Many of us dream of life on the road, for many the big question is how can we fund our trip? The String Family have been able to do just that. Commencing their big trip in 2016 with no set plans the family of four musicians originally hit the road in their caravan planning on performing and busking their way around Australia to fund their journey. They have now been able to turn this into a way of life.
Now that is livin’ life on the road
The family originally have roots back to Ireland and Wales, but before their journey started resided in the Illawarra region south of Sydney. However since 2016 their full time home has been in a 23 foot caravan as they have travelled extensively through Australia. Predominantly travelling the East Coast of Australia and into South Australia, entertaining many other travellers along the way.
Home is a 23 foot Jayco White Hawke
The String Family Members
The Sting family are a family of four, starting with Joel and Sarah who first met when they were children and competed against each other in a local Eisteddfod. They soon become duet partners, and eventually lifelong partners. They shared their musical genes with their children, Heath and Ashleigh which enabled them to make their duet into a quartet.
Heath & Joel, Sarah & Ashleigh
Joel was a small business owner for 20 years prior to the trip, and Sarah previously had vast experience as a profession entertainer. However, work related stress, health and other work commitments found them leading separate lives, with limited time as a family unit. It was at this time, the family entered the Australian National Busking Championships, just for a bit of fun. They ended up winning in several categories, which gave them the inspiration they needed to take the leap and make changes. Sarah recalls,
We had always talked about doing it, but a bit of a health scare and winning the busking competition convinced us the time was now.
So, in 2016 the family decided to make the journey of a lifetime and hit the road on unknown adventures.
Whilst they are all classically trained, they manage to take popular folk, rock and other styles of modern music and put their own spin on some modern day classics including the music of Queen and Abba, as well as the Charlie Daniels Band, Leonard Cohen and Mote. Their performances are more of a show, complete with dancing, singing and audience participation. They relate to many other travellers by incorporating their story as travelling musicians into their shows. In fact one of their favourite things to do is to put on impromptu performances at happy hour when staying at caravan parks.
An impromptu performance @ Happy Hour
Whilst the impromptu shows are a tonne of fun, right now the family has been able to land a full time gig at Paronella Park in Far North Queensland. Paronella Park is a venue all in itself where Jose Paronella built his unique modern day castle dedicated to the love of his life Margarita. The setting is on 5 hectares beside the Mena Creek Falls and includes picnic areas, bridges, tunnels, its own Hydro electric plant and over 7500 tropical plants which form a beautiful rainforest.
Performing @ Paronella Park
The String Family will be performing nightly at the park from May until 1 November as it makes the ideal backdrop to their unique style of performances.
You can find out more about the String Family and their performances from their website, which includes a short documentary about traveling as a family on the road.
The String Family