Justin Heazlewood is one of Australia’s most versatile storytellers. Music and comedy fans know him best as the ARIA award-nominated Bedroom Philosopher, a moniker under which Heazlewood has released several albums of incisive, brutally funny and often heartbreaking songs. Heazlewood is also a writer of journalism and essays – bringing humour and critical thinking to important issues such as mental illness, unemployment and the frailty of human relationships.
He has written two acclaimed books: the memoir The Bedroom Philosopher Diaries (2012), followed by Funemployed (2014), which focused on the ecstasies, horrors and realities of being a working artist. The latter earned praise from Tony Martin, Dave Graney and international writer Neil Gaiman, and featured interviews with over 100 local and international artists including Gotye (Wally De Backer), Clare Bowditch, John Safran, Tony Martin, Amanda Palmer, Christos Tsiolkas, Tim Rogers and Adam Elliot.
After its release as a book, Funemployed was commissioned into a radio series for ABC RN (Radio National) under the same name. Heazlewood also recorded the Funemployed LP, described as ‘a soundtrack to life as an artist in Australia – from rejection to fame to selling out and giving up’.
He has written for Frankie, JMag, the Big Issue and literary journals such as Voiceworks, Sleepers and Going Down Swinging. Heazlewood is also accomplished in the world of television. In 2013, he was commissioned to make two station IDs for ABC2; he then won ABC’s Fresh Blood competition in 2014, allowing him to produce three episodes of Crazy Bastards – a parody of Mad Men set in mid-80s Australia.