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Damn right we got the Blues!

Today Bluesfest Byron Bay, Australia’s multi award winning 5 Day Festival, held over the Easter long weekend (17th – 21st of April) at its home, the Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, north of Byron Bay, opens the fourth chapter to its 25th Anniversary special edition and the message coming from the Bluesfest HQ is that there will be at least one more artist release before Christmas – after all the Festival still has many of its artists left to announce.
Reports also say that Bluesfest 2014 Tickets, in particular the 5 day Festival ticket will sell out in the near future.
While the first three announcements focused on headliners Jack Johnson, John Mayer, Dave Matthews Band, as well as legendary artists The Doobie Brothers, Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Aaron Neville and Gregg Allman plus compelling contemporary musicians Passenger, Iron & Wine, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros and many more, this latest artist release is all about the hottest BLUES around.
It is also about staying within the tradition of what BLUESFEST started as 25 years ago, when it all began as the East Coast Blues Festival in Byron Bay, a Blues orientated gathering of very likeminded music fans and hippies!
Yes, Bluesfest has grown over the years but acknowledges its legacy with this special BLUES announcement.
FOURTH BLUESFEST ANNOUNCEMENT
Buddy Guy
Jake Bugg
The James Cotton Blues Band • Booker T. Jones
Charlie Musselwhite • Eric Bibb
Beth Hart • North Mississippi Allstars
Devon Allman • Walter Trout •
Candye Kane Band Feat. Laura Chavez •Saidah Baba Talibah
Plus many more to be announced
Peter Noble, Festival Director shares his excitement about this announcement:
“DAMN RIGHT WE GOT THE BLUES AT BLUESFEST. I am honoured that the World’s Greatest Blues Guitarist is coming to Bluesfest and to play, not once on our 25th Anniversary Festival, but twice!
There is no greater live Bluesman performing today than Buddy Guy….he simply IS the Blues. Every one of the truly great guitar players hail him as the best of the best. 2014 also marks 25 years of my touring with Buddy – Yes – I first brought him here in 1990 – the same year Bluesfest started and the year before ‘Damn Right I Got The Blues’ was released and his career went in to the stratosphere.
We played clubs on that tour and I tour managed, as well as promoted dates, driving to every show and got to know Mr Guy along the way. Buddy Guy is such an interesting man – he tells great stories, road stories and stories of Blues greats and what they got up to and did they EVER get up to things. His memory and recollection of events is just incredible – astounding in fact. Buddy Guy has a GREAT sense of humour.
I have toured Buddy Guy almost every two years for a long time, taking such pleasure in seeing him sell out theatres time and time again as his legend spread and his popularity grew.
I am advised that Buddy Guy is going to be pulling back on international touring and so, as much as I would hesitate to ever say this is his last tour of Australia, it really is going to become more difficult to get him back to our shores in future.
So – do not EVER be a person who said you came to Bluesfest and did not attend Buddy Guy’s performances. You may just have to go to Chicago in future to hear him. This is your big opportunity to be in the presence of one of the GREATS of music – don’t miss hearing Buddy Guy twice at Bluesfest’s 25th celebration.
Blues is for all ages and to keep our young audience on their toes, we are very excited to be adding Jake Bugg to our line up. His career is very new but it certainly has skyrocketed since he last came to Australia in July. This one is going to be a real treat and certainly the Blues is right down his alley!

Also on our big celebration are more of the greats, the one and only Mr Superharp – his first time EVER in Australia – James Cotton and his band – a true legend of the Blues. Then there is Charlie Musselwhite with his band – another Blues legend – who played the first ever Bluesfest in 1990 and impressed the crowd so much at Bluesfest 2013 – when touring with Ben Harper.
BUT – we are only getting started; we also have Booker T. Jones, the great Booker T. of the M.G.’s and Green Onions fame, who just did his first Stax recording in around 40 years. Then there is Beth Hart (who even Joe Bonamassa plays the role of sideman with, when he plays on their albums) and you are starting to have the BEST Blues bill we have perhaps ever had. Beth is a superstar – I recently saw her open for Stephen Stills new Supergroup, The Rides and she got standing ovation after standing ovation. That just doesn’t happen for opening acts BUT – mark my words – this lady is as good as it gets – miss her at your peril.
On top of that is Walter Trout, the great former guitarist with John Mayall and Canned Heat coming back to Bluesfest after too many years.
Devon Allman, who is Gregg Allman’s incredibly talented son – who blitzed Bluesfest 2013 as a member of the Royal Southern Brotherhood will be back and this time fronting his own band.
One of our all-time favourites Eric Bibb will be doing exclusive performances.
The North Mississippi Allstars will add their incredible sound and their new album is for me, the album of the year so far.
Put the incredible Miss Candye Kane in the mix featuring Laura Chavez – it’s just gotta be our best Blues bill yet.
Then there is also Saidah Baba Talibah, who is one of the hottest and raunchiest up- and-coming Soul & Blues singers straight from Toronto/Canada. I saw her live in Brisbane not long ago, and believe me when I say: Her show is truly intoxicating and will get you on a high for sure.I could not believe it when I heard that Saidah’s current lead guitarist is also the lead guitarist for Latin American artist royalty Shakira and her previous lead guitaristwas poached by music legend Prince. Saidah’s show is also a hell of a lot of fun, so don’t miss her at Bluesfest!

I’m so happy with what we are going to be presenting in the Blues at Bluesfest 2014 – I cannot wait until Easter – wonder if I can find a way to move it closer to Christmas.”

ARTISTS ALREADY ANNOUNCED

Jack Johnson • John Mayer • Dave Matthews Band
Two Incredible Performances
John Butler Trio • Passenger • Aaron Neville
Erykah Badu • Iron & Wine
Gregg Allman • Boz Scaggs • Doobie Brothers
Elvis Costello & The Imposters
Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros • India.Arie
Dr John & The Nite Trippers • Morcheeba • Steve Earle & The Dukes
Devendra Banhart • Michael Franti & Spearhead • The Wailers
Jimmie Vaughan• Gary Clark Jr • Suzanne Vega •
Grace Potter and the Nocturnals • Kasey Chambers • Ozomatli
CW Stoneking • Allen Stone • Larry Graham & Graham Central Station
KT Tunstall • Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes
Robben Ford • Grandmothers of Invention •The Magic Band
Trixie Whitley • The Soul Rebels • Valerie June • Nikki Hill • The Paladins
Music Maker Foundation Feat. Pat Wilder, Cool John Ferguson, and Little Freddie King
RocKwiz Live

BUDDY GUY
He’s a Bluesfest favourite – an absolute legend and, can you believe it, he will be 78 next birthday!!!
BUDDY GUY is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, a major influence on Rock titans like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Stevie Ray Vaughan. He has received 6 Grammy Awards, 28 Blues Music Awards (the most any artist has received), the Billboard magazine Century Award for distinguished artistic achievement, and the Presidential National Medal of Arts. Rolling Stone rank him at # 23 in its 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time. We welcome back our 5 time veteran of Bluesfest for 2 more unmissable performances!

JAKE BUGG
With a million selling self-titled 2012 debut album, a fusion of “retro folk with blistering contemporary rock riffs” – Clash Magazine and a Mercury Prize nomination already under his belt, at the age of 19 Nottingham-born JAKE BUGG has been fast-tracked to stardom.
He drew one of the biggest crowds of the weekend at Glastonbury 2013, as well as at Reading/Leeds Festival as well as other major festivals and his success in Australia is no different, on his first visit to Australia in July this year he sold out shows in Sydney and Melbourne and his album reached Top 5 on iTunes.
Now with the release of his second album ‘Shangri-La’ which was produced by Rick Rubin at his studio in Malibu, he is set to scale new heights. The new album is a much more fully-formed piece of work than its predecessor and is a stand out release of this or any year.

THE JAMES COTTON BLUES BAND
You haven’t heard harp-playing until you have heard Grammy Award Winner, JAMES ‘SUPERHARP’ COTTON play his harmonica. In 1935, in Tunica, Mississippi, he grew up working in the cotton fields alongside his parents and older siblings. His Christmas present one year was a harmonica, it cost 15 cents. JAMES COTTON and his harp have been inseparable ever since.

BOOKER T. JONES
Booker T.’s 25th Bluesfest performance will mark five years since the Soul and Rock legend last captivated the Bluesfest audience . Booker T. has recorded with the likes of Wilson Pickett, Ray Charles, George Harrison, Sam and Dave, Neil Young, Barbra Streisand and Bob Dylan and not to mention he features on fellow Bluesfest performer Valerie June’s latest album released this year. Classic Stax hits like ‘Green Onions’(which he actually wrote in High School) ‘Hang ‘Em High’Time Is Tight,’ and ‘Melting Pot’has earned Booker T. a GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award and the honour of being a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and Musicians Hall of Fame inductee.

CHARLIE MUSSELWHITE
CHARLIE MUSSELWHITE is a Bluesfest veteran, in fact he played at the first ever Bluesfest in 1990. The harmonica master is one of the most revered Blues musicians in the world and has collaborated with legendary musicians including Howlin’ Wolf, Muddy Waters, Sonny Boy Williamson and Tom Waits to name a few. He has earned many accolades during his career, including 7 Grammy nominations, 27 Blues Music Awards including induction into the Blues Hall of Fame and he recently won the Living Blues Award for Most Outstanding Musician (Harmonic) in the readers’ poll, this is the 10th time he has been given this honour.

ERIC BIBB
International Folk-Blues master of song craft and acoustic guitar, Eric Bibb makes a welcome return to his Bluesfest fans. He has criss-crossed the world for four decades paying his dues as a true story-teller, where Blues, Folk and World music intersect at a musical crossroads. He has picked up countless awards including the Best Blues album in 2010 for Booker’s Guitar. His recently released album is Jericho Road.

BETH HART
This is one of our Festival Director’s Top Picks. We invite you to check out BETH HART – and you’ll soon know why Peter Noble goes overboard for this woman. First there’s THE VOICE – when she sings, clocks stop, hearts dance, and neck-hair tingles, it’s that compelling!! Then there are the A-list collaborations with the likes of Jeff Beck, Slash, Buddy Guy and Joe Bonamassa. And then there is her music. New album Bang Bang Boom Boom (out March 14) has been earning this superb singer critical acclaim around the world, showcasing her amazing range across Blues, R&B, Swing and more. BETH HART will blow your mind.

NORTH MISSISSIPPI ALLSTARS
The Grammy nominated NORTH MISSISSIPPI ALLSTARS have recently toured extensively with Robert Plant and The Band of Joy, headlined major festivals and toured internationally as a headliner and with Ian Siegal as part of The Mississippi Mudbloods. In 2011 and 2012 they released two live bootleg records, Live in the Hills and Live in the Hills II, both recorded at the annual North Mississippi Hill Country Picnic. As Rolling Stone aptly notes “The (North Mississippi) Allstars may be children of tradition, but they’re digging deep in undiscovered country”.

DEVON ALLMAN
Bluesfest is knocked out to welcome back DEVON ALLMAN, this time fronting his own band – and with his first true ‘solo’ album, Turquoise, in tow.
DEVON has appeared occasionally as a guest musician for both his father Greg Allman’s Band and The Allman Brothers Band. He blew the minds of the Bluesfest audience as part of the blues-rock supergroup Royal Southern Brotherhood this year and this time he returns to Bluesfest leading his own DEVON ALLMAN BAND.

WALTER TROUT
WALTER TROUT has been there – done that – and traded his ferocious licks with the best of them!! John Mayall, John Lee Hooker, Joe Tex, Canned Heat, Coco Montoya, and Luther Allison have all felt the heat, the passion and the searing licks of WALTER TROUT and now he’s coming to show the Bluesfest audience what they have been missing all these years.

CANDYE KANE BAND FEAT. LAURA CHAVEZ
Songwriter, five time national Blues award nominee CANDYE KANE and guitarist LAURA CHAVEZ are feminist fireballs who delight audiences worldwide with songs of empowerment. Bluesfest welcome’s back CANDYE KANE after her last inspiring performance at Bluesfest in 2002.

SAIDAH BABA TALIBAH
We welcome soul-rock diva SAIDAH BABA TALIBAH for her Bluesfest debut this Easter. Toronto-bred vocalist SAIDAH, daughter of Tony and Grammy Award-nominated icon Salome Bey is “Canada’s First Lady of Blues”. Strong bloodline notwithstanding, SAIDAH is a fierce artist that isn’t afraid to combine Rock, Funk, Blues and raunchy Soul in all of her performances. SAIDAH marches to the beat of her own drummer and her preternatural punk attitude, striking good looks and sartorial splendour will have you gobsmacked in no time at all at.

FOR FULL ARTIST BIOS & PLAYING SCHEDULE VISIT WWW.BLUESFEST.COM.AU
All Festival and Camping tickets are on sale through www.bluesfest.com.au or by phoning the office on 02 6685 8310
Tickets are also available through Ticketmaster on www.ticketmaster.com.au

BLUESFEST WINS AUSTRALIAN EVENT & GREENER FESTIVAL AWARDS

The 24th Annual Bluesfest was awarded Australia’s Best Regional Event last night at the 2013 Australian Event Awards and praised for its contribution to the rebuilding of the NSW state economy, helping NSW winning the category of Best Event State or Territory. The award was presented live in Sydney at Doltone House, Hyde Park. Bluesfest was nominated against Blues on Broadbeach Music Festival, South Australian Wooden Boat Festival and Ten Days on the Island.

Festival Manager Annika Oman was in Sydney to accept the coveted award and said” I can’t begin to tell you how thrilled I am to be bringing this award back home. It is a huge acknowledgement of what Bluesfest contributes to the region. The economic impact of Bluesfest has so many benefits on Byron Bay and the region, we really are one of its major draw cards” She added “I am so proud to be working on an event that has the best team of people and makes thousands of people happy each year. It does not get much better than this”

The win comes just after Bluesfest was awarded an International Greener Festival Award for 2012/2013 for the festival’s engagement with the process of reducing environmental impact. This award win marks the seventh year in a row Bluesfest has won a Greener Festival Award.

Bluesfest has also recently been nominated for the highly regarded Annual Pollstar Award in the category of the 2013 ‘International Music Festival of the Year’ for the second year running and is the only Australian Music Festival nominated in the last two years. The nomination marks the fourth time Bluesfest has been nominated for the prestigious award and the 24th Annual Bluesfest has been nominated alongside worldwide heavyweights including the Glastonbury Festival (UK), Lollapalooza Chile (Chile), Rock in Rio (Brazil), Roskilde Festival (Denmark) and Tomorrowland (Belgium). The 25th Annual Pollstar Awards will be held in February 2014 at the world-famous Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.

Next up is the NSW Tourism Awards to be held on Thursday 28th November at the Royal Randwick Racecourse, Sydney where Bluesfest is nominated in the Major Festival and Events Category, the same category that Bluesfest took out the Silver award in 2012 and Gold in 2013.

The 25th Anniversary Bluesfest will take place over the next Easter long weekend; Thursday 17th– Monday 21st April, 2014 at the Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm in Byron Bay, NSW. Headliners announced to date include Jack Johnson, John Mayer, Dave Matthews Band and contemporary acts Passenger, Iron & Wine and Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros amongst many others. The latest Bluesfest announcement earlier this week included Blues greats including Buddy Guy, newcomer Jake Bugg, The James Cotton Blues Band, Booker T. Jones, Charlie Musselwhite, Eric Bibb and many more.

Bluesfest playing schedule is available on www.bluesfest.com.au

All Festival and Camping tickets are on sale through www.bluesfest.com.au or by phoning the office on 02 6685 8310. Tickets are also available through Ticketmaster on www.ticketmaster.com.au

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