DIARY - 5 JULY 2010 - BARB WATERS CD REVIEW
BARB WATERS & THE MOTHERS OF PEARL
BUFFALO MOUNTAIN GIRL
played guitar and made up her own songs/ all that summer she let me strum
along." - My Brother's First Girlfriend - Barb Waters.
by Tony Mott
mountain air in the Victorian high country is fertile fodder for songwriters.
Corryong born Lee Kernaghan and Myrtleford minstrel Barb Waters long ago
decamped their roots for the big smoke.
But they have repeatedly mined a rich vein for their niches in the country
They also soaked up the footy culture way beyond their birthplaces.
Lee, a latter day Queenslander, is a Carlton fan with country music loving
Goulburn Valley born star Andrew Walker on his speed dial.
Barb may be a St Kilda supporter but it's not clear if former Cats captain,
latter day Saint and former Murray Valley Bushrangers ruckman Steven King
takes her calls.
Kernaghan abandoned brief real estate sales across the Murray in Albury
for music with three singing siblings Tania, Greg and Fiona.
Waters used her literary skills from a successful teaching career to hone
her songwriting in the killing fields of inner suburbia.
So it's no surprise she also exploited fraternal memories for the entrée
song of her third solo CD.
In My Brother's First Girlfriend the singer recalls her brother's
ruptured romance devastated her because it deprived her of an embryonic
But Waters, whose wry humour inspired naming of primary school band The
Water Babies, doesn't seem to have suffered lasting pain.
Especially when she tears up her back pages with delicious dexterity as
she colours her vibrant vignettes with vivid imagery.
daddy wielding a shotgun/ no one of great renown/ rodeo riders, lonesome
hitchhikers/ not in this sleepy town." - Sleepytown - Barb Waters.
country palm trees, scent of lantana and unique mountain light bring
childhood memories to life in salient sequencing of Sleepytown,
I Used To Ride and Watch The Boys.
These are poignant pen pictures of idyllic exploits in the slow lane
before rural innocence fell victim to city cyberspace.
Luckily country singers seem to be immune to many of the spiders on
Waters ignites credible tales on departed friends and lovers in Don't
See Them Around and I Just Saw Our Love Fly Away with uncanny
bleak financial challenges of a latter day chosen career with therapeutic
rewards in the metaphoric Cannot Bend A Stone.
Waters punctuates her narratives with Tony Romeo penned Oh Boy
- an historic hit for diva Dianna Trask, an older chanteuse raised down
yonder at Warburton.
The hook heavy original scored mass airplay in an era before corporate
radio killed eclectic formats.
wore a blue dress, all that summer/he had a soft caress/ never said that
he loved her/ she didn't know, he was not a man of words/ all bright summer
long/ in the rock pools they nestled/ her dress it tore on the blackberry
nettle." - Quiet Country Boy - Barb Waters.
Waters at Basement Discs - 25/6/10
find a home on the ABC and community radio range with maternal paeans
The Poplars - replete with a lurking danger - and Don't Go Out.
Perhaps they're a perfect segue to the coming of age finale Quiet Country
The blackberry nettle that tore the mountain maid's blue dress before
she fled for city halls of academia may be a far less deleterious health
hazard than the telephonic tool that now bears its name.
The crisp production of Craig Pilkington enables Waters' vocals to drive
With Waters sharing guitar duties with Pilkington, Ash Naylor and Chris
Altmann, who adds pedal steel, banjo and mandolin, this disc never suffer
from heat seeking histrionics.
The Silo String Quartet enriches the deft touch of organist Bruce Haymes
violinist Jen Anderson and Dave Evans' accordion.
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