Album Review: ‘Dog Eared and Torn’ by Deebee Bishop

Nambucca Valley folk troubadour Deebee Bishop delivers it all on ‘Dog Eared and Torn’, his fifth album.

THE wellspring of creativity that is the Nambucca Valley can lay claim to another artistic jewel in the form of a new album by folk troubadour Deebee Bishop, intriguingly titled ‘Dog Eared and Torn’.

This album, Deebee’s fifth, does not comply with a theme or formula but rather serves as a collection of songs that each have their own story and feel.

“Traditionally, the craft of creating an album would be to have that bookend effect where the songs follow a theme of sorts and you listen to it in the order the songs are set down on the album,” Deebee told News Of The Area.

“But I think the world now is a much different place and most people don’t listen to albums that way any more.”

The songs Deebee has selected for this are some carry-over work from a previous project, his moving one-man show ‘Thirst’ and songs he has written and come to love with a nod to some of his influences such as Tom Waits, Bob Dylan and John Sebastian.

The track that is bound to attract the most attention is the joyous homage to the place in which he lives, a song called ‘Gumbaynggirr’.

Cleverly poetic and irresistibly melodic, Gumbaynggirr paints a picture of the natural beauty of the Nambucca Valley that is totally relatable for anyone who has a home here.

Deebee usually toils with each song he writes over a period of weeks and sometimes months; this song came to him in fifteen minutes.

He claims the rapid inspiration occurred following an interesting conversation he had with Uncle Martin Ballangarry OAM about the history of the Gumbaynggirr people and their connection to the area.

Sitting on a hilltop near his Lower Buckra Bendinni home looking west at the pink late afternoon clouds and pondering on the thousands of Gumbaynggirr people that must have taken in the same view for centuries, the song was born.

Recorded at Soundshed Music in Valla and Class 10 Shed Studio in Lower Bukra Bendinni, the rich sound achieved is in no small part due to the selection of musicians who appear on this record.

Guy Chapman’s violin and mandolin add a touch of class to an already polished production as does the perfection of Ethan Frankel’s guitar.

Julie Kovendy lends her harmony vocals to the album and is at her dreamlike best on ‘Two for the Road’.

Stewart Peters contributes elegant double bass, drums and harmony vocals and Deebee’s mate and renowned singer/songwriter Graham Howle also helps out with his celebrated vocals.

Stan Holroyd’s organ and piano accordion and Bradford Robinson’s Mandolin and Bowed Psaltery, combined with a slew of other musical tools the multi instrumentalist Deebee Bishop brings along, completes the opulent mixture that makes up this album that is eclectic, fun, deep and moving all in the one sitting.

To get a copy of Dog Eared and Torn go to and enter Deebee into the search panel.

The album will soon be available on Spotify too.


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