- Smoky Dawson has passed away.
If ever a man has earned the lofty mantle
of true legend, Smokey Dawson is that man. God bless Smoky.
- ''There will be a
private service for family and friends held in Sydney, and
that's strictly private because of his wife Dot, who turns 102
this year and she's very frail.
There will be a public memorial later.
Born Herbert Henry Dawson in Collingwood in 1913 and raised in
Warrnambool, Dawson recorded dozens of albums and hosted the
radio show "The Adventures of Smoky Dawson" from 1952 until the
- Smoky Dawson - the pioneer of
Australian Country music dubbed the nation's first cowboy - died
last month. He was survived by his wife Dot.
Born in 1913 in Victoria and name
Henry Herbert, he had a tragic and brutal childhood. He became
known as Smoky as a youth after trying, and failing, to smoke a
pipe while working in rural Victoria. He moved on Melbourne,
working in a tannery by day and making his first foray on stage
playing steel guitar at night in group called the Coral Island
It was in Melbourne that he met and married his wife, Florence
Cheers in 1943.
Dawson rose to prominence after World War II as a star of radio,
rodeo and the recording studio. In 1951 he toured Britain and
the US. His radio show The Adventures of Smoky Dawson, which was
broadcast from 1952 until the early 1960s.
Dawson and his horse flash were legendary. An entire generation
of young Australians grew up tuning in to his adventures on his
faithful palomino, Flash, and hearing Dawson's musical skills.
At its peak, the show was broadcast nationally on 69 stations
and Dawson had a fan club of one million.
Dawson was awarded an MBE in 1978, admitted to the Australian
Record Industry Association Hall of Fame and was elected to
Australia's Country Music Roll of Renown. He also received the
Honour Award of the Grand Ole Opry and the American Country
Music Association in Nashville, Tennessee.
During the 2007 Tamworth Country Music Festival, Dawson made his
last trip to Australia's Country Music Capital to be inducted
into the prestigious Galaxy of Stars. He was honoured at a small
lunch and was in high spirits. His wife Dot was too unwell to
travel to the ceremony.
Dawson is immortalised in Tamworth.
Apart from his large catalogue of music which will continue to
be enjoyed by fans, his name and image is a part of a range of
attractions which honour his contribution to the Australian
country music industry.
In September 2003, Dawson and his wife received a Country Music
Association of Australia Achievement Award. A tree was planted
adjacent to a rock monument with a brass plaque inscribed: ``The
Country Music Association of Australia pays tribute to two
people who from the very beginning of our industry more than six
decades ago, have given our Australian country music family the
bounteous benefit and joy of the extraordinary talents, vision,
energy, generosity and love. We salute
our beloved Smoky and Dot Dawson.''
During his career, Smoky Dawson was also awarded the Order of
Australia Medal. Smoky Dawson was the recipient two Golden
Guitar Awards (Country Music Awards of Australia).
- The Adventures
of Smoky Dawson... A Life Remembered
Australia's much-loved singing cowboy the legendary Smoky Dawson
died on 13th February, there was an extraordinary feeling of
loss throughout the nation.
Now, Smoky's friends are preparing for a spirited farewell which
will do justice to the man who, over eight decades from the
1930s into the 2000s, entertained and inspired so many
It will be a happy event in keeping with Smoky's own spirit of
adventure and fun. It will trace his life and achievements in
video, sound and stage performance with his peers in the music
industry, friends and long time associates paying tribute to the
man they all respected and loved.
Many aspects of his long and fruitful life will be featured
including the performance of some of his vast repertoire of
songs and recordings, his unbelievable skills with knife and axe
throwing, his rodeo performances, the immortal radio and TV
programs called ìThe Adventures of Smoky Dawsonî which made him
a household name throughout the land in the ë50s and ë60s, his
film acting and so much more from the life of this versatile and
talented showman and entertainer.
Many big name stars of stage and media will come together at the
Hills Performing Arts Centre in Castle Hill, Sydney, to salute
Smoky in song and wish him a fond farewell.
Organiser of the event for the Dawson family, long time friend
and associate Lance Smith, said he was determined that the send
off would reflect the excitement and wonderful good humour that
Smoky himself had brought to life in all his activities.
The Adventures Of Smoky Dawson... A Life Remembered will be held
on what would have been Smoky Dawson's 95th birthday on
Wednesday, 19th March, 2008.
Tickets will be available through Ticketek, phone 132 849.
Proceeds will go to one of Smoky's favourite charities for
children, Bear Cottage.
- Tamworth to host Salute to Smoky Dawson
A special dinner to be held in Tamworth, Australia’s
Country Music Capital, this month will pay tribute to Australian
country music legend Smoky Dawson and his wife Dot.
Organised by the Australian Country Music Foundation (ACMF), the
Smoky & Dot Dawson Salute will also be the first major fund-raiser
for the proposed new Country Music Hall of Fame in Tamworth.
Smoky is renowned as one of the earliest pioneers of country music
in Australia. But for a commitment to the band he was performing
with at the time (the early 1930s), he might have been the first
to record original Australian country music.
As it was, Smoky made his first recording in 1941, just five years
after Tex Morton and two after Buddy Williams.
But in the following six decades, Smoky was to become a household
name in Australia, even making an impact on Nashville in the early
development days of the American country music industry.
Smoky was, in fact, the first artist to record for the famous
Acuff-Rose Hickory label in the States and performed on the Grand
Ole Opry in the early 1950s.
After returning home from America, the now famous Smoky Dawson
Show debuted on Australian radio running for the next 10 years.
Smoky was elevated to the Country Music Roll of Renown in 1978 and
was awarded an MBE for services to country music in 1983.
In 2004, Smoky and Dot celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
Smoky, who is still recording (believed to be a global record in
the music business, certainly in country music), celebrated 60
years in the business three years earlier in 2001.
Both Smoky and Dot have spent a lifetime in the radio industry
(the couple first met while working in radio) and remain involved
to this day in broadcasting.
The Salute Dinner will be held at Tamworth’s Quality Hotel
Powerhouse on Friday, January 27, 2006, during the annual country
music festival. Tickets are $99 with all surplus funds raised
going to the Hall of Fame project. Smoky has been patron of the
ACMF since its inception in the early ‘90s.
Entertainment during the night will include a performance from
Golden Guitar winner Reg Poole and a silent auction.
Further information, and tickets, can be obtained by telephoning
the ACMF on 02 6766 9696 or by emailing
firstname.lastname@example.org . Seating is being
allocated on a first come first served basis.
- - - - - - - - -
FURTHER MEDIA INFORMATION AVAILABLE FROM BOB KIRCHNER ON 02 67 622
993 or 0419 998 386
AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY MUSIC FOUNDATION
OPEN extended hours daily from 9am during the January Country
93 Brisbane Street Tamworth NSW 2340
PO Box 1842 Tamworth NSW 2340
Tel 02 6766 9696 Fax 02 6766 9918
AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY MUSIC HISTORY ON LINE
AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY MUSIC HALL OF FAME
- Smoky’s Bar and Grill
from Anna Rose
Smoky’s Bar and Grill opened on Tuesday night in Tamworth at the
all-new Wests’ Diggers Club. Beccy Cole, Adam Harvey, Gina
Jeffreys and Adam Brand were flown in for the occasion, along with
visiting VIPs from Sydney and several local illuminaries, but the
night belonged to the restaurant’s namesake, Smoky Dawson MBE AM.
The veteran entertainer, at 92 years young, was overwhelmed by his
warm reception, as young and old alike clambered to shake hands
with a living legend. Each of the artists arrived in
chauffeur-driven style, with all the fanfare of an event like the
ARIAS. As the cars pulled up outside the Kable Ave club they were
greeted by the effusive Channel Ten weatherman Tim Bailey, as he
prepared to return to Sydney newsroom anchorman Ron Wilson for a
series of live crosses.
- Photos Shot By Jake
- Adam Harvey, Gina Jeffreys, Sophie Clabbum, Smoky Dawson,
- Katrina, Burgoyne, Adam Brand, Aleyce Simmonds
- and Beccy Cole - Photos Shot
- Rod Laing and Smoky Dawson - Photos Shot By Jake
- Tim Bailey with Smoky - Photos Shot By Jake
- ARIA fame for Smoky
- Smoky Dawson is
inducted into the Aria Hall of Fame.
Legendary country music singer Smoky Dawson never expected
to be mixing it up with Australia's rock 'n' roll elite.
But tonight he did exactly that as one of the inductees to the
inaugural ARIA (Australian Record Industry Association) Icons hall
of fame in Melbourne.
"It's awesome," Smoky, 92, said as he arrived at the event tonight
with his 98-year-old wife Dot.
"I don't know how I deserve it. I'm a musician, that's all.
"I never realised one day I would be joining all the rock n
Also honoured tonight were Split Enz, Renee Geyer, Normie Rowe,
Hunters & Collectors and The Easybeats.
The new award is designed to honour performers, producers, and
songwriters who have had an impact on Australia's music industry
and is separate from the annual ARIA music awards which have
included their own hall of fame since they begin 1988.
Australian actor Jack Thompson presented Dawson with the honour
"I am here to induct a legend of Australian music," said Thompson,
who starred in The Man from Snowy River.
"What an honour to have that privilege."
Lee Kernaghan, Troy Cassar-Daley and Anne Kirkpatrick performed
two songs in tribute to Smoky.
"He is one of the founding fathers of Australian country music,"
Kernaghan said of Dawson.
"He brought an exciting dimension, it wasn't just all the great
songs he wrote and the great records he made, he is a pretty good
whip cracker, knife thrower and pistol shooter as well."
Last night's event at Melbourne's Regent Theatre also included a
rare performance by Hunters & Collectors, and Normie Rowe on stage
with The Living End.
Renee Geyer performed two songs. You Am I, Tex Perkins and Jimmy
Barnes performed a tribute of three songs for The Easybeats.
Labor politician Peter Garrett of Midnight Oil fame inducted
Hunters & Collectors into the ARIA hall of fame.
The ARIA icons hall of fame will be broadcast on Foxtel channel
VH1 on July 17.
Print out and have