- Ash Grunwald
- The Wilson Pickers
- Cigany Weaver
- Dirt River Radio
- Black Rabbit George
- The Brains Trust
- The Imprints
- The Moorditj Brothers
- Mal Webb and Kylie Morrigan
- Opal Ocean
- Bonnie Love
- Barefoot Belles
- Secret Tuesdays
- The Taste
- Davy Simony
- Niq Reefman
- Sue Ray
- Blue Reed
- The Kroovs
- Legends of Perhaps
- Ella Hartwig
- Faux mO
- Machine Machine
- Sunny Ray
The only way a man can truly come into his own power, is to begin seeing who he truly is. Not seeing what he thinks he should be and certainly not seeing himself as he’d like to be seen by others; a good hard look within at what it is he stands for. This is the brutality and in the same breath, the blessing, of time; of experience and of the confrontation of a world that’s moving in contrast to core beliefs. This is Ash Grunwald NOW.
The Wilson Pickers play original folk and alt. country songs using bluegrass instrumentation. They stand five men across the front of the stage and are renowned for their 5 part harmony singing and jovial attitude. Their shows are raucous, virtuosic, often spell binding and always fun. In 2017 the happy accidental side project that is the Wilson Pickers rolls on.
The Wilson Pickers are a formidable Australian group with an impeccable songwriting and playing pedigree.
Started in 2009 as a side project for Andrew Morris, Danny Widdicombe, Sime Nugent, Ben Salter and John Bedggood, the Wilson Pickers have since gone on to receive an ARIA nomination for each of their three albums, play major festivals throughout Australia and build a reputation for the very, very good time that is had by everyone at their live shows.
Their latest album ‘You Can’t Catch Fish From a Train’ features the raw ebullience for which The Wilson Pickers are known, alongside heartfelt reflections on some of what life has thrown at this band of deft musicians and close friends, each bringing their own talents and perspectives to the table while keeping their individual voices.
With the momentum of their three albums, the group’s skill and eagerness to have a great time playing music together has made them favourites at major festivals across the country. The group’s ability to straddle multiple genres saw crowds responding wherever they went. The fact that they’ve played everywhere from Tamworth to sharing the stage with The Black Keys is testament to their broad appeal.
You never know what’s around the corner. The 2011 leukaemia relapse of beloved member Danny Widdicombe saw the band on immediate and indefinite hold while he undertook treatment.
The hiatus saw the individual members return to their own projects. Salter released two critically acclaimed solo albums; Nugent formed the Melbourne duo Sweet Jean who have made two highly regarded albums; Morris continued to work with Bernard Fanning and Bedggood worked with Kasey Chambers and Shane Nicholson amongst his numerous projects. Meanwhile, Widdicombe was a total champion and continued to make music, even from his hospital bed.
By 2015, with Danny’s recovery, The Pickers took their first steps back to the live stage and a year later, the band where raring to get back into the studio with unfinished business on their minds.
Nick DiDia (Bruce Springsteen, Rage Against The Machine, Bernard Fanning) mixed and mastered their latest album and has brought this passionate and powerful recording to brilliant fruition. There are guest appearances by Bernard Fanning (Powderfinger) and Rod Coe (Slim Dusty) making this highly anticipated release a very well credentialed recording with a lot of heart. With another ARIA nomination, their first Golden Guitar nomination, “You Can’t Catch Fish From a Train’ has been a triumphant return for The Wilson Pickers.
Hip Hop/Soul New Wave Brass Band.
New wave brass band, BULLHORN, are an acoustic force of nature with a line up including 7 horn players, 1 drummer and 1 monster MC. Their high octane, combination of hard hitting hip hop, funk, soul, jazz, reggae and dance music never fails to get the audience moving.
Cigány Weaver create sounds reminiscent of Jazz Manouche, Traditional Romani music to contemporaries such as Bjork, their virtuosic live performances invoke an array of toe-tapping, from the subtle tap to the carefree exuberant stomp of the dance floor.
Formed out of a love of Django Reinhardt, Sigourney Weaver and Red Wine, Cigány Weaver are one the newest, and most exciting Gypsy Jazz acts in Australia. Having recently performed at Australia’s premier Gypsy Jazz Festival ‘OzManouche’ and the Woodford Folk Festival, they have captivated audiences with their unique performances, establishing an expansive following.
Aussie Blues Rock
‘The Dirties’ are a band with a true gang mentality and are renowned for their wildly volatile, no punches pulled live shows.
Following a huge 2016 which saw Dirt River Radio smash a 30 date tour of Europe the band get set to release their third LP “Sun City White” on April 29th at Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne.
Three brothers (most likely from different mothers) maybe we met in Manly in 2012 on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, maybe we met on Mars, maybe we met by a bin fire floating wayward on a raft between the North and South Islands of Aotearoa as the full moon kept us moving….Either way we three brothers met, and we met to make music to make you sway and dance and swing and sweat. Music to make love to the mind, soul and ears of your sister, your wife, your mistress, your Nanna, to your sweet baby mama. We met to sing of love and trouble, of leisure and life.
Between all three members comes a combination of musical influences from Soul to Roots, Funk to DnB, Gangsta Rap to Hardcore Punk and everything in between. We love, we live and learn by the pleasurable sounds of Motown, Reggae, Bob Marley, Billy Idol, Kora, The Police, AC/DC, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Necro, Lisa Gerrard, Soundgarden, low frequencies, high frequencies, hotel farts, Slam’s sore neck, the future, those 5,000 people screaming (maybe that was a dream?), bacon crackling, the dude from above, and how many kitchen push-ups have you done to Black Hole Sun today?
CROSSROADS is a roots/rock/reggae/blues intersection where pumping hard rock meets earthy roots and where reggae slides across the blues highway. CROSSROADS is a high energy audio visual experience that leaves an empowering vibe and lasting impression long after they depart the stage. Their thought provoking lyrics, explosive riff-gasmic guitar solo’s, tribal rock drumming and funky heavy bass rhythms is a sonic bliss of soul cleaning goodness.
Black Rabbit George is a new incarnation for Tijuana Cartel’s guitarist/singer/songwriter Paul George. It’s an opportunity for Paul to further explore the acoustic guitar that is at the heart of Tijuana Cartel and to pursue his long-time interest in folk and roots music.
From the wellspring of childish fantasy and a lifetime of musical evolution emerges the Black Rabbit.
This is the story-telling talent of Paul A George, the musician whose guitar drives the unique sounds of Tijuana Cartel, one of the tightest and most sought-after bands on the Australian festival circuit.
If Tijuana Cartel ever lacked anything for its guitarist and vocalist, then it was the open door to a subconscious demand to tell stories – any stories – with the strings of a guitar and the words of a born storyteller.
Sunshine Coast trio The Brains Trust combine luscious soul textures and hip-hop attitude into beats that punch out of any sound system. The combined skills of producers Jonny Boinkin and Ed Ruben create new vibrations of the body and mind, topped off by glistening vocals from talented songstress Jess Lean. Fusing deep bass, mellow ambience and classic soul showmanship, a live performance from The Brains Trust will convince you that three heads are better than one!
The Imprints are an Australian live electronic music duo consisting of Willow Stahlut and Linden Lester. Armed with a violin, synth and various FX pedals, Willow creates deep sub bass lines and weaves a melodic tapestry beautifully complemented by Linden’s visceral energetic approach to the drums.
Playing together for six years, the duo has honed their signature sound, a kaleidoscopic burst of psychotropic dance music. Their use of layering and build-ups to intensify the hefty bass drop has festival crowds buzzing.
They’ve toured extensively performing at festivals including Glastonbury (UK), Boomtown (UK), Fusion Festival (Germany), ArtsWells (Canada), Katuaq (Greenland) and Luminate (NZ).
They have collaborated with fellow Australian artists including Greg Sheehan, Bobby Alu, Mal Webb and Luke Collins.
Individually they have worked with artists including The Cinematic Orchestra, Opiuo, Goldfrapp, Adalita (Magic Dirt), Blue King Brown, Little Birdy, Ainslie Wills, Yasmin Levy and The Bombay Royale.
After recently returning to Melbourne from their third international tour, The Imprints are back in the studio working from fresh inspiration formed on their travels.
Didgeridoo and Acoustic Roots
When you add Moorditj (“solid, good or great”) with Brothers (“one related or closely united to another by some common tie or interest”) not only do you come up with the Moorditj Brothers but you have discovered didge, drum, dance.
Throw in a mix of vocals, guitar, drums and didgeridoo and you have an original blend of roots, blues, rock and reggae music which can only be described as unpretentious, upbeat vibed goodness from this unique Australian trio.
The bands history sources from a variety of different genres, different styles and different bands which combine to make them truly original and distinctive, while their music has its influences from Rudd, Lang and Butler to name a few.
But it does not stop there: the plot begins to thicken when the Moorditj Brothers walk on stage and one is captivated by the delivery of a finely choreographed mix of pumping, striking didgeridoo, drum instrumentals and acoustic roots guitar that on occasions likens the listener to guess whether there are any Spanish or Reggae influences in the music undertones.
A jam band of sorts you will find each performance is different – that is guaranteed. But so too is “didge, drum, dance” music and an experience you will never forget once you stop dancing!
The Moorditj Brothers are Aiden Varro on guitars and vocals (solo), Tim Watkins on drums (Yalla Yalla, Something Humble) and Jay Gresham on didgeridoo (Matt Gresham).
Vocal adventurer, multi-instrumentist and looping beatboxing songwriter Mal sings his brain provoking songs using all sorts of vocal techniques, guitar, mbira, slide trumpet, trombone, chromatic harmonica and a loop recording pedal called Derek. And Kylie (who’s played with Orchestra Victoria and the likes of Stevie Wonder and Barry White!) provides violin and voice in a perfect balance to Mal’s nutsness. Their arrangements are intricate and playful. Imagine Einstein, Dr Seuss and Paganini making pancakes. Ebulliently eclectic. Nefariously varied. Family fun free from facile frippery.
Worldbeat, Mexican Flamenco
“Vigorous!”, “Virtuosic”, “Classical Guitar Alchemy!”
Opal Ocean is a powerhouse instrumental duo that shifts paradigms of the acoustic guitar.
Opening the borders of genre, they fuse together rock, flamenco techniques and progressive pop arrangements to create their own unique wall of sound.
Alex Champ and Nadav Tabak started composing and crafting their original works in a Melbourne basement in 2013.
Their independent EP “Terra” enjoyed great success, selling over 7000 copies since its release in 2015. The momentum from Terra EP has now sailed them from street to stage, playing festivals and shows in Australia and abroad.
Opal Ocean’s debut album, Lost Fables, creates a vivid portrayal of Champ’s and Tabak’s diverse music style and unique relationship with the guitar. The 11 track album was recorded with producer Dave Newington and critically acclaimed mixing and mastering engineer Mark Lewis.
An explosive Molotov cocktail of harlot and song from a true chanteuse who was born for the stage.
Reigning from the deep North, Bonnie Love, vivacious front woman from Award Winning Band, Rapskallion has been commandeering stages world wide for the last decade.
Bonnie Love makes music reminiscent of a bygone age, laced with poetic metaphor, and soul wrenching ballads.
Harnessing old time jazz, bitter sweet heart ache, whisky drenched blues and a caffeine fueled tongue , Miss Love delivers world class entertainment of the finest calibre.
“An explosive Molotov cocktail of harlot and song from a true chanteuse who was born for the stage.” Felicity Black, Dirty Power Studios
So what do you do when you live in one of Australia’s most remote towns and you love rock’n’roll but there’s no gigs to go to? Easy, just form your own band, write your own songs and keep yourselves amused. With true punk rock can do attitude this was the catalyst behind the formation of Barefoot Belles when Beck Payne and Roz Smith met in Cooktown in Far North Queensland.
The sound that came out of this collaboration was classic old school punk infused rock’n’roll. Uncompromising, fun and enthusiastic. Songs about social injustice and emotional mis-adventures. Guitar driven classic pub punk rock, straight from circa 1980. Not a sound that’s so common in their part of the world, where all the venues are looking for cover bands doing all the classics for the tourists. But that’s not, nor ever will be, the Belles thing. With that choice comes artistic freedom, which in turn leads to authenticity, which is what their audiences connect with.
Staying true to their sound has turned a few heads on the local scene with Barefoot Belles being runners up in the ABC Exhumed competition for the Far North Region in 2013 and winning the People’s Choice Award in the Passport to Airlie Beach (Festival) in Cairns in 2014. They have also been invited to play supporting gigs for acts like Clowns (Melb), Flangipanis (Bris) and The Go-Set (Melb) and have featured at the ‘Garageland at the Grand’ and ‘Rumble in the Jungle’, showcase gigs for punk rock fans in the Cairns region. 4zzz in Brisbane have recently picked up their track ‘Before I Explode’ and will be featuring the song in a joint video project with CQU.
One of the important ingredients to their success has been the Wallaby Creek Festival. A local annual 3 day music festival held 30 minutes outside Cooktown where top bands from across the country are invited to play in an ideal setting. A few local acts also get a gong and Barefoot Belles have been a festival regular since their inception. The festival organisers have also contributed to the costs of their latest album “Drill and the Gun”, recorded at Purple Sound Studios in Cairns.
So if you like your rock hard and your punk old school, if it’s about fun not fitting in, then Barefoot Belles are for you. It’ll probably get a bit loud, it’ll likely get a bit dirty and you’ll definitely have a whale of a time.
An all woman harmonic celebration of folk, gypsy, shanties, and country – a sepia toned collection of gold nuggets and old bones.
Secret Tuesdays are from the rainforested hills of Kuranda. Unafraid of the dark, we mingle tales of love and death with slapstick vignettes of drunken nights and getaway cars, to tell secrets tall and true – some sweet as country sunshine, some dappled dark with blood, sweat and liquor.
This truly dynamic, fun and fresh musical ensemble have been thrilling audiences with a buffet of influences ranging from funk, rock, soul and hip-hop for the past 3 years, rapidly building a loyal following down the East Coast and all across North Queensland.
With their latest single ‘The Hands Of’ following on from 2015 release ‘Reflections’, this hard working group are constantly performing and honing their craft with regular shows all across their home base of North Queensland.
“This is a band that’s all about big love and bigger vibes, and their newest song carries all the hallmarks of an ensemble well and truly coming into their own as accomplished young musicians worthy of your attention.” Mitch Knox from themusic.com.au
Having recently supported Tiki Taane and Saskwatch, the band have been regulars on the NQ Festival circuit over the last few years playing alongside the likes of Bullhorn, Kalidad, Siskin River, Zennith, Jeff Lang, Tijuana Cartel, King Social and many more.
Combing groovy rhythms with soulful hooks, the Tropical Hip Hop pioneers put on a high energy performance that’ll have you craving your next taste in no time!
Davy Simony projects his grounded stories through the powerful energy of a one-man-band, including foot percussion and live looping.
Davy Simony is an alternative folk-roots singer-songwriter hailing from Kuranda in Far North Queensland. With influences that span from Jack Johnson to Angus & Julia Stone and The Beautiful Girls, Simony’s work is defined by his grounded and heartfelt style of songwriting. His live performances are not to be missed. Boasting the powerful energy of a ‘one-man-band,’ Simony takes to guitar, foot percussion and live loops.
A true prodigy, Davy began playing music at just eight years old and after three years he was busking on the streets of several nearby towns. He started writing his own material at fifteen, the same year in which he performed for the first time – at a Battle of the Bands, where he led his band to victory. From there his music career has skyrocketed: Simony has held residencies at various venues, toured nationally and internationally, played festival shows and opened for acts such as Daryl Braithwaite, Dallas Frasca and Yves Klein Blue.
“…his combination of intricate guitar work and inspirational songwriting create a most enjoyable atmosphere.” – The Saint Kilda Festival, 2012
For the past couple of years, Davy has been playing festivals, busking and touring throughout Australia and Europe. The announcement of his second EP ‘Layers’ has spread throughout the nation. The six-track album demonstrates Simony’s diverse and remarkable talents as he weaves clever lyrics through captivating melodies in songs ranging from folk to hip-hop. With regular shows, a new EP and a killer live set, the future looks promising for this young artist.
Funky Picasso-bard Niq Reefman spreads storytelling songs of camaraderie, mirth and beauty. From a little town North of Sydney, Trumpet-Singer-Songwriter Niq Reefman is turning heads across the globe. Fans describe him as “Tim Minchin flying a trumpet through a thunderstorm” and his music as a “One-man-musical”.
Niq stands out not only with his minimalist fusion of Jazz chords with folk lyrics, but with beautiful melodies. His self-released album “A selection of musical tales” is heatedly anticipated and contains elements of storytelling, jazz, folk and electronic music.
2016 was a successful year for Niq as a full-time travelling musician, making a living by playing in festivals, vineyards, wine bars, restaurants, theatres, schools and homes across VIC and NSW. His appearance at Granite Town Festival was highly received and he was asked to join the closing band for a guest appearance.
Niq sets the bar for independent artists and Music-comedy genres. His unique blend of sound makes him hard to pigeonhole but easy to relate to. His mission is to spread more storytelling into music and encourage the embracement of culture that enriches our lives.
Americana, alt country
Award winning Americana alt-county songstress Sue Ray has a voice that will never let you go. The multi-award-winning singer/songwriter captivates audiences with her haunting, emotionally charged lyrics, considered compositions and smoky, molasses-rich voice.
Passion Swing and Fire are some of the emotions you will encounter while enjoying the songs from gypsy swing trio Blue Reed.
This newly formed trio who, when the occasion arises, will be joined by fiddle, percussion and vocals, consists of two guitars and double bass.
Holding down the low end on double bass is Dave Hart, a seasoned performer in the Cairns region for so many years we forgot to count them. Dave is also a member of iconic Cairns bands Snake Gully and Hot & Wet Swing Set.
Steve Baker 1st guitar, all round good guy and a champion for the arts in all their forms. Not only does Steve perform in the Blue Reed but is a core member of the tablelands gypsy swing big band Django in the Djungle. Steve is also an accomplished singer songwriter.
David Breeze 2nd guitar, a guitarist for all seasons. David has played with some of Cairns most loved acts from Paris Texas, Far Northern Soul Collective, Hot Rubber Glove, Hot & Wet Swing Set & raconteurs.
Blue Reed play gypsy swing in the style of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli. Sometimes fast and furious like the Captain Cook Highway on a Friday afternoon or slow and seductive like the Barron River on a Sunday afternoon.
In the repertoire you will also find some classics as well as well-known tunes given the gypsy swing touch.
The Kroovs were forged in the hot, sweaty pits of tropical far North Queensland by Seamus Lunt and Stacey Brown. The bastard love child of celtic punk sensibilities, old school rock n’ roll appreciation and sweet folk inclinations, The Kroovs came screaming into the world on a balmy evening in April 2014.
A celebration of all things folk and blues, The Kroovs will take you from the brumby plains of the southern highlands, to a boozer in the hills of Donegal, sail you into the smugglers coves in Cornwall before dumping you on a dusty verandah rocking chair in Virginia to rock away your musical woes.
The unstoppable momentum of a flaming steam train on an unfinished track, The Kroovs create a big sound that belies their number with driving rhythmic guitar accompanied by furious fiery fiddle, tinkling mandolin, roaring vocals, and untiring percussion.
The Kroovs high energy performance, on stage banter, floor shaking tunes and expressive songs are sure to entertain. Drawing influence from the traditional folk canon, and everyone from Johnny Cash to Led Zeppelin they tackle songs about cowboys, whisky, piracy, gypsies, cocaine, love and murder.
With Rossville being her home town and attending this festival every year as a kid, YAZMINDI is back performing at her second Wallaby Creek Fest; where she feels most at home. Having spent two months in Austin Texas earlier this year performing at South By Southwest, recording and writing new music, YAZMINDI creates an authentic style through her diverse songwriting. From wacky youth songs about her mum running over her cat to love songs about chocolate, teenage love and life, the authentic persona YAZMINDI creates is unique. At 19 years young, hard working multi-instrumentalist and singer songwriter YAZMINDI has taken her music to festivals and venues around Australia and abroad to Austin, Texas. Her style of indie, alternative folk with a touch of harmonica & stomp box, is an eye grabbing show not to be missed.
Legends of Perhaps are an Indie/folk/pop/rock band hailing from Cooktown, tropical Far North Queensland. The band consists of 4 siblings, Singer/songwriter-Amber Farnan 14 years plays guitar and captivates audiences with her mature vocals, her sister Holly Farnan -17 years plays keyboard/bass and uses melodic backup vocals, brother Jake Farnan- 14 years plays drums and 5 year old Jasper Farnan pulls a crowd as he beats his cajon and belts out a tune.
Amber won ‘Best Emerging Songwriter at the 2016 Tablelands Folk Festival for her original song ‘Bad Dreams’. Winner of the open songwriters competition at Palm Creek Folk Festival 2017.
The band has a mix of songs with topics such as climate change, Kreepy Kids and life experiences.
Legends of Perhaps have played at a variety of venues such as the Wallaby Creek Festival, the Tablelands Folk Festival, Palm Cove Reef Feast, Port Douglas Carnivale in the famous Spiegel Tent, the iconic Lions Den hotel and more recently busked on Peel Street at the Tamworth Country Music Festival.
Wallaby Creek Festival’s mission is to support new and emerging music.
14 year old singer/songwriter from Cooktown. Playing acoustic originals, alternating both guitar and keyboard. With a soft-rock acoustic feel- vaguely reminiscent of Jack Johnson’s laid back style.
Most of Ella’s songs are about life observations and trying to make sense of the world. Living in such a beautiful place sparks inspiration and helps transform it into music. She enjoys experimenting with different instruments such as banjo, mandolin and ukulele.
Wallaby Creek Festival’s mission is to support new and emerging music.
Born in 2014, faux mO (pronounced fomo) are a blip-hop duo from Kuranda combining mO zach’s enthusiastic nihilism and kinky intellectual poetry with Trish mO’s soft synth beats and melodic bleeps. faux mO have all the colour and directness of vaudeville, warped by a strange mirror of their own design. They also have a nice line in tin foil merch.
The psychedelic motherfunkers MACHINE MACHINE are a four piece band from the tropical roots of Queensland who have been jamming and writing original (and we mean original) tunes for the last couple of years, whilst forging a name for themselves in FNQ and beyond. Known for their high energy performance, improvised jams and never failing to get the crowd going, they have played countless shows including the Grass is Greener Festival, Airlie Beach Festival of Music and in almost all the bars across town (The Daintree is also a favourite spot for MM). On any given weekend, you can find MACHINE MACHINE playing to a euphoric dancing crowd and spreading good vibrations across the nation.
Sunny Ray is a NZ born singer, bringing you heart warning and soul rekindling musical medicine, mixing folk and roots rhythms, conscious lyrics and luscious harmonies.
Accompanied by Jay Jackson on percussion and Catterina Tilby on backing vocal.
Sunny Ray is a songstress from the west coast of New Zealand, who pours her heart and soul into writing original music that will bring a tear to your eye and warmth to your heart. She plays accompanied by a variety of different musicians depending which country she is in, Sunny has shared her music in 18 different countries, and sings in a variety of languages. This show will be full of love, sunshine, depth and thought provoking content.