Troy Cassar-Daley is back home in the Clarence Valley to perform and promote his book and album 'Things I Carry Around' this weekend.
Troy Cassar-Daley is back home in the Clarence Valley to perform and promote his book and album 'Things I Carry Around' this weekend. JANE DEMPSTER

Proud local to headline Carols by Candlelight

THERE will be a little bit of country in town on Saturday night when Troy Cassar-Daley headlines the annual Mayor's Carols By Candlelight at North Ipswich Reserve.

An Ipswich tradition for many families, this year promises to be the best yet, with an appearance by legendary children's entertainer Peter Combe, kids' rides and a free firework extravaganza at 8.30pm.

"I'm really excited to be appearing on Saturday night," Troy said yesterday from Tamworth where he is in the middle of a promotional tour.

"It's a great event and the work that the musicians are putting into it is amazing."

When he's not touring, the country star splits his time between his home at Morningside just up the road from where his wife Laurel Edwards works at 4KQ, and his property in Fernvale; a place he describes as his 'escape'.

Troy is preparing for a big 2017, as he hits the road in January for his 'Things I Carry Around' national tour that will end in Ipswich and Toowoomba in July.

"We feel like Ipswich locals, and I love the fact I can do something 'local' like this," he said.

"The whole thing was initiated when I was getting off a plane from LA I think, and Paul Pisasale sung out and asked me if I could do the carols this year.

"I've got four songs that I'm doing with an orchestra and they are putting lots of work into them.

"It makes you proud when people go to so much trouble.

"Nothing gets you into the spirit of more than hearing live music, especially Christmas carols."

Troy's children aren't little any more, but it doesn't take away the fact that Troy and his wife just love being together at this time of year, especially when the family is often spread across the country.

"Having a chance to have Christmas Day at your own house when you have kids is a nice feeling," he said.

"These days my kids aren't as excited about setting up the Christmas tree now they are 15 and 18!

"The truth is I'm prepared to spend Christmas anywhere that I've got my family around me, whether it's at the farm in Fernvale, Caloundra or in Grafton where my family are from."

Troy is looking forward to playing in Ipswich in July when his six-month tour winds up at the Civic Centre.

Following the success of his autobiography and CD 'Things I Carry Around', Troy has put his life out there for everyone to see.

Troy doesn't hesitate when asked his favourite carol.

"Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas is my absolute favourite, the band have put together a wonderful arrangement, and I just love it. It just spreads goodwill for me that song," Troy said. "Community in Ipswich sometimes is something we can take for granted, especially online, but getting out to events like this is true 'community', and it makes me feel so proud to be invited, and I have to thank the Mayor for inviting me."

Mayor Paul Pisasale's Carols by Candlelight will also feature appearances by A Star Is Born winners, the Ipswich City Orchestra, Blackstone Ipswich Cambrian Choir, Ipswich Musical Theatre Company and of course, Santa's Novelty Parade.

It's all free and the fun begins Saturday night from 5-9pm and is a smoke and alcohol free event. You can find your free songbook and program in this week's issue of The Ipswich Advertiser.