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What they've said...
"Abso-bloody-lutely fantastic album full of wit, good songs and banter. A must have for your Australiana collection." - Bruce Bubb
"Jason and Chloe's brilliant Roar of the Crowd was moving, funny, achingly sad in turns and at times all at once - not to mention both educative and entertaining. Top class stuff." - Cathy Rytmeister (regarding the live performance at the National Folk Festival, 2017)
"I think it's your best so far" - Bob Cady
THE ROAR OF THE CROWD
Chloe & Jason Roweth
Sensitively joined by Bill Brown Kit drums, Matt Nightingale Bass and Roger Hargraves on Fiddle.
This CD is a grand collection of traditional and more contemporary Australian folk songs to end all doubt that there are real Australian folk songs, if there is any doubter still needing proof. The words are sung with every syllable resonating clearly while the music provides a sensitive and varied accompaniment. The double CD comes artistically presented with photos of a storm looming over dry paddocks. The front has a John Dengate pen and ink drawing of a rebel, probably the croppy boy himself, to which Chloe has added images, in ink wash, of rebels rising over the hills. The CD is dedicated to Denis Kevans, who wrote the ‘Roar of the Crowd’ while still a very young man; a foretaste of the strength of his poetry to follow. I know both Denis and John would have been thrilled and humbled by this production of words, music and sentiments on this CD.
The traditional ballads and stories of colonial Australia are beautifully set with passion and understanding of the narratives.
The CD starts with Chloe’s effortless singing of ‘ The Exile of Erin, on the plains of Emu’, the most moving, but difficult of early Australian songs. I recall practicing for months before singing this song in the 1970s and was fortunately accompanied by a talented harpist who managed the octave leaps and cadences when I hesitated. However, Chloe never falters with this traditional setting of the words of Rev John McGarvie, first printed in 1829. The haunting imagery of Erin juxtaposed with chains of convicts imprisoned on the plains of Emu. Chloe evokes the emotions of longing and suffering while the accompaniment lends passion.
The roar of the crowd starts to grow with Jason’s delivery of John Dengate’s verse’ Australian Made’, spoken above the strict dance tune rhythm of Harry Asford’s schottische on mandolin. In our complex world of global economies there is controversy, but workers need opportunities for their trades and development of their skills. There is a change of tune and pace with the ‘Song of the Sheet-Metal Worker’ dedicated to John’s father Norm Dengate. Although this is sung differently from John’s unadorned singing, Chloe brings new vitality and strength to the words as she and Jason move to ‘The Roar of the Crowd’. Similarly with Duke Tritton’s ‘Sandy Hollow Line’ and Dorothy Hewittt’s ‘Weevils in the Flour’, the power and sentiment of the words is captured in the revitalizing of these songs with stirring music. It is inspirational to listen to over 27 songs on these CDs and too many to discuss here, but they are the classics of Australian folk traditions, so you need the CD to listen. Then you can join me in congratulating all involved.
By R. Dale Dengate
All Arrangements © C. & J Roweth, 2017.
Recorded and mixed by C. & J Roweth with additional bass recording by Matt Nightingale.
Cover design by Chloë Roweth. “Croppy Boy” front cover drawing by John Dengate.
Final artwork layout by White Tiger Graphics.
Mastered by Andy Busuttil and Greg Seiler at Blue Mountain Sound, Hazelbrook, NSW.
(02) 4758 6878
Manufactured by MAD CDs
Bill Browne, Matt Nightingale & Roger Hargraves
Dale Dengate and the Dengate family
Roger Montgomery and John Angliss
Megan and Joanna Roweth
Brian Newton, Sue and Leon Roweth
Collectors and preservers of the Australian tradition: Rob and Olya Willis, Chris Woodlands, John Harpley, Alan Musgrove, David De Santi, Keith McKenry, Dave de Hugard, Jacko Kevans, Mike Martin, Chris Sullivan, Bob Bolton, Hugh Anderson, Danny Spooner, Warren Fahey, Graham Seal, the late John Meredith, The National Library of Australia and Trove.
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"Loving 'Roar of the Crowd'! Stunning achievement Roweth Music. Aussie history, Aussie characters, Aussie ethics. Beautiful lyrics and spoken word with gorgeous lilting vocals that carry listeners on thought-provoking journeys. Lively stimulating music ensures it cannot be experienced with a still body. Feet tap, arms dance, faces smile and hearts will soar!"
- Jeanie Kay
The Roar of the Crowd
DOUBLE ALBUM (2017)
FEATURING BILL BROWNE, MATT NIGHTINGALE & ROGER HARGRAVES
Chloë Roweth (Vocals, mandolin, bouzouki, concertina, bodhran, percussion)
Jason Roweth (Vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, bouzouki, mandola, mandolin, occasional bass)
Bill Browne (Kit drums)
Matt Nightingale (Bass)
Roger Hargraves (Fiddle)
CD1 - 70 mins
CD2 - 70 mins
Delving through old and new traditional Australian song, story and poem, Chloe & Jason explore the clear duality in the nation’s modern history, unearthing a cycle of dispossession and dislocation. This is the other side of the fence, the wrong side of the street, south of the tracks - this is the Hidden Republic. We hear the voices of convicts and bushrangers, The First Australians, soldiers and activists for peace, workers rights and the elusive “fair go”. We hear from the earliest days of colonial Australia - Frank the Poet and the Great Anon, from the goldfields years and the Great Depression - Dorothy Hewett, Duke Tritton, and through to more recent work from the mighty pens of Alistair Hulett, John Dengate, Denis Kevans, Roger Montgomery. Pieces are tied together thematically, evocative dance tunes running under poems and expanding into songs, weaving together diverse threads of Australian tradition.
This recording is dedicated to Australia’s
‘Poet Lorikeet’, Denis Kevans (1939–2005).
Without Denis’ words, at times
this world would leave us speechless.
"And I heard the roar at the Town Hall, when the delegate rose to speak,
A roar to shake the merciless, a roar to raise the weak,
To raise the weak and wandering, to give eyes to the blind,
That was the roar of a tidal wave...
that was making up it’s mind. "
- From ‘The Roar of the Crowd’ by Denis Kevans
Note: Numbering matches CD tracks. Medleys have been combined into single tracks for download to avoid gaps between MP3 files occurring.
1. The Exile of Erin, on the Plains of Emu
Printed in the Sydney Gazette 26th May 1829.
Words: Reverend John McGarvie
2. Australian Made
Traditional Dance Tune: Harry Axford’s Schottische
3. Song of the Sheet-Metal Worker
Words: John Dengate
Tune: Valley of Knockanure (Trad.)
4. The Roar of the Crowd
Words: Denis Kevans
Music: C. & J. Roweth
5. Poor Ned Kelly
Smilin’ Billy Blinkhorn
6. The Kelly Gang
Includes fragment of The Jerilderie Letter written by Ned Kelly with Joe Byrne.
7. “Useless As...”
Johnny Go Milk the Bull (Trad.)
Carrie Milliner’s Mademoiselle She Bought a Cow (Trad.)
Traditional Dance Tune: Ernie Wells’ The Old Set
Give Us A Song (Anon.)
8. Mademoiselle From Armienteres
The original song is of disputed origin, often parodied. Earliest published version of this particular parody appeared in 1929, credited to “Riverina”. Passed on to John Meredith by Frank Lett in Mudgee (1987), introduced to John Angliss and Roger Montgomery by Keith McKenry - which is where we heard it.
9. The Sandy Hollow Line
H. P. C. ‘Duke’ Tritton
Traditional Dance Tune: Joe Yates’ Sofala Cuckoo
10. Weevils in the Flour
Words: Dorothy Hewett
Tune: Mike Leyden
11. Bullocky-Oh / Bogan Billy
Poem: Will Carter
Traditional Dance Tunes: Charlie Kyle’s March,
Joe Yates’ Wallaby Rocks, Frank Collins’
The Bowral Jig.
12 Georgie Sands
Traditional from Jim Lowe
13. The Dirt of the Mallee
14. Hey Banjo
Traditional Dance Tunes: The Dawson Family’s Burke’s Dream, Bert Jamieson’s Alberts Tune, The Crooked Corner Band’s Under the Willow, Joe Yates’ The Wedding of Lachan McGraw.
1. The Ballad of Ben Hall’s Gang / The Swagless Swaggie
2. The Swagless Swaggie
Traditional Tunes: Charlie Kyle’s Pretty Jig, Charlie Kyle’s Schottische, Morrison’s Jig, Simon McDonald’s Shoemaker’s Fancy, Norm McConnell’s Set Tune, Charlie Kyle’s Polka.
3. The Wild Colonial Boys Medley
Excerpt from Frank Clune’s The Wild Colonial Boys
Music: C. & J. Roweth
4. Jim Jones at Botany Bay
5. For the Company Underground
Words: Frank the Poet (Francis McNamara)
Music: C. & J. Roweth
6. Bury my Bones in the Hallowed Ground
Tune: Santy Anna (Trad.)
7. Ah, White Man, Have You Any
Traditional Dance Tune: Frank Collins’ Reel
8. My Home in the Valley
9. Well... The Tale of a Hole
Traditional Dance Tune: Bert Jamieson’s Lancers
10. Blue Murder
11. He Fades Away
12. It’s a Long Way to Cunnamulla
Tune: It’s a Long Way to Tipperary (Trad.)
13. Farewell to Sir Joh
Tune: Brisbane Ladies (Trad.)
14. Victor Podham and His Rusty Hut
Yarn: If you had what I’ve got (old as the hills)
15. Moreton Bay
Words: Frank the Poet (Francis McNamara)
Music: Traditional, as sung by Simon McDonald.