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Sydney, NSW, AU
Friday, November 23rd, 2012 at 8:00pm
Perry grew up in the inner city working class area of Sydney known as Redfern. He grew up in a home populated by various uncles, aunts, cousins and grandparents. Every Saturday morning his grandmother would do the house work whilst playing the likes of Ray Charles and Roy Orbison at a volume loud enough to spill out onto the neighbouring streets, lined with tightly-packed terraced houses, warehouses and textile factories.
When he was 12, he got his first guitar from the local pawn shop and within six months he'd written his first song. It was during his first year at high school that his family moved to the neighbouring area of Waterloo, with its high-rise Department of Housing blocks.
It was within this environment that Perry formed the band The Stolen Holdens in 1989. Musically inspired by the likes of The Clash and Elvis Costello and lyrically taking his cue from artists like Lou Reed and Bruce Springsteen, Keyes and The Stolen Holdens developed a small but loyal following in the local Sydney music scene. The band faded by the early 90s.
Perry re-emerged in 2003, playing solo sets featuring songs that would make up the bulk of his debut double album Meter - released in 2005 to critical acclaim and numerous years end best-of lists. His next album The Last Ghost Train Home was received with even greater acclaim upon its release in 2007. It went on to be short-listed for the Australian Music Prize and was named the ABC Radio National Album of the Year. It was followed by Johnny Ray's Downtown (2010) that once again draw on Perry's local environment - the marginalised, often neglected and rapidly decaying inner city areas of Sydney - for their inspiration.
Join Perry and his band when they return to The Vanguard to road-test material for his forthcoming album.