Adam Brand is a musician best known for winning 12 Golden Guitar Awards. The 52-year-old explains why his mother is a “fearless warrior”, what his partner taught him about love and his two daughters.
My maternal grandmother, Nanna Katerina, is 102 years old and lives in Toowoomba with my aunt Jules. She is of Polish-Russian descent and escaped from Russia and moved to Germany in the early 1920s, then escaped from Germany and went to Poland, arriving in Australia in the 1950s. is a health freak who chews three cloves of raw garlic a day and has a lot of molasses.
My Sicilian-Italian paternal grandmother, Maria, gave me my love of cooking. For her, everything happened around the kitchen, and if there were family disputes between my father, Michèle, and his brothers, everything was resolved around food.
Even when my parents broke up and Mum and I moved from Perth to Victoria when I was six, I never lost contact with Nanna Maria. She made sure I always visited for two weeks during school holidays. She was the rock of the family, and even though my parents didn’t really like the idea of organizing my trips, she made sure they happened.
My mother, Tamara, was very young when she met my father and was pregnant with me when she was 16 and he was 21. Mom and I traveled regularly through the Nullarbor and around Australia. I would do a lot of east coast trips with her. We did everything together.
Mom is still a fearless warrior and fiercely independent. She was working as a florist by day and a private detective by night when we moved to the Victoria area. She followed people in a Triumph Spitfire while I slept in the back. To this day, she hangs out in the trailer and enjoys being on the road. We recently took an eight month trip to the Western Australian outback; she just turned 70.
Mom remarried when we moved to Colac, Victoria and had three daughters, Christy, Natalie and Hayley. They are all amazing women. I was eight when Christy arrived. Mom separated from their father and I became their father, so to speak. I felt like it was my job to watch over them. We stayed close.
I first noticed the girls at secondary school. I went on a few bowling dates and was roller skating awkwardly holding a girl’s hand. I was easily heartbroken at school; even when the relationship ended after three weeks, i felt really sad about it.