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THE ARTISTS WHO PUT THE BLUES IN BLUESFEST!
BUDDY GUY
BONNIE RAITT
MAVIS STAPLES
BETH HART
ST. PAUL AND THE BROKEN BONES
VINTAGE TROUBLE
RHIANNON GIDDENS
BOOKER T PRESENTS THE STAX RECORDS REVUE
EXPERIENCE JIMI HENDRIX
ERIC GALES
MUD MORGANFIELD
DEVON ALLMAN BAND
ELLIS HALL
VASTI JACKSON
THE RECORD COMPANY
TONY JOE WHITE
NIKKI HILL
BLIND BOY PAXTON
JEFF LANG
RAY BEADLE & THE SILVER DOLLARS
LLOYD SPIEGEL
GLENN CARDIER AND THE SIDESHOW
DAVY KNOWLES
MELODY ANGEL
THE CALIFORNIA HONEYDROPS
 
Once again Byron Bay Bluesfest is bringing some of the world’s best Blues and Blues related artists to play at their festival over Easter. While many other genres of music are represented, the Blues artists who play are the heart and soul of the festival. Bluesfest is proud to bring them from around the world to perform for crowds that are considered to be some of the most appreciative and fun to play for in the world.  Bluesfest is also proud to have a wealth of Australian Blues talent performing at the festival this year.
 
In 2017 The King of the Blues Buddy Guy will take the stage perform exclusively at Bluesfest. The iconic blues guitarist and singer, who is now 80 years old has been a pivotal force in music history. Buddy Guy has influenced titans like Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Stevie Ray Vaughan, is a pioneer of Chicago’s fabled West Side sound, and a living link to that city’s halcyon days of electric blues.
 
The inimitable Bonnie Raitt, another incredibly gifted artist joins Buddy on the line up. She is more than a best-selling artist, respected guitarist, expressive singer and accomplished songwriter….Bonnie Raitt has become an institution in American Music. 
 
Mavis Staples, one of the greatest gospel, soul and blues singers of all time, is returning in 2017 for four exclusive Bluesfest performances. Mavis Staples has managed to remain a leading voice in a career that has spanned over 60 years, she recently toured with Bob Dylan on his U.S. Summer tour and released her latest album Livin' on a High Note in 2016
 
After St. Paul & The Broken Bones tore the house down at their phenomenal Bluesfest debut in 2016, a campaign followed to bring them back in 2017. It is with great pleasure that Bluesfest announces the return of the recently expanded Alabama soul eight-piece led by the charismatic Paul Janeway, whose vocals have been compared to the likes of Otis Redding. Since they made their roof-raising debut at Bluesfest this year, St. Paul & The Broken Bones have been selling out theatres across the globe, performed on one of the main stages at Glastonbury Festival and will be releasing their sophomore album Sea of Noise this September.  Sea of Noise is a successor to their 2013 debut album Half the City.
 
Vintage Trouble blew away Australian audiences with their blistering shows at the festival in 2016, leaving new fans in their wake, eager to see them again; so it’s with great pleasure Bluesfest can announce they will be back to rock the festival in 2017. Their brand new single ‘Knock Me Out’ was released in February; it’s anthemic, funky and will be electrifying live.
 
Vocal powerhouse Beth Hart gained a reputation as one of the ‘buzz artists’ at Bluesfest in 2014 and 2015, and will be returning in 2017 for Bluesfest exclusive performances. Beth Hart is on fire. Right now, the Grammy nominated singer-songwriter is riding a creative tidal wave, firing out acclaimed albums, hooking up with the biggest names in music and rocking the house each night with that celebrated burnt‐honey voice.
 
She wowed festival goers with her emotional range and dazzling vocal prowess in 2016, so Bluesfest is thrilled to have Rhiannon Giddens back in 2017. The Grammy Award winning lead singer of African-American folk interpreters Carolina Chocolate Drops, has stepped out on her own, winning over audiences around the world with, â€œthe fervor of a spiritual, the yips of a folk holler, and the sultry insinuation of the blues” according to the New York Times.
 
It can be argued that it was Booker T. Jones who set the cast for modern soul and R&B music and is largely responsible for its rise and enduring popularity. On classic Stax hits like â€˜Green Onions’‘Hang ‘Em High’, â€˜Time Is Tight’ and â€˜Melting Pot’ the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Musicians Hall of Fame inductee, GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award recipient and winner of four GRAMMY Awards pushed the music’s boundaries, refined it to its essence and then injected it into the nation’s bloodstream.
 
Bluesfest audiences in 2017 are in for a thrill when Experience Jimi Hendrix takes the stage. Inspired by Jimi Hendrix's unparalleled creative and musical influence Experience Jimi Hendrix is a concert that brings together an all-star line-up of some of Australia's  guitar greats each performing their two favourite Jimi Hendrix songs and a couple of surprise duets.
 
Eric Gales stands head and shoulders among other guitarists in his genre and is out to blow your mind and expand your musical horizons, in fact Joe Bonamassa calls him â€œOne of the best if not the best guitarist in the world today”. He is known for mesmerising fans around the world with his uncanny connection to his guitar.
 
In 1954 Mud Morganfield, the eldest son of Blues great Muddy Waters (McKinley Morganfield) was born. Possessing a baritone voice very much like his father’s, and blessed with similar vocal phrasing and a sense of how to command a stage, Morganfield cut  his teeth on the southside of Chicago. He soon became a popular draw on the Blues club and festival circuit; mixing both original songs and Muddy Waters classics into his live sets. Regarding his performances of Muddy Waters songs in addition to his own material, Morganfield says, â€œI started to sing to show the world that dad left me here. I love and am proud to sing his songs just like I love and will always be proud of him. I’m not Muddy Waters and I’m certainly not trying to be Muddy Waters. I’m Mud Morganfield but when I’m up on stage I always feel pops is there with me and it means so much that I can get on stage and keep his music alive around the world.” Mud is a dynamic performer and entertainer that can command the stage, engage the crowd, and wow them with some of the best true Chicago Blues they have ever seen
 
The blond hair is the same, the body posture is also the same, and there are touches in the voice that have a similar genetic connection, but Devon Allman has toiled long and hard to establish his own musical identity, separate from his legendary dad, Gregg Allman. In 2017 Devon Allman returns to Bluesfest on the back of his critically acclaimed new album Ride or Die. He will once again bring his bring his first rate guitar skills and powerful vocals to the stage at the festival.
 
Through the ages, there have been a number of famous blind African American male entertainers in Gospel, Blues, Soul and Pop but few as unilaterally gifted as Ellis Hall. What other man can claim to have written 3,800 songs, sung at the funeral of Helen Keller at St.Patrick’s Cathedral in New York and before Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, been a member of Oakland Soul band Tower of Power and a lead voice for the animated California Raisins, been nominated for an Ovation Theatre Award for his  first stage role in “The Gospel At Colonus” (in which he sang, acted, and walked the stage and stair props mostly unattended), and penned the official song of the city where he grew up: Claxton, Georgia? Welcome to the unprecedented greatness of Ellis Hall.
 
World renowned guitarist, and vocalist, Mississippi living blues legend, Cultural ambassador, 2012 Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame inductee, and 2015 Albert King Lifetime Guitar Award recipient - Vasti Jackson is a powerful force in the world of music. As an artist, Vastiis known for sweat-drenched, soul-ripping live performances marked by some of the most stunning, and innovative guitar playing today. Vasti's stellar vocals, fiery guitar, and stage presence captures the audience, and leaves a lasting impression that celebrates the triumph of the blues, and the joy of rhythm that is soul satisfying to all that are lucky enough to experience his music.
 
Founded in Los Angeles in 2011 The Record Company immediately took their hometown by storm, hailed by LA Weekly for â€œmaking bluesy music that would sound more at home in a sweaty, backwoods Mississippi juke joint.” They are a band who prides themselves on writing and playing raw, sincere Rock ‘n’ Roll.
 
Tony Joe White known to fans as The Swamp Fox is one musician who can certainly call Bluesfest his 2nd home, after multiple performances over many years. The American singer-songwriter and guitarist never ceases to please the Bluesfest audience with his swamp rock melodies, combining New Orleans-style rhythm and bluescountry and western, and traditional French Louisiana musical influences.
“If Tina Turner and Little Richard had a daughter and raised her with the help of uncles James Brown and Chuck Berry, she’d be like Nikki Hill.”— Minneapolis Star Tribune. Just a couple years ago, Nikki Hill was a bartender with an affinity for punk and a deep love for classic R&B. At her husband (and now guitar-player) Matt Hill’s behest, she stepped out from behind the bar and onto the stage. The response has been ecstatic, and now the band tours the globe relentlessly, stunning audiences with their muscular sound, Matt’s volcanic leads, and, of course, Nikki’s inimitable charisma.
 
He won the hearts of many Bluesfest goers in 2016, so it’s with great pleasure they welcome Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton back in 2017.  This young musician sings and plays banjo, guitar, piano, fiddle, harmonica, Cajun accordion, and the bones (percussion). He has an eerie ability to transform traditional jazz, blues, folk, and country into the here and now, and make it real. He is also renowned for mesmerising audiences with his humour and storytelling. He's a world class talent and a uniquely colorful character.  Mastering many styles including country and delta swap blues, Paxton is the real deal and someone Bluesfest is proud to bring to Australia so that audiences here can discover this wonderful artist for themselves.
 
Bluesfest is proud to welcome Australian-based musician Jeff Lang to the festival in 2017. He has earned worldwide acclaim as a virtuosic guitarist, a dynamic songwriter and a startlingly unique live performer. With a back catalogue of 16 studio albums, Jeff has been featured at major festivals, pubs, clubs, arts centres and venues internationally for the past decade. Blending rock, roots, folk, blues, ballads, instrumentals, improvisation and a devastatingly high level of musicality, Jeff Lang is a singularly unique performer in our world.
Ray Beadle has ripped it up at Bluesfest in the past, so they are welcoming him back with open arms in 2017. Ray's guitar and vocal styles evoke numerous blues legends, whilst concocting a breathtaking style all of his own.  It is not by chance that Ray has become a favourite amongst Australian blues and music fans.
 
One of Australia’s most highly lauded Bluesmen will make his Bluesfest debut in 2017. Lloyd Spiegel is an award winning solo artist on the cutting edge of the blues scene in Australia. Australian Guitar Magazine recently named him as one of the 50 top Australian guitarists of all time and he recently won every prize he was eligible for at the Australian Blues Awards.
 
In the 70s, Australian singer-songwriter/guitarist Glenn Cardier produced three albums of highly original folk/rock songs. He played the first two Sunbury festivals and worked with the likes of Frank Zappa, Spike Milligan, and Fairport Convention. He broke through in the tough UK folk circuit. His hard-strumming, quirky onstage persona was always at odds with his recorded work and through the 80s and 90s Cardier became increasingly reclusive. Glenn Cardier’s re-emergence in the 2000s as a songwriter / performer of real distinction has been nothing short of extraordinary. Onstage, there are the trademark flashes of dark humour in his songs of stark beauty and thumping rockabilly/blues. There’s a touch of Beefheart in his voice, a hint of Cohen in the lyrics, a pinch of Elvis here and there. But underlying it all are the songs. Happy/sad songs. Sweet/crazy songs. Cardier songs.
 
Davy Knowles makes his Bluesfest debut in 2017, however he is no stranger to festivals having played Coachella, Lollapalooza and Bonnaroo with his band Back Door Slam. Davy is known for his confident and distinctive guitar playing, commanding solos and tight-knit band. He is originally from the Isle of Man but has moved to Chicago recently where he made his 2016 album Three Miles From Avalon. Peter Frampton has called him “the gunslinger guitarist of the 21st century” so we are excited to introduce him to Australian audiences this year.
 
Bluesfest is thrilled to that The California Honeydrops will bring their feel good sound to the festival in 2017. The California Honeydrops don’t just play music—they throw parties. Led by dynamic vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Lech Wierzynski, and drawing on diverse musical influences from Bay Area R&B, funk, Southern soul, Delta blues, and New Orleans second-line, the Honeydrops bring vibrant energy and infectious dance-party vibes to their shows.

She may be at the bottom of this announcement, but Melody Angel is destined to be at the top in the near future. Born and raised on the south side of Chicago, she began playing guitar at the age of thirteen. Even though her mother was barely getting by raising two children alone, she found a way to introduce Melody to her first Fender Stratocaster by buying the guitar out of a window of a pawn shop.  She has been inspired by an array of artists such as, Michael Jackson, Prince, Jimi Hendrix, Chuck Berry, SRV, Big Mama Thornton, Buddy Guy, Bonnie Raitt, Slash, Lenny Kravitz, Santana, and Jeff Buckley. In her single â€˜In This America’ which is dedicated to â€œall the mothers that have lost their black sons unjustly” she sings â€œHow do I know it’s safe to have a son in this America?” and it is impossible not to be moved by her powerful words and heartbreaking delivery. Melody Angel is an important voice and one that deserves to be heard around the world.
 
All 5, 3 & 1 day festival and camping tickets are currently on sale through www.bluesfest.com.au or by phoning the Bluesfest office on 02 6685 8310 but will be taken off sale next week at the latest.



DAN BAIRD & HOMEMADE SIN
The Gov | Tues 2 May
Tickets: $45 + booking fee
Doors open 7.30pm

The Georgia Satellites were one of the most ferocious bands of the 80’s.What set them apart from the other 100,000 bands who cranked their amps up to eleven was that their wild riffs and tanked up cries came from a band who, from the start, understood it’s place in the rock tradition and fought hard to solidify it with each recording.

The story starts in the early 80’s at Hedgen’s, a “country club for the spiritually impoverished and emotionally destitute” as chief songwriter Dan Baird would later identify it. Bassist Keith Christopher, drummer Mauro Magellan and guitarists Dan Baird and Rick Richards were all playing on the Atlanta circuit in various bar bands such as The Hellhounds, The Brains and The Woodpeckers. These bands would gradually morph into the original Georgia Satellites, who signed to same the same management company as country-rock pioneers, Jason & The Scorchers.

Where the Satellites really earned their reputation though, was with their live club shows. Whether as headliners, or special guests to everyone from Tom Petty, Bob Seeger, David Bowie, Johnny Diesel and The Injectors.
All those years of three sets a night, paid dividends laid waste to audiences across the States and particular, Europe, which took the band to it’s collective heart, a love affair that continues to this day.
Breakthrough appearances at the legendary UK Reading Festival and Denmark’s Roskilde established the band as European favourites in 1986.

Two more Elekra LP’s, Open All Night and the remarkable In The Land Of Salvation And Sin, plus a cover of The Swinging Blue Jeans, Hippy Hippy Shake, on the Tom Cruise movie soundtrack, Cocktail followed, but by the early 90’s, all those years of incessant touring had taken their toll and the band split. Dan Baird went on to a successful solo career with Rick Rubin’s Def American, scoring major hits with the album Love Songs From The Hearing Impaired and the single I Love You Period. A second LP, the critically acclaimed Buffalo Nickel followed and Dan also developed as a career as a highly sought after producer.

The rhythm section on both solo albums were Keith Christopher (bass) and former Georgia Satellites drummer Mauro Magellan, the duo responsible for a large part of Dan’s trademark sound.

Jump to 2007 and the band was completed by Jason And The Scorchers founder member and guitarist extraordinaire, Warner E. Hodges. The quartet released their debut album in 2008, championed by Alan Jones (Uncut), Scott Rowley (Classic Rock) and Bob Harris.

The band appeared at the Sweden Rock Festival in 2009 and 2016 and Hard Rock Hell in 2011 and 2012. After headlining the prestigious Kilkenny Festival in Ireland in 2010,they have established an annual series of concerts in London that attract fans from all around the world.