Cooinda by Kutcha Edwards
Cooinda by Kutcha Edwards
Kutcha’s story is one of twists and turns, ups and downs but always one of family and culture. BLAK & BLU is an album of his soul. It’s a road journey of his spirit. In being given the opportunity to create this, his third solo album, Kutcha was able to find enjoyment through music again.
“I have always taken life as it comes. I wanted to sing and perform again but wasn’t sure where to start. It was receiving a random email from Craig Pilkington at Audrey Studios that I had a link. I had yarned with Craig when we performed together for the Nukkan Ya Ruby Tribute Concert at Sydney Festival and I told him how I was at a fork in the road as far as my music. The link with Craig re-ignited my desire to make music again and inspired me to seek support and an album happen. As the tracks would come to life, I remember listening and giggling inside…I was back doing what I loved.” Kutcha explained.
Kutcha was born on the banks of the Murrumbidgee River at Balranald, New South Wales, of the Mutti Mutti people and is among the many of the Stolen Generations.
In 1991 Kutcha was coerced into joining Koori community rock band Watbalimba and later Blackfire, as their lead vocalist and there has been no turning back. Touring both locally and internationally, Blackfire released two albums, A Time To Dream (1994) & Nightvision (1997), and supported Carlos Santana on his (1996) Australian tour.
Years later in 2002 Kutcha committed himself to his music and released his first solo CD, Cooinda, with production credits going to personal friends Paul Hester, Paul Kelly and David Bridie. Cooinda related Kutcha's life journey with songs covering a range of issues from his forceful removal from his family as a child to songs dedicated to both his mother and late father, racism and beating alcoholism.
Kutcha released his second solo CD title Hope in 2007, co-produced with Richard Pleasance. The album is again a collection of stories put to music, coming from experiences in his own life and that of his friends and family. Inspired by the songline told on the album, Kutcha was encouraged to write, co-produce and perform his first theatre based show, Songlines of a Mutti Mutti Man. In the great tradition of oral history, Kutcha and his family presented a unique and personal insight into the stories and songs of the Stolen Generations.
It was also during 2006, that a group of some of the most renowned Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performers in the country formed Black Arm Band, with Kutcha performing three major works with them, murundak (2006), Hidden Republic (2008) and dirtsong (2009) and toured extensively with the Black Arm Band nationally and internationally.
It was 2010 when Kutcha first connected with Craig Pilkington from Audrey Studio’s and decided to start writing his next album of stories in song. For the recording of BLAK & BLU Kutcha teamed up with Craig, who performed on and produced the album with Heath Mackaay from late 2011 wrapping up recording in mid 2012. On the album Kutcha is joined by a who’s who of Australia’s best blues and roots musicians including Jeff Lang, Dan Sultan, Chris Wilson, Rebecca Barnard to name a few.
Having guitar maestro, Jeff Lang put his stamp on most tracks on the album was a very special experience for Kutcha. Jeff came to the studio with specific ideas in mind for the recording, bringing his collection of abstruse guitars and musical instruments collected from all corners of the world. These instruments and Jeff’s musicianship helped take Kutcha’s music to a new and different level for the recording. Add to the story, the iconic vocal talents of Dan Sultan and Rebecca Barnard along with Chris Wilson lending his harmonica created a perfect blend of Australian musicians.