Don Burrows

Posted on 13 March 2020

Don Burrows 8 August 1928 – 12 March 2020

I'll leave those more qualified and articulate than me to circulate the particulars. The Don's awards, achievements and accomplishments are numerous.

I can only give my personal expressions about The Don.

The Don represents what we can be - open, optimistic, free; forever swinging, forever exploring.

The Don did so many things that were adventurous and expanded Australian ears, yet was generous enough to always be inclusive and not alienating.

Another thing that impresses me about The Don: he contributed so much of himself, inspired a generation of musicians and passed on his knoweldge at any given opportunity. The Don was generous, always.

In AJRB headquarters I have a number of portraits of significant Australian musicians on the wall. All taken by master photographer Natasha Blankfield, who has an uncanny ability to capture artists in the most pure form of artistic expression. I treasure these. They are a source of inspiration, and a reminder that those who have come before have forged a path that should never be forgotten. These captured expressions encompass Fire, Wonderment, Focus, and Being. The Don's portrait reminds me about how good it can be.

We all stand on the shoulders of giants. The Don has paved a way for us all to walk upon. May we walk on it knowing who has paved that path, and the spirit in which it was laid. 

The Don is a source of immense inspiration on a number of levels. He will be remembered fondly and with utmost respect.


If you learnt of The Don's passing from reading this post, I'm sorry to break the news to you. If you don't know about why Don Burrows is significant, I encourage you to check out some albums and listen closely. Listen for the possibilty. Listen to the Australian-ness. Take the inspiration and go forth and create good things. We all have a lot to live up to.