Current Traffic

Sunday, 1 February 2009

Post 65 - Johnny Ashcroft - Playground In My Mind

In 1954, Johnny Ashcroft laid down his first commercial recordings–six sides (three 78rpms) for Rodeo Records. These were recorded live. His mid-1950s Phillips ‘microgroove’ vinyl album, "Songs Of The Western Trail" was Australia’s first vinyl C & W ‘Long Play’ (LP) record. Four years later the next Australian C & W vinyl LP made its appearance. Songs Of The Western Trail is ensconced in Australia’s recording history and Australia’s very first trucking song, "Highway 31". Although the term had not yet been coined, Ashcroft’s 1960 smash hit, "Little Boy Lost", was Australia’s first country-rock song. This song, written by Ashcroft from DJ Tony Withers’s idea, tells the story of Steven Walls who became lost from his parent’s property at Tubbamurra near Guyra, NSW. 1973 was the year Ashcroft and wife Gay Kayler recorded their "Faces Of Love album". That same year, Ashcroft recorded his fourth hit an American pop song, Clint Holmes’s "Playground In My Mind", which went to Number One on the charts. Ashcroft’s fifth hit, Holy Joe The Salvo, was written on the back of an airline sick-bag. It became the Salvation Army’s 1975 Red Shield Appeal Song. The ‘Sallies’ then became widely known as the ‘Salvos’.No other Australian country artist appeared on Top 40 Charts as frequently as Ashcroft. Here for you to download is the 1973 hit "Playground In My Mind" (EMI 10224).

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