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Cold Chisel facts for kids

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Cold Chisel
A stage shot with four men clearly visible. The man at left is leaning at a rectangular box, he has a microphone nearby. The second man is shown in right profile, he is playing a guitar and singing into a microphone while seated. The third man is standing in the middle of the stage with arms at his sides, he carries a microphone in his right hand. The fourth man is also seated while playing a guitar and at a microphone. A fifth man is obscured seated behind and to the right of the middle one. The men are surrounded by stage equipment including speakers, lights and additional microphones. A drum kit is partly visible but the drummer is obscured.
L to R: Don Walker, Ian Moss, Jimmy Barnes, Phil Small
AIS Arena, Canberra, November 2011
Background information
Also known as
  • Orange
  • The Barking Spiders
Origin Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Years active
  • 1973 (1973)–1983 (1983)
  • 1997 (1997)–1999 (1999)
  • 2003
  • 2009 (2009)–present
  • Atlantic
  • Elektra
  • WEA
  • East West
  • Mushroom/Sony
  • Universal Music Australia
Associated acts Catfish
Past members see #Members

Cold Chisel are an Australian pub rock band, which formed in Adelaide in 1973 by mainstay members Ian Moss on guitar and vocals, Steve Prestwich on drums and Don Walker on piano and keyboards. They were soon joined by Jimmy Barnes on lead vocals and, in 1975, Phil Small became their bass guitarist. The group disbanded in late 1983 but subsequently reformed several times. Musicologist Ian McFarlane wrote that they became "one of Australia's best-loved groups" as well as "one of the best live bands", fusing "a combination of rockabilly, hard rock and rough-house soul'n'blues that was defiantly Australian in outlook."

Seven of their studio albums have reached the Australian top five, Breakfast at Sweethearts (February 1979), East (June 1980), Circus Animals (March 1982, No. 1), Twentieth Century (April 1984, No. 1), The Last Wave of Summer (October 1998, No. 1), No Plans (April 2012) and The Perfect Crime (October 2015). Their top 10 singles are "Forever Now" (1982), "Hands Out of My Pocket" (1994) and "The Things I Love in You" (1998).

At the ARIA Music Awards of 1993 they were inducted into the Hall of Fame. In 2001 Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA), listed their single, "Khe Sanh" (May 1978), at No. 8 of the all-time best Australian songs. Circus Animals was listed at No. 4 in the book, 100 Best Australian Albums (October 2010), while East appeared at No. 53. They won The Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Services to Australian Music at the APRA Music Awards of 2016. Cold Chisel's popularity is largely restricted to Australia and New Zealand, with their songs and musicianship highlighting working class life. Their early bass guitarist (1973–75), Les Kaczmarek, died in December 2008; Steve Prestwich died of a brain tumour in January 2011.

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