Why Jimmy Barnes has formed a new band

 

Australian rock hero Jimmy Barnes has formed a new band.

The Cold Chisel frontman has started a rockabilly outfit with Chris Cheney of the Living End and Slim Jim Phantom of the Stray Cats.

"We've got three quarters of a rockabilly album finished," Barnes told Confidential.

"It's half originals, half old covers. Slim Jim and I have been talking about doing this for 20 years. When you think about making a rockabilly album you don't think about making it over the internet with people in different continents, but that's how we had to do it because of COVID and it's actually working out well, we've got some great guests."

Barnes will be incredibly prolific in 2021. He's writing a novel, a cookbook with wife Jane and recording Flesh and Blood, a sequel to 1993's acoustic release Flesh and Wood including new songs written by himself, Neil Finn and Don Walker.

"It's quite current lyrically, when the world is dropping around you you look at your life and what you've done and what you want to do."

 

 

Jimmy Barnes is planning a particularly busy 2021. Picture: Sam Ruttyn
Jimmy Barnes is planning a particularly busy 2021. Picture: Sam Ruttyn

 

 

 

2021 will also see Barnes celebrate the 30th anniversary of his Soul Deep album.

"It was such a big record, certainly my biggest record. It'd be good to do a few shows to celebrate it later this year depending how things are - get a great horn section, put a Soul Deep show together.."

This week is the tenth anniversary of the death of Cold Chisel drummer Steve Prestwich; a year ago the band finished what they said was their final tour.

"I was having dinner with Don (Walker) recently and said 'We could just make a record, that's not hard' and Don said 'Um, remember how hard making a record is!'

"We've all been talking this week with the anniversary of Steve's death, it's a really sad thing. Maybe that'll prompt us getting back together for something?

"We wish we could be in the one room playing again. Never say never with Chisel. We had discussed that being the final tour, maybe we could do one off shows somewhere. Every time I play with that band I remember how bloody good they are."

 

 

Melbourne band The Living End will be playing the Forum next week. Pic: Supplied
Melbourne band The Living End will be playing the Forum next week. Pic: Supplied

 

 

Barnes is also uploading all the isolation videos he and wife Jane posted on social media to his You Tube channel.

Barnes scrapped plans to release the covers as an album, feeling they'd lose their unpolished charm.

"Sometimes we were out of tune, sometimes I forgot the words, we were flying by the seat of our pants trying to do something to keep everybody entertained. If you went to the studio and polished it you might lose that charm and it'd just become covers. I learnt a lot about singing, we did everything from Van Morrison to Matt Monroe to Doris Day. We almost did Metallica. It stretched me as a vocalist and Jane taught herself guitar, she's quite accomplished now."

Barnes is returning to Victoria for two shows as part of Sounds Better Together - this Sunday at Rochford Wines at Yarra Valley with the Teskey Brothers and Vika and Linda and Monday at All Saints Estate Rutherglen with Daryl Braithwaite and Deborah Conway.

The Sounds Better Together series, where all tickets are $49.90, has announced more COVID-safe shows - The Living End at the Forum next Wednesday, Ross Wilson at the Theatre Royal Castlemaine next Wednesday.

There also shows for just $20: Alex Lahey and Scott Darlow at the Espy next Monday, Didirri and Mia Wray at Whalers Hotel Warrnambool next Thursday and the Pierce Brothers and Shannen James at Westernport Hotel San Remo next Thursday.

Tickets for all shows go on sale midday today at soundsbettertogether.com

Singer Missy Higgins is playing in Geelong on Saturday. Picture: Tim Carrafa
Singer Missy Higgins is playing in Geelong on Saturday. Picture: Tim Carrafa

 

SOUNDS BETTER TOGETHER SHOWS

Tones and I + Missy Higgins + Gordi + Didirri

Saturday 23 January

Mt Duneed Estate | Surf Coast, VIC

On sale now

ticketmaster.com.au | 136 100 |$49.90

 

Jimmy Barnes + The Teskey Brothers + Vika & Linda + Darlinghurst

Saturday 23 January

Rochford Wines | Yarra Valley, VIC

On sale now

ticketmaster.com.au | 136 100 |$49.90

 

Something for Kate + Hayley Mary

Sunday 24 January

The Prince - sold out

 

Jimmy Barnes + Daryl Braithwaite + Deborah Conway

Monday 25 January

All Saints Estate | Rutherglen, VIC

On sale now

ticketmaster.com.au | 136 100 |$49.90

 

Alex Lahey + Scott Darlow

Monday 25 January

Esplanade Hotel | St Kilda

On sale: Thursday 21 January 12 noon

moshtix.com.au |$20

 

Ross Wilson + Fergus James

Wednesday 27 January

Theatre Royal | Castlemaine

On sale: Thursday 21 January 12 noon

oztix.com.au | $49.90

 

The Living End + Bakers Eddy

Wednesday 27 January

The Forum | Melbourne

On sale: Thursday 21 January 12 noon

ticketmaster.com.au | $49.90

 

Didirri + Mia Wray

Thursday 28 January

Whalers Hotel | Warrnambool

On sale: Thursday 21 January 12 noon

oztix.com.au | $20

 

Pierce Brothers + Shannen James

Friday 29 January

Westernport Hotel | San Remo

On sale: Thursday 21 January 12 noon

oztix.com.au | $20

 

James Reyne, Daryl Braithwaite + Vika & Linda + Mia Wray

Saturday 30 January

Mallacoota Oval | Mallacoota, VIC

On sale now

ticketmaster.com.au | 136 100 |$49.90

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Originally published as Why Jimmy Barnes has formed a new band



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