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Susan Lily Bio

2018 is shaping up to be a stellar year for NSW bred outback girl Susan Lily.  From the open spaces of Hay to her suburban home in Adelaide Susan has spent the past 12 years developing into one of Australia’s yet to be discovered stars. 

Over the past three years each single release has seen her climbing ever closer to be within reach of a top ten spot on the radio playlist chart, Country Tracks Top 40.  Susan has also had her first international number 1 with “Here On The Road” leaping up the UK based Radio Petts Wood top 40 chart within weeks to take top honours. 

In 2015 Susan collaborated with a Darren Scott composition “Fly In, Fly Out” that charted well in Australia and, also spent 23 weeks in the coveted “Iceman’s New Country Top 40” chart over in USA.  Reaching the top 20 at number 17, it was the only Australian single in the chart for much of its 23 week stint. 

 

 With many years of travelling and working around our big country Susan has taken the wise words of her grandfather and lived her life like there was no tomorrow. 


“He taught me to observe and take in the world, not just let it pass by.  I have been a student of nature and our world since a young child.  It’s given me a perspective that I feel is quite unique.”


Susan never dreamt she would be referred to as "a gifted songwriter" yet here she is, an album and EP later, with loyal fans who were drawn in by her innate ability to relate personally to their own lives.  A gal who follows her own path and values, creating music that she knows will uplift and bring joy to the world around her.


“I never really knew I could write a song, never mind a good one.  All I wanted to do in the beginning was write and perform comedy songs in my stage act.”


Susan first began on stage in short plays, musicals and finally, as a stand up comic, before taking her stage-craft knowledge and applying it to the world of musical entertainment.


She found her voice purely by accident when she decided to take coaching lessons from Nikki Nicholls ( BV – John Farnham, Kylie Minogue) and it was Nikki who introduced Susan to a man who would change everything for her.


“I couldn’t even hit a B flat above middle C when I first started lessons.  I think I was afraid to be heard back then.”


It didn’t take long for Susan to find her voice and then fine tune it, ready for the stage.  It was Nicholls who first introduced her to Paul Norton and through that meeting Susan gained a songwriting mentor and producer for her debut album, “Butterfly”.


“Butterfly was woven together with Paul Norton (“Stuck On You”, “Under a Southern Sky” ‘90s) and stable of local musicians including Gerry Hale (Uncle Bill, Innocent Bystanders), Wendy Stapleton (Wendy and the Rockets) and, Angus Burchall (John Farnham Band). It was a truly educational experience for me to engage with, and learn from, these awesome professionals".


It brought her airplay and with it eager fans and radio presenters around the country and the world.  With the increase networking of the internet and online digital stores the album sold here and overseas.


“I can remember the first time I heard my music on radio.  I was driving to a gig during the Mildura Country Music Festival and my single came on the local station.  I spent the rest of the trip squealing with glee.  It must have looked rather silly if you were watching me drive.”

On the subject of song ideas, Susan will often respond with,

“I don’t write the songs so much as they come to me.  A lyric or melody will sometimes jump into my head and I have to stop what I’m doing and disappear to record it.  That has created some interesting social moments, let me tell you!”

As for how she writes songs....

"I've been blessed to have been mentored by some great people who first taught me how to desconstruct a song and then how to rebuild and arrange it so it made sense. "

Susan is not big on winning awards so much as winning hearts.  Having said that she is privileged to have been a finalist in the Vic and National Country Music Awards in 2012 and to have been the recipient of an award at the 2015 Tasmanian Country Music Awards.


Born and bred in outback NSW then moving to various cities has given Susan Lily a broad view of people and life.  Having worked up close and personal with people in health she has translated into music with a gift for emotional story telling.  Capturing the essence of the ups and downs of life is her forte, and her melodic delivery adds to the lyrics she pens. 

Susan Lily made her Adelaide Fringe Festival debut earlier in 2017 in her one woman cabaret show entitled “Butterfly: When Country Meets City”.  This combined her musical, storytelling and, comedic talents into one 80 minute show.  Well received by attendees and venue, she is set to book another berth in 2018.


Set to Release her second album, “Free Spirited” in March 2018, Susan Lily is about to unleash an uniquely crafted series of words and musical notes.  Bringing lyrics and catchy melodies out to play is Susan’s gift.  One that she will happily share with anyone who will listen.

 

 

 

Achievements:

  • Special guest artist - Samantha Edge Album Launch Feb 2016

  • Special guest artist - Kylie Brice EP Launch Feb 2016

  • Main stage artist (with band) - Semaphore Music Festival Oct 2016

  • Guest Artist - Southern Pride March/Concert, Christies Beach Nov 2016

  • Tamworth CMF 2007, 2012, 2013, 2014

  • Mildura CMF 2007

  • Top 50 Hot FM in March 2007 with Got the Monkey off My Back

  • Playlist for Nick Erby’s CMR in January 2006

  • Seddon Music Festival 2012

  • Spotswood Music Festival 2012

  • Good Friday Appeal at The Hallam Hotel 2012

  • Played support to Paul Norton and Wendy Stapleton once a month at Hardimans in Kensington (2009 – 2012)

Photos by Danni Nix 

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