Ali Sacipovic (Sah-See-Pah-Vik) goes by the name of Ali S for “obvious reasons”, and is set to wow audiences next month on the main stage at Dirt ’n’ Dust, Julia Creek.
The musician and father was born in Boulia and moved to Hervey Bay two years ago to pursue a lifelong dream to be a country music artist.
From humble beginnings as Boulia State School captain in Year 7, Ali says his passion for music was always there.
After moving to Townsville for high school, he took up guitar lessons from Bjarne Ohlin, former lead guitarist for Divinyls.
That’s when Ali says his passion for music really started.
“We formed a school band called The Riffs – “bring back the riff!” And that’s how I got the love for music,” Ali said.
Upon finishing school, Ali played in pubs in Mount Isa and Boulia at the weekends, and did a round of rodeos in trio Candalis with local women Candice Cluff and Lisa Cunningham.
He says he’s thrilled to be invited to join a fantastic line-up at Dirt ’n’ Dust Festival, a huge opportunity at this stage of his career.
“I feel extremely honoured to be performing at Julia Creek this year,” Ali said.
“They have had incredibly talented artists on their line-up and to be a part of this makes me feel truly blessed,” he said.
Giving back is an important part of music for Ali, who feels indebted to the people that have showed him support along the way.
“I enjoy performing at festivals where people from my community and the surrounding areas are able to attend without traveling huge distances, and I can give something back to the communities that have supported my musical career,” he said.
While Julia Creek is a highlight on the horizon, releasing a debut record later in the year will be a major milestone.
Since relocating to the coast, Ali has been able to focus on writing material for an album, with a bit of help from legendary songwriter Matt Scullion.
“Being in Hervey Bay, it’s easier for the music side of things because it gives me a bit of variety, and the recording studios are much closer,” Ali said.
Ali is in the midst of recording and hopes to release his album ‘Couldn’t Do This On My Own’ in a matter of months.
And it appears the sentiment is true, with Ali receiving support from his wife Shannon who doubles as his manager.
"She does a brilliant job,” Ali said.
The couple have three young boys together, Drew (6), Preston (4), and Dustin (1).
“I’m slowly teaching Drew the guitar, he knows three chords, and he loves it,” Ali said.
Ali S will be releasing a new single with Country Radio singles on June 5, “I Need A Beer’, co-written with Catherine Britt.