Most artists only dream of writing with a tunesmith celebrated as Texan troubadour Guy Clark.

But for Newcastle novitiate Catherine Britt it came as a teenager on her first year in Nashville after being discovered by Bill Chambers.

Catherine, now 20, penned Poor Man's Pride with Clark and prolific bluegrass bred writer Jerry Salley.

Britt's performance of the video for their agrarian tune is the highlight of the finale episode of Series #4 of Nu Country TV on C 31 - this Saturday October 1.

Catherine was just four when Clark, 64, made the first of his two Australian tours in 1989.

Top rating 3AW breakfaster announcers Ross Stevenson and John Burns, then partner Dennis Donohue and Judge Bowman entertained Clark at famed Flower Drum eaterie on his Melbourne debut.

But 14 years later Britt jumped at the chance to write with Clark when she arrived in Nashville to source her second album Too Far Gone.

Her debut U.S. single Upside Of Being Down, produced by major hit writer and award winning producer Keith Stegall and Chambers, peaked at #34 on the Billboard charts.

Britt released a duet with Sir Elton John on When We Both Say Goodbye - also penned with Salley - as her latest U.S. Top 40 single.

But here it's the rural requiem that has been issued as a prelude to her return home for Christmas with parents Steve and Sue.

"I'm not afraid to say when somebody's written more than the others, and Guy Clark had a big hand in this song," Britt revealed.

"I had a title and an idea, but I didn't know what it meant, or what it was about. But Jerry Salley had a basic story of his family, and we started from there and made it something different. It took two full days of hardcore writing - longest songwriting session of my life - because Guy just wanted to get it right. It was so tiring, but when we were done we were so proud of it. It's one of those songs that's a great story, which is what a lot of country music is about, and it's a country story, about a farmer and a farmer's life. I love that song."

CLICK HERE for a feature in the Diary on October 21, 2004.


Travis Collins hails from the wild west of Sydney and is destined to head overseas to follow his muse.

Collins won the 2004 Tamworth Star Maker quest as a teenager and performs a video clip of Bridge That You Won't Burn - the winning tune he wrote with his dad Terry.

The song is one of the highlights of Collins debut ABC Music debut album Start The Car that also features Guy Clark song Step Inside This House.

Travis is featured in an interview about his desire to emulate high-flying expatriates Keith Urban, Jedd Hughes, Jamie O'Neal, Sherrie Austin and The Greencards.

Chart topper Austin has just won wide acclaim from the New York Times for her role of Bonnie Parker in the Broadway musical The Ballad of Bonnie & Clyde.

Collins, just 21, reveals how he wrote four songs on his Herm Kovacs produced disc and plans to tour Victoria in 2006.

CLICK HERE for a story on Travis in the Diary in the preview on September 5, 2005.


Prolific Arizona singer-songwriter Dierks Bentley cleaned golf balls among menial tasks when he headed to Nashville at 18.

Bentley soaked up bluegrass as he sang for his supper on the live circuit in the most competitive music market in the U.S.

Now the singer, who became a member of the Grand Ole Opry at the age of 29, has soared charts with third album Modern Day Drifter featuring eight of his originals.

Bentley performs a video clip of his autobiographical hit Lot Of Leaving Left To Do about his 300 nights a year live performing career.

The singer features bluegrass stars Alison Krauss on his new disc and Del McCoury on two of his discs.

CLICK HERE to read a feature on Bentley in the Diary on September 17, 2005.


Melbourne duo Utes And Suits didn't take their name from the once a year footy fans who invade the hallowed Members' stand at the MCG for the AFL grand final.

Colin Purssey emulated singing Texan crime novelist Kinky Friedman by borrowing from Arthur Conan Doyle for his pseudonym of Doc Challenger as a TV pro wrestler.

Purrsey teamed with Melbourne musician-arranger Chris Wilson, in need of an alias to distinguish himself from the Bellarine Peninsula blues singer of the same name,
to form Utes And Suits.

The duo collaborated on Purrsey tune Rock' N Roll Relic - featured in a video clip on Nu Country TV this week.

Purrsey was raised in the Illawarra steel foundry belt, left school at 14 and nurtured his songwriting during a security guard stint at ABC Radio in Melbourne.

The artist, who describes his muse as "new traditional country," also wrestled under the name of Digger Nolan to reputed TV audience of 20 million pub and home bound U.K. residents.

Purrsey and Wilson road tested their mantle radio era music with a U.S. release before unleashing it here in the unlucky radio country.


Rural NSW band Cowpoke returns to Nu Country TV with a video clip of new single Again.

Members met while teaching at Southern Highlands School of Music and debuted in October of 2004 with satirical single How Would John?

These Mittagong and Bowral lads follow their Nu Country spring debut with Fool from debut album Pokin' Around.

The sextet, revelling in a management address of 409 Bong Bong St, Bowral, NSW 2576,
Further info - http://www.cowpoke.com.au/


Former West Australian singer Nicki Gillis debuts the video for new single Jealousy.

The 1996 Gympie Muster Winner was also the 2002 headliner at the World Women's Hockey Championships captivating her audience of over 10,000 plus via satellite to viewers in 16 countries.

She made the finals of Female Vocalist at the Victorian Country Music & Australian Songwriters Association Awards for her song Lonely from On The Mountain.

Nicki also joined Newcastle-based artist Brooke Leal in the duo Velvet Moon.

Further Info - www.nickigillis.com.au


We have left the saddest news for last in this week's preview - the final episode of Series #4 of Nu Country TV.

Famed Australian actor, stage thespian and prolific voiceover expert Peter Hosking has drawn the curtain on his production and direction of the acclaimed TV show.

Nu Country TV was the brainchild of the Hampton born bard and multi-talented artist.

Hosking created the concept, did the legwork for the show's conception, nursed it through its growth and worked around the clock to ensure it not only survived but triumphed.

Peter convinced community TV station C 31, nee Channel 31, there was a market for a country music TV show.

And that he was the person to ensure it was of the quality necessary to reflect the huge growth of the most under-represented genre in the Australian media.

Hosking produced, directed, filmed and edited the first two series as he swung from the ropes.

This meant riding his pushbike, at great risk to his health and psyche, from speeding motorists to venues across the multi-cultural metropolis.

And, on occasions when time precluded him following in the spoke steps of fellow Abbotsford born singing actor Smoky Dawson, he obtained necessary visas to film in far-flung suburbs.

Hosking headed a team of volunteers including Heather Rutherford, Carol Taylor and Peter Bird, who filmed outside the city limits at Port Fairy, Bunyip and other exotic locales.

He also nurtured the talents of his co-hosts Rutherford, Paul Hicks and Red Smith, audio man Rodger Delfos and celebrity chef Mid Pacific Bob Olson and producer Peter Straubli.

And, of course, he fostered Monash University academic Lawrie Weir on his research and question cameos and gig guide host Annie Christophers in his interim period as web master.

That was before the recruitment of web mistress-photographer Anne Sydenham and her fellow unsung live concert critic and membership officer Peter O'Keefe.

When the workload threatened to drown Hosking while he was knee deep in house renovations he received solace from East Burwood editor Michael Wormald who added camera work to his CV as he edited Series #3 and #4 of the TV show.

It was a far cry from that dark, cold wet winter's day in the mid-nineties when Hosking trekked from his home in the delta of Beer Can Hill to the peak to offer his services as a DJ at Nu Country FM.

The maverick DJ soon became the resident jack of all shifts, voiceover wizard and host of movie show Reel Country as the station battled for nine years for a licence.

He was there when the station burned down on June 26, 2000, and got on his bike to help out when the station was resurrected at the Paris, Texas end of Collins St in the CBD in January of 2001.

We will run a more detailed tribute to Hosking - and the 50 multi-skilled persons we need to replace him - elsewhere on this web page.

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