Music heritage recalled

WHILE swimming legend Lisa Curry gave lessons in the pool at Cohuna last weekend, her other half, Mark 'Andrew' Tabone, was relaxing in the shade in the lead up to his 'Legends' tribute show.

The Elvis impersonator and entertainer said he liked performing in country towns because rural people tended to appreciate live shows more.

Mr Tabone was enjoying Cohuna, he said, especially learning about the town's musical history from Geoff and Betty Thompson, who were at the centre of a thriving town hall band scene in the 1960s.

"It was big back in our days," Mr Thompson said. 

"You talk to a lot of people around the district and they met at our dance. We'd get regularly on a Thursday night up to 800 people in the hall, and we had stars from Sydney and overseas and everywhere." 

The Lonely Ones, who were a local band, used to back most of the artists, he said.

On Australia Day 1964 the Bee Gees, who were in town for the week, spent time at the Cohuna pool, Mr Thompson said. 

John Farnham signed his contract in the town in April 1967 and staged a free street concert in Cohuna that attracted 10,000 people in 2002 before a national tour.

Some of the local musicians from that era are still playing in the area.

Geoff and Betty Thompson, life-time members of the Barham Rock 'n' Roll Club, continue to teach debutantes to dance in Cohuna and Pyramid Hill.

"The kids seem to like our type of dancing," Mr Thompson said.

A lot of Cohuna's musical history has been collected on the Facebook page @CohunaRockNRollHallofFame.

REMINISCING. Mark Tabone chats with Geoff Thompson at Cohuna.

REMINISCING. Mark Tabone chats with Geoff Thompson at Cohuna.

SPLASH. Lisa Curry conducts a swimming lesson at Cohuna.

SPLASH. Lisa Curry conducts a swimming lesson at Cohuna.

Smartphone
Tablet - Narrow
Tablet - Wide
Desktop