Ten of The Age Music Victoria Hall of Fame Inductees Get Lauded In Song

The Age and Music Victoria celebrated the 10th anniversary of their music awards with ten Victorian icons inducted into the Hall of Fame at a star-studded concert at the Palais Theatre on Friday night.

The first four were initiated at a VIP cocktail party before the concert. First was the Palais, with honours by Tex Perkins, and accepted by Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley and Palais CEO Neil Croker.


Bill Armstrong of Armstrong Studios fame, was inaugurated by long time friend, Normie Rowe, whom he recorded in the mid-1960s. Radio identity Billy Pinnell inducted the late Stan ‘The Man’ Rofe, who once dominated Melbourne radio with a hip night show, with Rofe’s brother Roy accepting the award.


The final icon Award was presented to Sunbury Festival by Brian Cadd and accepted by one of its founders, John Fowler.


Performing at the concert were headliner Farnham, Roach, former inductee Paul Kelly, Cadd, Rowe, Kate Ceberano, Mark Seymour, Vika Bull, Angie Hart, Phil Jamieson and Kingswood.


The show started with Jamieson and Bull trading vocal licks on The Rolling Stones Gimme Shelter, to acknowledge that the Stones played their first ever Melbourne show at The Palais in 1965.


Backed by the EG Allstars (Bill McDonald, James Black, Ash Naylor, Ben Weisner), Rowe performed his 1965 hit Shakin’ All Over for Armstrong. Mark Seymour honoured Stan ‘The Man’ with a rendition of The Loved One which he had championed and almost single-handed made a hit. Cadd’s Little Ray of Sunshine was for Sunbury.


This was followed by inductions of The Thunderbirds by their former lead singer, Marcie Jones, after Paul Williamson took to the stage to perform their 1961 hit Wild Weekend with The Allstars.


The Seekers were not able to attend citing touring and rehearsals for their Georgy Girl theatre production. 3AW’s David Mann accepted their award while Kate Ceberano did a rendition of their world smash I’ll Never Find Another You.


Also away touring was Olivia Newton-John, who accepted by video link the honour from Barry Gibb, also by video link. Angie Hart paid tribute by performing A Little More Love.


Archie Roach was joined onstage for Took the Children Away and We Won’t Cry by Paul Kelly and Craig Pilkington before he was welcomed into the Hall of Fame by friend, musician, actor and Aboriginal elder Uncle Jack Charles.  


Kingswood’s Fergus Linacre and Alex Laksa, with Vika Bull, tore up the stage with AC/DC’s Highway To Hell.


AC/DC were performing in Adelaide on the night, so David Albert from their long time Australian record company Alberts accepted the honour on their behalf from Music Victoria CEO and AC/DC tragic Patrick Donovan. Quite right too: years back when he was the main entertainment writer for The Age, Donovan and venue owner James Young began the battle for the renaming of AC/DC Lane.


Donovan in his speech recalled AC/DC moving to Melbourne to a share house in Landsdowne Road, St Kilda, when they jammed incessantly on rock and roll and blues records and wrote songs, and shaped their world-beating sound.  "Two of the world's best axemen, Angus on lead and Malcolm on rhythm, forging some of the biggest, baddest riffs we'll ever know.”


John Farnham was inducted by Sony Music Chairman & CEO Denis Handlin. He and his 9 piece band, complete with a cameo from two bagpipers, hit their stride from the get-go of a 30-minute set that included That’s Freedom, Pressure Down, You’re The Voice before returning to the stage for the epic encore It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll).


Patrick Donovan said, “How amazing to have this incredible collection of Victorian music icons celebrated on one night in our most stunning live music venue.  We look forward to adding further inductees in coming years, and eventually seeing a permanent bricks and mortar Victorian Music Hall of Fame established. We are proud to be able to continue celebrating our most famous music treasures.”


Appropriately, $5 from each ticket from the concert was donated to its charity partner, Support Act Limited, to continue to help musicians in need.


A free public exhibition of over 50 items connected to the inductees is on display at Arts Centre Melbourne until late March. It includes an Angus Young schoolboy uniform, Judith Durham’s 1960s beaded performance gown and tambourine and original recording equipment from Armstrong Studios. 

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