Shaped by the country
SIXTEEN-year-old Mitch Rolfe didn’t think much of country music growing up.
He would hear it frequently working on his farm but it wasn’t until he started learning Drive by Alan Jackson, to play for his dad, that he came to appreciate it.
“I always sang, but wasn’t into country music at first,” Mitch said.
“But dad loved it – he noticed I had a nice country twang – so I tried another.
“That’s when I got into it.”
Growing up in Emerald required extra effort for Mitch to get started as a singer-songwriter.
To that end, he is grateful to his family.
“Being in a rural area shaped the country in me.
“There weren’t too many opportunities, but eventually the scene opened up for me.
“Mum helped a lot. She opened doors to get my career started and I’m thankful for that.”
It was an early appearance on stage during a Relay for Life performance, when Mitch was a student, that cemented his love of playing for a crowd.
“It was a really good experience.
“Listening to the crowd say it wants to hear more of you makes you feel really good.”
And a paid gig at the Mayfair Ridge Tavern made Mitch realise he could make a living practising his passion.
“It was just me and my guitar up there.
“It was great. It opened my eyes to the fact I could do this as a job.”
Mitch has six songs of his own, two of which were written by himself. He said he had always been creative.
“I used to write down little ideas for songs. I always want to tell a story.
“Co-writing a song about my dad was the greatest experience of my life.”
Mitch will be the support act at the Festival of Small Halls in Rolleston on Friday, November 8.
More information and tickets are available online.