Catherine Britt collects Golden Guitar

Golden Duo: Catherine Britt and Troy Cassar-Daley celebrating at Tamworth on Saturday night. Picture: Gareth GardnerNewcastle’s Catherine Britt had a husky voice on Sunday, the day after she claimed the top gong for a female artistat the Golden Guitar Awards in Tamworth.

“At the after party, we were sitting around singing –me,Lee Kernaghan and Troy Cassar-Daley,” Britt said.

“It was really cool, really fun.”

The trio was “singing covers and jamming”.

“We all wore our voices out,” she said.

She said the singing was done around a piano at Tamworth’s Powerhouse Hotel.

“Everyone was just listening,” she said.

“You could hear a pin drop – it was pretty special actually.”

Britt and Kernaghan began a tradition of after-party jamming years ago, she said.

“We have a bit of a challengewhere we try and prove who knows more about country music.

“We try and outdo each other with who knows the most obscure song, which of course I always win.”

Kevin Bloody Wilson was at the party, “doing his dirty songs”.

“It was pretty funny,” she said.

The awards were held on the last night of the 10-day Tamworth Country Music Festival.

Britt was voted bestfemale artist and Cassar-Daley best male artist.

Britt, 31, never missesthe festival.She’sbeen going for about 20 years.

“We went for the whole time, which I haven’t done for a long time,” she said.

She drove back to Newcastle on Sunday.

“It’s good to be home–I haven’t seen my house since Christmas Day,” she said.

“I’ve been living in Tamworth fora month.”

The award comes amid a tough period for Britt, who was last year diagnosed with breast cancer.

“I’m good, I finished chemo on the fifth of January,” she said.

“I’m seeing it out now, then I start radiation on the first of February.”

This treatment willtake four weeks.

“Then I’m done – see ya later hospital,” she said.

Music remained a source of comfort.

“It’s my breath – I can’t live without it.”

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