The 28th Annual Bluesfest Byron Bay held over the Easter long weekend (13-17 April) has been a huge success, with just over 105,000 attendees enjoying the incredible music on offer, the beautiful weather and happy vibes around the festival. Bluesfest hosted 85 bands with a total of 670 artists who gave 185 outstanding performances across the weekend.
“This is one of the world class, great festivals of all time” – Bonnie Raitt
Legends abounded at Bluesfest 2017. NAS and the Soul Rebels performed to ecstatic and appreciative crowds. The Doobie Brothers, Santana, Neil Finn and Madness impressed with their extraordinary talent.
The diverse and amazing women on the bill were the talk of the festival, from Patti Smith to Mary J. Blige. Bonnie Raitt, Nikki Hill, Kasey Chambers, Courtney Barnett, Rickie Lee Jones, Corinne Bailey Rae, Beth Hart, Irish Mythen and Joan Osborne astounded with their performances.
Buddy Guy, Eric Gales, Vintage Trouble, St. Paul and the Broken Bones, Mud Morganfield, Booker T, Rhiannon Giddens, Experience Jimi Hendrix, Glen Cardier and the Sideshow and many more put the Blues in Bluesfest, leaving audiences spellbound.
Jazz aficionados were in heaven with Roy Ayers, Snarky Puppy, Miles Electric Band and Gregory Porter celebrating the power of Jazz at the festival.
Up and coming talents such as Melody Angel, The Record Company, Gallant, The Suffers, Nikki Hill, The Strumbellas, The California Honeydrops and Blind Boy Paxton picked themselves up thousands of new fans, who will eagerly await their next trips to Australia.
Bluesfest Festival Director, Peter Noble OAM comments on this year’s event:
I think everybody that came this year will tell you that this has been one of the great Bluesfests, and in my opinion certainly within our top 3. I will always be asked who are my favourite artists and who are the great success stories in terms of artists playing for the first time, there are almost too many to mention. From Laura Mvula, Nikki Hill and Melody Angel to Mary J. Blige and the incomparable Eric Gales there is a never ending list and if you were actually here at Bluesfest you would know what I’m talking about. The emerging artists are now known artists, the returning artists have cemented their careers even more strongly and every single legend shone….
…However, in the end the biggest stars in the sky at Bluesfest were our audience, they are simply astonishingly wonderful. And all our team who work so hard to put this show on I’m sure would say we did it for you, and you do it for us.
THE BOOMERANG FESTIVAL:
Once again the Boomerang Festival precinct was the heart and soul of Bluesfest and home to dozens of inspiring performances. Headliner Leonard Summer from Canada wowed the crowd, audiences were also treated to a surprise when former Yothu Yindi band members joined the incredible Yirramal on stage during his set. A real standout for us was young singer-songwriter Emily Wurramara
BLUESFEST BUSKING COMP:
Always a highlight of our Bluesfest road trip, The annual Bluesfest busking competition was won by Tay Oskee and Molly Millington took out the Grommet Busking Competition. This competition has been a real highlight of our annual Bluesfest road trips for over a decade now, we have discovered so may new and emerging artists at this event, past winners include Kim Churchill, Grizzle Train, Hussy Hicks, Marshall O’Kell and so many more. Applications for 2018 will open later this year go to Bluesfest busking competition for further details
Cystic Fibrosis raised a record-breaking $55,000 throughout the duration of the festival through their guitar raffles of donated Gibson guitars bringing their total raised at Bluesfest over the last 18 years to an impressive $530,000!
The Playing For Change Foundation, who create positive change through music and arts education, raised over $30,000 at their charity stall which will have a huge impact on the 14 school programs they run around the world.
Planning for Bluesfest 2018 is already well under way, and those who attended this year can lock in their Five Day 2018 Bluesfest experience for the incredible price of $375.00, yes that’s $75.00 per day for the biggest and best music festival in Australia. But don’t delay, as this offer is finishing this Sunday 23rd of April at 11.59pm. General public Early Bird tickets go on sale Monday, April 24th at www.bluesfest.com.au