Diana TRASK (1979)

Diana Trask  Location- Block 1; position 43

1923 - Born in Melbourne, Australia on the 23rd of June. Diana was educated at the Lilydale Convent and Presentation Convent in Windsor.

1940 - At the age of 17 Diana won the Swallow’s Parade television talent quest on Channel Seven. This led to a job miming the popular songs of the day on Channel Nine in a show titled “The Astor Show”.

1958 - Diana was singing her own ballads on the local television variety show” In Melbourne Tonight” hosted by Graham Kennedy.

Diana made her first recording on the W&G label – “Comes Love” with Tommy Davidson and his Orchestra.

1959 - American promoter Lee Gordon signed her as the support singer for the Stan Freberg tour of New Zealand which also featured the Australian Jazz Quartet and Frank Ifield. Lee was impressed and immediately signed Diana to tour Australia with the Frank Sinatra show. Sinatra was very impressed and suggested that she should try her luck in the US. He very kindly spoke to people on his return and Diana decided to go.

1960 - Diana opened at the Blue Angel Nightclub in New York. Many months of hard work followed with tours and singing engagements. After an appearance on Don McNeil’s Breakfast Club, Diana was noticed by Mitch Miller and this led to a recording contract with CBS. Diana released several albums and singles on the CBS label.

1961- Diana landed a regular singing spot on the national television series Sing Along With Mitch and was signed to a three year contract by NBC television. Diana worked with the big names in show business and formed friendships with performers such as, George Burns, Danny Thomas and Jack Benny. There were constant trips backwards and forwards between Australia and the US for concerts with Pat Boone and Sammy Davis Jnr.

Around this time, Johnny Mathis introduced her to Thom Ewen. Thom and Diana were married in Australia in 1962. In the same year their first son Shawn was born and Patrick was born in 1964. Thom was now Diana’s manager.

1964 - The family returned to Australia for "The Diana Trask Show” on the Nine Network. This was a national half hour variety show which was produced by Thom.

In the late sixties Diana made the change from singing ballads to concentrate on country songs with great success. The family settled in Tennessee and Diana signed with the DOT label. Many successful singles and albums followed which established Diana as one of America’s top country singers. Diana had a series of hit songs on the DOT label “Lock Stock and Teardrops”, “Hold on to what You Got”, “Lean it all on me” and “You’ve got What it Takes”. Diana Trask recorded 16 singles for Dot which got into the Billboard Country Charts including nine which made the Top 40.

In 1969 Diana was a guest on the Johnny Cash Television Show.

In 1970 Diana received a Grammy Award nomination for her version of I Fall To Pieces.

In 1973, she made the Top 20 twice with "Say When" and "It's a Man's World. Years of touring followed but then a recording session produced one of the biggest sellers in her career- “Oh Boy”.

Diana was also having success as a songwriter and wrote “I Think About Your Lovin’” which was a hit for the singing group, The Osmonds. Diana also wrote “Christmas in Australia” which was recorded by the Irish Drovers. Diana also recorded her own compositions.

Diana played venues like the Grand Ole Opry House where she was introduced by Roy Acuff. Diana played Las Vegas for many years, with standing room only, appearing with Roy Clark.

She also toured with Glen Campbell and Hank Williams Jnr. Over the years Diana was a guest on television shows with Dinah Shore, Johnny Carson, Merv Griffin and many other famous hosts.

1977 - It was onstage in Sydney during an Australian national tour  that Diana was confronted by Roger Climpson with the words "Diana Trask, This is your life.” Her entire family were on the program along with friends and entertainers from all over the world to celebrate the life of Diana Trask. Her father was brought on in a wheelchair and it was the proudest night of his life.

1979 – Inducted into the Hands of Fame.

In the early 1980’s Diana recorded several albums in Australia on the Hammard Label.

1985 - Diana was invited to sing at the Australian Rules Football Grand Final in Melbourne and then again in 1996 for the 100 years of Australian Football celebrations.

These days she is a proud grandmother and really enjoys her family. In recent times Diana has spent many years relaxing with her husband Thom. They have sailed their yacht around the Caribbean and toured the world. She has never forgotten the advice of her old friend Danny Thomas, who said, "Diana, always keep your pipes in shape”. Diana still practices every day.

In recent years Diana has studied natural medicine and graduated with honours as a Master Herbalist.