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Cowboys In Cybersp@ce - April 2001

Lee Kernaghan"We're all members of the On-Line Club"

The biggest Country Music news on the Internet this month is also one of biggest Web sites in Australian Country Music. www.leekernaghan.com is a mammoth undertaking that compiles many years of archive material on Lee Kernaghan, and couples it with the very latest news and photos. Let's take a look around the site and on the way, we'll have a look at some of the technology to make sure you get the full benefit from the site. On arriving you will see the 'HatTown Herald' - a scrolling list of Lee-related news headlines. 'JavaScript' creates the moving text, and happily you can enjoy this without ever having to understand anything technical about it. If you can't see it though, it could mean that it's time to update your browser, which is most likely Microsoft Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator. The easiest way to do this is to get the latest free version of these programs from the CD stuck to the front of nearly any Australian (or your country's local) computer magazine.

As your mouse darts around the pages, watch for text that changes colour as you pass over it. If your mouse cursor (the little arrow pointer) turns into a pointing hand, it's showing you where to click to find the way to find more content. Click where it says 'Music' for instance, and you will be taken to another page where you can choose whether you want to sample the tracks from Lee's albums, or watch some video clips. Either of these choices requires you to have a program called the RealPlayer™ installed on your machine in order to enjoy what is known as 'streaming media'. If you have a fairly new machine, chances are you already have this. If you haven't, follow the link from Lee's Music page to download the free RealPlayer™. This will take you to the 'Real' software site where you will be dazzled by the choice of items for sale. Don't reach for your credit card just yet. Scroll down the page to the smaller print and look for the free download (currently RealPlayer 8 Basic). Provided your computer meets the minimum requirements listed there, this will be more than adequate for the average user to hear music clips with. Take your time and follow the instructions carefully to download and install the software. From then on, every time you click on a song sample, the Player will automatically pop open and take care of business for you!

Throughout www.leekernaghan.com you should see several animated banners that create stylish headings for the pages. If you don't, your browser will prompt you with a message to download and install Macromedia Flash Player 5. Again this is free, and this time much smaller and quicker to get than the RealPlayer, and it will install itself if you agree to let it do so (which I recommend). The 'Media Resources' section of Lee's site contains a number of biographies and articles about Lee. Many of them are stored as 'Adobe Acrobat' files, sometimes known as PDF files because those are the letters that make up the suffix of the file names. Your browser might open these automatically for you but if it doesn't, you guessed it, follow the link provided and download the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. You should only ever have to do these things once, and your surfing experience will be greatly enhanced in the future.

Lee Kernaghan fans will need to allow plenty of time to explore the new site. Highlights include extracts from 'This Is Your Life', a Message Board for the fans and, from April 15th, the Telstra Webcast of Lee's 'Pass the Hat' concert for Wagga Wagga. Members of the Lee Kernaghan Fan Club, The Outback Club, get access to a member's only section. There they can, amongst other things, listen to rare recordings and unreleased album tracks and view all the videos available on-line.

Praise must go to Lee Kernaghan Productions, and in particular Webmaster Steve JW Roberts, for producing a great Web site that is already attracting lots of attention and delight from fans around the world.

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Some more new and updated
Country Music Web sites to check out:

  • The Rotary Club of Galston, in conjunction with its annual Galston Festival, has developed the Frank Ifield Award as an encouragement award with a focus on new talent. The inscription on the awards reads '...In recognition of artistic talent with the desire to promote and achieve excellence in the entertainment profession...' The 2001 awards were presented in Sydney on March 8th by Frank Ifield himself, in front of an enthusiastic crowd at Canterbury Hurlstone Park RSL, midway through the monthly 'Canterbury Country' show. Best New Male Performer 2001 went to Michael G. Carr and Best New Female Performer 2001 to Karen O'Shea. Karen was in Darwin at the time, however she would have been able to see photos from the presentation that same night via the Internet! Galston Country Music Festival executives Tony & Vikki Page accepted the award on her behalf.
    Tony and Vikki Page, Wayne Horsburgh and Frank Ifield

    A special Millennium Achievement Award was also presented to a very surprised and delighted Wayne Horsburgh (pictured above with Tony & Vikki left, and Frank Ifield right), "for exemplary professionalism both on and off stage, and having successfully made a career both in Australia and the United States". "Wayne is an excellent ambassador for Australia and as such is a perfect role model for aspiring new talent," said Frank during the presentations. You can see various other photos at Frank, Wayne and Karen's Web sites.


    Tommy Cash and Anne Kirkpatrick

  • At the same venue, the very next night, Tommy Cash (brother of…) performed a concert, supported by our favourite daughter Anne Kirkpatrick (pictured above). Check out Tommy's Web site where, amongst the music, you can also buy a copy of 'Recipes and Memories from Mama Cash's Kitchen'!

  • Just being one of Darren Coggan's biggest fans wasn't enough for 18-year-old Kathryn, so she has created the Darren Coggan Unofficial Site;

  • If you visit Jeanette Wormald's new Web site you get not only her music, but a look at the Mallee too;

  • Nattasha is a fine talent from Victoria who has a single 'Million Dollar You' on Country radio at present and a Web site for you to surf to;

  • virtueoz.com is a site that specialises in 'streaming media', and in their concert archives you can watch Kasey Chambers or Kinky Friedman;

  • The Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association (CAAMA) now have an on-line shop where you can find many Country releases;

  • Rodney Crowell returns with a dramatic and revealing album 'The Houston Kid' - read the story behind the songs at his Web site.

If you want to share the location of an interesting site you’ve seen or request a topic for discussion in future columns, why not E-mail me.

Don't forget to listen out for Cowboys in Cybersp@ce each month on the radio waves with Belinda Miller of Murri Country, 4AAA–FM (98.9 in Brisbane).

Until next month, happy surfing.

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