A truly iconic moment for one of Australia’s most treasured musical legacies, today’s Google Doodle celebrates Australian singer, songwriter, and guitarist Slim Dusty, who is widely considered one of the most prolific country music artists of all time.
Slim Dusty recorded over 100 albums and sold over seven million copies during a career spanning nearly seven decades. Today’s Doodle, which will be live for a total of 24 hours,is an endearing illustration that has been in the works for over six months and celebrates the Australian icon being awarded the Outstanding Achievement award at the ARIA music awards in 2000.
Slim’s family, his wife Joy McKean and children Anne and David Kirkpatrick, collaborated closely with Google on this project. His daughter, Anne Kirkpatrick shares her thoughts on her father below:
“I adored my dad. I was lucky and thankful to spend weeks and months with him touring all around Australia with the Slim Dusty Show as I was growing up. As I followed my own path in the music game, I’d still drop in on the family show like a bird flying home to the nest. The magic of his raw talent as a singer and performer had to be seen and heard to be believed and I still believe he has one of the most recognisable voices in Australia. I treasure the two duet albums we recorded together with the last in 2001 Travellin Still..Always Will, being the last full album he recorded.
He treasured a tattered book of Henry Lawson poems that he referred to as his ‘Bible of the Bush’, a precious birthday gift from my mother, Joy McKean, in 1952 during their first year of marriage. In later years he wrote in the front cover “All my dreams and ambitions are basically fulfilled”. That was the dream of an 11-year-old kid to become Slim Dusty, a kid of immense raw talent and drive who met a kindred spirit in my mother. Together they made his dream come true. Our family is immensely proud of what he achieved. So many firsts!
It’s a long way from Nulla Creek (near Kempsey in NSW) to be walking out with your guitar and singing ‘Waltzing Matilda’ at the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics. The list of awards and accolades is astonishing enough, however, perhaps more importantly, I saw how Slim Dusty and his music became woven into the fabric of people’s lives. His music lives on.
He was happiest on the road touring with his band, collecting, writing, and recording great songs and, in his downtime, going fishing!Slim Dusty was my dad, and while I shared much of him with Australia and thousands around the world, we wouldn’t have had it any other way.”