In 2016, Damien Leith celebrates a decade in the Australian music industry. To mark this auspicious anniversary, the revered singer-songwriter is gearing up for a massive intimate and acoustic tour that will see him perform at Lizotte’s in Newcastle on Friday August 26.
The Winner’s Journey – 10th Anniversary Tourwill take Damien to many towns that he hasn’t performed in for many years and is a rare opportunity to skip down memory lane as he reflects on music from his eight successful studio albums, as well as many of the untold stories of his career to date.
For Damien, it feels like his decade of performing to Aussie audiences has crept up fast. He is quick to point out that the most important factor in his longevity in the industry has been his dedicated fan-base. “It is hard to believe that it has been 10 years since I first stepped onto the Australian Idol stage,” he says. “One thing is for certain, I wouldn’t be doing what I am today without all the amazing support from fans over the years. From my albums, to my books and concerts, you’ve been there all the way and I can’t thank you all enough.”
His tour will not only include a look back at the music throughout his career, but will also feature some rare songs and a lot of untold stories that have brought him from 2006 up to today. As an artist who has had a varied career that has seen him labelled as an author, cabaret performer and singer-songwriter, there is a lot of inspiration to pull from when putting together the anniversary tour. Damien says he has numerous highlights over the past decade and can’t wait to share these with audiences.
“There’s been so many great memories,” he says. “From releasing my first ever album The Winner’s Journey, to performing nationally on stage in front of wonderful audiences, every year has given me something to cherish. There’s been eight albums, two novels, one play and loads of concerts, not to mention on a personal level three gorgeous little kids who I adore. I sometimes need to pinch myself when I look back over it all. I’ve worked with some incredible people in that time also, from musicians to personal idols like Joe Melson, Sharon Corr, my family back in Ireland and Barbara Orbison to name a few. The biggest highlight is that I’m getting to do the one thing I always dreamed of doing, performing.”
Recently, Damien has been out on the road with his ROY – A Tribute to Roy Orbison tour, which has seen him perform sell-out shows celebrating Roy Orbison’s 80th birthday and music. No stranger to performing the music of Roy Orbison, the April 2016 tour was by popular demand and Damien says he has had a ball sharing the music of one of his idols with audiences. “The tour was only six very special concerts and it was a huge success,” he says. “Clearly there are many people out there who love Roy’s music as much as I do. Given the massive amount of love for Roy and his music, this upcoming 10 year anniversary tour will also give me chance to perform any of those great songs to the audiences we couldn’t reach in April.”
Damien has also been listening to fans about what they want to see him perform and will be incorporating that into his 10th anniversary shows. “From The Winner’s Journey album right through to Songs from Ireland, there’s lots of songs to choose from,” he says. “I’m going to over as many as I can. I’ll do audience favourites like Hallelujah, Unchained Melody, Message To My Girl and Creep, but I’ll also perform some old gems and original recordings that don’t get heard that often. Before each concert I’ll also be asking for audiences requests online via my Facebook page.”
There is no doubt Damien Leith’s The Winner’s Journey – 10th Anniversary Tour is going to be an unforgettable experience for both the acclaimed musician and his fans alike. Despite reaching this enviable milestone, it doesn’t mean that one of Australia’s favourite singer-songwriters is going to take a break. In fact, his plans for the future will ensure he is as busy, and creative, as ever. “Ten years is a major milestone, but there is still a lot of fuel in the tank,” says Damien. “I’m already looking forward to the next 10. I’m back novel writing, which I’m pretty excited about, and later this year I have a new album coming out. It is busy times ahead but I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
Tickets on sale now via the Lizottes website.
If it's on in Newcastle, it's on Newcastle Live