Saturday at Bluesfest always brings a different vibe to it. Maybe it’s the extra people, maybe it’s the injection of new artists, or maybe it’s just because you’ve gotten the chance to become more familiar with your surroundings. Whatever it is, we had a great hump day at Bluesfest.
As always, our man behind the camera, Mr Craig Wilson of Swamp House Photography spent the day taking some world class photos. Check out the gallery below for shots of Vintage Trouble, Sir Rosevelt, Nikki Hill, Nahko & Medicine for the People, Melody Angel, Irish Mythen, Corinne Bailey Rae, Billy Bragg, Beth Hart and headlines, The Doobie Brothers.
Dan spent most of the afternoon interviewing a wide range of great artists. Make sure you subscribe to our podcast on iTunes to be the first in line to hear our chats with Busby Marou, Irish Mythen, Jake Shimabukuro and more.
But the music is what we’re here for so let’s get stuck into some of the action from day 3 at Bluesfest.
The Australian Ukulele Show
4 Ukes, a Didgeridoo, drums and bass – And by hell do they make a beautiful sound.
Like a walk down memory lane, The Australian Ukulele Show celebrated our unique history with broad strokes of the musical brush. From Yothu Yindi to Ice House, from G’Day G’Day to My Island Home – And the late afternoon crowd soaked it up.
Backstage we were able to talk the band into giving us a private performance. Make sure you keep your eyes on the Facebook page for that exclusive.
There’s nothing like a bit of Billy Bragg solo. Slightly out of tune, totally in the moment and full of ‘fuck you’.
The Crossroads tent soon filled with bodies all singing along to the choruses that have taught us about life, injustice and how to raise your middle fingers to the man.
Highlights of the set included Bragg’s classic The Milkman Of Human Kindness, and a reworking of Dylan’s The Times They Are A-Changin’.
“Cause the times they are a-changing…. Back”.
The man who brought the ukulele into the 21st century has become a tent filler! And he sure knows how to play to a crowd.
As the melody to Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah began to ring out, a small hum from the crowd quickly turned into a full-on sing-a-long. It was one of the highlights of the set, only outdone by another rousing sing-a-long for Jake’s version of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody.
You sometimes have to pinch yourself listening to Jake play because it’s really just one man and a small uke making all this beautiful music.
Keep your eye out for our interview.
Dan’s highlight of the festival, Irish Mythen takes solo performance to the next level.
From singing along to the chorus of the emotional Tullamore Blues to the feel good Four Walls, just when you think her voice can’t reach another level, she raises the bar. Just when you think it can’t get any more intense, she nails another chorus that leaves you speechless.
The set was peppered with funny stories, crowd participation and take no prisoners protest. And at one point Mythen picked out some arsehole who was yelling out in the crowd to teach him a lesson on cultural appropriation. It was epic.
For us, the highlight of the set was a gutsy acapella version of the Irish ballad, The Auld Triangle. A song about the occurrences in the real life Mountjoy Prison. It left us speechless.
You can catch Irish Mythen at The Gum Ball next weekend. Worth the admission price alone.
Beth Hart has one hell of a voice, and a band to back it.
Probably the best guitar solos we’ve heard all festival too, and that’s really saying something. Jon Nichols is up there with the best.
At 80 years of age, the living legend that is Buddy Guy is a must see at a blues festival.
We only stayed for a few numbers because we wanted to get over to the Mojo tent to see Zac Brown’s new band, Sir Rosevelt. And while it was obvious that we were in the presence of blues greatness, at times the sound was a bit chaotic and dare we say it, messy.
It was still awesome though….
We weren’t sure when we walked into the Mojo tent to catch Zac Brown’s new band, Sir Rosevelt if we’d somehow ripped a whole in space and time and accidentally found ourselves on the set of Eurovision.
Complete with dancing girls, a horn section and amazing visuals, Sir Rosevelt is far removed from what we’ve come to know from Zac Brown – And we’re loving it!
The band’s Bluesfest set was only the second time the act had performed publicly, and you could feel the excitement from the members reverberating from the stage.
It’s hard to pin down a way to describe the band’s sound because every song is so different. From the dancey juke joint vibe of debut single, Sunday Finest to the mariachi of Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now – It’s highly entertaining and showcases Brown’s musicality and understanding of melody and hook.
It has to be said that the highlight of the set for us was definitely the band’s cover of Rag n’ Bone’s Human.
If these guys tour, we are there in a heartbeat!
The Doobie Brothers
One of the biggest draw cards for a Saturday ticket to Bluesfest was American rock band The Doobie Brothers. And they sure know how to push the nostalgia button.
All the hits were on show and those in and around the Mojo tent lapped up every minute.
For us, it was a chance to grab some corn on a stick (apparently it’s not Bluesfest without the buttery festival goodness), and to beat the traffic on the business day of the festival.
Today was Dan’s last day at the festival. As he travels home to see his young family for Easter, it will be all down to Mr Craig Wilson of Swamp House photography to bring you the best of the best from the remaining two days.