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Behind the Music

Hasten Slowly. Soak up what you can.

There are many I suspect who share my initial experience of rejection as a singer. You can't sing you are told. As a twelve year old auditioning for the school choir I will never forget the impersonal backwards thumb jerk of the choirmaster as he moved on to the next singer. Never mind that we loved to sing. The autoharp was to prove my saviour. I saw Billy Connolly play one at the end of a stand up gig and I was fascinated. My wife bought me a Chromaharp which I mucked around with - without much success - until it fell into disrepair. In 2010 I bought a harp with a pick up. Singing along to those amplified and sweetly tuned 36 strings my vocals began to rapidly improve. Eventually I began to perform at small festivals and in 2015 with the assistance of my friend, mentor and producer Vince Brophy I recorded my first CD: Give Me Grace. The song from the title track was picked up by the Newcastle People's Chorus and is now part of their repertoire. In 2019 I recorded my second CD: This Land. Small video clips of some songs on this CD are on my video page. I am now proud to call myself an autoharpist. It has enabled me to get back in touch with my West Coast of Tasmania roots and to catch up on decades of lost time - singing!

Tony Newport with Vince Brophy
Jim Brown

Tony Newport with Vince Brophy

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