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  • Writer's pictureThe Sound Cafe

Kimberley Wheeler’s Roadside Holiday

By Stuart Coupe. THE NEW SONG

One day you find yourself in a place that is completely foreign.  You travelled in such small backward steps in appeasement of another, that you can’t remember how or why you got there, but suddenly you are in stilettos and a dress when you started out in blue jeans and ‘Ordinary Shoes’.   The song explores the thoughts of a woman moving on from her relationship and the "instagram reality" it became and the liberation felt from being able simply to be yourself once disengaged from a noxious situation and those heels.


Kimberley Wheeler has the uncanny knack of being able to find the right note and the right turn of phrase when creating and performing her music.  This accomplished Award-winning Americana, folk musician has shown plenty as a singer-songwriter, musician and collaborative recording artist in recent years.   All this to culminate in Kimberley’s next, and most exciting, project – her first solo release, Pokerface Limbo. “My songs do have some love-gone wrong moments, but mostly I observe the world and its inhabitants, and the songs almost always come to me when I am alone and least expect that inspiration.  They tip-toe towards me, I take them by the hand and discover their real identity” Kimberley’s journey to this point has been impressively diverse and provides some explanation for her rare capacity to absorb different styles into something unique and personal.  She picked up the bass at University in her native Geelong in Victoria and joined a heavy metal band, perhaps in revolt from the classical piano and clarinet thrust upon her at school.  Relatively late in the piece an explosive portal opened a whole new passion and ethos – specifically, in discovering bluegrass troubadour Tim O’Brien’s take on Bob Dylan songs via his release Red On Blonde. What followed was a deep-seated involvement and love for traditional music, as well as a veritable trove of impressive achievements, as a singer, word-smith, bass player and guitarist.  Playing with idiosyncratic jazz and swing icon Dan Hickson one of his Australian tours (as one of the Innocent Bystanders) and being a member of legendary all-star bluegrass outfit Uncle Bill are just two of Kimberley’s noteworthy achievements. Then there are performances at premier events such as the National Folk Festival, Port Fairy Folk Festival, Auckland Folk Festival, Mountaingrass, Maldon Folk Festival and Jam Grass.  Her community involvement includes many years serving on the Australasian Bluegrass and Old Time Music Association (ABOTMA) including a stint as President, as well as instigating and curating the Women in String Bands CD project to showcase and encourage a range of artists via a Folk Alliance of Australia funding initiative.  Kimberley has also written for roots music on-line magazine Listening Through The Lens, adding yet another string to her real-life bow! In 2015 Kimberley won 3MDR’s Tillie’s ChoiceAward for her striking and unconventional song “Watching Over Joan”.  She has collaborated with a range of other artists on record and on stage, recently taking the producer’s chair for new releases for the Colvins Brothers and Corn Nut Creek,  but now it is time for this gifted and creative artist to move in a new, exciting and independent direction. Kimberley Wheeler’s Roadside Holiday has already been making an imprint into the festival scene something that will only be enhanced by this release. “Her own songs were striking in their construction, dark and sometimes quirky context, as well as her distinctive vocals.  Kimberley Wheeler is one of Australia’s best and busiest bluegrass and traditional musicians" – Rob Dickens, Listening Through The Lens

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