Sunday, November 14, 2010

Jimmy Barnes on the Best Fishing Spots in the World!

Exclusive FishMax Interview.
The one and only Mr Jimmy Barnes recently took time out from his always  busy schedule (he is currently travelling Australia on his “Rage and Ruin” Tour and Cold Chisel performed at Shellharbour Workers Club in September and Delliquin Ute Muster in October) to answer some questions exclusively for FishMax. It's clear that, like us,  the working class man himself loves  that great pursuit that makes all men equal - fishing!

He might have been born in Scotland with the name James Dixon Swan but we know him as Barnsey and he is definitely one of Australia’s favourite sons (for those of you who care about these sorts of things, Barnes took his step dad’s name after his mother remarried) and it is clear that Australia is where his heart lies.

When asked about his earliest fishing memory, Jimmy reminisces  “When I was about 9 or ten years-old I used to catch a train from Elizabeth in Adelaide to Semaphore Beach by myself and spend the day fishing off the jetty . I didn't catch a lot but I loved the whole idea of it.  Spending time alone - me against the world .”

Despite travelling the world, Jimmy’s favourite fishing spot is still in the country he loves. “My favourite fishing spot would have to be Weipa, up north.” Jimmy says. “So much variety and so many fish , it is just amazing. There is an element of danger involved too, with all the crocs and sharks.” But he’s also willing to give due credit to other countries’ great fishing. “I love fishing in Thailand,” he tells us. “You can catch a fish and while you go for the next one the Thai boatmen clean and cook them on the spot . Doesn't get any fresher than that.”

“So which is the best?” I want to know. Jimmy’s answer is clear “I have been fishing in Thailand , The Maldives , Scotland but I think the most exiting and exotic is right here in Australia . God's country . We really don't have to go anywhere else, do we ?”

He's not afraid of looking to other parts of the world when it comes to how to eat his catch. “I'm a pretty good Thai cook” he says, “ so I’m very fond of just frying the fish in very hot oil and eating it with Nam Pla (fish sauce) and hot chilli and rice . His other choice is “baking [the fish] in foil with soy sauce, ginger and shallots”. Jimmy tells us that “Nothing tastes better than a fish you've just caught."

And the final word from the man who has belted out the songs that many (myself included) consider define a generation? “I don't get to go fishing enough , does anybody get to go fishing enough ?". If that was a song, I'd download it from iTunes!

As for Cold Chisel, If you missed them at Shellharbour or the Deniliquin Ute Muster earlier this year, Jimmy has confirmed that the band is working on new material for the first time since the late ‘90s and are looking at a tour in 2011.

In the mean time, you can catch Jimmy Barnes live in various places in Australia as he takes his  Rage and Ruin” tour on the road. For more information, visit

Words: Stevo Perry Pics:, Wikipedia

Next Week: Matt Hayden talks fishing

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