COCKATOO 10-string guitarist Matthew Fagan has launched a crowdfunding campaign in honour of his friend Billy Connolly.
The Scottish comedian is suffering from Parkinson’s disease and prostate cancer so Fagan has launched a campaign to fund the album A Song For Billy featuring Connolly’s banjo and all surplus donations above the project goal will go towards Parkinson’s Australia.
“The biggest highlight of my music performance career so far has been touring with Billy Connolly for 53 nights in 1999 to 2000. We became good friends,“ Fagan said.
“The last time I saw him, he was quite badly affected by Parkinson’s. It’s inspiring to see him still touring and even see him incorporate his Parkinson’s symptoms into his act. It’s a really good message to other people with Parkinson’s and their families.
“Billy was the greatest mentor that I have had on learning how to be a world entertainer. Billy’s gift of his banjo to me at the end of the tour was like receiving an Olympic gold medal.
“It has been a goal to make a recording with the banjo since that moment.
“Every time he returns to Australia, right up until 2015 when we were re-united backstage, Billy always greets me with a hug, recalls funny stories and always asks after my family.”
Fagan’s campaign will fund the recording and production of A Song For Billy as a way of returning the great friendship and mentoring Connolly has given him since the ’90s.
After his success at the Adelaide Festival, Fagan has been invited to perform at the largest arts festival in the world, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, in the United Kingdom and will tour Europe.
Prior to embarking overseas, he will play a send-off show at 8pm on Saturday 6 August at Upwey Belgrave RSL.
To donate to the crowdfunding campaign, visit, www.indiegogo.com/projects/a-song-for-billy.
Matthew Fagan’s promotional video for the Song For Billy album.