An elemental force present at the creation of Australian rock 'n' roll, Johnny O'Keefe converted incredible drive, a tremendous flair for showmanship and a larrikin spirit into status as his country's first rock star. Tragically, Johnny was dead at 43, after thirty hit singles and twenty-eight albums, and a succession of (self-inflicted) disasters – a near fatal car crash, a much publicised series of nervous breakdowns, bouts of alcoholism and drug addiction. His influence was immense; few in the world of popular music begrudged him the title 'the King of Australian Rock and Roll'.
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Damian Johnstone first remembers hearing Johnny O'Keefe in 1959, as an 8 year old. In 1975, during Johnny O'Keefe's Melbourne tour two years before his death, they finally met. For 15 years Damian has been researching and writing on Johnny O'Keefe for fan magazines, ABC Radio specials and community radio.
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