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Out of the ashes: Twice cancelled Bluesfest lineup grows again

Culture

Eight new acts including Amy Shark and Stan Walker have been added to the Bluesfest lineup, joining headliners Midnight Oil, Paul Kelly and  Jimmy Barnes for the Festival besieged by two years of postponements, now ready to rise for the 2022 Easter long weekend.

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There have been eight more acts added to the Bluesfest lineup with more expected to be announced in the months leading up to Easter 2022.

ARIA-award winning Gold Coast singer-songwriter Amy Shark has joined the lineup, her latest album Cry Forever was released in April and debuted at #1 on the album charts.

Alongside Shark will be multi-award winning country artist Casey Barnes whose album Town of a Million Dreams was nominated for ARIA Country Album of the Year in 2020.

Kiwi R&B star and Byron local Stan Walker will join them, saying Bluesfest was heaven on earth for himself and his family.

“The first year I went I was gob-smacked; this was musical heaven on earth. Mum said ‘Son – forget Billboard, forget Grammy’s, I will know you have made it as an artist when you are on the Bluesfest stage’,” said Walker. 

Guitar virtuoso and Santana’s stage mate Kevin Borich will perform with his band Kevin Borich Express, while ‘the Jimi Hendrix of the Hammond Organ’ Lachy Doley will play a set on Friday and Saturday with Lachy Doley and the Horns of Conviction.

Blues, soul, and roots is also on the menu with American soul singer Lisa Hunt’s Forever Soul, Geoff Achison and the Souldiggers, and Hat Fitz and Cara added to the lineup.

The Festival has been put through its paces over the past two years, having been rescheduled twice due to local Covid outbreaks.

The announcement comes just three weeks after Baker Boy, Renee Geyer, Hoodoo Gurus, Six60, Kara Grainger, Sam Teskey and vocalist for The Tea Party Jeff Martin were added to the lineup.

Kevin Borich and the Kevin Borich Express have been added to the Bluesfest lineup for 2022 (Image: Supplied)

Director of Bluesfest Peter Noble also hinted that more headliners would be announced over the months leading up to the Festival.

“This Bluesfest lineup keeps building and building – the quality and talent next Easter long weekend is amazing and unparalleled,” he said. 

“It is the best Aussie and Kiwi lineup ever and we still have one or two surprises left up our sleeves. We have always believed the day would come when we will be coming together to attend music festivals again.

“We have never given up on that. Although it’s been quite a difficult time, we feel that for our beloved music industry, the musicians, the crews, everyone who works in it and especially the fans, it is our responsibility to be there to present the music we love as soon as we can.

“Thank you for sticking with us in what has been an epic journey, it’s not too long now.”

The new acts will join a lineup celebrating the best music from Australia and New Zealand, with headliners Midnight Oil, Paul Kelly, and Jimmy Barnes.

Among the 82 artists booked for the five-day Festival are John Butler, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Xavier Rudd, Ian Moss, C.W. Stoneking, and Kate Miller-Heidke. 

The Festival has also announced that it will revert to its five-day scheduled programming, opening on 14 April and running until 19 April 2022.

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