Making Country Cool!

By Jemah Finn

They say you can take the girl out of the country, but you can’t take the country out of the girl!

Making Country Cool: A fresh take on country music.
Making Country Cool: A fresh take on country music.

Being a professional musician is the dream job of many, and with the industry as competitive as it is, being unique is vital.

Tanya Cornish has the look, the accolades and definitely the talent. But what sets this musician apart is her genre. Tanya is a country singer, and a good one at that.

Most young up-and-coming music talents go down the typical path of pop, but this Adelaide girl takes country and makes it cool.

With an angelic voice and guitar in hand, Tanya transforms country rhythms into something contemporary. Her mesmerising voice is bound to leave you wanting more.

Tanya grew up in a very musical family; her older brother Ryan is also a professional musician and younger brother Mitchell is just beginning his musical journey too. The talented Cornish family originate from a small country town called Tintinara, in South Australia’s South East. Growing up on a farm played a large part in igniting Tanya’s passion for country music.

One Talented Family: Tanya and brother Ryan Cornish gigging at The Duke.
One Talented Family: Tanya and brother Ryan Cornish gigging at The Duke.

Playing piano from an early age, and studying music throughout her schooling, it was no shock to Tanya’s family when she started playing gigs around Adelaide at the age of 18.

Only in her early 20’s, Tanya has achieved a lot already, including winning the Trans-Tasman Entertainer of The Year on Norfolk Island and performing at a number of Tamworth Country Music Festival’s.

Country music singer, Tanya Cornish.
Country music singer, Tanya Cornish.

I spoke with Tanya to find out more about her career.

Hey Tanya, firstly I would love to find out what you love about music?

I love everything about music. I love that it tells a story, and that I just lose myself in a song when I’m playing.. It’s a way to express my feelings and emotions so that they are meaningful and can relate to other people listening.

What would you consider to be the pinnacle of your career thus far?

I’ve worked really hard with my music this year, gigging most or every weekend and collaborating with other artists. I think a highlight this year would have been taking out an international competition when I won the Trans-Tasman Entertainer of The Year on Norfolk Island. Although anything musical makes me happy, whether I am songwriting with other artists like Bill Chambers and Aleyce Simmonds, or doing my regular gigs at Adelaide venues. I love it all!

What is it about country music that entices you?

Well, I grew up listening to country music thanks to Dad’s records! And country music gave me an opportunity to start off in talent quests in South Australia, and I just fell in love with it. The stories it tells, the people, everything! My favourite part of every year is attending the Tamworth Country Music Festival. There’s nothing like it.. Music all day in every venue for 10 days. There’s an atmosphere in country music festivals and events that I can’t even explain.

You’ve had  a very impressive career already, but what is next for you?

I won the Senior South Australian Champion of Champions recently, which includes a scholarship to attend the Academy of Country Music in January 2016 in Tamworth, so I’m really excited to improve my craft as a musician and network with other musicians.

If you aren’t a fan of country, get to one of Tanya’s gigs and have a listen, I guarantee she will change your tune.

Follow Tanya on Facebook here:


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