Vanda & Young

Vanda & Young: Inside Australia’s Hit Factory – John Tait

Who are Vanda & Young?

Do the names Easybeats, AC/DC and Flash and the Pan ring more of a bell? Harry Vanda and George Young have been the creative genius behind many of Australia’s music exports.

The Australian music industry has recognized Harry Vanda and George Young as legends. They have been recipients of the APRA (Australian Performing Rights Association) Ted Albert Award for outstanding service to Australian music. APRA also acclaimed their classic song Friday on My Mind as the best Australian song of modern times. Vanda & Young were in the first group of inductees to the ARIA (Australian Recording Industry Association) Hall of Fame. A few years later they were inducted again, this time as the Easybeats. Over the years they have won numerous awards for best group, best songwriters, best Australian producers, song of the year, and the most played Australian song internationally. Australia Post honoured them with a postage stamp. The National Film & Sound Archive has added Friday on My Mind to the Sounds of Australia registry. Powerhouse Museum in Sydney has made an exhibit of Harry Vanda’s 12 string Maton guitar. An important songwriting competition has been named after them.

This web page is intended to compliment my book Vanda & Young: Inside Australia’s hit factory, NewSouth Books, 2010

Signed copies are still available from us for only $20.  Postage in Australia is $5. Email us:

I only have one box left and then it is officially ‘out of print’.

Reviews for Vanda & Young

‘very entertaining and thoroughly researched’, Steven Carroll, The Age, Aug 7

“John Tait has written an engaging chronicle of the lives of Vanda and Young…” The Canberra Times, Sept 4

“Tait’s enthusiasm for the original Easybeats, and Vanda and Young recordings is obvious. He is very good on details about who did what, and on which song. There are some excellent photos. This book does fill a gap.” The West Australian, Sept 28

‘As the owner of a second hand record store, Tait is well placed to compile an authoritative discography and to reveal the backstories with a trainspotter’s respect for the work… This is a refreshingly nerdy book that avoids the common style of celebrity biographies where the writer’s gonzo persona is breathlessly imposed on a cut-and-paste assemblage. Tait states up front that Vanda and Young have provided a soundtrack to his life and then steps back to tell their story.’ The Australian

“brilliantly researched” … “Good Stuff” Jeff Jenkins, Impress, Oct 20

“John Tait’s Vanda and Young pays eloquent tribute to a great Australian rock story” Michael McGirr The Age, Dec 12

‘At last we get to know a little more about the two musical heroes that were responsible for so much good music…. A thorough work of research by John Tait, with lots of details even the greatest fans knew little about. ‘ F. de Graaf (Nederlands) Amazon review