Peter was cremated
privately in Port Macquarie Wednesday morning, a memorial service was
held at 4.30 in the Millbank hall near where Peter lived
Information courtesy of
- Family and Friends
Peter arrived in Australia
from Sri Lanka on his fourth birthday with his mother and brother.
They lived in Bacchus Marsh for some years before moving to Melbourne.
During his recuperation after a bout of illness, he took up the guitar
and taught his brother, Michael. In the early Sixties they
formed the Hayes Brothers and released two bluegrass albums.
At 18 he went on the road with the Rick and Thel Show and in 1966
celebrated the birth of his son, Patrick.
His career spanned more
than three decades and years of studio work and tours with both
National and International artists.
In 1978 both Peter and Mike
were inducted into the "Hands of Fame" for their contribution to
Australian Country Music.
In 1977 Peter met Maree and
in 1982 they moved from Victoria to Milbank and married in 1985.
Peter played in numerous
bands and with many musicians throughout the Macleay Valley, touring
nationally. Peter was greatly respected as a most
proficient musician mastering many, many instruments his latest
acquisition being a Bouzouki.
In his life away from
music, Peter delighted in his Sri Lankan/Irish heritage and in later
years established a strong relationship with his family whom he met
when he returned to Sri Lanka in 1995.
Apart from being a
musician, Peter was a competent mechanic, builder, gardener,
environmentalist and composer.
He was compassionate,
passionate, gentle, wise , gracious and graceful and had a great love
of animals. His great capacity for love was returned
many fold and he was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather,
brother, brother-in-law, uncle, mentor and friend.
- He will never be
forgotten and in his own words
- "Life Goes
- Anna Rose Remembers
- PETER HAYES, one of the
fabulously talented Hayes Bros, died Monday 1st December in
Kempsey Hospital, aged 58.
Pete had been battling cancer for a long time, although you
would never have known it to talk to the man or to watch him
play his beautiful banjo, mandolin, guitar - or practically
anything with strings. And that road-weary voice of his - to
Pete and his brother Mike began their professional music
careers in 1959. In the early '60s, their Bluegrass Ramblers
became known as the first performing bluegrass band in
Peter toured with Rick and Thel, and because of his mastery of
stringed instruments, was much in demand as a session player
when not on the road.
He played in many bands over the years, including The Hayes
Bros Band, The Promised Band and Homestead, with my late
partner, Jazzer Smith, during the '70s.
Mike ("the Prickle Farmer") and Pete were inducted into the
Hands of Fame in Tamworth in 1978.
He was a welcome stranger five years ago, returning to the
Tamworth Country Festival to play with fellow Victorian Harold
Frith as part of Andy Baylor's Cajun Combo.
The following year, Harold and Pete came back as Nite Trane
with wonderful Melbourne singer-songwriter Bernie O'Brien and
the equally talented Laurie Allen (now also gone), with the
band going on to win a TIARA for Best Group.
Pete was a regular contributor at the Bluegrass Breakfasts
held in Legends Bar of Wests.
You might also have spotted him playing with Chris Cook, Karen
Williams and Wayne Bromwich in Hillbilly Lovechild, a simply
superb acoustic outfit from the North Coast.
His last recording was a solo effort, titled prophetically it
seems, Life Goes On.
It will always remain one of my most treasured discs.
started playing music in 1959 and along with his brother Mike
(who died earlier this year), learnt to play chords to Australian
In the early 60's
the brothers formed "The Bluegrass Ramblers" and shared influences
with people such as Russ and Alan Hawking (
They received a golden guitar while he
was with them).
The Hayes Brothers
released 2 albums in the 60's and became notable as the first
Bluegrass band to perform in Australia.
At 18, Peter went on the road with the Rick and Thel
Show. He played alongside most of the greats in the
business, earning, over the years a deep respect, from his fellow
musicians and artists. His career spanned more than 3
decades and comprises years of studio work and tours with both
National and International artists.
In 1982, Peter
moved to the Mid- North Coast of New South Wales. He
continued to play in local bands, tour with other artists and do
studio work throughout Australia.
Cedar Creek playing fiddle & guitar he sang a great
version of Fly Like A Bird & some Hank Williams numbers and also
Bubbly Mary with his brother Mike .
Peter was a
multi-instrumentalist and well known for his vocal and harmony work.
He was a highly respected musician throughout the industry.
Print out and have