It’s 53 years ago… 1965…another time in Australia’s musical history.

Mick Bower, Gavin Webb and Brian Vaughton form an instrumental band in Adelaide called “The Mustangs”.

They advertised for a new lead singer – enter Jim Keays to the role and an Australian music institution was born in the legendary Masters Apprentices


Mick Bower: “The name came from watching (Adelaide band) The Others. Every time they played a song by the Rolling Stones they’d say, ‘Here’s something from the masters’ apprentices’, referring to the fact that the Stones were so influenced by the blues greats like Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf. We thought that was great, so we ran with that.”

Fast forward 53 years after 2 SOLD OUT Fringe shows in Adelaide 2016, plus other sold out 2017 shows, including a recent full house at the Corner Hotel in Melbourne, the band is back. 

The “1965 Masters Apprentices” feature 4 original 1960s members of this iconic band including founding members Mick Bower (guitarist /founder and principal composer), Brian Vaughton (drums), Gavin Webb (bass) and Rick Harrison (guitarist - joined in 1967). The band is augmented by former SA Jim Keays Band members’ guitarist Rob Pippan, additional vocalists Ian Polly Politis, Nanette Van Ruiten and Matt McNamee (second kit), plus vocalist Craig Holden upfront.

In the 60s the Masters became a rock’n’roll/r’n’b institution alongside the Aztecs and Easybeats taking Australia by storm, now 52 years later they reunite after Jim Keays’ passing to rock out yet again. It’s the only band from that era still doing major shows. 


Mick Bower: “In the 60’s when Masters were touring and recording you could see the great bands of the times – The Easybeats, Loved Ones, The Twilights and Billy Thorpe – it was a golden time in Australia’s musical history. We are the only band from that era still doing major shows. We are thrilled to be back playing together again in a brand new chapter in the band’s history. We hope to see the early Masters fans come out and see us. The new line up is now a tight well-oiled machine after many South Australian gigs, and we’re busting to keep playing and having a great time together.” 

Over the last 5 decades the legend behind the songs of the Masters has grown here and internationally. If you see the 1965 Masters Apprentices live you will hear the Mick Bower penned early hits ‘Living In A Childs Dream’, ‘Wars Or Hands Of Time’ and ‘Undecided’ plus the evergreen hits in later years such as Turn Up Your Radio, Because I Love You and much more. In 2016 also saw a reformed Radio Birdman cover and release Mick’s 1966 classic ‘Buried and Dead’ – more evidence of Micks Bowers’ enduring legacy with the Masters to this day. 



Once a Masters Apprentice, always a Masters Apprentice

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