Itchy Feet – More Sidetracks

Winter Leaves

As I write, it’s early evening in Hobart, already dark and overcast. It’s been unseasonably warm the last couple of days, very welcome after days of frost. It’s currently about 12 degrees C (54 F for those of you in the US) and I’m fairly well rugged up for an evening of reading and writing.




However, tonight I’ve got an eye on other things. My beautiful son is by now on the other side of the world in sunny Rome. At the moment it’s about midday there and a balmy 25C (77F). Although he’s probably jet lagged and sleeping it off, I’m envious! He’s in his early 20’s and has gone off to explore places he discovered in history classes and catch up with friends in Europe and the UK. I won’t see him until late September but I’m sure I’ll hear plenty about the weather, the great food, the people, the amazing architecture and the history when he returns.

Apart from the prospect of better weather than a Tasmanian winter, I think I’m just getting itchy feet to go travelling again. I’m planning a couple of weeks in New Zealand at the end of the year, something I’ve wanted to do for many years but never got round to. At this stage it looks like I’ll be playing at least a few gigs while I’m away but I’m hoping to do some house concerts while I’m there. I love the intimacy of playing to a small listening audience and in my experience, you meet the nicest people at these kind of shows.

If you know of or run house concerts in New Zealand please contact me, I’m keen to learn more and ease these itchy feet!

Love to you all, wherever you are on this beautiful planet……

Debra ❤


Photo by Derek Tickner

Photo by Derek Tickner

Hi everyone,

It’s cold here in Hobart, time for thermals, winter food and my favourite winter pastime – Dark MOFO. This year has been as wonderful as ever but the stand out for me was Antony and the Johnsons + The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. Here’s a short review from the Sydney Morning Herald. I was one of the many who wept and cheered, incredibly moved by the music and the moment.

The truth is, I’m in a strange head space at the moment. A very dear and old friend (one of the most vital people I know) is dying and I’ve been trying to come to terms with his imminent death. I haven’t seen him for quite a few years but I’m catching up in a couple of weeks, taking messages from other friends who are far away and probably going to gift him with a song I’ve been thinking about writing for some time.

Yes, I think about songs before I write them. They often start as phrases or a single line that I write in a notebook but when they start invading my brain while I’m trying to use it on other things, I know it’s time to act! I’ve got a chorus and almost two verses but we’ll see what comes out of the next couple of days.

Meanwhile, I should be working on a short story for uni and finishing off album art for The Woman on the Edge of the World. Oh well, that’s life. And death….

Take care wherever you are people, and if you have the chance, tell the people who matter that you love them while you can.

Debra ❤

Projects – Concluding and Beginning

As the snow piles up on the mountain and the days are getting noticeably shorter, it’s really good to have lots of projects on the go.

The Woman on the Edge of the World is foremost in my mind now, the art is kinda sorta in place and the liner notes are written. However, knowing me I’ll find something to edit in the next few days. Interestingly, I’ve maintained the original art work I produced to tag the digital download version, including my cover, featuring the Currie lighthouse on King Island.

Inner sleeve, ready for liner notes!

Inner sleeve, ready for liner notes!

It’s going to be a very limited run, 150 copies only (numbered and signed), so please contact me here or via the comments if you want to go on the pre-order list.

And today, I’ve just had a lovely lunch and meeting with friends, discussing a game project I’m writing narrative/screenplay for. It’s all in it’s very earliest stages, but really exciting, working with some very talented men and women who are equally passionate about games, art and storytelling.

Looking forward to a busy winter here in Tasmania!

Take care wherever you are,

Debra ❤

Winter – Southern Style

March Snow 2015

Wow, it’s June already! Who stole my year and can I have it back please? I don’t know about the rest of you but life’s been a blur the past six months.

Yesterday was the first day of winter here in the southern hemisphere and it was a reminder that the year is marching on. Firstly, there was snow on the mountain, our second reasonable fall in a couple of weeks. Yes, we had heavy snow in March this year, very unusual for this part of the world (see the pic above, snow to approx. 200m/220 yards!) The garden is looking a little shabby as it always does this time of year, with fallen leaves that need raking and using as mulch, fruit trees that need attention and weeds competing with winter vegetables. Nevertheless, I love winter gardening in Hobart on those crisp, sunny days that we generally see so many of through June and July.

The chickens are looking equally tatty, all five of the old girls are in various stages of molting, and because of the shorter day length, no eggs at present. On the up side, the rabbits are thriving. They much prefer the cooler weather and all three have very luxurious winter coats, plenty of food, bedding straw and shelter.

Bunnies at Breakfast 2 June 2015


Out of view in this photo is a heavy duty enclosure that I’ve fitted with a tarp, where each of the bunnies gets a chance to run around, feast on grass and get plenty of exercise. I have been known to go and have a break in there with them, which usually means rabbit cuddles. Life’s hard ❤

And June heralds a new study period at online university, this time my first unit for a Creative Writing major. It’s really interesting as a much-lauded songwriter and lyricist that I’m going back to basics but my mantra throughout life is that you can never know it all – there’s always new things to learn.

As I’ve mentioned here before, I’m studying online through Griffith University and even a few days in, I’m really enjoying the course material, meeting new people on the discussion board who have a similar passion for words and the prospect of learning new things, new ways of doing what I love.

Hopefully, this will mean more regular blog posts!

Take care everyone and see you soon

Debra ❤

ASA – A Farewell to Irish

Photo courtesy of Kevin Gleeson

Photo courtesy of Kevin Gleeson

Well, last night saw the Australian Songwriters Association – Tasmania‘s final gig at Irish Murphy’s in Salamanca Place. It was a raw night to be out and about – the weather here in Hobart has been typically Winter (with a capital W) since last month’s plunge into single digit temperatures. However, kudos to all the brave folks who came out on such a night to support and perform – you are all diamonds!

It bears noting that the opening act was emerging songwriter, Cassie O’Keefe, who has really improved as a performer – so much so that I let her use my Seagull guitar last night!

Cassie ASA 1 June 2015

Cassie has really come into her own in the last year or so, thanks in part to the amazing support of her wonderful family and friends – and shows like the ASA, which provide a wonderful avenue for new writer/performers to share the stage with proven hands like Tony Brennan, myself and the consummate professional, Ian Paulin.

I’m therefore very pleased to tell you all that I’m taking Cassie down to Belfry Studio next month, where she’ll be recording with my favourite engineer in all the planet, Malcolm Battersby. It’s an incredibly gratifying experience to see someone grow from an uncertain child into a powerful young woman, who can turn a pub crowd on a Monday night into a listening audience, and hold them in the palm of her hand. It’s every teacher/mentor’s dream and inspires me to keep doing what I do 😀

Also, I must mention the fine work by the ASA Tasmania coordinator, Matt Sertori. His job has been so difficult over the last few months, with people pulling out at the last minute or turning up late for their set. Seriously, organising musicians is like herding cats, and not for the faint hearted – we are a difficult mob! Matt has kept his temper and his outrageous sense of humour well intact and I thank him for all his support and unwavering friendship over more than ten years of ASA shows.

I’m not sure where the ASA will be heading next, there isn’t a venue lined up at the time of writing – but that in itself is kind of exciting and makes me wonder what we can do next!

Watch this space and stay safe and well, wherever you are on this beautiful planet ❤