Katherine singer-songwriter Tom Curtain has documented the slower pace of life in the Top End in his new single, Territory Time.
Tom runs the Katherine Outback Experience show for travellers and said the relaxed way of life in the Territory could frustrate visitors if they didn’t understand it and that inspired his latest single, Territory Time.
The new single will be released this Monday.
“Travellers and visitors can get very frustrated because there could be something broken on their caravans and they have to wait, but it’s a bit of a mindset up here that we’re living on Territory Time,” Tom said.
“The whole song is about when I first came up here and I was always rushing around. An old bloke gave me some advice to chill the hell out and just embrace it. There are still a lot of hard working people, but every now and then Territory Time creeps in.”
Territory Time is the title track of Tom’s new album that will be released in mid-November.
This single follows on from the release of Never Never Land earlier in the year. Luke O’Shea co-wrote both singles with Tom.
“Those two are the main Territory songs I’ve written,” Tom said.
“The rest are about living in the bush, there are also some serious songs about true stories, and a few comedy songs.”
Tom originally hails from Kingaroy in Queensland.
”I came out to the NT in 2001 and worked at Mount Sanford Station in the stock-camp, sleeping in a swag every night. Something out here inspired me to write songs, so I would write them on the back of a horse and use the hoofs as a drum beat,” he said.
Tom is going to film two music videos around Katherine this weekend.
“This weekend we have a film crew coming down to do the clip for Territory Time and also another single Livin in the Bush which comes out in February,” he said.
Mr Curtain said he took a bit of a break from recording after his second album but his partner Annabel McLarty encouraged him to produce a third album.
“I am really passionate about all of the songs I write and co-write. It is really rewarding.
“Annabel has been a big influence on getting me back into music,” Tom said.
The pair met under unusual circumstances in Western Australia about three years ago.
“I was hitchhiking with this big saddle bag and finally a guy picked me up and took me back to his farm. I was on my way to see mates at a campdraft and this guy said he would give me a lift there if I helped him out for a bit loading his car. A while later Annabel arrived, and I just thought wow,” Tom said.
“It was her dad who had picked me up and that is how we met.”
Ms McLarty said the pair kept in touch for about a year before she eventually moved up to Katherine and now runs the business side of Katherine Outback Experience.
“I pinch myself all the time. If someone had told me three years ago I would be living in the Territory with a horse breaker I would have laughed,” she said.
Tom’s new album will be launched at the Katherine Visitor Information Centre on November 14.