Are you a happy little Vegemite?

Around 50 years ago, 8 children burst onto the small screen singing about a thick black substance that Australians love but everyone else seems to hate.

The Happy Little Vegemites television advertisement ran for decades and is still a well loved part of Australian TV history.

Kraft, the makers of Vegemite, are now trying to track down the children who sang the Vegemite jingle all those years ago. It seems that no production records were kept when the ad was created and so they now have no idea who the children are who took part.

While they were children back then, the young performers would now be into their fifties and sixties.

This article at tells us that the Kraft company has devised some secret questions to make sure that those who might come forward are the real deal. I hope they’ve got some pretty good methods to weed out the wannabes.

I remember only a couple of years ago when the Royal Australian Mint was looking to portray the famous World War II Dancing Man on a one dollar coin, several men came forward claiming to be the one who was filmed dancing in a Sydney street in New South Wales, Australia all those years ago. If you haven’t heard of the Dancing Man, the legend began after the end of World War II when on August the 15th, 1945, a reporter took note of a man’s joyful expression and dance as he celebrated the end of war and asked him to do it again. The man consented and was caught on motion picture film. The resulting film has been played again and again on television and film ever since.

So, were you one of the happy little Vegemites 50 years ago?

Posted by Rodney Olsen

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Now listen …

… Oh we’re steppin’ out

One of the things I love about my job is being able to speak to some of my musical heroes.

From my early years listening to my brother’s Daddy Cool albums through to singing along to Mondo Rock on the radio in the eighties and then onto his solo work, I’ve always appreciated the incredible musical talent of Ross Wilson.

No party in Australia is complete without Daddy Cool’s song Eagle Rock pumping through the speakers but Ross Wilson has contributed a lot more than that one song to the soundtrack of our lives.

Mondo Rock gave us a string of hits in the eighties and I’m still more than happy to sing along at the top of my voice whenever I hear their song, No Time. One of the tracks from an early Mondo Rock album became a huge hit when John Farnham recorded Touch of Paradise for his come back album, Whispering Jack.

As well as writing a string of hit songs for himself and many others, Ross has worked as a producer for some wonderful music including the first few albums for Skyhooks.

Ross has even recorded a country album so we’re left wondering if there’s anything that the man can’t do.

He’s going to be in Perth with his current band, the Urban Legends, for the inaugural Hearing Aid family concert in Supreme Court Gardens on Sunday, 25th of March. The Ear Science Institute Australia, a not-profit-organisation, will be using the money raised through the family event to fund vital medical research into ear and hearing disorders.

The concert will feature over four hours of music from acts as diverse as the Rogue Traders, the Hooley Dooleys and Courtney Murphy & Murphy’s Lore.

I spoke to Ross Wilson this morning during my radio programme on 98.5 Sonshine FM. You can hear our conversation using the media player below.

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More on self harm

Last week I talked about the complex and disturbing phenomenon of self harm. Self injurers are people who may develop habits of cutting, hitting, burning, scratching, skin-picking, banging their heads, breaking bones or not letting wounds heal.

Psychologist/Counsellor Genevieve Milnes M.App.Psych, MA (Couns), B.Ed, B.Div from the Belmont Counselling Clinic joined me again today during my morning radio programme on 98.5 Sonshine FM for further discussion on self harm.

Today we asked what else can be categorised as self harm. What about overeating? What about tattoos? Alcohol and drug abuse? These all cause us pain or harm but can they be classified in the same way?

If you’d like to hear our discussion left click here or right click here if you want to save the mp3 and listen later.

Posted by Rodney Olsen

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Feeling old?

Beloit College in Wisconsin has released a Mindset List every year for many years. The list outlines a picture of the world as those now entering university know it.

For instance, do you realise that for the class of 2010, those 18 year olds starting university in the US this year, the Soviet Union has never existed? In their lifetime, bar codes have always been on everything, from library cards to retail items. As far as they know, Phantom of the Opera has always been on Broadway. They’ve never known a time when ‘reality’ TV hasn’t been on the small screen. They have always been able to watch wars and revolutions live on television.

To their understanding Disneyland has always been in Europe and Asia, non-denominational mega-churches have always been the fastest growing religious organisations in the U.S. and professional athletes have always competed in the Olympics.

The current list is interesting but try going through their past lists and get even more scared as you realise that they’re talking about people older than 18.

I feel older already.

Posted by Rodney Olsen

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