Friday night - Walk the Line
Johnny Cash Show
Feat Daniel Thompson and Stuie French
Support act - Billy Bridge & Rebecca Lee Nye
Saturday night - Adam Brand
Support act - TBA
2018 CMC Australian Artist of the Year
2018 CMC Australian Video of the Year 'MILESTONES'
Multi Golden Guitar Winner
Celebrating 20 Years of "MILESTONES" in the Industry
Viper Creek Band
These five talented guys from Newcastle Australia got together in early 2011 to form THE VIPER CREEK BAND.
They believed that country music in Australia was rea.dy for an exciting new sound and began writing songs, rehearsing, playing live and building a loyal fan base .
The first single from the album ‘Tonight Tonight’ debuted at Number One on the Australian ITunes country singles chart. The Viper Creek Band have been invited to perform in the USA onboard ‘Country Cruising’
With their live show all about great music and good times with great mates - this is one show not to miss and one band already going places.
First impressions aren’t always right. If you’ve been foolish enough to nail down the sound of acclaimed songwriter Gretta Ziller, then prepare to have the rug pulled out from under you. Queen of Boomtown, her stunning debut record, defies categorisation and demands repeated listens. Ziller’s sound may bear the hallmarks of classic Americana music but its essence is far more diverse. The Melbourne songstress’ roots span jazz, blues, rock, pop and classical, and that eclectic musical upbringing is reflected in the varied tracks on this new collection.
“I didn’t want to make an album that sounded like anything in the Americana scene right now,” says Ziller. “I wanted my album to reflect the soundtrack of my childhood, yet sonically and lyrically sound like who I am now. I really wanted to push the boundaries of what country music, or Americana, alt-country – whatever you want to call it – can sound like. I didn’t want to fit neat and tidy into the country music box.”
Ziller brought together an impressive array of musicians to perform on Queen of Boomtown, the recordings featuring members of Saskwatch, The Cat Empire, and the bands of Angus & Julia Stone, Passenger and Dan Sultan. Accomplished songwriter Jen Mize provides backing vocals while Henry Wagons appears as a guest on ‘Round and Round’.
Recorded at Woodstock Studios, Balaclava, the album was produced by New Zealand-born, Melbourne-based singer-songwriter Paul Ruske. “Working with Paul was the most amazing experience,” Ziller recalls. “Not only is he such a beautiful person and talented musician, but he understood me and what I wanted with this record.”
Billy’s relaxed, warm and distinctive vocals, sooth you and guide you on a journey through time, places and events that shaped the great country of ours.
Billy has continued to perform, write and play music from his heart and music inspired by our great people and places.
X Factor contestants... three farm boys from Mudgee, NSW celebrating a decade strong.
Makirum, Tayzin and Shardyn Fahey-Leigh have clocked up six Tamworth Country Music Festivals already and despite their country-folk roots, Brothers3 isn’t afraid of the pop end of the spectrum.
The huge sound this trio creates is something to see and hear!
The Train are very popular for their wide appeal with audiences of all ages, which sees them in constant demand and laying tracks all over the east coast and beyond where they average over 150 shows a year.
Camille and Stuie are truly a musical marriage made in heaven... Stuie French is the Tasmanian guitar wiz and Camille impresses the stage with her vocal talents.
2018 Golden Guitar Finalist Casey Barnes is making a monumental impression on the
Australian country music scene. He’s had hits in Europe, recorded and toured in America,
appeared in a top-rating TV show in Australia and performed alongside many international
stars includingMariah Carey, Lady Antebellumand Bryan Adams.
Making music can sometimes feel like you’re drifting on the ocean, waiting for inspiration to appear like shore on the horizon. For Australian singer-songwriter Andrew Swift, the sea was the Melbourne music scene. Following the release of his acclaimed 2015 debut, Sound the Alarm, he was adrift in the sprawling waves. But coastline appeared in the form of country and Americana music. These timeless genres reinvigorated his songwriting and new music flowed around him.
Those familiar with Swift’s impressive first record will notice the left turn taken on follow-up Call Out For the Cavalry. The classic sound of American roots country fits him like a glove. One would think from listening to assured tracks like ‘Reckless Desires’ and ‘Ball & Chain’ that Swift has been plying his trade in the Australian alt-country scene since he picked up a guitar. But this is new territory for Swift and he’s quickly acclimatised.
“So much has changed for me musically between the first album and this one,” says Swift. “In hindsight I think I was floundering around the Melbourne music scene, not too sure of where I belonged. After the first album I released an EP with a band and then a solo single after that. I pretty much stopped writing for about 18 months after Sound The Alarm. But then I was nudged into the country music world, and introduced to Americana and alt-country. I felt at home and writing again came with it.”
Swift made a big first impression on the country music world when he became a Toyota Star Maker grand finalist. He also teamed up with respected Americana songwriter Gretta Ziller and the pair took an intimate show of songs and storytelling on tour to caravan parks along the East Coast of New South Wales and Victoria, en route to Tamworth Country Music Festival. Ever the dogged performer, Swift has supported the likes of Shane Nicholson, Catherine Britt, Amber Lawrence, Adam Eckersley, and Lachlan Bryan.
Jase Lansky is an international singer songwriter currently living on Queensland's Gold
Coast. As a musician he has had the opportunity of performing throughout both Australia
and the United States and has recently completed recording in Nashville, Tennessee.
Round Mountain Girls
Round Mountain Girls will dominate any stage and blow audiences away with their alt-country, roots blend of music. Last year saw the lads play play BLUESFEST for the third time and, after blistering, high-energy performances, Peter Noble, Festival Director, could not deny them a place at this year’s 2014 Bluesfest. As far as accolades go, this is a huge honour for RMG yet one they take in their stride in their search for musical nirvana. 2013 also saw Round Mountain Girls play their first ever Victorian show at the Port Fairy Folk Festival. What an introduction to southern audiences - RMG at full tilt in the Guinness Pavilion in front of 3000 people.
Round Mountain Girls are arguably Australia’s best underground, live act on the circuit at the moment.
As one critic aptly said, “A night out with Round Mountain Girls is like a good night in with your partner. They'll leave you
hot and sweaty, exhausted but exhilarated, sonically bruised, maybe even a little tender ....and yet you'll still end up begging
for more”. This is a band on the rise.
Thor and Jasmine Phillips
Born and bred in the Northern Rivers of NSW, Thor’s world-class guitar skills, and powerful performances are stirring up storms across the nation. Appearing at major festivals (Tamworth CMF, Broadbeach CMF, Ballina CMF, Dorrigo Bluegrass Festival) as well as performing up to fi ve shows a week at live venues; music is his passion, and it shows. Thor’s original tunes draw inspiration from Alt. Country as well as Blues greats and more modern Roots artists. There’s also a nod to folk, a stomp of bluegrass and dusting of Americana. Fans have described him as being “one-part Shane Nicholson, one-part Troy Casser-Daley and one-part Jerry Douglas”; well-renowned for his lightning fast fl at-picking and expressive dobro style. What sets Thor apart is his dynamic energy, his confi dence with the guitar, his rich voice, and his willingness to be both powerful and vulnerable within the same song. Thor’s audiences connect with his integrity and depth. He makes music which gets straight to the heart, and stays with you long after the guitar strings have stopped humming.
Forth Form Boys
The Forth Boys are a local group that originally formed when a group of mates were teenagers at high school in Ballina back in the 80s, recently reformed, playing a great cross section of hits of their youth (Eagles, Dire Straits). Two of the group went on to be professional musicians.
Get ready to Mumble - Lennox Head-based bluegrass band, The Mumblers, play a mix of traditional bluegrass, original songs and evocative adaptations, bringing traditional sounds to life with plenty of thump and groove on the bottom end.
The six-piece band combines electric bass, kick drum and washboard with the more traditional fiddle, banjo, mandolin, guitar and three-part harmonies on vocals to create the unique Mumbler experience – a raucous coproduction of joyful performances and foot stomping crowds. Look out for the loyal fan base wearing the band t-shirt and mind your toes!
The Linelockers are an authentic, grass-roots, high energy rockabilly and Honky Tonk band hailing from Lismore, NSW. This trio have been gaining increasing momentum since their formation in November 2016. Building a strong following from local audiences, and drawing rockabilly and kustom kulture enthusiasts from near and far.
This is a band not to be missed! Get your dancin' shoes on and be ready for some real hardwood floor stompin' honky tonk.
Country singer-songwriter released his debut single ‘Travelin’ Man’ to radio in May this year. This single was produced by Adam Eckersley who said "It has been great being part of Blake's journey so far, he is extremely talented and driven, and it's clear to see that he has what it takes to make a career out of music, he has been a hit with everyone of our audiences that he has played to whilst opening out 14 of our Highway Sky Tour Shows." For Brooke McClymont & Adam Eckersley. The track is lifted from Blake’s self-titled EP which was release in June and debuted on the National Australian Independent Record Labels Chart at #1 Made #2 on the ARIA Australian Country Charts just behind Keith Urban.
Blake has opened shows for: Adam Brand, The Adam Eckersley Band, toured with Adam Eckersley & Brooke McClymont, Russell Morris and Drew McCallister.
Blake took home this year Australian Country Music People’s Choice award for “Most Promising Future Star” in Tamworth. Also winning Peoples Choice for Emerging Artist Showcase at Gympie Music Muster 2017.
Warren H Williams
After the charting success of his 2016/17 duet album “Desert Water” including the hit single “Two Ships” which garnered main stage festival appearances all over Australia and a Golden Guitar nomination, 2017 was a massive year for Warren H Williams who continues to mark his place as a legend of Australian Country and Indigenous Folk Music with a view to make 2018 even bigger. If 2017 wasn’t going well enough with the Desert Water album, the year was topped off with an invitation to appear on the TV Series “The Secret Daughter” alongside longtime friend Jessica Mauboy and the opportunity to record a duet.
Jessica Mauboy releases a duet with country music legend Warren H Williams “Always on my mind”.
The classic track appears on the long awaited “The Secret Daughter” season two album and lovingly honors Country Music Legend, Warren H Williams as an elder, mentor and a significant part of Jessica’s wider Aboriginal family connections. It was Warren H Williams that opened the door at CAAMA Music to an 11 year old Jessica Mauboy and immediately recognized her incredible vocal talent, he swiftly got her into the studio where Jess was able to record for the first time. Fast forward to the Yabun festival 2017, a chance meeting that brought the two together again saw them make a pact to record together again. Having an incredibly tight schedule and little time outside of her TV and promotion responsibilities, Jessica made the duet project happen in the course of her busy life by writing Warren into an episode of The Secret Daughter (season 2) where Warren plays a cameo role as Billy’s Aboriginal uncle “Marlon” in a scene where “Billy” is introduced to her aboriginal side/family. The scene showcases a duet of “Always on my mind” performed acoustically around the campfire.
Kick yer shoes off, put yer hoe-down & hang on to yer britches! “The Hillbilly Goats are having a hell of a time raising hell“, remarks Trevor J. Leeden in Rhythms magazine, Nov 2013, and that’s just what Golden Guitar Finalists, the Hillbilly Goats have been doing all over the nation.
With their undeniable passion for Mountain Music, the instruments and the harmonies, their recordings paint a picture of traditional songs from 1710 through to the 1940’s with a high energy quirky edge. Featuring Banjo, Bones, Double Bass, Fiddle, Dobro, Harmonica, Percussion, Tap Dancing, 3 part Harmonies and more, there is a tale told of the history of Mountain Music’s evolution into Blues, Country & Bluegrass. Their album reviews in the Weekend Australian and several music magazines not only rave about their recordings, but their stage presence has been labelled “more driving and energetic than the less traditional shows seen on main stages of Australian country festivals.” (Alex Turnbull, Capital News).
The band members are never satisfied with their own instruments and continually swap over and change positions on stage.
With 2 nominations for Bluegrass Recording of the Year in the Golden Guitar Awards, the album has been highly successful and further stamps the musical twist on traditional songs The Hillbilly Goats are renowned for.
So, if you’re still a Goat Virgin and haven’t seen the Hillbilly Goats yet, check them out and see what all the fuss is about. They sure know how to Raise A Ruckus and you are guaranteed to be entertained – OLD TIME STYLE!
Whiskey Mountain Boys
The Whiskey Mountain Boys is a trio of experienced, talented and professional entertainers. Using instruments such as the bush bass, mandolin, stomp box, bass guitar and acoustic guitars, they deliver their own hillbilly thumping versions of all the well known party songs we all love. Playing songs from Johnny Cash to AC/DC The Whiskey Mountain Boys do it with their own pumping hillbilly feel. Just three big kids having fun, but these boys are a highly professional and funny outfit and without doubt one of the Sunshine Coast’s finest acts. Making every event a memorable one, this fun filled and action packed trio thrive on audience interaction with the result of every single person having a smile on their face.
CHRIS COOK BAND
Drawing on Australian country and American bluegrass roots, singer and multi-instrumentalist, CHRIS COOK has performed around Australia for over 35 years, both solo and with different line-ups. Chris’s ability to entertain an audience with guitar, banjo, fiddle, original songs (his “Diggin’ a Hole in My Guitar,” “When the Country’s Wet” and “Rollin’ Down the Road” were recorded by Slim Dusty) and a seemingly limitless repertoire of covers both popular and obscure prove his versatility. Chris has played at most major East Coast Festivals and has made a number of recordings over the years. He has released Tributes to Slim Dusty called “Dustier than Ever – Volumes 1 & 2” and a number of other albums including “Now and Then,” a retrospective of 30 years in the recording industry and “Thanks a Lot” a Tribute to Johnny Cash, released in 2012. The Chris Cook Band released “Brand Old Country” a CD of 16 tracks in 2013. Chris Cook is both well-known and well-respected around the Northern Rivers of NSW where he has been based in recent years.
What began as just a bunch of mates getting together to have a laugh and play some songs, has inadvertently become one of the hottest country bands around. Backwater Brethren consists of some of the Northern Rivers’ most cherished musicians, who have been collaborating wth one another throughout many different musical incarnations over the years. Between all seven members, they bring over 200 combined years of experience to the stage, with a dynamic live performance that ebbs and flows as the show rolls on. The frontman role is shared amongst the band, from lonesome cowboy songs through to enormous 7-part vocal harmonies and everything in between. All backed up with deft instrumentation from some of the country’s finest; Diego ‘Él Diablo’ Zaragoza (Heartworn Highway) on steel guitar, Rod ‘Rattlesnake’ Coe (Slim Dusty Band) on bass, Stu ‘Hot Sauce’ Eadie (Karma County) on drums, Phil ‘Longhorn’ Levy (The Romaniacs) on electric guitar & mandolin, Steve ‘Six-Guns’ Gilbert (Shane Howard Band) on harmonica, Justin ‘JB Fingers’ Bannister (Wolfmother) on keys and Ash ‘Buckshot’ Bell (Starboard Cannons) on acoustic guitar. With many men come many tastes, and the repertoire stretches and accommodates, but a common thread exists in good, solid outlaw country. Merle, Waylon, Hank, Willie, Guy, the list goes on. The Brethren play what the Brethren love, and the Brethren love playing it.
COMBINING heartfelt songwriting and an eye for a story, Brendan Smoother prides himself on songs that count for something. He first picked up a borrowed guitar when he was 15 years old from a friend who showed him a few basic chords. Soon after, John Williamson’s Mallee Boy album would firmly set the course towards country. At age 17 Brendan began guitar lessons with Matt Scullion as they were living in the same South Coast town of Ulladulla. The singer-songwriter embraced his career as a paramedic and it was through a posting to a quiet rural town that he began performing in public, after resuscitating the Gundagai Country Music Club. This led to performing on the country music club circuit between Tumut and Cootamundra and music became a major part of his life.
The Billy Gudgeon Band
A great mix of contemporary and classic Country Rock
The Billy Gudgeon Band is a four piece band playing a mix of contemporary and classic Country Rock. Covering material from classic artists like the Eagles, Creedence and the Doobie Brothers to contemporary giants such as the Keith Urban, Zac Brown Band and George Ezra, the band brings its own unique sound and presence.
The Billy Gudgeon Band is based in the Lismore-Byron Bay region of NSW. It plays throughout NSW and Southern Queensland, including in western regions of both states. The band is currently booked into venues across both states, as well as private and corporate functions. Over the last year the Billy Gudgeon band proudly participated in public events that include NAIDOC, and the Ballina Country Music Festival.
The Billy Gudgeon Band will work with venues to help promote events through social media, point of sale promotion, local media (eg “gig guides”), and other activities. It has experience working “alongside” DJ’s, in public and private events.
The band delivers high energy, quality musicianship, all through professional level sound and lighting equipment.
Golden Guitar winner Steve Passfield has certainly “paid His dues”. The leader and driving force behind the Award winning Handpicked Band formed back in 1988, which went on to tour much of Australia, Asia and New Zealand. Steve released 3 independent Handpicked albums and a 21 year Anniversary DVD that intertwines the Anniversary Gig with Steve’s personal story of the Macleay Valley, His hometown Kempsey and family and friends that have formed the background for many of His songs.
The album also saw Steve gain great radio and CMC support. Television appearances and many festival invitations followed. Support from Fender Australia followed with Steve becoming an Endorsee and playing Fender, Guild and Gretsch guitars.
The new album Timberman & Other Tales was for sale at the 2010 Tamworth Country Music Festival and the first single hit the airwaves soon after. Steve says, “the Timberman album is all about really good songs and it took almost a year to write. Many of the songs were co-written with Producer Rod McCormack and Rod pushed me to new heights lyrically”.
“Being an independent artist is not easy, but if you’re doing what you love, and people get a kick and relate to your story, then it’s worthwhile continuing to swing the hammer” says Steve. Determination, hard work and a very strong belief in His Country and His music sees Steve continuing on the creative journey, looking always to improve His skills and reach out to a wider audience.
Local Northern-Rivers alt-country musician Kathryn Jones and Sydney music partner Steve Passfield. The pair received 8 nominations at the Tamworth Country Music Festival taking out an Australian Country Music People’s Choice Award for Best Vocal/Music Event as well as a Brumby Award for Best Collaboration in the Australian Independent Country Music Awards. With 3 nominations in the prestigious Tamworth Songwriters Association Salute Awards and 6 in the
People’s Choice Awards, Jones and Passfield were in good spirits and kept busy performing at all 3 awards nights as well as various shows throughout the festival.
Steve has been an integral part of the Australian country music industry since the 80’s with his very popular outfit The Handpicked band and has received many awards for his contribution and talent including a Golden Guitar.
Kathryn’s recent amalgamation with Passfield, who produced her 2nd album Lil Gypsy, shows the sassy performers song writing skills truly brought to the fore. The first single, a co-write with Steve, "Even Cowgirls Sing the Blues" shot to #4 on the National Country Tracks chart staying in the charts for an impressive 18 weeks.
Their current release Gypsy on the Wrong Side of the World, was radio presenter/journalist Jon Wolfe’ favourite track at the 2015 Tamworth CMF with Jon stating in his Capital News review “The collaboration between
singer/songwriter Kathryn Jones & songwriter/musician/producer Steve Passfield, showcases the extraordinary talent this woman is”. The song which sums up the Lil’ Gyspy Herself & penned by Passfield, Gyspy on the Wrong Side of the World, is a catchy, toe tapping tune that gives the listener an insight into Kathryn’s nomadic personality. 2015 saw Jones & Passfield touring Lil Gypsy music to stunning destinations such as New Zealand & New Caledonia, as well as local festivals eg The Gympie Muster, Slim Dusty CMF, Sydney CMF, The Central Coast CMF, Bony Mountain Folk Festival and Port Stephens CMF and 2016 promises to be busy with Festival & gig bookings already in the diary. Kathryn and Steve wish to thank all the hard working radio presenters for
their generous support in airing their songs.
Based in Lismore, NSW and an independent recording artist with two albums, which have seen great success. Well-known within the Tamworth Country Music Festival circuit, performing now for 19 years. Highly-anticipated EP “So Much More” was released in 2017. “So Much More” is an original EP of modern/contemporary songs that have been written a co-written with some extremely talented singer, songwriters and musicians with the likes of Luke O’Shea, Lana and Phil Doublet.
The album features some of the finest musicians in Australia including musicians that have played on many big named artist albums.
It doesn't get much better than these brothers when you want awesome harmonies and great songs. With over three decades of experience, they have honed their musical skills and with a love of great tunes, the Massey Brothers deliver a top show - every time.
Young Emerging Artist Showcase
* Sophie Volp * Mitch Lynam * Georgie Taylor * Amity Angels *
A musical collabration between Bill Bradney on guitar and mandolin and Liz Edwards on accordion and woodskin drum.
Blues, cajun, celtic and bluegrass are all thrown into the Thrillbilly melting pot.
Having toured all over Australia we are lucky to have Thrillbilly Stomp residing locally, right here in Ballina.
A Graduate of the CMAA 2018 Senior Academy of Country Music course, Kevin Sullivan has most recently performed on stage with O'Shea at the 2018 Golden Guitar Awards. Kevin performed at the Opening of the 2018 Tamworth Country Music Festival in Bicentennial Park and throughout the festival, performed his original song and crowd favourite 'Outback Australia' with The Bushwackers and was also joined on stage by Kevin Bennett, of Kevin Bennett and the Flood.
Headline acts include the iconic Birdsville and Innamincka Races where he toured with legendary bass player Rod Coe and launched his first album.
A natural storyteller and family man, Kevin's forthcoming album 'BELONGING' is inspired by the people and places of his life and travels. The songs explore his own connectedness to his history as well as the stories of every day Australians, often capturing love, tragedy and hope.