Wendy Matthews couples her sublime voice with iconic singer songwriter and long time friend, Glenn Shorrock, for a night of pure musicality in An Evening with Wendy Matthews and Glenn Shorrock
The artists perform a selection of their many hits, plus a few surprises and personal favourites, dating back to their initial jamming sessions in the late 1970s … They tell us a little bit about their friendship.
Glenn, your friendship with Wendy goes back a long way – I understand you were responsible for Wendy initially coming to Australia?
I first met Wendy in LA in the late 1970s. I found out she was a singer doing a bit of session work around LA and heard a few of her demos – that was the start of our friendship, which continued for many years. I was responsible for bringing Wendy down to Australia to perform on my solo album called Villain of the Peace and do live shows with me.
People will be happy to hear that you and Wendy are performing some of your favourite songs in the show:
There’s nothing new about nostalgia, to use the expression. People still want to hear the music that we’ve done over the years, and we are certainly catering to that. There also might be a little bit of Dusty Springfield, Bonnie Raitt and that sort of thing, plus a couple of Celtic ballads. The music will all be very melodic and have a strong lyric content.
How much interaction is there with the audience in the show?
If we can get a bit intimate with the audience and talk with each other, that’s what we’ll do. I’m really warming to the fact that I can talk to people while on stage and that they can talk back to me.
Do you enjoy visiting the Manning-Great Lakes?
It’s a beautiful area – all water. My life is busy, so sailing on the bright blue, clear water is good for me. I often look at real estate and drool a bit over Blueys Beach and Smiths Lake.
Wendy, you first met Glenn in the late ‘70s?
I left Montreal, Canada to go busking when I was 16 and ended up in Los Angeles in a big house with a bunch of Australians. One night they took me to a huge concert with the Little River Band … Before I knew it, the singer I’d just watched on stage – Glenn Shorrock – was helping me to jump-start my Volkswagen car. I remember thinking that was pretty cool.
You’ve been an Australian citizen for nearly 30 years. When you first came to Australia, you stayed with the Shorrocks?
I was like the guest who wouldn’t leave … we would sit around the piano in the lounge room and we found we had similar tastes, and we just used to sing a lot. We really enjoyed singing together, so we’ve brought a few of these actual songs to the stage in our current show. We start off doing a number of songs together and then we each do individual sets, followed by more combined performances.
The show features many of your hits. I’m looking forward to hearing The Day You Went Away, which still makes me cry every time I hear it …
Songs and smells can take you back to a completely different place and time and have a completely different meaning from one person to the next. A friend of mine in London wrote The Day You Went Away, and it was originally a Dance and Hip Hop track. We slowed it down to learn the chords, and discovered it took on a whole different thing and became a very different song.
Speaking of places, are you looking forward to spending time in the Great Lakes area?
I love going there and get down there when I’m passing through with Bear, my Border Collie dog. I really enjoy the beauty of the area.