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  • Writer's pictureSkymac

Russell is marching to the beat of his own drums


Russell, who resides in one of Skymac's Supported Accommodation homes, has been into music for as long as he can remember.


Growing up in Birmingham, England, Russell enjoyed all genres of music, but more specifically, Motown and Reggae.


It didn't take much for him to learn and master the complicated rhythms and techniques of the bongos. He would practice every day after school and soon got good at it.

Russell progressed to playing in bands and eventually at bars and events. He later moved back to Brisbane in his adulthood.


A chance meeting with a woman at an Autism seminar led him to the River City Steel Band, an inclusive group open to all walks-of-live and musical abilities. It not only expanded his social network but gave him opportunities that he might not have otherwise. Russell travelled widely around Australia and New Zealand with the band and even came third in a competition.


You can find Russell at the Manly music scene on any given Sunday, which a few of our staff members have. "I feel very privileged to perform with the guys from Steve's Sunday Shake Up," said Russell, who's since been a permanent fixture of the band.


Although his musical passion has turned into a paid gig, Russell confirms that "it's just a hobby right now", when asked if he would pursue it full-time.


Russell also works twice a week at Foodbank Queensland and would love to continue to do this.

November is looking like a busy month for Russell. With tours and gigs blocking out most of his calendar, one could compare it to the life of a rockstar!


If you can't find him at the Manly Deck Bar, there's a chance he'll be at the Ralph & Co Camp Hill.

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