Songs from Ian Thomas Band New Album “Riding Free”.
Track 1 “Have A Little Good Time”
Everyone feels “over” work at times. But there’s always the weekend! Thinking about knock off time and heading down to the local, and fantasising about that Queensland getaway, somehow gets you through!
Track 2 “Bondi Drover”
An old drover retired and went to live near his daughter in Bondi. He’s got it all- an ocean view, cafes and bars- but he still misses life out on the track. I wanted to write this one with a light- hearted, and sometimes humorous feel, but it’s quite sentimental at timeswith inspirations from Slim and Henry Lawson.
Track 3 “Wild Fire”
Bushfire’s an ever-present reality in Australia, and in summer it’s always lurking, waiting to arise! The song starts with a dream I had about a bushfire. It goes on to celebrate the courage of fighting the blaze. But despite our best efforts, there’s really no rest, no certainty, till that rain comes tumbling down!
Track 4 “Frank The Fox”
A comedy. This song has been a real hot with audiences, and I’ve been physically threatened by several grandmothers who have been waiting for me to record it, so they can get the song for their grand kids. It’s a song about a dirty, rotten, mongrel fox! Frank moves in to the neighbourhood and starts doing the “Foxtrot” with the girls. (The dance being code for Chook- eating, so as not to frighten children in the audience). But the infamous Frank gets it in the end ! The song has a serious underlying theme of the damage foxes inflict on our native animals.
Track 5 “Australia Day”
A love song, with romance, lovers tiffs, and missing home, all rolled into one.
Track 6 “Back In The Little Town”
The story of an Australian prodigal son, who leaves home, blows his inheritance in Brisbane, ends up sleeping in a cardboard under the Story Bridge, and then crawls back home where the Old Man accepts him with open arms. The song has a real Aussie Rock Ballad sound.
Track 7 “Tamworth”
I just love Tamworth each year! The drive to get there, the excitement of Peel street, the characters, the heat, the music, the stars, the buskers. I just love the energy of this song, and the awesome instrumentation. It’s a real hoot!
Track 8 “Riding Free” – TITLE TRACK
This great country of ours never fails to provide me with songs. “Riding Free” was really born a few years ago in Tamworth during yarns with a mate. He loves to get away after working at his demanding job as a paramedic, and head out west on his red Ducati. He savours the landscape, the solitude, and rolling out the swag by the Darling beneath the moon and stars. But he looks forward to seeing his wife when he gets back home. He’s travelled around the world, but nothing beats this wide, free land that is home. As I wrote each of the “newies” I found it hard to decide on a name for the album. Then out of the blue came the song “Riding Free”. I thought it said it all. I just love the magic that happens when writing! It was great working with producer Matt Fell to achieve the feel of those wide open spaces. I hope listeners feel like they are sitting on that motor bike, cruising on a western highway.
Track 9 ” Kandahar Lullaby”
I heard about a bloke who was a soldier, fighting in Afghanistan, and missing his little boy back home.
Track 10 “Can’t Take The Bush Out Of The Boy”
I love to head out Bush. It’s a part of me, and there’s no place like home. Even when I lived in the Sydney for a couple of years, I’d find myself looking up through the glow of city lights, to try and find the Southern Cross.
Songs from ‘Australian Son’
- Adelaide is about a bus trip across the Nullabour and a childhood crush.
- Donald Mackay is a tribute to a true Australian hero who paid the ultimate price for making a stand against drugs in the 1970’s.
- Carrathool Races is a wonderful insight into the fun and excitement of the bush race meeting. Set in the little Riverina town of Carrathool, where every year the population explodes from just 99 to thousands.
- Going Home Some Day is a tribute to the Diggers who slaved on the Burma Railway and were incarcerated in Changi Prison during the Second World War. The song’s based on the life of Doug’s uncle Brian Pearson who only just survived, then made it home to raise a family, work a farm and help build the nation.
- Jessica is the epic tale of young Narrandera woman Jessica Bergman, whose story was made well-known by author Bryce Courtenay in his novel ‘Jessica’.
- Dragonfly is a snapshot of the medical rescue choppers flying on into the country towns and helping out in time of need. “It’s like the choppers have a personality- they’re like a big dragonfly” says Doug. The song focuses on three scenarios of people in need, and the release that comes from the arrival of ‘our old mate Dragonfly’.
- Proud to be a Truckie is about Doug’s Griffith truckie mate Morris.
- The title track Australian Son, is a true anthem resounding with over-whelming pride in the Australian story and who we are as a people. Amidst the pride, is a clear message that we’re shaped by our past, and that we can’t forget the road we’ve taken if we want to move confidently to where we’re going.
- Taste of Paradise looks at how the real measure of a man lies in his treatment of the most vulnerable, and how true happiness comes through embracing the dejected.
- Everyone Needs Someone is about a young bloke who goes bush to reclaim lost love.
- Yellow Moon is pure romance.
- Country Road captures the thrill of driving down a country road and life on the road as a performer. “But the song is for everyone” says Doug. “We’ve all felt like a modern-day Swaggie, like the road is our second home- driving along with the window down, the friends we meet along the way, and missing home. Travelling the big distances is part of Australian life. On the road I’ve sometimes had a strong sense that it’s my songs that are taking me to the places I go. Creating songs is really about performing them to the people I write them for”.