"Poor old Bill met a girl called Mary/ she was really quite pretty but her legs were hairy/ but Bill didn't mind." - I Want My Tractor Back - Lianna Rose

Tractors long ago gained traction as vibrant vehicles for driving country songs into the soul of the genre.

Kenny Chesney earned a cool $90 million from 2008 touring and had an embryonic hit with She Thinks My Tractor's Sexy while Joe Diffie's John Deere Green was a metaphor for the mighty machine.

Canadian troubadour Fred Eaglesmith collects a tidy profit from tractor tunes and Jason Aldean recently charted with Jim Collins-David Lee Murphy song Big Green Tractor.

Let's not forget Tulsa legend Steve Ripley whose band The Tractors recently released its sixth album Trade Union.

Now NSW Central Coast chanteuse Lianna Rose puts the big green machine up-front as spurned spoils of a marital split in I Want My Tractor Back on her debut album.

Rose, prolific writer for others and former resident of Yass on Highway 31, penned all 13 songs here.

In her paddock prince tune guitarist Bill returns home from a gig to find Mary and his tractor gone.

Six months later, successful litigant Mary shakes her lawyer's hand on the court steps before the punch line.

"You could hear Bill laughing cause away he ran/ with the tractor, he went and stole it."

Unclear how many guitarists steal tractors but Rose sold her Highway 31 home before heading to the coast and proves a mirthful mistress of her muse.


"And as I pick up the matches to burn away my pain/ I stop and thinks to myself, girl/ he's not even worth the flame." - A New Guitar - Lianna Rose

She mixes mirth and melancholia in A New Guitar where a femme fatale finds solace in her axe but baulks at burning her banished beau's pictures.

Rose's characters are strong women and wield guitars as weapons of choice in single Jack (New Strings), replete with video clip of the decamping damsel.

"Yeah, I'm a real nice girl, I left you my P.C./ cause I know how much you love that damn thing/ more than me."

Ruptured romance ignites powerful domestic violence tale I Still Cry as a mother of two falls twice - eight years apart - for abusive men.

It recurs in love battlefield saga Smoking Gun - "when all is said and done/ love is just a smoking gun/ dropped on the floor."

Rose, whose songs adorned Home & Away this year, excels in narratives - especially tear stained entrée Higher Ground and Don't Take The Girl that includes a lyric lifted for her album title.

Most villains are men - the cheater in Sugar On It - but there's self-deprecating mirth as she casts a poisonous princess in Just Like A Rose.

Maybe it's a play on the name of the artist who softens in esoteric Ebony.

Rose and producer Matt Fell deserve extended credit for salient song sequencing.

Rose exhibits fragility on Even Angels Need Angels and poignant Jenny that precede the uncertain choices of despair driven finale Am I The Song.

"Funny how life can make you feel little unsure/ and no matter what path you choose there's always a vampire/ sucking your soul for more."

Rose, producer Fell and co-writer Dai Pritchard add guitar to a disc enriched by Mick Albeck's fiddle, Fell's banjo and percussion, drummer Michael Carpenter and pianist Bill Risby.

Mark Punch and Felicity's singing spouse Glenn Hannah also join the guitar army on a disc that is already an ARIA contender.

top / back to diary