Neighbours’ Alan Fletcher Debut Americana EP Features Alyce Platt Duet and John Prine Cover

22 June 2022 | 11:22 am | Staff Writer

'Dispatches' is out on Friday, June 24.

Alan Fletcher

Alan Fletcher (Image: Supplied)

One of Australia’s most instantly recognisable and loved actors, Alan Fletcher, releases his anticipated new Americana/Country release – Dispatches – on Friday, June 24, 2022. 

In 2019, Fletcher teamed up with producers, Lachlan Bryan and Damien Cafarella at their Melbourne studio, End of the Road, to realise his passion for Americana and Country music. Together they began a journey of writing and recording in this genre. Dispatches is a collection of work that forms part of Alan’s debut album due for release in late 2022. 

Opening the EP is the current single, Meet Me On The Steps of The Bombed Out Church“a lilting, melodic love song that perfectly captures a sense of deep longing, it also references an important landmark in a city that is something of a spiritual home for me, Liverpool”, according to Fletcher. 

The Church of St Luke in Liverpool was destroyed by fire in the ‘May Blitz’ of 1941. The church has never been rebuilt and stands today in silent testimony to the brutality of war and to the fortitude of Mersey-siders who withstood Hitler’s onslaught. It is a common meeting point for the city’s citizens. 

“From the first time I heard this beautiful song crafted by the artist who is Silent Sleep, Chris McIntosh, I have wanted to include it in my repertoire.” 

Time Was is an original that floated for a few years until it found its home on Dispatches

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“I wrote Time Was many years ago and it wasn’t until I began working in Americana that the song’s message and feel found its home. It is a creative joy to be part of the process that found the song’s heart.” 

Fletcher shifts into a more country gear on Spend a Little Time With Me

“This is a fun country feel track about someone desperate to fulfil a longing for love, possibly for all the wrong reasons.” 

Joining Fletcher on Sorry Is The Word is his Neighbours co-star and fellow singer, Alyce Platt. She is also known for her work on Sons & Daughters, City Homicide and Sale of The Century. Platt has released three albums since 2004 with her most recent in 2015.

“I wanted to write a classic country duet. That has become such a traditional medium for telling stories about love and loss. Duets allow for truthful emotional expressions with irony,” says Fletcher. “Like a lot of songs, Sorry Is The Word, came from my own life experience. I have learnt over time that pride and an inability to accept blame and apologise is responsible for so much heartache and missed opportunities.” 

Rounding out the EP is Fletcher’s version of John Prine’s, Fish and Whistle

“John Prine is a genuine legend of Country/Americana music, and his brilliant words and melodies are my strongest influence. Fish and Whistle was the first Prine track I can remember hearing and it felt right to cover it on Dispatches”. 

For 27 years, Fletcher has portrayed the character, Karl Kennedy, on the iconic Australian television drama, Neighbours. He has also appeared in Cop Shop and in the US series, The Love Boat. His first forays into music were with the rock band, Waiting Room, in 2004 – releasing two albums and a single. The band has toured the UK ten times in eight years performing to sell-out crowds and maintaining a weekly residency in Melbourne for 12 years. 

Earlier this year, Fletcher presented the ‘New Talent Of The Year’ with Lyn Bowtell at the Country Music Association of Australia Inc (CMAA) Golden Guitar Awards to Darlinghurst.

Bowtell remarked to Fletcher, “So this would be your first country album you’ve recorded, and this is your first Tamworth Country Music Festival, and this is your first [Golden Guitar] awards, so therefore you’ll actually be eligible to win this category next year.”

Fletcher laughed, “If I won ‘New Talent Of The Year’ I’d retire a happy man!”

Dispatches will be launched at P.O.M.E. (Palace of Magnificent Experiences) in Richmond VIC this Saturday, June 25 with special guest Brooke Taylor. Tickets for the event are SOLD OUT.

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Keep up to date with Alan Fletcher and follow him on Facebook here.