Country music club’s story compelling viewing

Capital of Country Music co-directors Wade McClelland, left, Jenny Mitchell and Bradon McCaughey....
Capital of Country Music co-directors Wade McClelland, left, Jenny Mitchell and Bradon McCaughey. PHOTO: SUPPLIED.
St James Theatre
Thursday, May 30

On Thursday night, the SBS St James Theatre was treated to a world first.

The premiere of Capital of Country Music: 50 Years of the Gore Country Music Club was held before a sellout crowd.

This documentary gave me a new-found appreciation for the country music genre and its impact on Gore.

Being relatively new to the area, I knew about its love of country music, but I did not know just how deep that ran.

Early in the documentary, Eastern Southland Gallery curator Jim Geddes recalls a comment made about the club by local country musichero, the late Dusty Spittle: "Country music is working people’s music andplaces like this are built by working people, so it’s their celebration of their place."

This could not be more true, as Gore was built for and by working people.

The documentary highlights that through the accounts of many in the industry, including Peter Cairns, Kayla Mahon, Max and Coral McCauley and Donna and Dame Lynda Topp.

It was very good at presenting significant moments in the club’s history,

including the day when the clubrooms burnt down in 2004.

And for the future of the Gore Country Music Club?

Well, not even those in the documentary were sure.

All they were sure of was their love of country music and the desire for the club to continue.

If the opportunity arises to see the documentary I highly recommend a viewing.

I congratulate director Jenny Mitchell and Dunedin film-makers Wade McClelland and Bradon McCaughey, of Scrambler.

This documentary will be loved by many for a long time.

Review by Ben Andrews