He’s played in Timbuktu, the Sahara Desert and India and is now headed to the Sunshine Coast to perform at the Woodford Folk Festival.
Harry Jakamarra is no stranger to the grassroots music scene. Growing up in Broome, he was lucky to be surrounded by artists such as the Pigram Brothers, Warumpi Band and Midnight Oil from a young age.
After finishing his tour of the Kimberley and Pilbara, Mr Jakamarra is now gearing up for a national tour this summer. This will be his first time playing at Woodford and he says he is looking forward to the opportunity to connect with other musos.
“Festivals like Woodford are always such an amazing experience. They are intense in a good way. I think my favourite thing is how focused everyone is on the music,” he tells My Weekly Preview.
However, Mr Jakamarra is not planning to rock up to Woodford like any other artist. He tours in his ex-Navy fire engine, which he converted to a liveable vehicleand plumbed to run entirely on used cooking oil.
“It runs entirely off grid on solar and is very comfortable,” he says. “I even have a solar powered espresso machine.”
Mr Jakamarra bought the truck when working as a crocodile skinner at a wildlife park in Broome.
“I ripped the equipment off the back and taught myself how to weld a subframe.
“The waste cooking oil doesn’t cost me anything to acquire and it doesn’t cost the environment.”
This will be his second visit to the Sunshine Coast. After a brief tour in 2015, the artist says he is looking forward to visiting properly this time.
“I’ll be around after Woodford doing a bunch of shows at local venues. I’m also doing a Parlour Gigs feature tour so if you like music in the home you can visit their website and book me to play at your house. House concerts are a really special and unique experience for everyone involved. I love them.”
This is one man definitely living his dream; from playing gigs in his local pub at the age of 16 with his younger brother Albert, to touring around Australia and overseas, and big-name festivals such as Woodford.
“Woodford has such a great reputation, it’s a legendary festival and revered in a lot of ways. It’s a festival I’ve heard so much about for so long, I find it a little surreal to be finally on the bill.”
The Woodford Folk Festival is on at December 27 to January 1. For tickets and more information visit woodfordfolkfestival.com.