Artist profile

Location Kiama

Artist Type Semi Professional




The Water Runners play a high energy blend of contemporary Australian folk with elements of bluegrass, country, roots and folk. Their songs tell of life and death, love and loss and tales from the South Coast’s past and present.

  • About

    Based in Gerringong and Kiama, NSW, The Water Runners play a high energy blend of Australian folk, performing original songs that combine influences from bluegrass, country, traditional folk and rockabilly as well as the work of contemporary folk artists like Paul Kelly, John Flannagan, The Morrisons and Crowded House. The Water Runners have played festivals, radio, pubs, clubs and events from Sydney to the Snowy and beyond. Their tight harmonies, strong musicianship, clever song writing and great stage banter have earned The Water Runners a reputation for engaging and entertaining live shows.

    In 2019, they finished recording a new album, 'Point of No Return', under the guiding hand of Australian Bluegrass legend, John Kane (Flying Emus)

  • Biography

    John Littrich (guitar, vocals, harmonica) and Neil McCann (banjo, mandolin, backing vocals) have played in various bands for years. Neil formerly played with Australian folk legends, Wongawilli and John spent much of his youth playing in Sydney pub band, The Creepers, who regularly supported bands such as the Cockroaches and Dynamic Hepnotics. On percussion and vocals is Dom Littrich (Pacific Avenue), joined by the talented dairy mechanic James Turk, on Double Bass. Danita Harris on fiddle has played in bands including Strung6teen and the Garth Brooks Tribute Show.

    We have played at numerous festivals such as the Perisher Peak Festival, Kiama Folk By the Sea, Kiama Jazz and Blues, Kiama KISS ARTS Festival, Illawarra Folk Festival, Viva la Gong, Jamberoo Music Festival, Kangaroo Valley Folk Festival, Sydney Folk Festival, Folk by the Sea, Majors Creek and Tamworth Country Music Festival. We have supported international acts including Scotland's The Elephant Sessions and the USA's Chris Henry and the Hardcore Grass. We have played for the South Sydney Folk Club and The Troubadour Folk Club at Woy Woy and have played at pubs and other venues up and down the East coast including the Servo at Port Kembla and two weekend residencies at the Tathra Hotel.

    Our EP, Too Young To Be This Old, was released in 2016, followed by our first album, Heading South, in early 2017. The Water Runners have twice been runners up in the Illawarra Folk Festival Song competition and in in 2018 received a Kiama Council Cultural Grant to help with the recording of a new album incorporating songs based on local stories. That album, Point of No Return, recorded at Kangaroo Valley under the guiding hand of Australian bluegrass legend, John Kane, was finished in January 2019, launched in April 2019 and can be purchased from our website.

    As a result of the terrible New Years Eve South Coast Bushfires, we wrote a song called The End of the Year and is is available as a free download from our website

    We really enjoyed playing 17 sets of music to appreciative crowds at Tamworth 2020 and look forward to returning again in 2021.

    The Water Runners sing songs of bushrangers, Aboriginal warriors, grisly murders and ghostly well as the odd song about love and, of course, love gone wrong. We look forward to bringing our special blend of music to somewhere near you soon. In the meantime, we'll be trying to write more songs, hanging out at festivals...and tuning the banjo!

  • Awards & Career highlights

    2016- 2017 - 2nd place in 2016 and 2017 Illawarra Folk Festival Song Competition.

    2010-2014 - Top 10 Australian Songwriters Association Songwriting competition in various categories 2010 - 2014

    2019 - Invited to perform at The Sydney Folk Festival

    2020 - Tamworth Country Music Festival Played 17 sets over 5 days. Finalist in Tamworth Songwriters Awards Bluegrass Section.

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