Lucky Oceans
Fremantle, WA

Lucky Oceans was born into a music loving family in Philadelphia in 1951. He co-founded and named 'Asleep at the Wheel' with whom he toured the world, recorded 7 albums for major labels and won two Grammy Awards, in 1978 and 1993. 

 

He is listed in Hugh Gregory’s book, ‘1000 Great Guitarists.’ While playing with Asleep at the Wheel, Lucky played onstage with Willie Nelson, Eric Clapton , Merle Haggard and Jerry Lee Lewis.  In 1979, Lucky married Australian-born photographer Chris Gosfield and moved to Fremantle, W. Australia where he became a session musician, a producer, a specialist teacher and began composing for film and television and continued playing the pedal steel guitar in jazz, country and rock bands.

 

In the 1980s and 1990s he toured and recorded with Paul Kelly and Joe Camilleri.  In 1995, Lucky became the presenter of ‘The Planet,’ a daily world music program on ABC Radio National, a position that enabled him to introduce a vast audience to his many musical passions and which made him a central figure in Australia’s cultural life. 

 

In 2001, he co-wrote and presented the 6 part ABC Television series ‘The Planet’ and co-produced ‘Music for a Novel: Dirt Music’ with Tim Winton. From 2001-2005, Lucky was on the Australia Council Music Board and Multicultural Arts Boards.  He wrote and taught the course ‘World Music Cultures 101’ for the University of Western Australia.  He has performed numerous spoken word pieces for Radio National Drama.

 

He wrote music for 4 ABC Television shows and for numerous films, was co-musical director for PIAF’s 2016 opening concert ‘Home’ and wrote and performed pieces for Big hART/Ten Days on the Island’s ‘Acoustic Life of Sheds in 2015, 2017 and 2019.  He also wrote, recorded and performed in Big hART’s ‘Murru.’  He regularly plays concerts and showcases all around Australia and USA.

 

He has recorded or performed with Indigenous musicians William Barton, Kutcha Edwards, Fred Ryan, Geoffrey Fletcher, Fitzroy Xpress, Archie Roach, John Bennett, The Pigram Brothers, Lois Olney, Angus and Camis Smith, Kankawa Nagarra (Olive Knight)   He appeared in David Milroy’s Perth Festival play ‘Waltzing the Willara’ and he wrote the music for the documentary ‘The Coolbaru Club.’  He is the Musical Director for the annual Roebourne Concert ‘Songs For Peace.’

 

He hosts an annual live concert series called 'Sonic Sessions' in which he interviews and plays with musicians at the Fremantle Arts Centre.  His guests have included Dave Faulkner, Sarah Blasko, The Waifs, Robert Forster, Tim Minchin, Bob Evans, Paul Dempsey, Archie Roach, Hank Marvin, Tim Rogers, Jeff Lang, Paul Kelly, Billy Bragg, Joe Camilleri and Dave Hole.

 

His recording 'Secret Steel' was called, A head-spinning, genre-dissolving album of deliciously bent notes and reimagined "sacred steel" rave-ups’ by Richard Gehr in New York’s ‘Village Voice.’ His album of Hank Williams songs reimagined -  ‘Purple Sky’ - in which he collaborates with Paul Kelly, Kasey Chambers, Tex Perkins, Don Walker, Jeff Lang, Matt Walker, Eugene ‘Hideaway’ Bridges and Vika and Linda Bull will be released by ABC Records in mid 2019.

© 2019 Strings Attached Guitar Festival

Images © David Dare Parker & Martine Perret

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