As Australian as Austen Tayshus

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As Australian as Austen Tayshus

Paul Kelly is widely regarded as one of Australia’s greatest lyricists. Nick Cave, too. But in 1983 Austen Tayshus, the stage name of Alexander Jacob Gutman, released a song whose lyrics were quite brilliant. The spoken-word hit ‘Australiana’ was the number one single in Australia for eight weeks and remains the highest-selling Australian single of all time. Alexander, commonly called Sandy, first performed as Austen Tayshus at Sydney’s Comedy Store in 1981. On its release, ‘Australiana’ sold more than 200,000 copies. It would lead to MC spots and supports for the biggest Australian bands of the time including Mental as Anything, INXS, Cold Chisel, Midnight Oil, Uncanny X-Men and Richard Clapton. He has performed over 10,000 shows around the world. The Piping Hot Chicken Shop – June 28.