Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Bush Music Club "Songs from the Shearing Sheds" Mono LP 1966 Re-issue

Another welcome offering from the Victorian Bush Folkie.

The Bush Music Club was inaugurated in Sydney in 1954 and is still very active today. The renowned collector, John Meredith, was one of the founders and is also featured is a lead singer on this album.

This album was originally released in about 1959 under the title "Songs of the Swaggies" and then released in about 1966 as "Songs from the Shearing Sheds". Both titles are equally misleading.

The LP itself has cleaned up fairly well. The recording and editing was of a reasonable standard for 1959 especially considering that it was almost certainly a budget production leading to some distortion.

But we do need to recognise that the context is that the performers were a group of ardent enthusiasts seeking to generate greater interest in Australia's folk music legacy (these were very early days in the folk music revival period and Australian folk music was being swamped by American influences in the popular music scene).

Frankly, the performances are, IMHO, pretty ordinary especially in respect to instrumental backing  The percussion is often overdone and discordant and the tin whistle is quite shrill at times. For me, it is a pretty disappointing album but that should not distract from the significant contribution that these people made to the early popularising of Australian folk music.

The download file is small because it is mono.

1. Charlie Mopps (First time I have heard that one for many years - great song)
2. The Ballad of Catalpa
3. To the Shores of Botany Bay.
4. Dennis O'Reilly
5. Paddy Fagan
6. 16000 miles from Home
7. Nine miles from Gundagai
8. The Ryebuck Shearer
9. The Drover's Dream
10. The Ram of Dalby
11. The Flash Stockman
12. Jog along till Shearing

Click here to download album as MP3 224-256 VBR mono. 23MB
Click here to download album as FLAC version mono.  74MB
You will need to decompress the downloaded file. Let me know if the link fails at


  1. I don't think there are any percussion instruments here, strictly speaking, but sounds more like a tea-chest bass. Now I remember why I disliked that instrument so much....

    Doubt I shall be playing this one too often, but interesting to hear the way bush music was presented more than half a century ago. Thanks for making it available.

    1. I think there are aboriginal music sticks there along with someone playing the spoons. Just a bit too enthusiastic and untimely. I did pick a lagerphone very intermittently but that was OK. Definitely one for interest rather than having a place in anyone's playing favourites.

    2. Whoops. Not quite what I meant to say! (Blame my limited cut and paste abilities!)). Should have read, from memory, something more like "I don't think any of the percussion instruments here detract from the recording as much as the persistent booming from what sounds like a tea-chest bass. Now I remember why I disliked that instrument so much...."

    3. Ha! You had me worried there for a moment. Now all you need to do is to answer that question as to the instrument/whatever in Emu Plains in the Folk Concert on Campus album. I have absolutely no idea.

  2. Sounds to me like a harmonica....