Performing Arts

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Smoky Dawson

Smoky Dawson

Smoky Dawson AM MBE (1913 – 2008), born as Herbert Henry Brown, was an Australian country music performer, radio star, entertainer, and icon. He was born in Victoria; his mother died when Herbie was six and Herbie was taken from his father's care - because of the violence - when he was nine. Placed in an orphanage provided some respite from being belted but the freedom he got in a summer foster care placement when he was 12 made Herbie decide to never return to the orphanage. In 1934 Dawson formed a group and began broadcasting on Australian radio. 7 years later he signed with Columbia Records and toured the country with I’m a Happy Go Lucky Cowhand.

Smoky Dawson continued his singing career until his death in 2008. Amongst other awards, he was inducted into the Hands of Fame in Tamworth in 1977, awarded an order of the British Empire in 1983, and made a Member of the Order of Australian in 1999. He was also inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2005.