1. Joni Mitchell. She is my favourite, due mainly to the album 'Blue'. It is colloquial and devastating at the same time. You feel like it's 1971 and you're sitting opposite her in her kitchen.
2. Paul Simon. He has written so many brilliant songs, but I think the album 'Graceland' is particularly excellent. I know every word, and they dance around like magic. It's so musical and funny and clever and just excellent.
3. Bill Callahan [aka Smog]. I find Smog’s songs to be some of the most arresting things you can hear. They are so punishing and beautiful and sexy.
4. Leonard Cohen. He makes very delicate and detailed and fine sentences. I particularly love the generosity of spirit in his songs. They are such a celebration of love and beauty.
5. For the last one, I can't choose between Morrissey, Patti Smith and Dolly Parton... for entirely different reasons, obviously.
Holly Throsby will play a solo set at Tongues Of Flame, the opening night of the Queensland Poetry Festival, at the Judith Wright Centre Of Contemporary Arts on Friday August 24. queenslandpoetryfestival.com