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Singers ready to rock the outback

Thursday, 2nd December, 2010

Mark Seymour chronicled his life with Hunters and Collectors in Thirteen Tonne Theory Mark Seymour chronicled his life with Hunters and Collectors in Thirteen Tonne Theory

Aussie rock icons James Reyne and Mark Seymour have kickstarted the annual Indian Pacific Outback Christmas Journey with a railside gig in Sydney.

The pair performed to several hundred fans from a platform at Central Station yesterday afternoon before boarding the historic train on its 4,352km journey across southern Australia.

The former Australian Crawl and Hunters and Collectors singers will perform nine shows in three days at stops along the way, including Broken Hill, Adelaide and the trains final destination Perth.

But the biggest crowds are expected to gather at wayside stops in the outback, including some of the most isolated places across the Ampullary Plain like the towns of Cook and Rawlinna.

"I'm looking forward to seeing people and places along the way it should be a truly exciting and uniquely Australian experience," said Reyne.

Seymour, who played Hunters and Collectors classics Holy Grail and When the River Runs Dry during the half hour performance, is looking to dusting off his hits in the outback.

"This is a rare opportunity to perform in some of the most remote parts of Australia, travelling across the continent," he said.

It will be the 10th year that the Great Southern Rail train has helped bringing festive cheer to remote communities and raise money for the Australian Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Guy Sebastian, Shannon Noll, Marcia Hines and Jimmy Barnes are some of the musicians who have already performed on the annual festive journey - and there's one sought after passenger who always makes the trip.

"Local children treasure the chance to sing with the super stars, but often it's Father Christmas who steals the show," the Great Southern Rail chief executive officer Tony Braxton said.

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