Byron Bay Bluesfest

Part 2 Bluesfest First Announcement Alumni - Why They’re Not To Be Missed in 2017

8 September 2016

“One of the most highly anticipated dates on the Aussie festival calendar is the first Bluesfest artist announcement, and the fan favourite has come out all guns blazing with a massive 2017 line-up” – The Music. With a similar outlook circulating amongst media and followers of Bluesfest, we thought we’d take a closer look at some of the Bluesfest alumni artists on the 2017 first announcement and why you can’t miss them in 2017.

#1. Jethro Tull

Last Bluesfest performance was….

In 2011 – a huge year for Bluesfest with Bob Dylan and BB King headlining.

What they have been doing since….

In 2012, Thick as a Brick 2: Whatever Happened to Gerald Bostock? was released , the fifth studio album by Jethro Tull frontman Ian Andreson, released in 2012 as a follow-up of ‘Thick As A Brick’, Jethro Tull's highly acclaimed 1972 parody concept album. 

And in 2014, Ian Anderson released new album ‘Homo Erraticus’ (The Wandering Man) , with a tour following in the UK & US.

The same year Ian Anderson celebrated his 46th year as an international recording and performing musician.

 Why Jethro Tull are a must see at Bluesfest in 2017?...

With the band Jethro Tull reuniting in 2016 for a world wide tour, with legendary frontman Ian Anderson, their Bluesfest performance on Easter Sunday presents some of the best known songs from the repertoire of the band Jethro Tull and elaborate video productions to the stage. It’ll be a legendary , one of a kind, wild and a rocking show with mind blowing flute sounds – get ready to rock this Easter!

#2. Booker T. presents the Stax Records Revue 

Last Bluesfest performance was…..

It was in 2014 for the 25th year Anniversary celebrations!

What has Booker T. been doing since…..

At 71, Booker T. is still touring continuously, and most recently touring with Carlos Santana. In 2015, he toured the UK, Europe and Canada, playing to sold out crowds . He has also been taking his son on tour with him.

Why Booker T. is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017?...

Fan of soul classics? Booker T. will be presenting The Stax Revue, a collection of Stax Records, performed by the man who wrote so many of the songs and played on the original recordings as well as song from his time with the MG’s.

Expect to hear some of the greatest soul classics from the Stax Superstar including ‘Green Onions’ (Booker T. & the MG's), ‘Try A Little Tenderness’ (Otis Redding), ‘Mr Big Stuff’ (Jean Knight), ‘Gee Whiz’ (Carla Thomas), ‘Respect’ (Otis Redding/ Aretha Franklin), ‘Born Under A Bad Sign’ (Albert King), ‘Time Is Tight’ (Booker T. & the MG's), ‘Hold On I'm Comin'(Sam & Dave) and ‘When Something Is Wrong With My Baby’ (Sam & Dave) on Easter Sunday and Monday at Bluesfest 2017.

#3. Irish Mythen

Last Bluesfest performance was…

2016 we introduced Irish Mythen to Bluesfest – was also the same year that one of our Koalas was officially named Irish. Our koala conservation team all agreed that Irish Mythen was their standout from Bluesfest 2016 – so they named one of the Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm koalas after her.

What has Irish been doing since….

Off the back of Bluesfest 2016, Irish continued touring to Canada, England, Scotland and Wales, then onto US for a bunch of shows, and is now back in Australia touring the country. She also won a P.E.I. Award, winning SOCAN songwriter of the year for her song ‘Gypsy Dancer’.

 Why Irish Mythen is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017!

A gifted story teller with an incredible voice and sending shivers down the spine of festival goers in 2016, it would be hard to go past seeing Irish this year at Bluesfest. Plenty of opportunities to be up close and personal with her on opening night, Saturday 15th April and Easter Sunday!

#4. Jake Shimabukuro

Last Bluesfest performance was…

We were fortunate to see a whole lot of Jake Shimabukuro in 2015, not only for his own sets but jumping up on stage with G. Love and Donovan Frankenreiter. Bonus!

What’s been happening in Jake’s Ukulele world since he was last at Bluesfest?

Between family life and touring, Jake has recorded a new album ‘Nashville Sessions’ with the single ‘Galloping Seahorses’ recently released. Jake has also released an App!

Why Jake is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017!

Jake will be back for another mind boggling set at Bluesfest 2017, this time with new material. Don’t underestimate what this Hawaii native can do playing solo ukulele. Combining elements of blues, funk, jazz, rock and everything in between it’s no wonder Jake is one of our most requested back artists. Be sure to find your spot front and centre on Saturday 15th April and Easter Sunday. Who knows what surprises he has up his sleeve and which guest he might invite up on stage.

 #5. Mavis Staples

Last Bluesfest performance was?

It’s been 2 long years between visits for Mavis Staples , last performing in 2015, the same year she was awarded the ‘Bluesfest Shining Star Award’.

What has Mavis Staples been doing since his last Bluesfest performance?

Mavis has been on the road for her own tour as well as touring with her buddy, Bobby aka Bob Dylan in the US. And there’s talk of them recording together next year and another tour! BRING IT ON! Mavis has also just released her new record ‘Living On A High Note’. In 2015, her documentary ‘Mavis’ was also released.

Why Mavis Staples is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017!

What a privilege to have Mavis Staples return to Bluesfest, a living legend that raises the roof every time she visits. Expect 2017 to be no different. Mavis is EXCLUSIVE to Bluesfest, meaning she will not be performing anywhere else in Australia. We have Mavis for four performances over the 5 days! Does it get any better?

#6. Bonnie Raitt

Last Bluesfest performance was…

2013 we last time we sang the Blues with Bonnie Raitt at Bluesfest. Not only did she perform her own memorable shows, fans were treated to a musical extravaganza as she jumped up on stage with Zac Brown Band and Mavis Staples during their sets. The same year Bonnie and Mavis Staples toured as a double-headline over Australia for Bluesfest Touring.

What has Bonnie been doing since…?

Bonnie released a new album ‘Dig In Deep’ in early February 2016 and has been touring the US ever since as part of a two year worldwide tour. She performed at the 2016 GRAMMY’s with Chris Stapleton and Gary Clark Jr., paying tribute to the late King Of Blues BB King, with a performance of ‘The Thrill is Gone’.

Why Bonnie is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017!

Bonnie has mentioned that the new album ‘Dig In Deep’ is her most personal yet, channelling 'the dark stuff' (being some challenging years with the loss of close family members from 2010). With over 20 albums, one of the world’s best living blueswoman and slide-guitarists, expect a groovy Blues show on Good Friday at Bluesfest! Mavis Staples and Joan Osborne are scheduled to play the same night – these ladies have performed together before, wonder if there might be some cameos during her set?

 #7. Nikki Hill

Last Bluesfest performance was…

After a knockout performance in 2014, by popular demand, we just had to invite Nikki Hill back to Bluesfest in 2015 and again in 2017.

What has Nikki been doing since…?

Rocking and rolling, touring in the US and UK and doing her thang, this girl doesn’t stop.

Why Nikki Hill is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017!

“I am so excited to be invited to be a part of this again” reveals Nikki about coming back to Bluesfest. This girl is born to rock n roll. One of the most enthralling live performances you will see at Bluesfest in 2017, don’t miss the Nikki Hill show, every day from opening night until Easter Sunday.

#8. Roy Ayers

Last Bluesfest performance was…

It was 12 years ago in 2005 that Roy Ayers visited us, the 16th Bluesfest at Red Devil Park alongside REM, Jack Johnson, Dave Mathews Band.

What has Roy Ayers been doing since…?

Roy Ayers has been influencing some of the biggest names in the music business over recent times. Pharrell Williams cites Roy Ayers as one of his key musical heroes and Quest Love says he’s one of the key influences of progressive hip-hop and one of the forerunners of the marriage between Jazz and hip- hop.

He’s also been involved with starting the ‘The Roy Ayers Project’, a crowd-funded documentary (by the film makers) of the life, musical contributions, and cultural relevance of "one of the greatest musicians who has ever lived - Roy Ayers" featuring Questlove plus a number of hip-hop producers and artists who have sampled his music speak about the living legend.

Why Roy Ayers is a must see at Bluesfest in 2017!

Roy Ayers, who has been hailed as the Godfather of Neo Soul and best-known and most respected jazz and R&B – don’t miss this living legend onstage at Bluesfest 2017 Good Friday and Saturday 15th April.

Missed Part 1? Find it here!


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