If you listen to most Community Radio Country Music Programmes in Australia, they will take you out to the news with an Anthony Baxter track. I get why they do it, it is sometimes tight coming up to news time and it is better to cut off an instrumental than a song with lyrics. It is also a shame in many ways, as instrumentalists deserve a bit better than just being someone to fill in the gaps. This is not the course by everyone, quite often, an instrumentalist is also featured during a programme. I guess as long as they get exposure somewhere, it is a good thing!
I am a huge instrumental fan. I have as many classical music records, soundtracks to movies and theme songs as well as classics like Mason Williams and David Foster and Dave Grusin, etc in my collection as I do have other genres.
In a way, playing instrumentals is a tougher profession. You are kind of an island in the stream out there…..you don’t have lyrics to back you up you are a bit more exposed. You really have to get it right. Anthony gets it right.
I always admire people who can play an instrument. I struggled with the piano as a kid and I can barely play a triangle, now. I have always wanted to learn, I just don’t have the knack. Anthony is in good hands with the people who he is working with. He is slowly but surely building a reputation in country music circles. I know a lot of people who admire his stylings and his work in general.
He has chosen 4 songs on this EP that are going to be well received. It is good to have an original (Personally my favourite) and three legendary Aussie Ballads. The flying fingers on Winter Winds, the gentleness of Camooweal and of course, you couldn’t mention Aussie Ballads without mentioning a Stan Coster song.
It is a tougher road being an instrumentalist in Australia, sometimes you have to diversify or hook up with session musicians or a band and build your way up. Folks like Alwyn Aurisch, Andrew Wrigglesworth and Stuie French can understand that ride. We have some of the best guitarists in this country….I had a talk with Michael Fix (one of my favourites) about writing instrumentals and getting his music out there, it isn’t easy.
These guys need to be supported and promoted. Lots of people can sing, but the songwriters and the instrumentalists need to be cheered on and appreciated more than they are now. Mustered Courage, The Wilson Pickers and others are helping the cause, but more of our musicians need to be promoted out there.
Anthony has a lot going for him, as has a growing number of guitarists and multi skilled instrumentalists in Australia. Please support them.
Well done, Anthony, continued success to you. This is a fine example of what he can do.
Huntah’s Melody – (A Baxter)
By a fire of Gidgee Coal (S Coster)
Camooweal (M. Cormack/S Dusty)
Winter Winds (S. Ranger)
Lead Guitarist: Anthony Baxter
Fiddle: Billie Makim
Other Instruments: Rusty Crook
Mastered by Steve Newton