The Short Story:
Cheynne Murphy is singer-songwriter from Byron Bay, Australia. He moved up to Byron after a promising music career fronting a rock band in Sydney where he signed a worldwide publishing deal, had national radio airplay on JJJ and two national television performances. Citing ‘artistic differences’, Cheynne moved to the North Coast and using his 12 string Maton as a key feature of his sound, he debuted his solo EP at Bluesfest on a world class stage. Cheynne’s debut album ‘A Horse Called Freedom’ produced with Paul Pilsneniks (Pete Murray, Angus Stone, Powder Finger, Jeff Martin) received positive reviews with Country update magazine describing the album as ‘at once ambling and cinematic’; Rhythms magazine commending its ‘shimmering production and instrumentation’; and The Courier Mail commented on the ‘tight band, sighing harmonies and evocative guitar’. Cheynne’s latest album Celtic Heart is being supported by community radio in Ireland and has been described by Rhythms Magazine as “big,warm, sprawling, folk-rock...unpretentiously earnest”. Cheynne has just returned from a tour to China playing at an international music festival with a new rock outfit and is working on a new EP “Made in China”.
Born: Nowra, NSW, Australia
Lives: South Golden Beach, Byron Shire, Australia
2016 Songwriter of the Year Finalist - North Coast Music Entertainment Industry Awards
Bluesfest Artist - 20th Anniversary Festival
Worldwide publishing deal – Warner Chappell /Alberts
Radio airplay – JJJ, 2SER, MMM, ABC Regional /Radio National /
Multiple national television appearances
Festivals: Bluesfest, Fatherhood Festival, Bangalow song-writers festival, Neurum Creek folk festival, Kangaroo Valley Folk festival
Supports: Pete Murray/Tex Perkins /Jeff Martin / Epicure / The Church / Oblivia / Paul Greene / Richard Clapton /Christine Anu / Choir Boys
Venues: The Zoo /QPAC (Brisbane), Annandale Hotel, The Basement,
The Hopetoun Hotel, The Roundhouse, UNSW bar, Excelsior, Cat and Fiddle etc (Sydney), The Espy (Melbourne), Transit (Canberra)
”Something special” Beat Magazine
“Rare song-writing genius” Drum Media
“A big,warm,sprawling,folk-rock, at once ambling and cinematic - unpretentiously earnest" Rhythms Magazine
‘Tight band, sighing harmonies and evocative guitar” Courier Mail
The longer story....
Cheynne murphy is a folk alt-country rocker hailing from the alternative never-lands of Byron Bay, Australia. Debuting his first EP Firesongs For The Soul at Bluesfest 2009, he has just released a debut album A Horse Called Freedom late 2014 to strong critical acclaim. Country update described the album as ‘at once ambling and cinematic’. Rhythms magazine commending its ‘shimmering production and instrumentation’ and The Courier Mail commented on the ‘tight band, sighing harmonies and evocative guitar’. Paul Pilsneniks (Pete Murray, Angus Stone, Powderfinger, Jeff Martin) has co-produced the album and created some rich sonic textures wrapped around what Fender Australia has described as ‘music in the tradition of other timeless homegrown artists – from Paul Kelly to Pete Murray, the Black Sorrows to the Waifs. Catchy, original and unmistakably Australian.’
After discovering three chords and the truth in his final year at university, Cheynne dropped the security blanket of his corporate marketing career to his parents dismay, pursuing something far more meaningful at the time…the art of music and the dream of fame and glory. With no previous musical training he started a naïve journey of creative self-discovery and to his surprise, two years later negotiated and secured a worldwide songwriting deal with Warner Chappell, as well as two live performances on national television and national radio airplay on JJJ and MMM. Drum media called the rock album he penned with his band Wingspan in 2000 as: ‘ambitious orchestral rock with rare song-writing genius’. A star was rising. Or was it? Record deal scams, band breakups, management breakdowns and financial desolation had Cheynne running for the rolling green foothills of Byron Bay where he resettled on a farm in a tiny village called Possum Creek. Inspired by his 12 string acoustic guitar and rustic country living, and the arrival of his two young children, Cheynne invested in a new musical connection inspired by the rural vista and the simplicity of the fireside and the warmth of family, friends and harmony.
He recorded his debut solo EP ‘Firesongs For the Soul’ in 2008 and showcased this in the company of giants at the 20th Anniversary of the Bluesfest in 2009. He followed this up with a second EP, ‘Spaces In-between that Rhythms Magazine (2011) described as ‘an unpretentiously earnest sprawling folk rock record’. That EP which was volume II in the Firesongs for the Soul series, was recorded in Cheynne’s beach shack in South Golden Beach just north of Byron Bay with a couple of microphones, a laptop, and a bunch of friends who he says ‘were lured in with the promise of wine and baked dinners cooked constantly throughout the recording process’. In a sense Cheynne had reconnected to the spirit of what music and collaboration was all about as he recalls: ‘Music has always been an innocent pursuit for me. Its been a constant companion and song-writing is a balm for my soul. I felt I had got ‘corrupted’ by the machinations of the music industry and the desires of 'fame and fortune'. The Firesongs for the Soul concept was a coming home to authenticity once again with the fire a grounding focal point, a hearth for sharing but also inspired by my love of acoustic guitars and harmonies'.
The ground work had been laid for Cheynne’s most accomplished creative work to date, the debut LP : A Horse Called Freedom (Firesong For the Soul series Vol III). Joining forces with ex-301 engineer and producer Paul Pilsneniks (Pete Murray, Angus Stone, Powderfinger, Jeff Martin), and a new band to boot, Cheynne has recorded a rich, emotive folk rock album with alt-country influences. Inspired by images of an old Richard Harris movie he watched with his Dad, ‘A Man Called Horse’ (which had depicted a cowboy captured and assimilated into an American Indian apache tribe), Cheynne drew on this indigenous imagery and symbology, integrating these themes with what defines the modern day warrior. Drawing on his own challenges, juggling a blended family with 4 children, 5 jobs, 100’s of students as a lecturer, a masters degree and the ongoing dream (or mirage) of a music career, Cheynne reflects that ‘ life these days demands from men and women a strength, fortitude and resilience not unlike the warriors of old. In a sense it is less about the physical demands but more about the emotional challenges of modern day life. A movement from outer to inner strength’. The resultant album is a conceptual journey of someone coming to terms with the balance of life and the rapidity of change. It also deals with the losses we may face along the way. People close to us, our support network or even the loss of our own identity. For the 4 part 'making of video's' checkout www.youtube.com/cheynnemurphy . Cheynne's latest album, built upon the title track A Celtic Heart, was released late 2016 inspired by his trip to his Grandfathers birthplace Ireland in 2015. Cheynne recently toured China with a band of friends and is working on a new EP called Made In China.