By Matthew Pearce
Despite the chaos caused by the coronavirus, 2020 was a year of professional highs for Fanny Lumsden.
The country music singer, from the Snowy Mountains, launched her third studio album, Fallow, just as Covid-19 caused lockdowns around the country.
“It was certainly a bumpy ride, the day Fallow came out was the day that everything got cancelled in the music industry. It was a pretty terrible news day to release an album,” she said.
After being rescheduled twice, the Fallow tour is finally back on, with Fanny performing six shows in Queensland, including Gladstone on February 6 and Rockhampton on February 7.
While she was unable to tour until November, the popular singer ticked a few items off her bucket list last year, including getting the chance to perform on Playschool, become a Support Act ambassador and win an ARIA.
She also made a documentary on Fallow and the bushfires that hit her home in the Snowy Mountains, was nominated for the Soundmerch Australian Music Prize and received an incredible seven Golden Guitar nominations.
“It was the most incredible run, a complete career highlight even though we had such a crazy year last year,” she said.
“The Golden Guitar nominations in particular were overwhelming, it’s not something you expect to happen to yourself, it’s one of those things you expect to happen to other people.”
Rich in vocal harmonies, Fanny said Fallow came from a different place to her past music.
“This album is very much inspired by us living in the mountains, very much inspired by this valley,” she said.
“We just wanted to make something really beautiful and make something that I could find solace in. It’s still me writing the songs but it’s a bit broader in appeal than in the past, not as open to interpretation.”
No stranger to Central Queensland, Fanny has performed in Rockhampton many times, most recently at Beef Australia 2018 while she was 31 weeks pregnant.
“We used to follow the grey nomads. I live in the Snowy Mountains so it gets pretty cold in winter,” she said.
“We love coming to Queensland, there’s great crowds and excellent nice warm weather.”
While it’s hard to make definite plans with the Covid-19 pandemic still ongoing, Fanny has some festivals coming up in South Australia and Western Australia, as well as other ‘socially distanced’ events.
“We’re hoping our Country Halls Tour will return in 2021. We’ve performed at 150 halls all over Australia and we’ve already had 80 apply for this year, so we want to get to as many as we can, as safely as we can.”
Joking that she’s a ‘10-year overnight success’, the singer said she’d come a long way since releasing her first EP in 2012 and first full-length album in 2015.
“We’ve just been plugging away, working hard,” she said.
“We work with an independent label now and I still manage everything. We have a really independent grassroots team and independent attitude to it all.
“All the accolades are absolutely incredible for us because it’s never been about that. It’s not top down, it’s us driving all the kilometres, sending all the emails, making all these things happen.
“You understand the huge workload that goes into it when you do it all yourself, we’ve had sleepless nights and so many stressful days.
“Those little moments, like we’ve had lately, are few and far between so I feel you should very much celebrate them.”
Fanny will perform at Crow St Creative, Gladstone, with Timothy James Bowen and Hayley Marsten on Saturday, February 6, and at the Gracemere Hall with Timothy James Bowen and Brad Butcher the following day.