Rocky PAGE OAM 1998

Rocky Page

1928 - Dean "Rocky" Page was born at Kadina on May 10, 1928. Rocky's parents had a mixed farm.

1932 - His father passed away and the family moved to a dairy farm at Wallaroo.

Rocky volunteered for all the circuses and travelling concert shows in the hope of getting a ticket to the show. I

1939 - His mother moved to Crafers in the Adelaide Hills where Rocky completed his education.

Rocky's step father, George Westly, was a talented musician on the button accordian and mouth organ and taught Rocky to play these instruments. Rocky's first job was delivering meat and mail around the Adelaide Hills on horseback - rain, hail or shine.

Early 1940's that Rocky met great radio personality, Uncle Bert Wooley, who gave him a guitar and taught Rocky to play. Bert was a fine entertainer. Rocky and Bert performed in many shows around Adelaide.

Late 1940's Rocky appeared on many radio stations, Mel Cameron's Radio Canteen 5DN, Bob Fricker's Mountain Music 5AD, The Tivoli Shows and Good Friday Appeals.

1947 - Rocky made his first custom record at 5AD. He also taught music at the Adelaide College of Music.

1951 - He moved to Berri and continued to teach for the Adelaide College of Music. Every Riverland town and charity organisation benefited by the "Rocky Page School of Music Shows".

1956 - Rocky and Family toured with Stan and Kitty Gill around Australia in their rodeo and circus. Rocky was billed as the "Singing Cowboy Hypnotist Extraordinaire".

At the close of this tour in Melbourne, Rocky met Les Partel and as partners had many joint ventures in show business and recorded as the Whitman Brothers.

Rocky appeared on television in Melbourne many times on Channels 9 & 7 and on Radio 3DB. The Rocky Page Show was playing to packed houses everywhere, with top artists, Tex Barnes, Ian Castles, Les Partell, Isobel Denmead and Ken Warne.

Rocky then opened a music shop and music school.

1957 - Rocky had a weekly radio programme that played on 5RM (Berri), 3TR (Sale), 3CV (Maryborough) and 7HT (Hobart).

1961 - Rocky undertook a two month tour in Tasmania with the Slim Dusty Show and Rocky recorded for Hadley Records in Launceston with Slim, Joy and Barry Thornton backing.

The next six years Rocky spent working with Frank Foster on most capital city show grounds with great artists such as Lonnie Lee, Slim Dusty, Chad Morgan, Lionel Long, Johnny Chester, Johnny Devlin, Johnny O'Keefe and Normie Rowe.

Early 1967 Rocky performed a lightening tour with the Johnny Young Spectacular. Later that year Rocky joined the Slim Dusty Show for a complete tour of Australia which in Rocky's own words were very happy and exciting times.

1968 - Rock again toured with Slim and Joy with regular appearances on Reg Lindsay's Country and Western Hour television show in Adelaide.

1971 - Rocky organised and started the very successful Berri Rodeo.

1976 - Radio 5RM Service to Youth Award

1977 - The First Riverland Citizen of the Year

1978 - Riverland Special Citizen of the Year. Inducted into the Hands of Fame.

1978 - Rocky rode a horse to Darwin putting on numerous shows to raise funds for Apex Help A Kid Make It Appeal and raided in excess of $10,000. The rides and shows took some four months to complete. Also the first South Australian Country Music Awards were conducted following the Berri Rodeo.

Over the next 20 years, Rocky continued to organise and promote the South Australian Country Music Awards and was instrumental in establishing the Festival which is now part of  a ten days of Country Music in the Riverland.

1983 - Dedication to County Music SA Award

1983 - Australasian County Music Award (Tamworth).

1984 - South Australian Country Music Festival Awards- Inducted into the Hall of Fame.

1988 - Riverland Tourism Award - Outstanding Contribution by an Individual

1990 - Industry Award Adelaide Country Music Club

1990 - Received the Order of Australia Medal for service to the community and to country music.

1991 - Songwriters Tex Morton Award (Tamworth)

1995 - Lions Club Award (Tamworth)

1995 - South Australian Music Industry Award - SAMIA

1995 - Rotary Award

1996 - Service to Council - District of Barmera

1997 - Special Award Riverland Country Music Festival

1997 - Broadcasters Hall of Fame - ACMF (Tamworth)

Rocky's health was not always the best and after a long battle with Motor Neuron Disease, Rocky lost the battle against the disease in on the 14th of June 1997.

1998 - Elevated to the Roll of Renown.