Ol’ Black Eyes

A Comeback for ‘Bobby Rivers?’

Not quite.

But actor / singer Jon English is back in the spotlight this week, performing in David Williamson’s 1971 Australian classic The Removalists for Perth Theatre Company, which opened yesterday.

English is best known to Australian TV audiences through his appearances on Countdown, the landmark miniseries Against the Wind and the Nine sitcom, All Together Now.

On the comedy series, which ran from 1991 – 1993, he was joined by Rebecca Gibney, Steven Jacobs, Jane Hall, Garry Who and later, Kerry Armstrong.

English told The Australian he’s ambivalent about his success as the none-too-bright rocker ‘Bobby Rivers.’

“I used to hate it when [the show’s writers] wrote dumb things for him to say because I never thought he was [stupid]. I thought he was a bit acid-fried, and quite deaf, and actually, if you’re clever when you’re writing this, it could be quite good. But no.” He pulls a face….

1978’s Against the Wind was a pivotal miniseries, in the day when Australia produced period miniseries. English, who wrote the memorable theme “Six Ribbons” was also the male lead. He won the TV Week Logie Award ‘Best New Talent in Australia’ for the role.

On Countdown, he was both guest host and performer, singing the classic Hollywood Seven, Turn the Page, Get Your Love Right and Words are Not Enough.

These days he still tours regularly with the band Jonah’s Road, and dreads the thought of retirement.


  1. I have a lot of respect for Jon English. He’s had a great career and done a wide variety of things.

    He seems like a very genuine guy and good luck to him for his future enterprises.

  2. A major pop hero from the mid to late 70’s – his husky tones were always on the radio and that towering presence on Countdown. Nice to know he is still around.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.