The Muster's always been more than a gig for Amber
IN the near 10 years it's been since singer-songwriter Amber Lawrence took a risk to make a name for herself in music, she hasn't stopped moving.
Momentum is the name of the game, she said, and with a constant schedule of touring and recording it's clear the country starlet is making the most of it.
"I've always just loved what I do, and I'm lucky enough to be in a position in my life where I'm able to work as hard as I do,” she said.
"My partner and I are pretty self-reliant and we don't have kids - why wouldn't I make the most of it while I can?”
It's an approach that's clearly working, with the release of two critically acclaimed albums last year.
2017 has seen a new collaborative EP with Travis Collins and an eagerly-anticipated return to the Gympie Muster stage this week,
"I think this will be my sixth time playing the Muster, and it's always been a different experience each time,” she said.
"The community has always been so fantastic, and I like the idea of going in with no expectations - the best way to do it.”
More than just another show for Ms Lawrence, the Muster's own long history with charities mirrors the causes she's chosen to champion as an ambassador.
With country music and its performers so linked with the community, she said, it's a natural fit.
"Much of it comes from my own experiences, I work with the Stroke Foundation because of my father who suffered from a stroke,” she said.
"And I'm a strong believer in proper services for Defence Force members, which is how I got involved with the RSL's DefenceCare.
"Country musicians have always been so supportive of causes they believe in,” she said.
This deep love for Australia (and Australians) shines through on her latest release with fellow Muster performer Travis Collins, 'Our Backyard'.
"It was so exciting and a new kind of challenge for me as a musician,” she said.
"So much of the process was about presenting your ideas with one another, finding out what worked and what doesn't really mesh.”
The finished product is a heartfelt ode to Australia in all its splendour, a theme Amber said is recurring in her songwriting lately.
"It wasn't anything conscious either it's just come about naturally,” she said.
"One of the things I'm interested is taking these Australian-isms and doing it in a way that isn't corny - to come from a genuine place of emotion.”
With both artists on the Muster bill this year, fans will no doubt get a chance to hear these new tracks live.
"We're really looking forward to it when Travis and I hit main stage - there's nothing like it,” she said.
Amber Lawrence will be appearing a number of times throughout this year's Muster.
You can see her at the Grove on Friday and Saturday morning at 10.15 for a stripped-back acoustic set, before her appearance on Main Stage at 6.15 Friday night.