Johnny Young, the 60s pop star who created a generation of stars with the long-running Young Talent Time, is to be inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame as recognition of his contribution to the Australian recording industry.
Born in the Netherlands but raised in Perth, Young was a chart-topper with songs including Cara-Lyn and Step Back and wrote several hits that went on to become ‘60s anthems, including Smiley and The Real Thing. He also hosted a pop music program, Club 7Teen, for Perth’s TVW7.
In the late ‘60s, he featured on Melbourne-based pop music programs Go!! and Happening before starting Young Talent Time – a talent quest and variety series cast with junior performers. Young’s adaptation of the Beatles song All My Loving served as the closing signature tune for Young Talent Time.
Under Young’s guidance, Young Talent Time created stars from child performers like Jamie Redfern, Tina Arena, Jane Scali, Sally Boyden, Debbie Byrne, Phillip Gould, Karen Knowles and Dannii Minogue. The show won TV Week Logie awards for Best Variety/Music Program in 1972, 1974, 1975 and 1976 and in 1982 won a special Logie for sustained excellence in television. His chain of talent schools, started in the late ‘70s, continue to operate across Australia today.
In 1990, Young was inducted in the TV Week Logie Awards’ Hall of Fame.
Young, 65, is now back in Perth presenting the breakfast program on radio station 6IX and is still performing.
The ARIA Awards’ Hall of Fame presentation is to be held on 27 October, hosted by Julia Zemiro. Also to be inducted this year are John Williamson, The Models, The Loved Ones and The Church.