By Dongyun Kwon
Legendary musician and ARIA Hall of Famer Ross Wilson is about to come to Healesville.
As a part of his tour ‘Now Listen! We’re Steppin’ Out! 50 Years of Hits National Tour’, Wilson will have a concert at the Memo on Friday 8 December.
Wilson said he has been to Healesville many times.
“The last time [I had a show in Healesville] was at a hotel. I am looking forward to being in a theatre this time because Healesville is a terrific place,” he said.
Wilson started the ‘50 Years of Hits National Tour’ two years ago, but the tour this year covers more regional areas with the expanded title by including one of his key phrases in his song ‘Eagle Rock’, “Now Listen! We’re Steppin’ Out!”.
The 2023/24 tour started in September and Wilson has performed in local theatres which he said has given him some different vibes from playing in clubs or pubs where he usually performs.
“Going into the theatres gives it a different kind of edge. The way I approached the show is now more talking about the songs [and] how the song was written,” Wilson said.
Despite the different vibes of theatres compared to pubs and clubs, Wilson said he wanted to enjoy his concert with the audience.
“Theatres are a naturally sit-down place, whereas pubs and clubs are more like getting-up, moving and dancing places. My job is getting people up and moving. [I hope] we’re all doing it together [in theatres] because I am not a preaching type of person,” he said.
“As a professional musician for over 50 years, I couldn’t survive without my audience. We need each other.”
Wilson’s music style has changed over the years as he has grown up.
His early period focused on fun while having a good time, whereas he now focuses on lyrics attaching more serious subjects.
“I had two really huge bands. when in the 70s, it was ‘Daddy Cool’ and that was like a fun kind of band and a bit silly,” Wilson said.
“Then, as I got older, I formed another band ‘Mondo Rock’ and they were much more grown-up music as our audience grew up. The tone of music became more detailed and lyrics were better.”
In recognition of his success in music, Wilson was inducted ARIA Hall of Fame twice, once as a solo in 1989 and again as a member of Daddy Cool in 2006.
Looking back on his long-time music career, Wilson said he was lucky to work with good people.
“I rely on my band members who sound really good and make the show really smooth. I also have a good team who helps us to reach our fans and communicate with them,” Wilson said.
“But, one thing I am concerned about is the shrinking of live venues. Since we all got back from the lockdowns, about 1300 live venuses have disappeared across Australia. Kids don’t have anywhere to play their music and learn the crafts.”
“I hope my tour becomes a signal for the revival of local live venues.”
Tickets are purchasable at www.songkick.com/concerts/41332583-ross-wilson-at-memo-healesville.