“Mic Conway is a very, very talented man. He should be elected as one of Australia’s living national treasures.”
: Bill Riner, ABC Radio, Queensland

“The king of vaudeville in Australia today.”
: Lucky Oceans (ABC Radio National)

“Mic Conway carries a torch for the idea that music can be fully rounded entertainment, making people giggle, dance and go ‘Wow!’.”
: John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald

“There is nothing else like a Mic Conway show… an exhilarating, vaudevillian mix of songs, magic, comedy and fire-eating. He is a truly unique artist and a showman… You really do have to be there. If you have a chance, don’t miss it.”
: Bill Brown (ABC Radio)

“The mind boggles… Where does one start a review of something like this, and more importantly, can it be reviewed? … Really it can’t be done justice in words alone. Go see it … somewhere. Junk is the word.”
: Teri Louise Kelly, The Independent Weekly.
(Adelaide Cabaret Festival reivew, June 2010.)

“Inspired silliness, not to be missed.”
: Peter Burdon, AdelaideNow (June 2010)

“Mic Conway is a true legend, rarely seen today. I know what it is to work and sweat on stage to give the peopel everything you’ve got, and this guy has been doing this his whole life, with a joy and intensity that I really respect. We have shared several musical evenings together over the last five years. In an increasingly plastic entertainment world, Mic is the real thing, and a link to a type of performance style that is fast disappearing. He is a national treasure.”
: Bob Brozman “Rhythms Magazine”

“A magic world turned upside down, where the norm is the unexpected, where a joyous anarchy is layered with lunacy and a sly sophistication that reaches beyond Monty Python, where the MC has a vaudeville soul and slips as easily into a tap-dancing character out of a ’20s sideshow as a big-band crooner or a magician. And the music is great too!”
: Jackey Coyle, “Rhythms Magazine”

“You can’t beat jug band music and Mic Conway – he’s a real stayer.”
: Fran Kelly, ABC Radio National (3 March 2008)

“That consummate musical trouper, Mic Conway … a delight!”
: Sydney Morning Herald

“Bizarre and unique brand of musical lunacy, with Mic “Microphone” Conway.”
: Time Out, UK

“Mic Conway looks like he was born on a cabaret stage… his ease with a variety of cabaret styles from music hall and vaudeville to New Wave testifies to this involvement and his expertise is apparent.”
: The Age

“Mic Conway’s genius is for a clever combination of the absurd and witty with tremendous musicality.”
: Paul Petran, ABC Radio National

“FantasMic-orical Conway… Where does he get that ENERGY?!”
: Eric Bibb

“Mic Conway inspired me… He’s the greatest!”
: Paul Hester, Crowded House

“Perfectly pitched… In one tune he was able to pack in a lifetime of Cabaret.”
: Roy & H.G., ABC TV

Mic Conway’s genius is for a clever combination of the absurd and witty with trememdous musicality. That combination first surfaced in the 1970s when Mic and his brother Jim Conway founded the much loved group, the Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band. Like Captain Matchbox, the Junk Band’s trademark is a uniquely zany brand of jug-band blues, spiced with jazz, swing, popular standards, cabaret, sideshow chutzpah and vaudeville routines including slapstick, tap dancing, juggling, magic and even fire eating.
: Paul Petran, ABC Radio National

Articles & Interviews


  • Sydney Morning Herald, DRIVE : “In For The Long Haul” by Stephen Lacey (April 2010)
  • “A Bio Burlesque” by Joel Swadling
  • Rhythms magazine : “Taking the Mic” by Jackey Coyle
  • Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band : History



Albums Reviews


It is a strange musical truism that male vocalists who perform as a “crooner” (an antique term previously associated with the likes of Bing Crosby and Perry Como) never lose their voices. Thus Mic Conway, some 50 years after his first gigs with the Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band, sounds fresh and vibrant as he did all those decades ago. Ably supported by the four-piece National Junk Band (well-named, as they play everything from kazoo to glockenspiel, musical saw, sousaphone, jug to nose flute, and washboard to garbage bin), and with guests including his peerless harmonica-playing brother, Jim Conway, Mic serves up a delicious potpourri of musical sentimentality and nonsense. This includes such delicacies as beautiful jug-band version of the Beatles’ Because, a delightful reading of the 1929 standard Spread a Little Happiness, and a wry broadside about Sydney, Sydney Steak and Kidney, which describes the city as “a shark in the harbour if life”. Deeply rooted in the belief that in times of plague and depression music can lift the spirits, this is a joyful reminder that “even when the darkest clouds are in the sky” a jug band really can “spread a little happiness”. BRUCE ELDER (SMH, The Age 14/11/2020)

“Corporate Chook”

“Lots of hilarity, no sacred cows – they like to attack a lot of things we take for granted, with some great jug band and swing oriented music mixed in there… What on the album isn’t fun?”
: Lucky Oceans, ABC National

“It’s a bloody good listen… Go buy it and cheer yourself up.”
: Geoff Green (Springboard Media Editor, UK)

“A splendid showcase for the band’s musicality.”
: Tony Hillier, Rhythms Magazine

“The world would be a poorer place without either this record or the National Junk Band… Go for a ride down a road you never thought even existed.”
: Michael Smith, Drum Media

“If Mic Conway loses his night job he could become an economist… (A High Standard of) Mediocrity is a perfect anthem for our era.”
: John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald

These guys are a lot of fun, singing about the most unlikely subjects and making fun of popular culture as they go. ‘Rubbish Wrap’ is a standout.”
: Tsunami Mag, QLD

If you like witty lyrics, social satire, ukes, sousaphones, kazoos, nose flutes, National and lap slide guitars, musical saws, mandolins, silly noises and great vocal harmony, you will love this latest offering from Mic Conway’s National Junk Band. I know I do!… Give yourself, or someone you love a treat this Christmas. Forget the socks and jocks, the useless kitchen gadget, the bit of bling that will be condemned to the bottom drawer. Be brave, fly your social colours and show your refined musical taste. Help to convert the revolting masses!!
: InFolkus

“Tin Can Alley”

“Non-stop carnival! …. MC and his accomplices in rhyme playing a potpourri of quirky numbers on the most eclectic set of instruments imaginable … All styles of acoustic music are in the mix – from Hawaiian to Reggae, from singalong to swingalong, from jug blues looning to ’30s-style crooning – along with the irreverent satire and instrumental mayhem that is Mic Conway’s stock in trade.”
: Tony Hillier, Rhythms Magazine

“Tin Can Alley contains great versions of Tracey Chapman’s ‘Give Me One Reason’, Ian Dury’s ‘Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick’ and Monty Python’s ‘The Galaxy Song’ as well as 10 fine originals. Go and see them whenever they perform live – you are guaranteed to be highly entertained… Dazzling and unpredictable music.”
: Foffle Magazine (Melbourne Satirical paper)

“Mic Conway carries a torch for the idea that music can be fully rounded entertainment, making people giggle, dance and go ‘Wow!’. Thanks to strong songs and a great collective ear for detail, the risk of live fun turning limp on record is side-stepped by Conway and friends. Surprises abound: Carolyn Johns’s nimble tuba line on Ian Dury’s ‘Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick’; Bob Brozman’s ravishing slide guitar on ‘Jungle of Love’ and ‘Clich Blues’; Jeremy Cook’s junk percussion on ‘Bad Cop Bad Cop’. A bewdy!”
:  John Shand , Sydney Morning Herald

“Blissful existence … They genre cross, they satirise the musical, they cover people … even Marlene Dietrich.”
: Rachel Holmshaw, Revolver

“Irreverent lyrics, impeccable musicianship, and more than a little humour… The National Junk Band is good value.”
: City Weekly

“You enter into the spirit, which is pure fun. Everything is delivered with tongue lovingly pressed into cheek… in a lovingly self-depricating style on the unlikeliest array of instruments… The scary thing is, it all sounds perfectly musical. These alley cats can actually play. What more could you want? Go on, you know you want to.”
: Michael Smith, Drum Media.