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Fanny Lumsden: Enthusiam and a scrunchie

Bettina Richter

She’s been coined as Australia’s answer to Americana, was nominated for an Aria last year, and already this year has picked up a prestigious Golden Guitar Award.

It’s pretty clear that Fanny Lumsden’s star is on the rise.

With long brown locks and a cheeky sparkle in her eye, donning vintage frocks and cowboy hats, it’s Fanny’s sass, honesty and heartfelt lilting voice which has made so many people proud ‘fanny fans’. Fanny says she’s not sure why her music resonates with people, she cites that maybe it’s because the songs are about everyday things that people can relate to and that her music is not overly orientated in one specific genre – some songs are more ‘folky’, some more country.

Growing up in the tiny town of Tallimba in the Central West of NSW has left an indelible mark on Fanny.

“I love to tell stories and talk about real life situations, and I suppose having grown up in the country and living back in the country now, I see all these play out every day around me,” she explains.

Fanny grew up in a musical family – her mum was a music teacher and she recalls driving in the car with her dad with Smokey Dawson on high rotation. One of those classic growing up stories she loves to tell is about camping on the Murrumbidgee River in summer with her cousins, and standing up on logs and performing songs for hours to their imagined adoring fans.

In 2015 Fanny released her acclaimed debut album Small Town Big Shot which came in at number six on the Country Aria Chart, #15 on the Air Chart and garnered critical acclaim. She toured the album everywhere the old fashioned touring way, playing at large clubs, small country halls and house concerts in people’s homes all across the country, travelling from town to town in a pop-up caravan with her life partner and manager, so it’s no surprise that she’s won so many hearts and turned so many heads.

Whilst country touring is still important to Fanny, she’s also just as likely to be seen on the line-up of Vivid Sydney, Darwin Festival or showcasing at Big Sound. Next month she’ll be heading back into studio to record her highly anticipated second album.

Fanny is coming to Canberra and will appear exclusively at the National Folk Festival at Easter. Fanny says she loves the community spirit of festivals and is particularly looking forward to catching up with old friends at the Festival and experiencing “those Canberra sunsets”.

So what are her three essential must-have items at a Festival?

“Enthusiasm, a scrunchie for my unruly hair and my fanny bag!”

What is in her fanny bag you might ask? Her MAC powder, phone, lipstick, cash, glasses and some tiny snacks. Everything a girl could want.

Don’t miss Fanny Lumsden with her full band playing at this year’s National Folk Festival. In 2017 there are 200 acts to choose from at the National Folk Festival, with 30 international artists heading to the Festival from all over the globe.

the essentials

What: The National Folk Festival 2017
When: 13-17 April 2017
Where: Exhibition Park, Canberra
Tickets: Full season passes, day and evening passes available online at

HerCanberra are a proud sponsor of The National Folk Festival 2017


Bettina Richter

Bettina Richter lives on the far south coast of NSW and works in the arts and music industry, working with artists, authors, theatre directors, musicians and filmmakers. She has an MA in Writing from UTS, has written and produced documentaries for ABC Radio National, been a producer and researcher for film and TV and has written for various publications over the years, including writing a regular column for Arts Hub. More about the Author