19th June 2015
Songwriter, singer, comedian and radio presenter, Greg Champion
combines a unique blend of comedy, sport parodies and country/folk music.
Born in Benalla, Victoria and raised in South Australia, Champs has
become known as a writer of AFL and cricket-themed songs, with a swag of
Aussie Rules hits since the 80s. However his musical versatility extends
beyond the sport fields to include more moving and descriptive songs, which
explore what makes us Australian – drawing links to the work of John
Williamson, Eric Bogle and Ted Egan.
Having grown up in Adelaide, Champs moved to Melbourne in 1979. By 1980
he was fronting one of Melbourne’s most popular bands, the
rock-cabaret-fun outfit The Fabulaires. He then joined The Young Homebuyers,
along the way performing with Aussie legends Wayne Burt (Black Sorrows, The
Falcons), JJ Hackett (Stars, Mondo Rock) and later in the 80s with Wayne
Duncan and Ross Hannaford, both of Daddy Cool.
Champs’ rise to national prominence also came through his radio work.
In 1983 he drifted into a community radio show, the Coodabeen Champions,
which has now become an institution on ABC and commercial radio after an
amazing 34 years.
Parallel to his parody and comedy work on radio and in live
entertainment, Champs established himself as a songwriter with the reaction
to his first,1985 single I Made a Hundred In The Backyard At Mum’s.
I made a Hundred then became the opening track on Macca’s
first Australia All Over album, a record which went on to sell over
150,000. In 1994, Channel 7 took up Greg’s anthem That’s TheThing
About Football as the theme for their AFL broadcasts, for several
A second album which is closing on 150,000 sales is Aussie
Christmas with Bucko & Champs. In 1996 Greg teamed up with
renowned songwriter Colin Buchanan to create a double album of Aussie-flavoured
Christmas songs which are now sung annually at school carol nights across
Greg has performed nationally at dozens of Folk and Country Festivals
since the Eighties – and his corporate comedy appearances have kept him
busy for 25 years. He’s played in Weipa and Albany and most points
between. He and his pals have performed at 3 AFL Grand Finals, several
one-day cricket finals, and two SANFL Grand Finals. Along the way there has
been a Golden Guitar Award, two Tamworth Songwriting Awards, two ARIA comedy
nominations and several Victorian Country Awards.
Champs continues to carve a broad trail through the Country, Folk and
live music scenes. He’s now viewed as a noted Australian songwriter, while
also having published three books. Forging his own distinctive path through
the Oz musical landscape, it’s been said of Greg that he has contributed
to the fabric of Australian culture.
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