Shir Madness

February 22, 2015 by J-Wire Staff
Read on for article

The organisers of Sydney music festival Shir Madness provided top flight local entertainment to a packed Roundhouse at the University of New South Wales.

This is the second time Shir Madness has put on a tribute night featuring the best of Sydney’s Jewish artists performing the classic songs of world-famous Jewish songwriters. The first tribute night was held in May 2014 at the Jam Gallery in Bondi Junction and was completely sold out with over 350 people in attendance.

Nikki Kurta

Nikki Kurta      Photo: David Sokol

Festival Director Gary Holzman told J-Wire: “As a result of the Bondi sell-out, we opted for the Roundhouse a larger venue.  To our delight and amazement the event was once again a sell out with over 550 people turning up on the night.”

The aim of the Tribute Nights are similar to the Shir Madness festival itself namely, to foster and promote the wealth of musical talent within the Sydney Jewish community to music lovers of all ages.

The evening was organised by 20-yr-old Aliza Waxman aided by Jeanette Kidron. The MC for the evening was Gary Holzman.

The night also served as a taster and a way to promote the next Shir Madness which will be held in Melbourne on 6 September 2015 (Father’s Day).

Featured artists included Nicky Kurta  a former backing vocalist for artists including INXS and X-Factor winner Dami Im. She can be heard singing for the Australian movie ‘A Few Best Men’ as the voice of V-Hits on

The Four Skins

The Four Skins       Photo: David Sokol


Foxtel, in numerous advertising campaigns and singing the promo track for FOX8’s Desperate Housewives of Melbourne. Nicky loves songwriting and has written with some of Australia’s most accomplished writers including DNA, Rick Price, , Brian Cadd and countless others. In 2014, a song co-written by Nicky was nominated for a Golden Guitar at the Australian Country Music Awar

Tull Kidron is a member of the amazing Kidron family. Tull has been a member of various bands over the years including Watussi, Naked Parade and most recently Love / BYO Social Club.

Joanna Weinberg

Joanna Weinberg Photo: David Sokol

For the tribute he put together a special group called the Four Skins.  Holman said: “They are a cut above most other groups and if you’d like to know how they do it, Tull says they are happy to give tips!!”

Sam Joole is an incredibly versatile musician playing a wide variety of styles including blues, soul, African and Celtic music. He was a founding member of the band Alien Zoo which had a large Sydney following and

Sam Joole

Sam Joole Photo: David Sokol

released one album. Since then Sam has released two solo albums The Crescent and the Moon and Shape Shifter.

Joanna Weinberg had the crowd on their feet with her performance of three songs by Burt Bacharach sung in the guise of each of the iconic songwriter’s wives.  She is the co-writer and songwriter of the Australian music film Goddess, based on her original one-woman show Sink Songs. She has written and performed 10 solo shows, most recently Baroness Bianka’s Bloodsongs in September 2014.

Tim Freedman

Tim Freedman       Photo: David Sokol

Tim Freedman has released 7 albums with his band the Whitlams including Eternal Nightcap which was voted the 17th all time greatest Australian album by JJJ. A few years ago he released his first solo album titled Australian Idle which he described as his “drug album”. At the time he said I’m on 15mg of Mobic a day for my bad knee, a small dose of statins for the cheese, and a bit of Valium some nights”.

Tim is soon to release his latest solo album which is inspired by the 1970, Harry Nilsson record “Nilsson Sings Newman” – which featured the songs of Randy Newman.  In turn Tim’s new album will be entitled “Freedman Does Nilsson”.

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published

Got something to say about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.