Some voices are like old friends, familiar at once not broken by time or distance.
Schumann’s voice carries the wind in from the outback. It has grains of red dust and yellow earth, it’s flecked with toil, hardship, humanity and love. It’s as old as the land, with a gnarled weariness, like the weathered bark of a gum, tinged with the light of hope.
He sings of Australia, of its past and present, its people.
John Schumann, welcome, come in. Sing us your songs. He is here once more with his Vagabond Crew.”
Warwick McFadyen ‘The Daily Review’
John Schumann is one of the very few songwriters who have changed the way a nation thinks. Known for his leadership of the legendary folk-rock band Redgum, and his Vietnam veterans’ anthem, I Was Only 19, John Schumann’s career spans over 35 years.
He has received almost every award the industry has to offer – some twice over.
In late 2005, after a 15 year sabbatical with his young family, John Schumann returned with Lawson, a highly acclaimed album of songs drawn from the poetic works of Henry Lawson. John’s current band, The Vagabond Crew, named after a line in the Lawson poem, Knocking Around, had its genesis in the recording of the “Lawson” album.
Signed to a new label ABC/Universal Music in 2007, John also released Gelignite Jack – The John Schumann Collection, Behind the Lines and his 2018 album Ghosts and Memories –all recorded with The Vagabond Crew.
Packed venues and standing ovations demonstrate how John Schumann has earned for himself a stellar reputation as an inspirational, intelligent and defiantly Australian performer.
John Schumann and The Vagabond Crew are sought after to play at important and high-profile events here in Australia and overseas. John and has also travelled to East Timor, Afghanistan (twice), the Solomon Islands and Tanzania to entertain the Australian forces deployed there.
Described by rock historian Glenn A. Baker as “One of the finest songwriters this country has produced”, John’s songs have been paid the ultimate compliment by becoming the property of the people and the country they were written about. His lyrics are on reading lists in schools, colleges and universities throughout Australia.
John Schumann still lives in Adelaide. He has upset many people in positions of importance both there and interstate. He claims not to care.