Down Memory Lane

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Down Memory Lane

In 1989, Archie Roach stood before an audience of 2000 people at the Melbourne Concert Hall and performed his iconic song ‘Took the Children Away’.
He was opening for Paul Kelly. Kelly recalled the incident with Kerry O’Brien in 2010: “… That’s another moment I vividly recall. Again, I hadn’t met Archie before that night. I think he had 20 minutes to play and he did two songs. And one of them was ‘They Took the Children Away’. And, I was just watching him from the wings and you could just feel it in the auditorium, this electric tension when he sang the song.”
The song, which dealt with Roach’s personal experience as one of the ‘Stolen Generation’, would appear on the songman’s 1990 debut album Charcoal Lane, which featured Paul Kelly as producer. The album won two ARIAs as well as a Human Rights Award, the first time such an honour was awarded to a songwriter. 25 years later and the album remains as powerful as ever. Archie has been celebrating the release with a series of shows, including the recent NaranaFEST, and will make his way to Castlemaine’s Theatre Royal on December 3. He will be wonderfully supported by the world-renowned interpreter of charango, Jaime Torres.