Powderfinger were an Australian rock band formed in Brisbane in 1989. From 1992 until their break-up in 2010 the line-up consisted of vocalist Bernard Fanning, guitarists Darren Middleton and Ian Haug, bass guitarist John Collins, the groups third studio album Internationalist peaked at No.1 on the ARIA Albums Chart in September 1998. They followed with four more studio albums in a row, Odyssey Number Five, Vulture Street, Dream Days at the Hotel Existence. Their Top Ten hit singles are My Happiness, On My Mind and Lost, Powderfinger earned a total of eighteen ARIA Awards, making them the second-most awarded band behind Silverchair. After the release of their first DVD, These Days, Live in Concert, and the compilation album Fingerprints, The Best of Powderfinger, 1994–2000, the group announced a hiatus in 2005. The June 2007 announcement of a nationwide tour with Silverchair, Across the Great Divide tour. Powderfinger were involved in philanthropic causes, in 2005, they performed at a WaveAid concert in Sydney, to help raise funds for areas affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. Another performance at the Sydney Opera House in October 2007 raised funds for breast cancer victims, one aim of their Across the Great Divide Tour was to promote the efforts of Reconciliation Australia, and awareness of the gap in life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous children. In April 2010 Powderfinger announced that they would be breaking up after their Sunsets Farewell Tour, on 13 November 2010, they played their last concert, signifying their disbandment. In November the following year, rock music journalist Dino Scatena and the published an biography, Footprints. Powderfinger were formed in 1989 by Steven Bishop on drums, John Collins on bass guitar and Ian Haug on guitar, the Eternal, The Vibrants and The Fossils were other Brisbane-based outfits. The bands name is from Youngs song of the same name, despite their popularity in Brisbane, when playing a heavy metal gig in Newcastle in 1990, Powderfinger were booed off stage. Fanning took over the role of vocals from Haug and also provided guitar. Late in 1990, Jon Coghill – another university student with Fanning and Haug – replaced Bishop on drums, Bishop later worked in London-based bands before returning to Brisbane where he was a member of Moonjuice and then The Haymakers. Powderfingers final line-up change was in 1992 with the addition of Darren Middleton on guitar, keyboards, Powderfinger initially performed cover versions of other artists songs, but gradually developed by writing and performing their own material. In August 1992, the group self-funded a seven track self-titled extended play, also known as the Blue EP, on their own Finger label and it was produced by Leroy Bath and Ian Taylor, and recorded at Broken Toys Studios, Brisbane. Their second EP, Transfusion, was issued in September 1993, at that time, Simon McKenzie of Time Off noted they were hoping the major label will put a bit of weight behind the disc, but its not as though theyve signed a record deal or anything. McKenzie felt the EP showed they were wanting to get heavier and louder for a long time, the five tracks include Reap What You Sow, which reached the No.1 spot on the ARIA Alternative Singles Chart, replacing Nirvanas Heart-Shaped Box
Image: Powderfinger performing September 2007 (b)
Bass guitarist John Collins, one of the founders of Powderfinger, is shown at the Rock and Soul Revue, Brisbane in January 2005.
Ian Haug, another founding mainstay, is on lead guitar in Sydney in September 2007.
Darren Middleton on guitar in January 2010 at Big Day Out, Melbourne. He joined in 1992 and formed a side-project, Drag, in 2001. During Powderfinger's 2005-07 hiatus, Drag regrouped.