Russ Johnson, who sadly died in Sept. 2007, was a songwriter & guitarist (Alison Gros/Country Radio/The Hangovers) & was best known for being a member of the original Mississippi band which later morphed into the super successful OZ Rock band, Little River Band.

Listen to former band members of Mississippi: Graeham Goble, John Mower & Derek Pellicci discuss Russ Johnson’s musical career & his extremely underrated musical legacy.

Youtube link to Russ’s “Final Concert” Click Here

Very sadly John Mower died in June 2016.


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  • I have just come across this tribute to Russ and would like to let you know of his first few months in Adelaide before the formation of Allison Gros. I first met Russ only weeks after he arrived in Adelaide from Los Angeles and he got a job washing light aircraft at Parafield Airport. He then had a stint at Arkaroola, which only lasted a few weeks before he returned to Adelaide.
    I would like to put the record straight regarding Graham Gobles’ comment on how he first met Russ. Russ was at that time working in Gawler Place, Adelaide in a small outlet guitar shop owned by Hedley Smith – he loved that job as it gave him the opportunity to sit and play guitar all day and one day Graham walked past and heard him and approached him about joining a band. He was not out on the street busking. The early rehearsals of Allison Gros were held in Shane Simon’s garage and later at the Warradale Army Barracks.
    To my recollection their first gig was at the Marion Shopping Centre, late autumn of 1970 and their first recording session was held at Derek Jolly’s recording studio in Melbourne Street, North Adelaide.
    RIP Russ

  • Thankyou for setting the record straight.Russell and myself did a trip to France before he died. When we returned he did some busking in Adelaide. He was an extremely great musician and the clip of his final performance was only busking in the east end of Rundle St. He was also a great songwriter .

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  • I did first see/hear Russ playing in Gawler Place, sitting on the sidewalk. He never told me he worked at the guitar shop… I assumed he was busking. On September 2nd, 2007, I was in Adelaide, performing with ‘Birtles Shorrock Goble’, as part of the Countdown Spectacular 2 shows. Glenn Shorrock came across Russ busking in the street. They had a chat, Russ gave Glenn his number and Beeb & I met with Russ at our hotel, later that afternoon. It was good to catch up after 37 years. Beeb & I were shocked to hear of Russ’s passing, just a few weeks later. Russ was a gifted musician who wrote some very memorable songs. His epic ‘Save The Land’ is arguably the best ‘environmental’ song ever written and 20 years ahead of its time.

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