Tamworth Country Music Festival: Kasey Chambers on Roll of Renown

Kasey Chambers at the Australasian Country Music Roll of Renown on Sunday morning. Picture: Simon McCarthy
Kasey Chambers at the Australasian Country Music Roll of Renown on Sunday morning. Picture: Simon McCarthy

Kasey Chambers has become the youngest inductee to the Australasian Country Music Roll of Renown.

The 41-year-old singer was announced as the 2018 inductee at the Toyota Golden Guitar Awards on Saturday evening, and the plaque was unveiled on the rock outside the Tamworth Regional Entertainment and Conference Centre on Sunday morning.

Over her career, Chambers has released eight solo albums, two with then husband Shane Nicholson, won 22 Golden Guitars and had a profound effect on country music, especially the rise of alt-country.

Kasey Chambers performs at the Toyota Golden Guitar Awards on Saturday evening. Picture: Peter Hardin

Kasey Chambers performs at the Toyota Golden Guitar Awards on Saturday evening. Picture: Peter Hardin

In accepting the award, Kasey paid a special tribute to her parents Bill and Diane and to brother Nash, her long time record producer.

"I definitely wouldn't have got to first base without my family and their involvement," Chambers said.

The singer-songwriter, who cut her teeth in country music as the lead singer of her family group, the Dead Ringer Band while still in her teens, went on to be a groundbreaking solo artist.

The Dead Ringer Band win the Golden Guitar for Group or Duo of the Year in 1998.

The Dead Ringer Band win the Golden Guitar for Group or Duo of the Year in 1998.

Looking back, Chambers said she didn’t believe her music would be a full-time career when she went solo in 1999, and she could not have dreamt about the success that would come.

“I had really resigned myself to the fact, back then, that I was never going to be successful in music. Because not only is it country music, which doesn’t get played a lot on mainstream radio, but also, I was playing a really different style of country music, that was less popular back then than it is now,” she said. After picking up two Golden Guitars in 2000, sales of debut album The Captain took off, quickly reaching gold, then platinum, and eventually double platinum with sales of more than 140,000.

“When The Captain went they way that it did, I was shocked,” Chambers said. “I’m still shocked about it to be honest.”

She followed it up with Barricades and Brickwalls, which sold almost half a million copies and included the single Not Pretty Enough, which became a number one hit on the ARIA Singles Chart, and at one stage had the top song and top album on the pop charts.

“That whole time is very surreal for me,” Chambers said. “And when I think about it, it feels like a bit of a dream.”

At the Toyota Golden Guitar Awards on Saturday evening, Chambers picked up the award for Alt Country Album of the Year for her latest release, Dragonfly.