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The Prodigious Son

David Campbell has two claims to fame: he sings wonderfully, earning high praise in the cabaret capitol of New York; and his father is the ragged-throated rock legend Jimmy Barnes. As he prepares for two nights at the Theatre Royal, he tells us his favourite cabaret songs (and why) and which of his Dad's songs shake his maracas.

  1. Alexander's Ragtime Band by Irving Berlin. One of the first popular songs ever written. It can be performed a million different ways (and probably has), it is always fresh and will never die.

  2. It Will Always Be You by Don Walker. A new song, I know, and probably not considered a standard yet, but I think it soon will be. It is such a good song and Don is one of Australia's best songwriters. Also I love this song because my father gave it to me.
  3. Grateful by John Bucchino. A new song from a musical that is going off-Broadway sometime in the next year. John is a great friend of mine and this is one of the most uplifting songs I know.
  4. Someone To Watch Over Me by George and Ira Gershwin. They don't write songs or melody lines like this anymore. Writers of this period really know how to write songs about yearning. We don't yearn enough nowadays.
  5. Moon River by Johnny Mercer and Henry Mancini. An all-time favourite song of mine. Go and find a really great version and listen to it with the lights low ... bliss.
    Now heres my Dad....

    1.  No Second Prize. This song had a huge imnpact on me when it was first released. I guess I have always lived my life knowing that there is no second prize since I first heard it.

    2. Higher and Higher, from the album Soul Deep. I put this song into my set in New York having no idea that my father would see the show. Yet when he did I couldn't help calling him up on stage to sing with me - the first time ever in my life and a memory I will never forget.
    3. Saturday Night (Cold Chisel). Why? Do Do Do, Do Do, Do Do Do Do Do!
    4. Stone Cold. I think one of his best songs and so far one of his best performances of a song. Although I do tend to love most of his stuff, this just really stands out for me.
    5. Four Walls (Cold Chisel). One of Chisel's most evocative songs. Those guys could capture feelings like no other band. I can't wait to hear what is next for them.
    David Campbell, Theatre Royal, tonight and Februaury 22nd.

Sydney Morning Herald Metro, 13 Feb 1998