PC Bio

With musical roots deep in the socially conscious 60s and 70s, 50 years on the stage, four albums to his name, and a songsmith's take on wrangling a challenging future, Peter Campbell brings a healthy dose of honesty, activism, human emotion, humour and personal politics to his infectious style of Indie Folk.

In the words of his own song Pete willingly carries a Burden of Hope which has taken him around the world engaging audiences in a listening experience that seeks to reawaken human compassion, foster healing and inspire social change. His music is uplifting, challenging, vulnerable and, as often as possible, hilarious..

His first album, Of Time and its Distance, was recorded in Brisbane, Australia in 1975. His second, Across the Border, was produced by folk legend Noel Paul Stookey (Paul of Peter, Paul & Mary fame) in Blue Hill, Maine, USA. PP&M covered his song Wild Places on their album Such is Love and he supported them on their1982 Australian Tour.

PC with Noel Paul Stookey (PP&M) in about 1977.. doing a bit of TV.. and performing at the Australians For Nuclear Disarmament rallies in the mid-80s

Passion for the natural world has always been a driving force behind this music. Down through the years the activist appears in songs such as One Last Wild River, written and performed during the fight for the Franklin River in Tasmania, and Hope is Rising, an anthem written for the giant rallies convened by Australians for Nuclear Disarmament in the 80s. This song finds new relevance under the existential threat of climate change.

The cataclysmic fires which devastated Australia in 2019/2020 inspired Circle of Wonder, a moving tribute to the people that provided such deep support and love to fire affected communities. Same Science is a hilarious, call and response take on the hypocrisy of cherry-picking scientific research to suit a denialist agenda in a world in the grip of the climate crisis.

In 2020 his song Waited Too Long, sparked by unprecedented drought, the bushfires, social dislocation, financial trauma and the rise of domestic violence with the arrival of COVID, became the anthem for the United Nations International Summit on Domestic/Family Violence in the COVID-19 Era. A grim but sober and honest expression of human suffering within the family circle, the anthem was played multiple times a day over this 72 hour world-wide event out of New York. It featured leaders and global experts in the field and included participants from 47 countries; was translated into seven languages, opened by Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, and featured a welcome to the global audience from the Pope.

Playing 6/12 string guitars and banjo, Pete brings a wealth of finely crafted, powerful songs to contemporary audiences. In the 2020s, this music is an affirmation of the power of hope in extremely challenging times – a deeply felt call to connection as much as a call to action.

Woven through these lines of song is a life of creative endeavour with human rights, social justice and environmental sustainability as personal imperatives. In parallel to his music, Peter is an architectural graduate, graphic designer, photographer, glass artist, magician and ventriloquist. Music has always been the passion, but his creative life has expanded into many other areas. He performed in professional theatre and film with Grahame (Auntie Jack) Bond, and created ‘The Mugic Man’, a rollicking kids show combining magic, ventriloquism and wild banjo. He has designed architectural glass environments for cathedrals, residences and institutions, created destination brands and wayfinding systems for cities, regions and towns, and undertaken large photographic projects exploring the social impact of industrial change. The Biscuit Factory, a photographic essay on the closure of the Westons Biscuit Factory in Sydney’s Camperdown, was celebrated in a major exhibition at the Museum of Sydney.

Pete and his wife Jan live in Australia’s beautiful Southern Highlands.

Cast photo with Grahame Bond and a 19 year old Peter Campbell – Candy Striped Balloon, 1969; Head Windows, 1983; Westons Biscuit Factory Project, 2004