Bye For Now - Ralph McTell

24 April 2012 | 11:29 am | Staff Writer

Ralph McTell made up for English ales and tea with wine and mateship.

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What has convinced you to give up touring Australia?
Australia's a vast country and the rigours of good solo performance are extremely demanding. Inevitably if one is to keep performances fresh and vital, you need to be at the top of your game. I would hate it to be reported that I seemed tired or that the performances might be suffering either because of travel, or worse, old age!

What will you miss most about Australia?
The spirit. There is nowhere that I've ever been that combines all the elements of life the way Australians do and that makes it one of the most vibrant and exciting places on the planet.

What do you remember about your first trip here?
My first impressions of Australia took me years to write into a song, which I finally managed to do for Billy Connolly's Word Tour Of Australia TV series, when I wrote In The Dreamtime. The paradox of being so far from home and yet feeling so close to the people I met, is a feeling that remains to this day.

Can you mention a few highlights of your visits here?
My first ever gig was the Sydney Opera House. It doesn't get much better than that. It makes no difference where I play, they're all highlights

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And lowlights…?
Doing without my English ale and tea (more than compensated for by wine and mateship).

How are you saying farewell to the fans here?
I think again with the sentiments best expressed In The Dreamtime will best sum up my fondness for Australia.

Farewell shows:
Friday 27 April at the Balmain Town Hall, Saturday 28 at the Joan Sutherland Centre in Penrith, Sunday 29 at The Clarendon in Katoomba and Friday 4 May back at the Balmain Town Hall.

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