It was the hurricane season, in Blackwater 1994 when Van Larkins, a ten year old Australian discovering his gift for music, began what was to be a journey of musical exploration and discovery. Van’s father, an artist and musician, introduced his son to the guitar, which was to become Van’s instrument of choice and access to share his music with friends, family and soon after, a world-wide audience of music connoisseurs.

Van’s qualifications from Western Australia and Queensland include a Certificate III in Contemporary Music, for which he won an award for contribution to the student group, Certificate IV in Music Performance and Diploma’s in both Music Performance and Music Technology. Owen was featured on Channel 7’s six o’clock news for his effort in this area, he also continues to work closely with the music department co-ordinators, performing and holding workshops to encourage young musicians to begin a career in music.

He played in a duo with Ross Hunter as “The Express” from 2002 to 2010 when he was studying Music Performance at Southbank College in Brisbane. The two developed their own unique blend of sounds that incorporated Celtic, Folk and Spanish genres. They were signed by Candyrat Records in the US and their first album “Myriad” produced by Andrew White, was released in December of 2010. Described as, “Nothing short of an acoustic explosion of sparkle and clarity that effuses sonic enchantment…this CD had my auditory senses piqued within the first 90 seconds of the title track which sets a sonic hook in a way that makes it impossible to turn away”, it was clear that an new and extraordinary acoustic talent was emerging on the Australian music scene. “To find a guitar duo that seems to push and pull each other in directions that sound effortless and spontaneous is a rare thing and, perhaps, that is what makes this recording so infused with energy and solar flare like acoustically.”

Over the period of almost a decade the duet “Hunter Van Larkins” has opened shows for “The Black Sorrows” and “Phil Emmanuel” as well as headlining several shows at the ‘Woodford Folk Festival’, Brisbane’s ‘Greenfest’, and corporate shows around Brisbane and surrounding areas. As a soloist, Van Larkins plays a modern fusion of traditional styles with a “one man band” approach incorporating bass, rhythm, melody and harmony. Van’s music has transitioned from Metallica to finger-style acoustic guitar, playing transpositions of 400-year-old harp songs.

He is now signed as a solo artist with CandyRat Records and completed his first solo album in May 2012. During that time Van has toured New Zealand twice where he recorded his first album with internationally-renowned guitarist Andrew White and played at the Acoustic Masters Series held in Hamilton where he opened three of the shows and also played with Nigel Gavin. Van has also toured America and Canada and in July 2011 performed at the prestigious Canadian Guitar Festival in Kingston, Ontario.

“To listen to Van Larkins play guitar is to watch some magic of nature that both amazes and calms the spirit. The listener is drawn into his world, a world where his seductive melodies tell tales of adventure and of love and weave a path through a land that is new and exciting yet somehow familiar. ”

Andrew White – Recording Artist

“Van Larkins doesn’t just play guitar…he creates a beautiful musical sound-scape. His application of musical cascades and original compositions shed new light to the term “ear candy”

Phil Emmanuel – Recording Artist

 “Van Larkins is one of the best young up-and-coming songwriters I know. His music immediately draws you in and won’t let you go until the end of each song”

Rob Poland – Candyrat Records

 “Van represents what this degree is all about; it provides the perfect learning opportunity for creative and talented people to express and explore their musical ambitions,”

Charlie Macneil – Music Teacher, Creative Music Technologies