The Sound Cafe
Young Australian Singer-Songwriter, Charlie Fittler, To Release Debut EP 'Dying Breed'
There is a saying that you have to live it to sell it, and if that is true, then Charlie Fittler, is the real deal. He has lived his entire 19 years on his family's fifth- generation Merino sheep property in the New South Wales Northern Tablelands outside of Armidale. This is the heartland, and country life runs in his veins.
That true country experience is laid front and centre on the lead and titled track lifted from his forthcoming EP – “Dying Breed”.
“I wrote this song with my older brother Tom at home in 2021”, says Charlie. “I wanted to write a song that had a different arrangement but still had that traditional country rock vibe. The song is about imperfect people that sometimes aren't always what they seem”.
Both the single and EP are produced by Bill Chambers who – thanks to his traditional roots and outlaw ways - is the perfect fit as producer for the young artist.
“Bill is a no-bullshit person, yet when he gives you advice about songwriting, recording or anything in general, he takes his time and is incredibly accommodating, and you shut up and listen”.
Chambers assembled a stellar A-team of musicians for the EP including Jeff McCormack (Bass), Rod Motbey (Electric Guitars), Glen Wilson (Drums), Mick Albeck (Fiddle) and Michael Sparrow (Harmonies) – joining Chambers (Slide Guitars, Mandolin, Dobro, Steel Guitar, Harmonies) and Fittler (Guitars) to round out the mighty studio band. Jeff McCormack mixed and mastered the track adding that further touch of Australian Country Music magic dust.
The EP, “Dying Breed”, is earmarked for release on Friday 12th May 2023 and according to Charlie, he’s excited to unleash it to the world.
“Absolutely. It's been in the works for some time now, and it's great to be at the point where we can finally share the new music that makes up my debut EP”.
His first guitar, received as a Christmas gift, was an acoustic Tanglewood, and it quickly became an obsession before, at age eight, he started guitar lessons with Stephen Tafra, who he finds inspirational as a teacher and friend still to this day.
Four years later, he performed at his first open mic night at a local restaurant, and in the space of a few hours, in front of an audience, the seed was firmly planted.
“I remember the first night very well. I was 11 years old and had heard about a local open mic night in town, and I was encouraged to play a song. I was full of nerves, and the lights were blinding, but when I started to sing my first song, 'Lights On The Hill', the atmosphere changed, and it felt exhilarating. After that all I could think about was when could I perform next."
At age 13, Charlie headed down the Moonbi Range to the Tamworth Country Music Festival to give busking a shot. Standing in front of music fans belting out songs, he was hooked; the future was clear, and he has been back every year since. That he travelled on the same stretch of highway that Joy McKean, one of Australia's best songwriters, travelled on a dark rainy evening that inspired the classic 'Lights On The Hill", a song that Charlie still plays every night, does not escape him.
"Legends. Pure and simple. I love the music that Slim and Joy gave us, and I, like so many before me, have so much respect for the legacy they created."
Charlie say's "You would never see me without my hat, jeans, boots and my pocket knife. One day when I was little, I wore my spurs into the supermarket".
He attended The Academy of Country Music in 2018, at which he co-wrote his debut single 'Guitar Can't Drink a Beer', released in 2019, with multi Golden Guitar winner Travis Collins.
You might not expect this guy to open his mouth with such a deep country roar and develop an equally young engaged fanbase. But to know Charlie Fittler is to learn that rebelling expectations and shaping his own path is standard procedure.
For Charlie, the road is long, but the journey will be a blast.