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April 24, 2024

Bluesfest 2024 wraps

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Ben Harper at Bluesfest 2024. Photo Tree Faerie

Bluesfest organisers have described the 2024 edition as a triumph, with brilliant performances every day of the festival and visitor numbers consistent with 2023.

Festival Director Peter Noble OAM said of the 35th edition of the festival, ‘I have booked many, many editions of Bluesfest in the past, but I have not had one come together as well as this one did in so many ways.

Bluesfest Director, Peter Noble OAM. Photo Jeff Dawson

‘Australian artists showed time and time again that they could give international artists a real run for their money.’

He said it’s a wonderful time to be in the music industry right now, despite the challenges. ‘We’re still calculating the numbers, but we know the attendance for Bluesfest this year was at least the same as in 2023,’ said Mr Noble.

‘We have held our position, and as much as we would like to see more people come, it’s not going to happen until the interest rates drop. We do ask our government to support our industry until then.’

He said ‘Bluesfest will be 125 million per-cent back in 2025.’

Rickie Lee Jones at Bluesfest 2024. Photo Tree Faerie

New and old

Organisers say this year’s tale of two Taj-es was a perfect example of the health of blues and roots music across the generations.

Taj Farrant. Photo Tree Faerie.

‘Grammy-winning Blues Hall of Famer Taj Mahal, who played an exclusive Australian show at Bluesfest to mark his 10th appearance at the event, and homegrown 14-year-old guitar wonder and certain future Grammy winner Taj Farrant beautifully bookend the marvellous musical alchemy blues embodies.’

There were also multiple talented musical daughters on stage this year, including those of Peter Garrett, Taj Mahal and Tim Finn.

Other memorable collaborations included Ziggy Alberts joining Jack Johnson during his set, the Blind Boys turning choir for Tom Jones, and Bluesfest star punter Kasey Chambers joining Sweet Talk and The Teskey Brothers.

Hussy Hicks at Bluesfest 2024. Photo Tree Faerie

Barnesy’s back

‘Of course, as far as Easter resurrections go, it was hard to beat the heartfelt, overflowing Mojo tent welcome for national treasure Jimmy Barnes’s return to live performing on Sunday night after life-saving heart surgery,’ said organisers.

‘Jimmy was joined by some of his favourite fellow performers, including fellow Bluesfest stars Tommy Emmanuel and Josh Teskey, as well as musical royalty Bernard Fanning and former Cold Chisel bandmate Ian Moss.’

Tickets for the four-day Bluesfest 2025 are on sale now (Monday will not be part of the program next year).

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  1. I agree this was an outstanding festival 5 day so bloody good
    The oz acts were amazing actually I rated them better than the os acts but all so different and talented
    One comment in the negative was some of the sound amixing or was it the performers ??? Elvis Costello for example (but not the only one ) was really poor was it the mixing ??
    But hay I feel it was my most enjoyable yet and the logistics of the event buses staff vollies 10 out of 10
    Thank you all


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