1945 - Born November 1st into a musical family. John is the eldest of 5 brothers, and was raised in the Victorian Mallee
1965 - Family moves to Croppa Creek, near Moree, NSW. Begins performing at a local restaurant and when he includes
“Old Man Emu” it is an instant favourite.
1970 - Sings “Old Man Emu” on the television program 'New Faces' which he wins. Part of his prize is a recording contract
with Fable Records. “Old Man Emu” is released as a single and goes to No 1 nationally and achieves Gold.
1971 – 81 - After ten years performing all around Australia, John is asked to host a new country music TV show 'Travlin'
Out West' from NBN in Newcastle and is shown on all regional TV stations across Australia for some two years.
1981 – Signs with Festival Records. His song, “The Breake” helps him realize his dream that audiences are prepared to
hear indigenous stories sung with real Aussie accents.
Starts working his one-man show and releases two albums: “True Blue” and “Fair Dinkum JW”. “True Blue” is released
and becomes his first defining song.
1983 - Releases live album: “Singin' In The Suburbs”.
1984 - Following on the success of “Singin' In The Suburbs” another live album “The Smell of Gum Leaves” is released.
1985 - On a tour through Central Australia and the Northern Territory, John begins compiling impressions of inland
Australia resulting in the album Road Thru the Heart. Golden Guitar for APRA Song of the Year with “Queen in the Sport
AMBASSADORSHIP from the Advance Australia Foundation.
1986 - Golden Guitars for Album of the Year with “Road Thru The Heart” and Male Vocalist of the Year with “You and My
A compilation album, “All the Best”, is released, along with his first video, “Live at the Longyard”. TSA Songmaker Award.
The Federal Government requests the use of the song, “True Blue” as the theme for its Australian Made campaign.
New Zealand Professional Country Music Recording Industry: BEST AUSTRALIAN ACT.
12th Annual Mo Award for Male Country Performer of the Year.
South Australian Country Music Festival Awards- Inducted into the Hall of Fame.
1987 – “Mallee Boy” reaches triple platinum. Gold Guitars for Album of the Year with “Mallee Boy” and Male Vocalist of the
Year with “True Blue”. “True Blue” is APRA's Most Performed Country Work.
13th Annual Mo Award for BEST MALE COUNTRY PERFORMER.
1988 - Performed at the opening of Australia's new Parliament House in Canberra. Releases “Boomerang Café”, featuring
songs from the previous year's tour of Western Australia. Gold Guitar for Best Selling Album with “Mallee Boy”.
TSA - Song of the Year for “When We Were Kids” (co-written with Norma Murphy).
14th Annual MO Award for BEST MALE COUNTRY PERFORMER.
1989 - Gold Guitars for Album of the Year and Best Selling Album with “Boomerang Café”. New album “Warragul” is released
and reaches No 1 on the National Charts and surpasses triple platinum sales. ARIA Best Country Album with “Boomerang Cafe”.
15th Annual Mo Award for BEST MALE COUNTRY PERFORMER.
1990 - Golden Guitars for Album of the Year and Best Selling Album for “Warragul” and Heritage Award for “Drover's Boy”.
TSA - Song of the Year – “Rip Rip Woodchip”.
“JW's Family Album”, is released.
Advance Australia Award for CONTRIBUTION TO THE ARTS AND ENVIRONMENT.
ARIA Award for BEST AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY RECORD: “Warragul”.
16th Annual Mo Award for BEST COUNTRY PERFORMER.
PLATINUM AWARD from EMI Music/Roadshow Entertainment for video sales of “John Williamson Live”.
APRA Award - Most performed country work for “Rip Rip Woodchip”.
1991 - New album “Waratah St” is released and passes Gold sales before it reaches the shops. PLATINUM AWARD from
EMI Music/Roadshow Entertainment for video sales of “Welcome To My Campfire”
Variety Club ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR.
Mo Awards for Country Performer of the Year.
1992 – Signs with EMI Music Australia. “Australia Calling - All the Best, Vol 2”, is released. Royalties from the single, “I'll Be
Gone” are directed to the Salvation Army, to help homeless kids around Australia.
Awarded an AM (Order of Australia) for services to Australian Country Music and conservation awareness.
Golden Guitar for Best Selling Album with “JW'S Family Album”. TSA award Song on the Year for “Papa Whiskey November”.
17th Annual Australian Variety Artistes' Mo Award for: BEST MALE COUNTRY PERFORMER; BEST COUNTRY PERFORMER;
and MOST SUCCESSFUL ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR.
1993 – “Love is a Good Woman”, is released.
18th Annual MO Award for MOST SUCCESSFUL ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR
1994 – “Mulga to Mangoes”, is released. The “Australia Calling” album goes platinum as does the video.
John links up with Landcare; a government sponsored organisation seeking to help groups of people in tackling environmental
problems in their local area.
1995 - Records two songs, “On Our Selection” and “Will You Vote For Me” for the soundtrack of a new film version of the classic
Aussie tale “On Our Selection”.
Releases a two CD compilation, “True Blue”, of best tracks to date. A book of the same name featuring John's lyrics together
with yarns about how they came to be written. Special guest on the TV show, 'This is Your Life'.
Golden Guitar for Video Track of the Year with Tropical Fever.
PLATINUM AWARD from EMI Music for album sales of “Waratah St”.
APRA Award - Most Performed Country Work for “Tropical Fever”.
1996 – “The True Blue” compilation goes triple platinum and lends its name to a TV series John does for Foxtel, interviewing
prominent Australians. Releases second “Family album”.
Visits London and Dublin for performances.
Golden Guitar for Best Selling Album of the Year for “Mulga to Mangoes”.
TRIPLE PLATINUM AWARD from EMI Music for album sales of “True Blue, The Very Best of John Williamson”.
TSA - Children's Song of the Year – “Bush Town” (The Lawnmower Song)
1997 - Inducted into the Roll of Renown. Is one of three presenters on 'Bush Telegraph', a TV show about unique inland Australians
which airs nationally on Channel 7. He discovers a song by the same name while judging a bush band competition. It becomes the
theme for the TV series and is included among a batch of originals on the platinum album, “Pipe Dream”.
TSA - Children's Song of the Year – “Kitchy Kitchy Koo”.
1998 - A concert for the Queensland Olympic Council leads to more Olympic fund-raisers for other states. Begins writing an
article for each issue of the quarterly magazine, the Weekly Times Country.
Golden Guitar for Best Selling Album of the Year for “Pipe Dream”.
Returns to England for a solo tour.
Releases “For Aussie Kids” album and video, recorded live at Nyngan while travelling on the Variety Club 'Bash'. His duet of
“Raining on the Rock” with Warren H Williams wins best single at the Deadly Sounds Indigenous Awards and they perform it
at the ARIA Awards.
TSA - Country Comedy/Novelty Song of the Year with “Old Farts in Caravan Parks”.
1999 – “The Way It Is” is released and passes Platinum sales. An accompanying TV Special and video, filmed around a
campfire in the Northern Territory, are also released. Presented by EMI with an award acknowledging sales in excess of
2.5 million in Australia. Suggests that Waltzing Matilda is the song to inspire the Wallabies against the All Blacks.
Performs Waltzing Matilda at Stadium Australia in front of a world record rugby crowd of 107,000.
Sings “True Blue” on stage at the welcoming home dinner for the victorious World Cup Cricket Team; sings the “Australian
National Anthem” at the Bledisloe Rugby Test match in Auckland. The “True Blue” album entered the New Zealand Top 50
'Pop' Chart shortly after.
After being inspired by the Wallabies John writes & records “A Number On My Back”.
Tours the UK again. Performs “Waltzing Matilda” at the Rugby World Cup Final in Cardiff with Rolf Harris. “A Number On My
Back”, is played while they run their victory lap.
Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PCCA)
Award for Most Broadcast Australian Country Artist (Radio)
2000 - Golden Guitars for Bush Ballad of the Year with “Three Sons”, Heritage Song of the Year with “Campfire on the Road”
and Best Selling Album of the Year with “The Way It Is”. The album goes platinum and the video of the same name goes gold.
Tours New Zealand for the first time.
Records a duet with Jimmy Little, “This Ancient Land” which is accepted as the official song for the Aboriginal Reconciliation
event Corroboree 2000, which sees a huge crowd walk the Sydney Harbour Bridge in support of Reconciliation.
Performs “Good Tabacci When I Smoke” at the Slim Dusty tribute concert celebrating the release of his 100th album
Performs at the Official Opening Ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Performs “Waltzing Matilda” on the US
network NBC's Today Show who are in Sydney covering the 2000 Olympics.
“Anthems - A Celebration of Australia” CD and video released featuring 20 of John's most patriotic recordings. The CD and
video both go gold.
Plays 10 concerts in London, Edinburgh and the Midlands.
TSA - Song of the Year and Contemporary Country Song of the Year – Purple Roses
2001 - Year of celebrations for the Century of Federation commences with John performing at Federation events in all States
of Australia. Also represents Australia at the Opening Ceremony of Winterlude in Ottawa, Canada.
Performs “Sir Don” at Sir Donald Bradman's Memorial Service at St. Peter's Cathedral in Adelaide, a song he had written
when requested by Ray Martin for a Nine Network TV Special on Sir Donald.
A month off travelling through Queensland to Cape York sees him gathering material for his new album.
2002 – “Gunyah” released and quickly goes gold. Also “I'll Sing You the Outback” DVD/Video filmed in the Numinbah Valley, Qld.
2003 - Elected President of Country Music Association of Australia. Awarded Australian Government Centenary Medal for
services to Australian society for singing and song writing.
Another compilation album “True Blue Two” CD/DVD, released along with a new book “True Blue Two - More Stories & Songs of
Invited by the Prime Minister to travel with him to Bali to perform “Waltzing Matilda” at the First Anniversary Memorial Service on
12th October, 2003.
John teams up with his musician mates, Pixie Jenkins (on fiddle) and Warren H. Williams (on guitar) and the “True Blue Reunion”
tour gets under way.
2004 - Gold Guitars for Vocal Collaboration of the Year and Single of the Year for Raining on the Plains duet with Sara Storer.
Receives the Tex Morton Special Award from the Tamworth Songwriters Association
Invited to take his “True Blue Reunion” show to the USA. Releases a live double CD and DVD of the “True Blue Reunion”
show under the title – “Mates on the Road”.
Tours extensively throughout the Northern Territory, and Northern Western Australia to search for new songs. Tours New Zealand.
2005 – “Chandelier of Stars”, John's 35th album is recorded with Pixie Jenkins, Warren H. Williams and a guest appearance from
Chad Morgan. TSA - Tex Morton Award. NSW Gold Medallion Awards – Songwriter of the Year.
John is listed No 14th out of 100 of the most trusted people in Australia in an exclusive national survey conducted by Australian
2006 - John's song “Sing You The Outback” accepted as the Official Song for YEAR OF THE OUTBACK 2006 - Australia's Youth Infront.
“We Love This Country” CD released in association with the Caravan, RV & Accommodation Industry. The CD is made up of 15
Travelling Songs to accompany travellers on their holiday trips around this amazing country.
“Chandelier of Stars” CD goes 'Gold'. Chandelier of Stars DVD released.
Golden Guitars for Album of the Year and Highest Selling Album with “Chandelier of Stars” and Bush Ballad of the Year with “Bells
In A Bushman's Ear”.
Tiara Awards (Tamworth Independent Artist Recognition) for Vocal Collaboration for “Wrinkles” with John Stephan
Stan Coster Memorial Bush Ballad Awards for Album of the Year with “Chandelier of Stars” and Songwriter of the Year for “Bells In
A Bushman's Ear”.
Victorian Country Music Awards for Trailblazers Heritage Award for “The Camel Boy”.
Represented Australia at Festival Interceltique de Lorient (Celtic Festival) in France headlining 150 Australian performers.
Sang “True Blue” and “Home Among The Gum Trees” at Steve Irwin’s Memorial Service. A DVD of the Service was released
worldwide and all proceeds were donated to Wildlife Warriors Worldwide Fund.
Released the album “WILDLIFE WARRIORS: IT'S TIME” a compilation of his environmental songs written over the years and
featuring his new song, dedicated to Steve Irwin, “Wildlife Warriors: It's Time”.
The Platinum Collection released comprising 62 John Williamson classics.
2007 - Commenced the year performing at the Woodford Folk Festival in Queensland and continued throughout the year touring
his 'Wildlife Warrior Tour' with his mate, Warren H. Williams to all states of Australia.
Performed with his singer/songwriter daughter Ami on several occasions throughout the year.
2008 - Rehearsals underway for “Quambatook” The Australian Folk Musical which features over twenty songs written by John
woven into a story by Simon Heath. The musical, based on the early days of the Williamson family in Quambatook, Victoria and
their quest to see 'The Rock', had its world premiere at the Evan Theatre, Panthers World of Entertainment in Penrith, NSW in
February and received great audience reaction.
“Hillbilly Road”, was released in August, and reached No. 1 in the ARIA National Country chart and Top 6 in the ARIA Popular
Album chart. The “Hillbilly Road Tour” staring John Williamson with special guest Warren H. Williams kicked off in Brisbane
and visited all mainland states by the end of the year.
2009 – Golden Guitar for Bush Ballad of the Year for 'Australia Is Another Word For Free'. The song performed by John Williamson,
Warren H. Williams and Amos Morris became the fourth single from the best selling album “Hillbilly Road”, when it was released
on Australia Day accompanied by a brilliant video clip by award-winning director Mark Jago.
The Platinum Collection 3CD set reaches platinum status in March.
In late May, John commences filming the Gosling brother’s documentary 'Song of the Outback' which will be offered to the BBC
and American television.
'Hillbilly Road' CD reaches Gold status in July
2010 - On 21st January, John Williamson was honoured in Tamworth by the Governor-General Her Excellency Ms Quentin
Bryce AC for his 40 years in the entertainment industry. During the annual country music festival, the Governor General presented
John with a special glass-etched award for his milestone year congratulating him on his achievement.
Victorian & National Country Music Awards- Bush Ballad of the Year for “Australian is Another Word for Free”.
“Absolute Greatest John Williamson: 40 Years True Blue” 2CD set and “Absolute Greatest John Williamson: 40 Years True Blue”
DVD set are released on 19th March.
2014 – Golden Guitar for Vocal Collaboration Of The Year for “Pozie” with Sara Storer.