In 1969 John Williamson wrote a novelty song, "Old Man Emu", and early the following year he performed the track on TV talent quest, New Faces, winning first place. He later reflected on his song writing process, and the importance of his guitar, "no matter where I go I'll have one with me, in case I come up with a song, I've got to have the guitar straight away. I always write the words and the music together". In early 1970 he signed a recording contract with Fable Records owner and New Faces 's judge, Ron Tudor. In May "Old Man Emu" was released as a single on Fable Records, which peaked at No. 3 on the Go-Set National Top 60. It was awarded a gold Certification and was listed at No. 14 on Go-Set 's Top Records for the Year of 1970. His self-titled debut album followed in mid-year and, although it featured "Old Man Emu", it had little commercial success: only selling two-thousand copies. Since "Old Man Emu" was his only hit he had to perform it two or three times per gig. Williamson's follow-up single, "Under the Bridge" was issued in November. It was pressed with its A and B sides reversed. By February 1971 the album's third single, "Beautiful Sydney", appeared. A string of non-album singles followed including, in March 1972, "Misery Farm" with Lumpy Pumpkin. Six years after the first LP Williams released his 2nd LP “Comic Strip Cowboy” (6357 037) for Philips Records. It was produced by John and Bruce Brown and featured the talents of Paul Emanuel, Ricky Osypenko, Allan Tomkins, Gary Haines, Milton Saunders, Tony Ansell, Ken Hitching and Emma Hannah. All the tracks were penned by Williamson Flac.