Swanee’s ‘Fortunate’ Life

First published in Orange City Life 13 July 2017.

OAM John “Swanee” Swan’s rock music career has spanned many decades, with jaunts of booze, drugs, love and loss – overcoming his own demons to help others.

Musician John “Swanee” Swan made a name for himself in the music industry playing in a number of bands including Adelaide group Fraternity, and replacing his good friend Angry Anderson in the Party Boys, ushering their most successful period. He appeared with Cold Chisel from time to time providing backing vocals and percussion, until he was fired for “punching a roadie”. He was considered as Bon Scott’s replacement in AC/DC after Bon died from alcohol poisoning in 1980, but Swanee says it’s a good thing it didn’t transpire. “Bon was my drinking buddy! If I had’ve joined AC/DC they would have had another drunk as a singer. And why would you put them through that again?” Continue reading

Earning My Place: Jamie Stedman’s High Impact Life

Jamie ‘Stedo’ Stedman has lived a few different lives… he discusses drugs, family, death (his own), and his view on finding ‘purpose’. 

When I first met Jamie Stedman, ex-prison officer and current editor of Orange City Life, I immediately liked him. Not sure why, but that’s how it works for me. Over the next few years, I changed my mind several times as we butted heads big time, but I always came back around. On this particular day when we first met, Stedo and I were introduced, we exchanged hellos, and that was it – I knew he was an alright bloke.

What I didn’t know then, and wouldn’t for years, were the colourful stories that shaped who he is, or who he chooses to be. A man of loyalty, bluntness, defensiveness, humour and often pig-headedness. It’s a lot easier to understand him when you discover where he’s been: a kid who tried his best to look after a dysfunctional family; who hid heroin in piles of pigeon shit from his mother; who has died twice with a cricket ball through his spleen. And that’s not even half of it. Continue reading