Joe Dolce
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Joe Dolce

Carlton, Victoria, Australia | Established. Jan 01, 2015 | INDIE

Carlton, Victoria, Australia | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2015
Solo Spoken Word Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos




'JOE DOLCE's musicianship and song writing are better than ever. One of his newest songs, about forgiving his father's violence, has lyrics that an EMINENT POET would be proud to have written. DOLCE's setting of another poet's work, called 'MILES' DELIGHT' is a show-stopping highlight!' - Chris Boyd

"JOAN ON FIRE - Oratorio for SATB and Orchestra"

'Joe Dolce a living musical genius. Bach and Handel will be smiling down on this work.'
- Dr. Lou Gottlieb, PhD Music, student of Arnold Schoenberg, member of Sonoma Bach Choir and legendary


'Joe Dolce's cover of Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' is fantastic! I kid you not. He plays guitar and harmonica and sings. He sounds great, his playing is mighty fine and he is a sparkling charming wit, and hilarious. It's a laid back blues rendition, sung with a humourous conviction that exposes the song for what it is: ' Who wrote this stuff?' He asks, then points out a similarity to 'Mellow Yellow'. "I brought my own words if you don`t mind," he says, half way through, in a Vampiric voice, and bends the song into 'Gloria', although, of course, he settles for 'Gorier'. On the one hand, we should herald Denton for getting Dolce to play this song, on the other, Joe Dolce shines as a great performer and comic genius."' (Andrew Denton's 3MMM Musical Challenge)' - W.M.

"Sydney Morning Herald"

'Maybe you recall 'Shaddap You Face' as just a novelty song of 1980, but Dolce's hugely successful singalong was more than that. It summed up the change in Australia when multiculturalism displaced the derogatory label 'New Australian', when colourful Immigration minister Al Grassby regularly graced the national stage, and SBS was about to take to the air. It caught a social current and gave voice to it in about three minutes.' - R.J.

"Latrobe RABELAIS ."

' . . .as everyone out there knows, spending a fortune on champagne and an expensive hotel room doesn't necessarily mean the sex will be any good. eg. I had probably the most intense orgasm of my entire life in the back of a plumber's van while the radio played 'Shaddap You Face'. - Sue L.

"The Guardian, UK"

' He begins strumming on his polished steel guitar - a Christmas present from Lin Van Hek, a performance artist and his partner of more than 20 years. He messes around with a blues version of 'Shaddap', before moving on to a more recent work. It's a setting of a work ('In The Monotonous Village') by the Greek poet Constantine Cavafy, about a man living in a dull town, who escapes his humdrum life through sexual fantasy. There's a yearning, folkish sound to the simple guitar part, reminiscent of Joni Mitchell; his eyes close as he sings, absorbed in the tune. It's beautiful.'
- David Fickling


" . . . Dolce's consistent ability to write or choose songs that obviously mean something to him . . . allow[s] his musicians and fellow singers to shine as well . . . . The CD begins with "St Valentines Day", which sounds like a live recording with the tuneful vocals up front and clear in the mix, and some nifty slide work by Dolce; a great driving start to proceedings. Then follows cajun/tex mex with "Lynetta" (reminding one of the late lamented Mollys) . . . some fine rock on "Dragon Lady", a tribute to John Lennon on "It Was Only A Dream (But No Reason To Awake)" . . . One personal highlight is "Cocaine Lil" which combines a 19th century lyric with original music to create a blues-rock song that works well, with a very full sound that still has room to breathe. The track struck me as treading a similar musical path to Jeff Lang, which can only be a good thing, really. Another favourite is "Gift From One Iraqi Child" which has a somewhat chaotic, experimental middle-eastern beginning, and then transforms into a melodic contemporary roots/rock song, with all too pertinent lyrics. . ." (excerpt)

- GREEN MAN - Michael Hunter

"'Best Act in 4 Years!' HENRY LAWSON FESTIVAL"

" Dear Joe, Let me, on behalf of the Henry Lawson Festival committee, thank you for your unforgettable appearance at this year's Festival. It is certainly the best act I have had on the concert bill in four years of organising the event... people in town are still talking about it." Peter Soley, Henry Lawson Festival Committee " - Peter Soley - Director


" . . .The effervescent FREELOVEDAYS CD bubbles over with glorious melodies and clever lyrics. While the eclectic collection of musical ideas resists categorisation, the evidence is that Dolce is born of that folk-blues tradition that flourished before John, Paul, George and Ringo changed the rules. Indeed, the title track feels a little like Dylan's My Back Pages, and 'Jack of Diamonds' could easily have slipped off Blood on the Tracks. . . . .the highlight is the barely orchestrated tribute to the Greek poetess Sappho - whose legendary work remains only in brief fragments. Dolce sings 'Fragment 64' accompanied by Miriam Morris's viola da gamba in a moment of unlikely beauty, not a million miles from William Orbit's Pieces in a Modern Style. " 4 Star Review 2004 **** - PETE BEST


" Yes, he is that Joe Dolce, the frank in your face singer who received international acclaim in the early 1980s with his release 'Shaddap You Face'. While that song has been dubbed as one of the most memorable of the '80s, and also has the auspicious title of the 'worst song ever recorded' whilst remaining one of the most successful songs in Australian music history, it isn't a reflection of the real Joe Dolce and his consummate musical ability. The Wind Cries Mary is a testament to this.

This is his first release since 2000 and cements Dolce's reputation as one of the country's premier songwriters. His lyrical compositions are delightful to listen to, the words fit together like a perfect puzzle and while their contrast to the music and their rhythmic sense is appealing, it is also the stories behind the songs that are beautiful. Then there is that Dolce humour that shows through, especially in songs such as 'Smokin', where his clever witty lyrics are divine.

The tracks themselves are depictions of Dolce's life, often private parts of himself he isn't afraid to share with audiences, as well as occurrences throughout history that have offered him inspiration.

From the first song 'St. Valentine's Day', where Dolce croons 'music is your occupation, sometimes it's like working on your damn vacation", it is an avid description of his life as a working musician. It is this endearing personal quality that hits home with his music, and despite the song's sometimes upbeat instrumentation, his message will resonate with anyone.

Dolce's track 'Lynetta' is another demonstration of his musical ability, it is sung entirely in French. The music moves from strong upbeat guitar focused tracks with impressive percussion and laid-back tunes where Dolce's unique voice is the focus.

Its country-twang and blues instrumentation makes this album a pleasure to listen to - a far cry from the 1981 hit that made Joe Dolce a household name. "



'THE WIND CRIES MARY': Most recent CD, 'Cocaine Lil' guitar solo featured in 'Australian Guitarist' magazine.

'FREE LOVE DAYS': Voted Top Ten Release of the Year by Australian Blues and Roots quarterly, Rhythms Magazine, with 4 star reviews in the two major Australian dailies, The Herald and The Age.

'FLOWER': with LIN VAN HEK. Picked as Top Ten release of the year by Australian blues and roots quarterly, Rhythms Magazine.


'MEMOIRS OF A MOUTH ORGAN,' compilation of favourite blues harp performances, recordings and unreleased tracks,
including 'Miles' Delight' live-in-performance.

'STEAL AWAY HOME': Cassette and CD, songs co-written by playwright, Phil Motherwell and Joe Dolce.

'HILL OF DEATH,' on 'The Best of Australian Gospel Music' CD.


'GIFT (One Iraqi child)' on 'PEACE SONGS FOR A BETTER WORLD' CD, CANADA. 2005.

'Did You Get Stupid from Being Ugly (Or Ugly From Being Stupid?)' on 'PROTEST SONGS FOR A BETTER WORLD' CD, CANADA. 2005.

Blues 'cover version' of Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' included on Andrew Denton's 2MMM MUSICAL CHALLENGE CD (along with artists including NEIL FINN, JIMMY BARNES, TINA ARENA, ARCHIE ROACH, JAMES BLUNDELL.)

Released 'SHADDAP YOU FACE - NO ROOM FOR RACISM ' (with new lyrics), as a protest against Australian right-wing party, One Nation.

1997 Released solo blues harp CD, 'MEMOIRS OF A MOUTH ORGAN'.

1986 Executive Producer and co-writer, with LIN VAN HEK, of the song, 'INTIMACY', sung by LIN VAN HEK and included in the classic US film blockbuster, THE TERMINATOR.

1984 Released single, 'PIZZA PIZZA,' on Fable Records. Currently the theme song for the USA Pizza Team.

1980 'SHADDAP YOU FACE', LP First released in Australia on ASTOR RECORDS. Number 1 hit in 15 countries.

1979 'BOAT PEOPLE', independently produced single, Melbourne. Translated into Vietnamese.

1968 'PLEASE TELL A FRIEND', with JONATHAN EDWARDS and SUGARCREEK, on Metromedia Records, New York.



* Best Australian Poems 2015, edited by Geoff Page, Black Inc.

* Wrote, produced and performed, SHADDAP YOU FACE, which continues to hold the nine times platinum record for the most successful song in Australian music history for thirty-five years straight! Over six million copies sold worldwide, hundreds of cover versions, Youtube variations, and synch licenses, with translations into 10 languages, including Papua New Guinea pidgin and the Australian aboriginal Indjibundji dialect.


* Over one hundred poems, including twenty-six new song-lyrics, published as stand-alone poetry, selected for publication, by editor and poet, Les Murray, winner of both the T.S. Eliot Prize and the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.

* Shortlisted for the 2014 Newcastle Poetry Prize and the 2014 Canberra Vice-Chancellor's International Poetry Prize.

* New poetry, photographs & essays published in Meanjin, Best of Quadrant Poetry 2001-2010, Island, Monthly, Contrappasso, Australian Love Poems, Etchings, Southerly, The Canberra Times, Cordite, Journey, Australian Poetry Journal, Going Down Swinging, PENMelbourne, Carmenta I & II, Eye To The Telescope, Stars Like Sand, Best of Vine Leaves, Best of Little Raven, Communion, Overland, Rochford Street Review, Not Shut Up (UK), Tupelo Quarterly (USA), Structure & Surprise (USA) and Antipodes (USA).

* Principal and founding member, with Lin van Hek, since 1992, of the ongoing literary-music group DIFFICULTWOMEN.

* Executive Producer, lead guitarist and co-writer of the song, INTIMACY, sung by LIN VAN HEK, and included in the classic US sci-fi film, THE TERMINATOR, one of  25 movies listed for preservation, along with films such as The Asphalt Jungle, Deliverance, The Invisible Man and In Cold Blood, for cultural, historic and aesthetic significance, by the US Library of Congress.