For quite some time now I've been writing about, and
with, iconic Australian musicians. (OK, the odd Kiwi, too, but you know we
claim the best ones as Australians.) So it's odd I haven't already written a
biography about John Farnham, in some ways our most iconic singer of all —
certainly our most popular. Foolishly, I got entangled in matters of
'coolness', something John has never been accused of, nor pursued. But once I
started to dig into the life and career of John / Johnny / 'Farnesy' Farnham, I
learned what a rich and lively story it is, how a regular guy took a punt on a
career in pop, peaked very quickly, and found himself washed up and seemingly
done — all before the age of 30. Then, with the faith and tireless support of
several key people, and a reborn belief in his own ability, John's career
reached the type of supernova heights he hadn't even approached during his
'Sadie' days. And then — and here's the kicker — John managed to not only prove
that Whispering Jack was no fluke, but maintain a second coming that continues
30 years on.
I say this about every book I write, admittedly, but I'm incredibly proud of what I've emerged with, a very Australian story about an iconic Australian character. (OK, I know, I know, he was born a Pom, but let's not get too picky.) Hope everyone enjoys reading Playing to Win as much as I did writing it. It's out through Nero books in beautiful hardcover. It's also available as an audio book; you can hear a sample of Rob Meldrum (Molly's brother) reading the book.