Joan MARTIN (1978)
1921 – Born on July 2nd
N.S.W. Her family was musical - her grandparents came from
and brought their music and dances with them. Joan spent her
early years on a farm, until her father was forced off the land
during the great depression.
1933 - Family moved to the
Darling Downs in
Joan was soon singing regularly on Toowoomba's 4GR Radio also
acting in Radio plays and appearing in pantomime. Later she met
Eric Tutin, a music teacher, who in the 1930's formed the
musical groups, the Sundowners. Eric and Joan were both
songwriters, and it was while performing with the Sundowners,
Joan became the first female country singer in Australia
to record for the Regal Zonophone label, as part of the
Sundowners. The group was Joan Martin (vocals, guitar), Eric
Tutin (accordion) and Ted McMinn (fiddle). It's believed that
Joan recorded several tracks for Regal Zonophone.
1942 – Joan retired from
recording and show business and moved to Sydney to care for
1976 – Dave Ovenden from the
Victorian Country Music Guild persuaded Joan to come to the
Tamworth festival. She was amazed
that people still remember her.
1977 – 35 years after retiring
Joan released the album “Darling Eyes” for her mother’s 78th
birthday. She wrote the 12 songs on this album
1978 – Released the album “Home
Music Days”. Inducted into the Hands of Fame.
1979 – Released the album
1980 – Released the albums “The
Search” and “Younger Every Day”.
1981 - Joan and her daughter Ellen appeared in a
television special with the Blanch family called 'The Lady and
the Cowboy' which was eventually sold to US cable TV.
1983 - Another TV special came about when the ABC filmed
a half hour segment of the Pioneer Lady of Australian Country
Music for their 'Big Country' series.
In 1982 Joan produced her daughter Ellen's first solo
album. Nothing is known about Ellen's career, however in 1983
she joined her mother (Joan) to complete a recording of
Australian Pioneer Dance Music to accompany their book
'Introduction to Australian Pioneer Dances'.