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50 Greatest Australian Artists of All Time – #28: Savage Garden

Vance Joy reflects on the iconic duo that changed Australian music forever, Savage Garden.

50 Greatest Australian Artists of All Time - Savage Garden

Supplied; Justin Bettman*

In December of 2020, Rolling Stone Australia released a special edition issue which looks at the 50 Greatest Australian Artists of All Time, paying tribute to the best and most impactful artists in Australian music history. While it would have been easy for the editors and writers of the publication to profess their love of the listed artists, the decision was instead made for those who found themselves inspired by these world-renowned names to share their own testimonials of why these artists deserve to make the list.

In celebration of the issue’s release in December, we’re counting down the full 50 artists and their accompanying testimonials in this ongoing online feature. If you want to get your hands on an physical copy of the magazine, be sure to subscribe now to experience the double-length edition featuring some of Australia’s best and brightest discussing the finest names in local music.

50 Greatest Australian Artists of All Time – #28: Savage Garden (by Vance Joy)

I was nine years old when I first heard the Savage Garden song “I Want You”. I didn’t know what the song was called then; until I had the lyric book in my hand, I called it  “ooohaahwachu”. 

I have a distinct memory of playing a game of basketball in the school yard around that time. I suppose it was some kind of out-of-body experience; I was running around on autopilot and that song was amplified loud and clear in my head. It was a feeling of being totally “in the zone”. The song profoundly impacted me.

“The song profoundly impacted me.”

Savage Garden’s debut album was the first album I ever bought (well actually mum did). I loved and still love the fast rhythmic lyrics of “I Want You”. Chic-a-cherry cola! 

I have so much admiration for the great songwriting of Darren Hayes and Daniel Jones. As one of the many millions of people who have connected with and been moved by their music, I want to say, “thank you, Savage Garden.”