Each month guitar picker and Webmaster BOB HOWE covers a different topic, as well as bringing you the latest Country Music happenings on the Internet. You can surf your way from month to month, or why not bookmark the main index for the complete contents!

CYBER COWBOY Cowboys In Cybersp@ce - April 1998 CYBER COWBOY

By Bob Howe © 1998

"It's A Small World"

The bigger the World Wide Web gets, the more it brings people closer together. E-mail provides a cheap and startling efficient way of communicating and (with a few extra pieces of hardware) video conferencing in the home is a reality! It also draws together like-minded individuals from around the globe, especially Country Music fans. Regular readers of Cowboys In Cybersp@ce may have noticed the focus on Australian and American Web sites. This month we peek through the window to see what's happening on the rest of the planet! "Chili Beans" is the name of the Home Page of Country Music in Japan. There you will find profiles of the leading Japanese Country musicians and samples of their music which you can listen to over the Internet. Practical details include lists of Western Clothing stores in Japan, dance lessons, and where to tune into your favourite music on the radio from Kyoto to Kobe.

Over in the Netherlands, the Dutch Country Music Homepage provides a comprehensive rundown of their local bands and singers. There is a mailing list you can subscribe to, but only if you speak Dutch. "Are you ready for the country?" asks Viktoriapark, the German page which lists all the "C & W in Deutschland". Back in Britain the Country Music UK & Europe claims to be the "The definitive guide to Country Music in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Western Europe". It certainly does a good job of covering the U.K. scene. We were intrigued to find an artist listed as the "CyberSpace Cowboy" (no relation) and we tried to locate him, but his page at "www.lovestarvedman.com" wasn't available for viewing. Perhaps he's found true love after all!

Heading west now, Country Wave goes by the banner of "Canada's Premier Country Music Magazine". You can peruse the contents of each month's issue and read the cover story. When we checked it out, the February issue featured and in-depth article on Shania Twain. Cowboys In Cybersp@ce was on the surfing agenda for Joyce Seamone in Nova Scotia. Joyce had a NUMBER ONE record in 1972, "Testing 1-2-3", with sales reaching an unheard of 80,000 copies in Canada. We dropped in on HER site and were very impressed by the effectiveness and simplicity of the design. Inevitably, we head south and stop off at Branson.Net where you can find everything you need to know about America's fastest growing "Music town". Shows, hotels, fishing, golfing and shopping malls; it's all here!

Just recently Australia was visited by a team of delegates from the CMA. It's time to drop in on them at the Country Music Association home page. You'll find news and reports on Fan Fair and the CMA Awards. Here at Cowboys In Cybersp@ce we would love to pack our bags straight away and visit their 2ND Annual Music Industry & New Technologies Conference (or MINT for short) in Nashville.

Sleishman logo More instrument news: this time beginning with drummers. The Sleishman Drum Co. have a re-vamped Web site up and running. Sleishman are the inventors and manufacturers of the innovative Total Resonance System that delivers unrivalled resonance and tone - the ultimate sound for drummers. Many top country drummers rave about these Australian drums. Also on the homegrown instrument front, Tomkins Guitars are exhibiting at the Australian Guitar Makers Expo at the Frankston Guitar Festival this month. The hand-crafted range of Tomkins guitars and basses is sure to cause quite a stir. Earlier this year the Keith Glass single "Smoke And Mirrors" made Number One on the charts at HOT-FM. Keith's Web pages now feature excerpts of two album tracks in Real Audio.

It is very encouraging to report the continued increase of Australian sites on the World Wide Web. Hadley Records have been preserving and promoting Australia's Country and Western Music for 37 years now. It was nice to see the smiling faces of Eric and Hilary Scott looking out from their Web site along with details of all the Hadley catalogue. All the things you would expect from a Jade Hurley show can now be found on the Internet. At the Jade Hurley - Australia's King of Country Rock site you'll see the definite presence of the piano pounder himself urging you to buy his latest CD and video "LlFE, Wouldn't Be Dead For Quids". Frank Ifield has just released a new CD "The Fire Still Burns" on the ABC label and you can read about that and more at his site. Speaking of yodellers, at ShowNet - "The Australian Showbiz Directory", Wayne Horsburgh has a local page to compliment his U.S. entry at the IFCO (International Fan Club Organization) site. Also at ShowNet are the popular Sydney-based duo Jus-Two, combining the vocal talents of Wendi Jackson with the musical expertise of Glen Bain. Last January Glen won a TIARA award in Tamworth for his instrumental "Broken Hill Rag".

Fancy Reba If you're getting ready for the Reba/Kenny extravaganza then you'll probably already have been checking out the numerous Web sites devoted to this pair of hugely popular entertainers. Our picks would be Trevor & Gypsywoman's RebaFAN site , The FANCY Reba McEntire Page and Kenny Rogers Road. Built by obviously dedicated fans, these are some of the most comprehensive sites you will ever see.

Cowboys In Cybersp@ce was featured in the "siteseeing" section of the March issue of Australian Net Guide magazine. If you are interested in a broader range of Internet topics or technical issues, check them out in print, or on-line where they have a wide range of tutorials on view.

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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