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Harii Bandhu excels with `I Wonder’ – Flashback to 1996

August 12, 2013

90's Flashback

Songwriter scoops the pool at Song Contest

On With the Show’s
Flashback to 1996

By SHIRLEY BROUN

EXCITING new song writing discovery, Harii Bandhu, has surpassed contemporaries from around the world to score a major win in the inaugural South Pacific International Song Contest.

Harii Bandhu – 1996 South Pacific International Song Contest winner. (Photo by Shirley Broun)

Held on the Queensland Gold Coast as an official event of the IndyCar Grand Prix, the event offered $10,000 in prize money and attracted entries from Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Spain, Denmark, Holland, Papua New Guinea, Sweden, Slovenia and Kuwait.

The 21 finalists from around the world were showcased at a gala evening at the Gold Coast Arts Centre, supported by an estimated 1000-strong audience.

The high standard of song writing and performance was evident from the very beginning with many composers also performing their work.

Audience spellbound

Harii Bandhu’s performance of his Overall Award-winning song `I Wonder’ left his audience spellbound with its professionalism and world-class presentation, further enhanced by his own saxophonist who was featured throughout.

Indeed, Harii Bandhu’s performance and song could have matched some of the world’s best. `I Wonder’ also won the Soul R&B Category.

So impressive was his song – inspired by his wife Rambanita – that Gold Coast-based radio station, Gold 92.5 FM, has been playing it consistently since the awards.

Much of its airplay has been encouraged by listeners’ requests.

Off to Ireland

Harii Bandhu’s success has also resulted in an invitation to perform at the Cavan Song Contest in Ireland in February next year.

Delighted by not only his success but the chance to perform his music at a truly international level, Harii Bandhu says the South Pacific Song Contest has opened doors for him – one he hopes will lead to a major recording contract. “I entered quite a few songs into the contest – many will appear on my new album entitled `I Wonder’ – and I was a little surprised with my success,” he said.

“As a song writer you tend to evolve, change and progress. I wrote `I Wonder’ several years ago and my style has changed a little since then but because of its success I’m seriously thinking of going back to that style.”

After his recent wins, Harii Bandhu said he never stopped writing. That was, however, until about a week after the awards when a chain saw accident on his Northern New South Wales property severed his Achilles tendon.

As a result, he expects to be laid up for a few months – but look at the good side … he’ll have plenty of time to pen a few more potentially award-winning compositions for next year’s South Pacific Contest.

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