Paul Field (musician)
|Genres||Pop rock, children's music, pub rock|
|Occupation(s)||producer, director, musician, songwriter|
|Associated acts||The Cockroaches, The Wiggles, The Field Brothers|
Paul Field is an Australian singer-songwriter and filmmaker. He is best known as one of the founding members of the Sydney pub rock band The Cockroaches and The Field Brothers and as Managing Director for the children's music group The Wiggles.
Early life and education
Field was educated at St Joseph's College Hunters Hill, where he excelled as a rugby player and musician. Upon leaving school he attained his teaching qualification from Australian Catholic University and a diploma of religious education from Aquinas Academy in Sydney.
In the late 1970s, while still at boarding school he and his brothers John and Anthony formed the pop group The Cockroaches. Paul was the lead vocalist for the band and also booked their first live shows in pubs in the inner city of Sydney and Kings Cross.
The Cockroaches enjoyed some success in Australia, producing three albums, one of which, The Cockroaches, sold 100,000 copies and became platinum. The band consisted of the three Field brothers, who played guitar and vocals, fellow boarding-school student Tony Henry, who played drums, Phil Robinson on bass, and Jeff Fatt on keyboards. According to Anthony Field, Paul Field was "a picture of professional efficiency", whereas John Field was the showman of the group. John Field's performances on-stage built the Cockroaches' reputation for being a party-band, even though alcohol and drug use was never part of the band's culture. In the heyday of The Cockroaches, they played over 300 gigs a year all over Australia; according to Anthony Field, they were "one of the biggest crowd-drawing groups in Australia". Australian musicologist Ian McFarland called The Cockroaches "an in-demand pub band [that built] a sweaty, frenzied atmosphere with good old-fashioned showmanship and unpretentious, energetic rock'n'pop".
In September 1988, while The Cockroaches were on tour in Queensland, Field's eight-month-old daughter died of SIDS. Her death "had a devastating effect on everyone involved", but The Cockroaches went back on tour to "create a sense of normality" and because he "had bills to pay". By early 1989, however, "nothing was ever the same again"; Anthony Field left the band to study Early Childhood Education at Macquarie University, and The Cockroaches disbanded. Anthony formed The Wiggles in 1991, with Murray Cook, Greg Page, and fellow Cockroaches band member Jeff Fatt, and they dedicated their first album to his niece.
In 1998, at the request of his brother Anthony, Field became The Wiggles' manager and began working with them. At first, he booked venues for the group, "mainly pre-schools, RSLs and theatres". By 2007, he produced and directed their videos and oversaw their consumer products. As manager of The Wiggles, Anthony Field has said, "I totally trust Paul; he is an honest man".
Field has expressed an appreciation for the development of The Wiggles coming out of the tragedy of his daughter's death. "When I think of how much joy [The] Wiggles have brought to children, it's good to know that out of an event so horrifying, something good has come", Field has said. Field has his daughter's name tattooed on his right arm and the names of his four other children and his wife on his left arm, something his younger brother Anthony has emulated when he had the names of his three children tattooed on his arms. Paul Field's children have appeared in several of The Wiggles' videos and television programs. His son Luke Field served as tour manager and his daughter Clare Field was dance captain for The Wiggles' "Dorothy the Dinosaur Show"; both had toured with the group for most of their lives.
The Field Brothers
In 2011, twenty years after the last recording of The Cockroaches, Field and his brother John recorded an album, entitled 1964 because its cover featured a picture of the brothers taken that year. Their sister Maria co-wrote a track on the album, and some Cockroaches songs were re-recorded as country songs, including their hits "Some Kind of Girl", "Rely on Me", and "Permanently Single". The album was dedicated to the Fields' parents and to Paul's oldest daughter, and reflected the previous 20 years of their lives.
- Elliott, Tim (2007-01-07). "It's a wiggly, wiggly world". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2008-06-24.
- St. Joseph's College Magazine. Sydney, Australia: St. Joseph's College, Hunters Hill. 1979.
- "Platinum record award, The Cockroaches, 1988". Powerhouse Museum. Retrieved 2012-12-10
- Field, p. 17
- Field, p. 15
- Field, p. 14
- Field, p. 6
- Field, p. 19
- McFarlane, Ian (1999). The Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop. St Leonards NSW: Allen and Unwin. p. 129. ISBN 978-1865080727.
- Stapleton, John (2008-06-07). "Death of little girl gave birth to the Wiggles". The Australian. Retrieved 2008-06-24.
- O'Neill, Helen (2008-06-07). "Double Take". The Australian. Retrieved 2013-09-22.
- "About Us". The Wiggles Official Website. Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 1 August 2007.
- Scott, Paul (2006-04-02). "Kid Rock". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-09-22.
- "CSU graduates part of The Wiggles world". Charles Sturt. 2010-07-30. Retrieved 2012-12-10.
- Collier, Shayne (2012-12-09). "Dorothy the Dinosaur wiggles in to Hornsby RSL". Hornsby Advocate. Retrieved 2012-12-10.
- "Get to Know the Field Brothers". Country Music Channel. Retrieved 2012-12-10.
- McCabe, Kathy (2011-11-11). "Brothers wiggle to a new album". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2012-12-10.