JOHN FARNHAM...lot of people bag him in Aussie ..yet, his probably the only bloke here who can do a 11 month tour and sell out every night...so bash that up your arse non-believers
I had Farnham's early "King of Pop" singles, HELL, who in Aussie didint...the very famous Sadie (the cleaning lady )and Raindrops were the two 45's in question ...and after his King of Pop wins John got into stage and cabaret performing in stage shows Dick Whittington and Charlie Girl...not my cup of tea..but I dare say he gave it his all, like he does anything else.....He even had a weekly television show in the 70's called Bobby Dazzler about a pop star putting up with chicks chasing him everywhere.....but I started
to get a bit rockier and John sorta faded off my radar....
John also did an album with aussie gun geetar player Tommy Emmanuel...it was the album Uncovered but unfortunately radio in oz at the time considered John a piss poor cabaret act and didnt push it at all.....
Anyway, to say that John done it tough for a while, is calling a black cat black, quite frankly...somewhere along the line, Glenn Wheatley, ex-bassist for The Master's Apprentices and manager of champions...encouraged him to write stuff along with some mates and to put together a album along with sound engineer extrodinaire Ross Fraser...this ,quite frankly was Johns last shot, Wheatley even mortgaged his house..NOW... that's faith.
While they were putting the album together they were in a jazz club state side and the yank who clearly didnt use english as a first language called John Farnham ...
JACK PHANTOM...John liked the mistake and filed the name away for later use...after working with Ross Wilson and a slew of other muso's, he got the album done....
the album was delivered to Sydney radio stations as being performed by NEW act Whispering Jack Phantom...and the radio stations played it....the next time I saw John was on a very famous variety show here in aussie, HEY HEY ITS SATURDAY..and him and the band banged out Your the Voice and a quick cover of "Women in Uniform" with Graham "Shirley" Strachan from Skyhooks...(who wrote it ,NOT Iron Maiden, for all you poms out there;))
Farnham went out on the road to give back to the people that got him back to the top of aussie rock...and dont John do a show...fkn brilliant isnt a strong enough word..I been to a couple of tours and he worked his arse off every night...I can safely say that Ive never seen OR heard of John half arsing a gig..and that says a lot about the bloke if you ask me....a
and hasnt he had some of Aussies greatest muso's working with on tours..People like Lindsay "The Bloody Hippy" Fields on back up voice, Angus "The Mongrel" Burchell on the drums, Stuart Fraser (yes him from Feather) on guitar and Brett "Rambo" Garsed who other gig of note was with hair metal act NELSON...oh and we cant forget the Queen of Australia, Vanetta Fields on voice
Everything he touched turned to gold ...He done a in the round version of Jesus Christ Superstar as JC himself with Angry Anderson as Pontius Pilate and Jon Stevens of Noisewoks as Judus...wasnt bad I suppose...
not my cup of bourbon and he also did a series of gigs called Main Events with Olivia Neutron Bomb...umm Newton John and Anthony Warlow, which Deb loved, once again, me not so much, he also done a duet with Jimmy Barnes "Something is wrong with my baby"...a sterling tune
John has produced a string of albums that are just off the hook..Romeos Heart, Chain Reaction (my personal fave), Age of reason...33 &1/3, The Last Time and Farnham all live at my place...and they all are the goods....(psst ...wasnt a big fan of the great australian songbook, But dont let that stop ya looking for it)
He even done a gig with Tom Jones and released a dvd and cd of the gig...to the best of my knowledge they met on Hey Hey...thats the first time I saw them together and they did an acapella version My Yiddisha Momma and it blew the roof off the joint...fkn awesome doesnt cover it....
He did an album called the Last Time in 2001...and this resulted in the "retirement "tour...which me and Deb went to at Newcastle Entertainment centre in 2002...some halfwit tried to sue him for emotional stress and breach of promise for doing a mini tour in 2003...BUT.. John said he wasn't doing any more major tours he never said anything about never gigging again.
Around this time he did a version "We Will Rock You" with Brian and Roger from Queen and while he never was gonna do a gig proper with them , he coulda pulled it off with no doubt about.
So there you go, my homage to Whispering Jack Phantom...hope you hunt him down and get into him
Everybody Oughta Sing a Song (1968)
Looking Through a Tear (1970)
Christmas Is... Johnny Farnham (1970)
Johnny Farnham Sings the Shows (1972)
Hits Magic & Rock 'N Roll (1973)
Johnny Farnham Sings Hits from the Movies (1974)
J.P. Farnham Sings (1975)
Whispering Jack (1986)
Age of Reason (1988)
Chain Reaction (1990)
Then Again... (1993)
Romeo's Heart (1996)
The Last Time (2002)
I Remember When I Was Young: Songs from the Great Australian Songbook (2005)
The Acoustic Chapel Sessions (2011)