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MARGRET ROADKNIGHT

A unique and passionate artist, renowned for her powerful vocals and wide-ranging roots-based repertoire with lyrics full of wit and wisdom, Margret RoadKnight survives and thrives outside the mainstream music scene with flair and soul.

More than five decades into her career, she continues to tour, singing rivetting if under-exposed songs, either acappella or with her guitar and African thumb piano, solo or with accompanying musicians, always interspersed with informative and amusing anecdotes, at venues ranging from house concerts to outdoor festivals (and yes, she still reprises her fondly remembered mid-'70s Australiana hit "Girls In Our Town").

"..as much as for her impressive voice and choice of songs, RoadKnight is delightful because she sheds so much fresh light on the nature of the world and its people"   (Oakland Tribune, San Francisco)

This is Margret RoadKnight  
(yes, that is only one 'a' and a capital 'K')


and this is her BIOGRAPHY


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   MARGRET ROADKNIGHT --- Australian Singer

l;lMargret RoadKnight was born in Melbourne in July 1943, was based in Sydney for several decades, Brisbane for another, regional Victoria for almost another decade, and is currently back in her home town Melbourne.

Margret made her singing debut at a Melbourne theatre in 1963. Since then she has performed solo, and collaborated with a plethora of local and overseas performers on jazz, blues, gospel, folk, comedy and social commentary songs in concert halls, cathedrals, clubs and campuses from Broome to Hobart, Beijing to Memphis, Paris to Auckland, Edinburgh to Tel Aviv, New York to Seoul, Amsterdam to Dublin, New Orleans to London, Vancouver to Nuku'alofa.

Major Australian Festivals that have featured Margret include:

Arts

Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth

Folk

National, Port Fairy and Woodford

Rock

Sunbury, Myponga and Narara

Jazz 

National Conventions, Montsalvat and Gold Coast International

Blues

East Coast Byron Bay, Goulburn Australian and Bridgetown

Popular

Sydney, Moomba and Expo River Stage

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Television viewers first saw her in 1965 with Leonard Teale (left) and the Kingston Trio's Dave Guard.(right)

Since then she has made guest appearances (most recently Spicks & Specks) on numerous musical, variety and news shows, and she selected and sang topical songs for the weekly national current affairs program OPEN END (ABC TV)

There have been radio specials on Margret in Australia, Scotland, USA and Canada and for three years she was Australia's only national weekly broadcaster on African American gospel music (ABC Radio).l

Margret has recorded ten solo albums and been featured on thirty one others.
She's sung the theme song for two films (and was a 'Bartertown' extra in the Mel Gibson/Tina Turner movie "Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome") (left)



She has lectured on Folk, Black and Women's Music for adult students, and taught guitar, vocal techniques and song writing at tertiary institutes and prisons. For over a decade Margret worked hkwith Musica Viva in Schools singing multicultural llsongs with her acappella group Girls In Your Town (left), and presenting "Out Of Africa" with a multi-instrumental trio (right).
For ten years she conducted weekly singing sessions in Brisbane , and occasionally runs vocal workshops around the country.


Margret has sat on Arts Advisory Committees, been an Eisteddfod Adjudicator, an overseas correspondent on the gospel music scene,was the first singer added to the Montsalvat Jazz Festival Honour Roll, and Artist of the Year at the 1998 Port Fairy Folk Festival, also recipient of the 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award at the National Folk Festival
and Lifetime Achievement Award at the inaugural Australian Women in Music (AWMA) ceremony in Brisbane 2018.

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She has presented 5 programs with the South Australian Theatre Company, was Musical Director of the touring Paul Robeson tribute theatre show, "DEEP BELLS RING". provided material for and performed in One Extra Company's "PEOPLE LIKE US",hk  guested in the cabaret version of "BRAN NUE DAE" in Broome, co-produced "A Smile, a Strum and a Hand Up Your Bum" with the Sydney Puppet Theatre (proof left, herself as Bridget the Midget the Queen of the Blues), performed in the Sydney Opera House season of "CINDERELLA ACAPPELLA", devised and toured the centenary celebrations "ROBESON KEEPS ROLLING ALONG" and "Malvina Reynolds: FROM WAY UP HERE", and her own musical biography "ADJUSTING THE REARVIEW MIRROR".ll

In the '80s her promotional partnership Honky Tonk Angels toured and presented overseas singers (Ellen McIlwaine, Holly Near, Tom Paxton, Mickey Newbury and Jeremy Taylor), booked artists for several venues, publicised theatre shows, introduced nationally the concept of sign-language interpretation at concerts and was the last entrepreneur to hire Sydney's grand Regent Theatre.

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Margret first traveled overseas in 1974 (the first of eleven trips to the USA) and more recently to West Africa in 1996 (both trips assisted by a music grant from the Australia Council). In 1999 and 2000 Margret returned to the USA to study and record Gospel with 2,000-voice massed choirs at the Gospel Music Workshop of America conventions in New Orleans.
(at right Margret with choir director's brother - Billy Preston!!!!)  


As well as performing in England, Germany, Hong Kong, Tonga, Vanuatu, New Zealand, France, The Netherlands, and Ireland
Margret has represented Australia in:

Japan

World Music & Dance Festival  2011


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China

Australian Theatre People's Tour 1978

Canada

Down Under Festival - Toronto 1981

Scotland

Commonwealth Arts Festival 1986

Israel

Tel Aviv Embassy Concert 1986

South Korea

Promotion Australia 1992

USA

Houston International Festival 1988

 

World Trade Fair - Cincinnati 1988

 

International Memphis in May Festival 1985

 

 

Louisiana World's Fair 1984

 

 

Washington, D.C. Embassy Concert 1977

 

 

New York Consulate Concert 1977

 

 

Australian Peace Delegation to the United Nations Special Session on Disarmament - Member 1982



Overseas, her performances have included: temple
               Koya San, Japan, 2011
Fund-raising concerts in Japan for Tsunami relief
Acappella singing in African American churches and Buddhist temple (pic on right)
Playing African thumb piano at the first Heilala Festival - Tonga
Performing for the Shanghai Symphony
Drumming (by invitation) in historic Congo Square, New Orleans
Hosting concerts at Folk Festivals - Canada
Touring New Zealand in a blues/rock band
                     

Performing on London's South Bank
in "VAUDEVILLAINS"
with the Conway Brothers

  and

Presenting her one-woman
"LIVING IN THE LAND OF OZ"
show
at the Edinburgh Festival

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