Bart Thrupp is able to entertain, as well as sing and play the guitar, another feather in Toowoomba’s cap of inspiring local talent.

Bart feels a spiritual and physical need to write songs. “Ive never been asked to write a song; I contributed to a country CD when I was 11, and the momentum has continued since then. I can write a song in less than an hour, however there is one track Monkey King, off the new album of the same name, that actually took around six months to write. I am never conscious of my expressionalism, I would prefer to express genuine feelings, than just rely on clichés all the time.”

Bart has recently played live shows in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide, and these cities beckon Bart’s return in the very near future. “I didn’t have any expectations (of touring interstate). I thought the tours were successful, and I am planning on going back soon. I love the stretch between Maitland and the Gold Coast; it’s my favourite part of Australia. There is something about playing in regional towns. I think the crowds are not as spoilt, when they are entertained. They really let their hair down,” Bart says.

“I would love to live in Ireland, but before that I intend on driving around Australia. I would love to be a notable recording artist, on an international stage.” Bart has been playing guitar since he was four years old, and music has been a constant element of his life. “It makes me happy, and I feel lucky that I have found something I love, and manage to make money from it. I have never gone longer than six weeks without playing the guitar,” he said.

“The best piece of advice I was ever given was to ‘sing it like you mean it’. That piece of wisdom taught me to not only sing and write with conviction for my own performances, but also to be constantly aware of what other audiences are enjoying, whether it’s live music, comedy, or a live drama situation.” Bart was born in Roma and grew up on a diet of traditional country music, from the likes of Slim Dusty and Stan Coster. “It wasn’t until I moved to the city that my tastes changed.” He has a good sense of the absurd. “If I could have dinner with five people, I think I would choose Bob Hawke, Leonardo da Vinci, Paul Kelly, Ozzy Osbourne and Ani DeFranco, although I’m not sure about Bob and Ozzy getting along, but it sure would be funny to watch,” he smiles.

“I’m not a very superstitious person, but I carry with me a brick that I have owned since I was 15, it’s painted black, and it represents solidness. It also has a use in my stomp box, which is part of my stage equipment. Not that everything always goes to plan on stage; I broke two strings on two guitars at Bluesfest.”

Monkey King is the latest three-track offering from Bart Thrupp, his fourth recording effort.

Words by Marcus Hudswell | Image by Lily Fern Photography