Tamworth Golden Guitar Awards 2021: True Blue wins Vocal Collaboration of the Year

It all started out as a bit of fun and something special to share with Australians, so little did Parkes' singer-songwriter and music producer Dianna Corcoran expect to win a Golden Guitar for it.

Dianna and great mates Kirsty Lee Akers and Amber Lawrence both of Newcastle, and Aleyce Simmonds from Tamworth, won Vocal Collaboration of the Year for their moving all-female rendition of John Williamson's True Blue, which was created in isolation as a tribute to the people of Australia amid the COVID lockdown.

It was largely made and filmed in Parkes, released last July.

After a devastating year threw the entertainment industry into turmoil, 2021 began with a bang for some of country music's brightest stars.

Despite the cancellation of the Tamworth Country Music Festival, which follows the Parkes Elvis Festival, the golden spirit of country music was in the air on January 23 as the golden carpet was rolled out for the 49th annual Golden Guitar Awards.

Singer-songwriter Fanny Lumsden pulled off a stellar live performance that afternoon and took home five Golden Guitar Awards for her wildly successful album Fallow, including the prestigious Toyota Album of the Year and Female Artist of the Year.

Our girl squad performed True Blue live at the ceremony, with Dianna, who lives in Nashville, projected onto the screen behind them - and again on Network 10's morning talk show Studio 10 the following Tuesday.

"It's momentous to share it together and to know it was that moment of time, in coronavirus, that's why we sang it ... if we can put that in the history books we'll be really excited," Amber told the Northern Daily Leader at the time.

This is Dianna's third Golden Guitar, about her 13th Golden Guitar nomination and her first collaboration award.

Dianna won Best New Talent in 2004 and the coveted Female Artist of the Year four years later.

"I was watching, live from Nashville. By the time our category was being announced it was around 3am," she said.

"Winning Vocal Collaboration is beyond special, for many reasons. Not only do I get to share the win with my friends, but it came from a recording that was put together, from a distance, during the initial COVID-19 lockdown in 2020.

"The only intent we had when recording this project was to have fun, do something that felt special and put a smile on Australian faces.

"The win is a bonus and I call it the 'accidental Golden Guitar' since I'm mostly working in the background these days."

Dianna is proud to come from Parkes.

"Parkes is one of the few towns in Australia to produce multiple Golden Guitar winners," she said.

"Between me and the Emmanual brothers, Parkes now has countless GG's to its name.

"And some may be unaware, but former Parkes man, Luke Wheeldon is now part of an awesome band called Hurricane Fall. They received their first nomination this year and although they didn't take the trophy home, I think they'll end up with plenty on the shelf in the near future.

"I was a few years behind Luke in high school and he was always a talented guitarist. So glad to see him up in lights."