Apart from her acting, singing and dancing occupations, she is also an entrepreneur and environmental activist. Born in the UK, her maternal grandfather was a Nobel-winning physicist. Due to her recurring battles with cancer, she is an advocate of medical cannabis.
- THE SONG: She sings this iconic tune from a classic musical with an American actor, known for his role in Pulp Fiction.
How many did you guess? And what are your guilty pleasures?