Russell Morris: The Real Thing

The Fame Reporter interviewed rock ‘n’ roll legend Russell Morris starring in his new show The Real Thing at QPAC’s Concert Hall on 15 January.

Australian rock legend Russell Morris is bringing his live show to QPAC for the first time ever!

The iconic singer-songwriter and guitarist, who repeatedly topped Australian and international music charts throughout the 60s and 70s, will share stories and insights about the creation of some of the most iconic songs of the era – from “The Real Thing” and “Sweet Sweet Love” to “Wings of an Eagle” – before performing a 70 minute set live on stage.


ABC Radio Brisbane’s Loretta Ryan takes a seat with Morris as they chat about the origins of and stories behind his emblematic music and what makes him tick (or ‘rock’ as it were). Go behind the scenes as Morris talks about his debut solo single – the psychedelic, seven-minute production extravaganza “The Real Thing”; released in March 1969, written by Johnny Young and produced by Molly Meldrum, the single reached #1 in Australia before skyrocketing to the same heights in the United States. An ARIA Hall of Fame inductee, Morris talks about his career and the legendary artists that have accompanied him on his stellar journey, from Jim Keays to Darryl Cotton and many more.


Post-interval, and after you’ve been taken on a ‘back stage’ tour of Russell Morris’ career, it’s time to rock. Morris retakes the stage with his 5-piece touring band to perform all of his beloved hits and a selection of his blues-inspired catalogue. Songs from Morris’ latest album, “Jack Chrome and the Darkness Waltz” by The Morris Springfield Project, the moniker for his collaboration with another veteran Australian singer Rick Springfield, will also feature.

We talked to Russell about what we can expect from his new show ‘The Real Thing’, his inspiration behind his music, what he has learned performing around the world and more.

Welcome to The Fame Reporter Russell, what can audiences expect from your new show ‘The Real Thing’ at QPAC?
I guess audience’s can expect the unexpected- as I have never done a show like this. 

What 3 performers dead or alive would you love to have a dinner party with?
Usually my penchant would be Astro physicists, or sports men, or women.

Seeing you have asked—- John Lennon, Robert Johnson and Frank Sinatra

Where did you learn to write music and where does your inspiration for music come from?
I taught myself to write, by listening to other writers compositions.

Inspiration can come from anywhere— any mundane interaction can ignite it.

What was it like working with legendary music figures Johnny Young and Molly Meldrum on your debut single ‘The Real Thing’?
I would need to write a book— as there are endless nuances.

Molly— extremely creative.
Johnny— extremely insightful 

What do you love about the Queensland music community in particular?
The Queensland music community is varied, and extremely talented.

I have already worked with excellent Queensland players, who will be life long friends.

What album or song are you most proud of and why?
That’s an impossible question— it’s like saying ; which of your children is your favourite. Each has aspects, that I love.

What did you learn from music greats – Jim Keays to Darryl Cotton?
When you work with other artists, something from the quantum level, always seems to connect, and rub off on you.

You have performed on all over the world, what have you learnt about yourself whilst performing around the globe?
That I am at times, very insecure— human frailties are always ever present.

What can people do to support the Australian live performance industry right now?
Go out, and watch people perform, and instead of cherry picking individual tracks on Spotify— buy an album.

Fame Reporter Word Play

The Real Thing
A time capsule 

Spirit Animal

A Dog

Bucket list

Spain, Italy ( again ) Croatian coast

Favourite band



No heavy clothes- casual 

Favourite mantra when you are down

Frank Sinata to Pink Floyd and back again 

Savoury or Sweet

Rather than acrobatic— character 

Favourite musical
Phantom of the Opera 

Can’t live without

My family 

Place you want to travel to


Future dream
My next album 

TV Show Binge


Finally, favourite thing about performing

Thank-you Russell for joining us at The Fame Reporter and we wish you all the best for your concert ‘The Real Thing’ at QPAC!


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All photos and videos – Supplied