The Story of Two Australian Migrants and the Telly.

It’s been five weeks since I last posted a light-hearted YouTube video on this blog. Events around Queensland and other parts of Australia kind of put a stop to that regular feature.

Now though feels like the right time to bring it back. With not one, but two videos.

A Top Australian TV Program.

One of the first television shows I latched on to when I arrived here in Australia is a program called rage. Yes, that is rage with a small r.

rage is an all night video music show that is broadcast on Friday and Saturday nights on ABC television. rage itself must be considered an Australian icon; it’s been on air since April 1987.

It has no presenters, just plays back-to-back videos. But on Saturdays they do have famous guest programmers from the music industry. People like Deborah Harry, Lily Allen and Nick Cave have all sat in the chair.

Dick Williams: Hit Scene

Dick Williams: Hit Scene Presenter

But way before rage there was a program called Hit Scene, presented by Dick Williams, which was also aired on ABC television here in Australia. I only know this because ABC have been delving into their archives and playing entire shows of Hit Scene on rage.

And what gems these programs are too. Particularly the episode that was originally aired in March 1970. Two acts on that show really caught my eye. As it turns out, both of these guys have a story to tell when it comes to moving to Australia.

But first, the music. Grab your pen and a piece of paper because you’ll want to make notes. This is Kamahl with a song called “You’ve Got to Learn”.

And if you thought that was fantastic, wait until you see this one! It’s Marty Rhone with a cheeky little swipe at the Australian music industry of the time….

There! What do you think of that?

If you didn’t watch both those acts with your mouth wide open in astonishment, then perhaps, like me, you should try watching it at around three o’clock in the morning after having consumed a proper Aussie geezer’s portion of a carton of beer.

Oh, and those migration stories? Kamahl moved to Adelaide from Malaysia as a Tamil Hindu schoolboy in 1953. Marty was born in Indonesia, but moved to Australia with his half Dutch half Chinese father and fifth generation Australian mother when he was just two years old in 1950.

Both still live here today. I think we can assume then that they like life in Australia.

So, where are they now? Surely, nobody knows? Not so!

Kamahl went on to be “one of the most sensational recording stars in Australian history” according to his own website. They may even be right about that; he has sold more records internationally than any other Malaysian artist, has sung for Queen Elizabeth and other royalty and he’s met George Clinton.

Marty Rhone’s career took off pretty good too. He has been described as “an Australian music legend”. He toured Australia with the Rolling Stones, performed at the official opening of the Sydney Entertainment Centre with John Denver and became the first Australian solo performer to sing at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, USA. He also won two popular awards at the World Popular Song Festival in Tokyo. And has performed on stage with Yul Brynner.

He’s still touring today.

Well, who would have thought?

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