VJ King Jr | Nine Network's This Is Your Life logo

VJ King Jr | Conrad Jupiters Gold Coast logo


Jupiters Casino


Gold Coast


15 February 2004


VJ King Jr | Nine Network's Channel 9 logo


VJ King Jr | Tommy Emmanuel


VJKing Jr | The Emmanuel Quartette | Tommy - Chris - Virginia - Phil

The Emmanuel Quartet

c. 1961

Tommy Emmanuel | Chris Emmanuel | Virginia Emmanuel | Phil Emmanuel

Tommy & Phil are playing Maton MS500 guitars - Virginia a lap steel guitar

VJ King Jr | Col Joye

Col Joye was one of Autralia's 1st Pop idols. Known as the 'Golden Boy', Joye's music career began in 1957 when he joined his brother Kevin Jacobsen's jazz group, The KJ Quintet. The band's formation coincided with the birth of Rock 'n' Roll in Australia leading to an image and name change - which gave birth to Col Joye & The Joy Boys.

Neville Kitchen, together with his wife Linda, head up the Maton Guitar Company, with headquarters in Melbourne, Australia.

Established by Linda's father, Melbourne-born jazz musician Bill May and his brother, Reg, in 1946, Maton is the longest running and most successful of all Australian guitar manufacturers.

VJ King Jr | Neville Kitchen - Maton Guitar Company
VJ King Jr | Sarah Evans

This Is Your Life's Sarah Evans, aside from being the program's Researcher, also acts as the stand-in double at rehearsals for the human targets of the program. Sarah had all the Tommy Emmanuel moves and scripted lines down to a 'T'!

Phil Emmanuel, founding member of Emmanuel Quartet 1960-1963 and The Midget Surfaries 1963 (Chris Emmanuel, Phil Emmanuel, Tommy Emmanuel, Virginia Emmanuel) shares a yarn with VJ King Jr at the TIYL after-party. Yes, definitely, that is an imaginary glass of JD that Phil is holding.

VJ King Jr | Phil Emmanuel
VJ King Jr | Gina Mendello

One of VJ's favourite ladies (yes, there are many!) - Gina Mendello - poses for a photograph. It is nearly 12 months since Gina and VJ first met at the Yallah Woolshed, NSW Australia, when the star manager accompanied Tommy Emmanuel on his last Australian tour.

Grafton born, Troy Cassar-Daley is an Australian Country Music legend who took out his first award - Search For A Star - back in 1996. Recent years' highlights have included touring with The Highwaymen and LeAnn Rimes. Thanks, Troy, for helping VJ out when in need of some help tuning his guitar.

VJ King Jr | Troy Cassar-Daley
VJ King Jr | Nathan Cavaleri

For those who've been asking "What ever happened to...?" - well, here he is - Nathan Cavaleri, looking a bit older (now 21 years old) than most remember him in those MacDonalds ads. Nathan is back in Australia and in the process of putting together a new band. Stay tuned.

Tommy pauses for a photograph with one of his many young music fans. "It's kinda sad that I only get to see Tommy once a year... I would really love to spend more time with him, but I know he has to attend to business in lots of other places around the world. Tonight was an experience beyond my wildest dreams - to be invited here by the Nine Network to honor a wonderful man."

VJ King Jr | Tommy Emmanuel
VJ King | Heidi Sutherland

Recent addition to the nine Network's Production Team is Production Assistant, Heidi Sutherland, whose engaging personality, infectious smile and constant attention to detail was truly appreciated by all the program's special Green Room guests.

While their names remain unknown to VJ, there were a host of delightful guests at the after-party, many of whom engaged him in conversation. 

[We apologise for not having recorded all their names - and hope that, in time, someone may be able to inform us of their identity.]

VJ King Jr | Jupiters Guest
VJ King Jr | Des Steffensen

Kindly words of advice - and some encouragement, too - from Des Steffensen,  the husband of Tommy's cousin Lynn (nee Sant - daughter of Clara Emmanuel, the sister of Tommy's father, Hugh Emmanuel).

Time for an autograph.

VJ King Jr | Jupiters Guest
VJ King Jr | Russell Standing

Many present were interested to enquire what it felt like to be playing with Tommy and Phil, also taking time to offer words of encouragement and advice. One such guest was Russell Standing, former manager from the 60s / 70s Trailblazer era, seen here in conversation with VJ.

The man responsible for the whole affair... Andrew Rodgers, Nine Network's This Is Your Life producer. Time for a debriefing session with VJ amid the relaxed atmosphere of the after-show party.!

VJ King Jr | Andrew Rodgers
VJ King Jr | Col Joye

Then it was back to Col Joye who, with VJ, poses for another photograph together during the evening's festivities.

The Wiz and VJ at night's end.

VJ King Jr | The Wiz

VJ King Jr | Simon Ritchie

One of the busiest guys on the set was This Is Your Life's Production Manager, Simon Ritchie, pictured here making hurried notes while in conversation on  his shouldered mobile.


VJ King Jr | "Tommy Emmanuel - Thi s Is Your Life" | Jupiters 16 February 2004

"Tommy Emmanuel    This Is Your Life"

VJ King Jr | Blue Note

VJ King Jr | Tommy Emmanuel

It was son Phil Emmanuel that gave to his mother the nickname 'Rita' - after the character Rita (Rita & Wally Stiller)  from the 1960s TV comedy-drama series My Name's McGoolie - What's Yours... which, in the early 1970s, became Rita and Wally.

Tommy, on the other hand, called his mum Lambsey, a name derived from the popular 70s cartoon Help - It's The Wolf!

Set in the European Highlands, Sheepdog was minder to a flock of sheep constantly stalked by Wolf.  The little lamb (Lambsey) would call out "It's the wooluff, it's the wooluff!" - and Sheepdog would answer, "I'm a'comin Lambsey, I'm a'comin' "



VJ King Jr | Linda Virginia 'Rita' Emmanuel - b. 21 September 1925 d. 02 October 2003

Linda Virginia 'Rita' Emmanuel

(nee Giggins)


21 September 1925 02 October 2003


Aged 78 years

Born Linda Virginia Giggins to parents of English extraction, at Broadwater, Northern NSW - in the Richmond River area (near Ballina) - 'Rita' was raised on the family's dairy and sugar cane farm. She milked cows and planted cane while her two brothers were engaged in military service during WW2. Only one brother survived. Her older brother, a Japanese POW, fell victim to the tortures of the infamous Burma Railway.

The picture (left) was taken at a family reunion organised by Mrs Emmanuel's daughter, Virginia ('Goog') McGrath, on 13 September 2003, just days before her death.

It was to be her last photograph.

VJ King Jr | Blue Note





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