Skip to main content

Jim Conway

active 1971

Jim Conway, harmonica player, composer and music producer, grew up in Melbourne and attended Camberwell High School before beginning his career with the frenetic jug outfit, the Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band, in the 1970s. Captain Matchbox was fronted by Conway's madcap brother, Mic (later, the founder of Circus Oz). Jim played harmonica and kazoo and sang with the band on releases such as the definitive album Wangaratta Wahine (1974). The siblings played together in the Conway Brothers' Hiccups Band from 1984 to 1988, enjoying some success at international festivals. In 1988 Jim joined the Backsliders, who toured Australia for many years. In 2006 he left the Backsliders to concentrate on his own band, Jim Conway's Big Wheel, which had formed four years earlier. Big Wheel released their second CD in October 2008. Director of the Balmain Acoustica music festival since 2005, Conway is also a session musician in demand, playing with Slim Dusty and Anne Kirkpatrick amongst a host of other musicians, working across blues, jazz and country styles. He has composed, produced and recorded music for many film and radio projects; a documentary about his music and his life with multiple sclerosis was made in 1999.

Updated 2018