21.2 C
Byron Shire
September 17, 2021

The biggest challenge getting to Bluesfest each year…

Latest News

Goonellabah drive-thru COVID testing this weekend at GSAC

With the community in lockdown, Lismore City Council says it is important for to get tested for COVID-19, even if you only have the mildest of symptoms. 

Other News

Sometimes you’ve just got to laugh

I confess to having no clinical or medical training, but my reading of some of the literature increasingly tells me that laughter, and the hormones that trigger it, is a powerful healing and comforting tool that serves to help us cope with stress, anxiety, trauma and the challenges associated with living and navigating modern life. 

Ruination

I wholeheartedly agree with Brian Mollett (Letters 18 August). Until very recently Burringbar Street was a true representation of...

First day out of lockdown – record high of NSW 1,599 new cases

NSW recorded yet another new record high 1,599 locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night.

Modelling

Modelling the billions of connections within the human body to determine illness? Modelling one individual’s billions of connections to...

NRPP transparency questioned over controversial Evans Head Iron Gates development

Concerns have been raised over the transparency of the process of the Northern Rivers Planning Panel (NRPP), by which it reached a decision, in relation to the Iron Gates development in Evans Head, to ‘accept the amendment of the application under Clause 55 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Regulations 2000’.

How is RT-PCR used to diagnose COVID-19?

It’s fast, reliable and full of lines – but might look different to the PCR you learned about in school.

Mandy Nolan. Photo Tree Faerie.
Mandy Nolan. Photo Tree Faerie.

 is getting a babysitter…

No-one wants to commit to looking after your kid when they’re shooting for a ticket to the biggest show in town.

I’d ask my teenagers, but they’ve already been planning on going for the last six months. Of course I could bring my six-year-old, but then I won’t be able to squeeze up front in a sea of sweaty flesh and become part of that wonderful joyous organism called a Bluesfest audience.

This year is probably one of my favourite programs.

The lineup is so diverse it jumps well beyond the moniker of blues and roots. This year, it’s blues and roots and gospel and vegas and rap and indie pop and avant-garde and indigenous…

Boomerang Festival heading our way
Rhoda Roberts.

The inclusion this year of the Boomerang Festival encapsulated within the event creates a wonderful Babooshka effect… The smaller festival within the Festival… a global indigenous arts and cultural festival curated with the passionate fervour and genius of Rhoda Roberts.

Roberts has fulfilled her vision this year to broaden the festival-goer experience, creating a quiet place to sit and learn basket weaving, learn traditional dance at a dance workshop or get goosebumps listening to the wisdom of Archie Roach in conversation with Craig Pilkington and Nancy Bates.

Then there’s the music… Monday showcases the genius of Brian Wilson – onstage playing an extended set with an 11-piece band playing Pet Sounds, the album that has been called the second-greatest album of all time. That’s incredible. Plus, my friend Clare is playing cello – she’s going to be one of the 11 pieces! It’s not every day one of your friends gets to play with the Beach Boys! I am not going to miss that one!

And the Residents! I saw them 30 years ago when they were skinny boys in black skivvies wearing giant eyeballs on their heads. Sure, I was full to the brim on LSD, but I think that gig altered my brain. I could see the music. In fact, I think I could taste it. Fortunately back then they neither random drug tested, nor did I drive; this year, I’ll be a middle-aged woman having consumed only her two standard glasses of Cab Sav, topped up on fishoil and probiotics, revisiting a favourite experience, and perhaps having a brand-new one. (That fishoil really comes on strong in a mosh pit.)

The-Cat-Empire
The Cat Empire.

Of course I love The Cat Empire. Who doesn’t? Even people who don’t dance end up dancing. The shrill thrill of that trumpet just pierces through resistance, and before you know it you’re a lather of sweat jumping to the beat.

The Cat Empire are a fully guaranteed blast of serotonin. A night with them and you feel good for weeks!

And the Blues Brothers band? Well, who doesn’t want to be part of their six-decade mission from God? I have to see The Blind Boys… ever since the first time I saw them, probably 25 years ago, I’ve never failed to be overcome by the spirit of their show, the unbridled joy that comes about in the harmony of their unison. I never thought I’d be clapping along enthusiastically to If I Had a Hammer infected with the joy of Jesus! Such is the power of great gospel! It just floods you with love, even when you’re a hard-hearted atheist. So that show is a definite Yes.

But these are people I’ve seen before…

Taj Mahal.
Taj Mahal.

This year, alongside the beloved Bluesfest acts who return every few years, people such as Taj Mahal and Eugene Hideaway Bridges there are also a plethora of acts making their Bluesfest debut. Acts such as Melissa Etheridge, whom I had the pleasure of interviewing late last year.

Etheridge brings more to her shows than just the music; she brings the passion of her activism, her clear-sightedness and her moral and creative fearlessness.

The innovator held responsible for Brit pop – Noel Gallagher, in solo mode with his outfit High Flying Birds. And Rhiannon Giddens, with a voice so remarkable that when I played her CD in the car I couldn’t get out until it was finished.

There’s the chilled grooves of UB40, the five-times Grammy winner Kendrick Lamar, and of course Tom Jones. How can you not want to be part of the Jones experience? That man knows how to deliver a show! It’s not unusual, it’s Bluesfest 2016.

– Mandy Nolan, Echo entertainment editor

See the special edition Bluesfest 2016 liftout here

More stories from Bluesfest 2016

100,000 punters flock to Bluesfest

By the time Tom Jones sang out ‘It’s Not Unusual’ at 10 o’clock last night more than 100,000 people had passed through the gates of this year’s 27th annual Bluesfest at Byron Bay.

1

Bunny Sunday Bluesfest day 4

Sunday saw some of the Bluesfest big guns roll out – Jackson Browne played a massive one and a half hour set as did Melissa Etheridge – neither disappointed the legion of punters pressing against the barriers to see...

0

Man’s death at Bluesfest ‘not suspicious’

A 44-year-old man from the Tweed region was found dead in a car at the Bluesfest site at Tyagarah on Saturday.

0

Seasoned festival snapper souled right out

Veteran Echonetdaily photographer Jeff Dawson has probably caught more performers in the act up close at Bluesfest than you can think of, and much more than most of his peers on the job this year.

0

Bluesfest hump day and the rain came

It wouldn't be Bluesfest if we didn't get a bit of rain and at the halfway point yesterday afternoon, the heavens open to hear the sweet tunes drifting up from Tyagarah and the rain fell.

0


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Reece Byrnes re-elected as Tweed Deputy Mayor

With many many local councils are juggling the elections timetable owing to COVID-19 restrictions, and last night the Tweed Shire elected their Deputy Mayor.

COVID update includes trial of home quarantine

When media were told that NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian would be at today's 11am update, we expected big news – the Premier said last week she would only attend the updates if it were important news.

How is RT-PCR used to diagnose COVID-19?

It’s fast, reliable and full of lines – but might look different to the PCR you learned about in school.

Queensland passes voluntary assisted dying laws

Dying with Dignity NSW has welcomed the passage of Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) laws in Queensland and is hoping that NSW Parliament resumes next month so that this issue can be addressed in NSW without further delay.