Mildura Country Music Festival
FRI 29 SEP - SUN 8 OCT 2017

Mildura Country Music Festival
ALICE BENFER

ALICE BENFER

Alice Benfer is a 20 year old singer and songwriter, who

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grew up on a Cattle and Sugarcane property on The Sunshine Coast. Each day you could hear music being played in her home. She released her first 14 track album “Mustering Up Country” in January 2011 with Kross Kut Records. In 2012 Kate won Best New Talent in QLD through the Gold Medallion Media Awards. Alice started singing and yodelling when she was 7 years old and they both came naturally to her. She writes her own songs and like to be very different and versatile when she performs.

 

SHARON BENJAMIN

SHARON BENJAMIN

In 1993, Leeton based singer/songwriter Sharon Benjamin she released her debut album Something For Everyone.

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In 1997 Sharon and husband Mark Hillier formed a duo called Strike Two which recorded a self-titled album followed by her six track EP As the Crow Flies. In 2006 Sharon released her acclaimed album Perfect Little World 13 tracks written by Sharon, and co-produced with Mark in their new Redbak Recording studios. Her latest album “Re-Souled” was released in 2012 and has 13 covers songs that Sharon chose by popular request. 

TERRY BENNETTS

TERRY BENNETTS

​Terry Bennetts is two time Golden Guitar finalist. In 2014 two years after his wife, Jenny passed away

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he released his first solo album ” Mateship” which was nominated for numerous awards including being a finalist in the 2015 Golden Guitar awards for best Instrumental. Terry writes, sings and plays songs of Australia performed in the Bush Ballad style. Born and raised in the Southwest of Western Australia he married Jenny after meeting her in Perth. He runs Red Dog Recording Studio, recording his own songs and other artists.

LANCE BIRRELL

LANCE BIRRELL

Lance Birrell is an award winning musician A capable solo artist who has entertained in many areas throughout Australia.

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Born and raised in Port Pirie South Australia, where his talent, personality and guitar picking skills were recognised at an early age. He is now residing in Tamworth New South Wales. With a friendly and enthusiastic approach, Lance plays and sings an extensive variety of music and songs to audiences of all ages. He is an accomplished multi-instrumentalist and a much sought after session musician. Many recordings feature his guitar and pedal steel expertise.

OWEN BLUNDELL

OWEN BLUNDELL

Owen is described by many as the best kept secret in Australia and one of our most versatile and talented entertainers today.

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A feature of his show is his impersonations of many well-known people - the most popular being Frank J Spencer. Owen has numerous albums and three videos to his credit, he has appeared many times on radio and television, and regularly tours with Reg Poole and Terry Gordon as The Gunbarrell Highwaymen. Owen won a Most Outstanding Entertainer Award in 1995 and, in 1998, he was named winner of the TSA Songmaker Award.

CARTER & CARTER

CARTER & CARTER

Carter & Carter have so many runs on the board during the past 10 years 

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that there should be no argument about describing them as Australian Independent country music artists of the decade. Dominating the Independent Country Music Scene in Australia for over 15 years now Carter & Carter (Merelyn & David) have amassed more awards and more chart success than any independent artist in history. Their latest album “Wonderful World” was released to a full house at the Capitol Theatre in Tamworth at the festival and their hit single “To The Moon And Backwon them their 11th Independent Country Music Award for Group/Duo of the Year. Their latest singles have both climbed to the top of the National Country Tracks Chart - “Little Patch Of Heaven” (#2 for 6 weeks) and “What A Wonderful World” (#3 for two weeks).

 

 

 

 

 

 

ALLAN CASWELL

ALLAN CASWELL

In 2007, when Allan Caswell won his sixth Golden guitar in Tamworth for Vocal Collaboration Of The Year, it marked 27 years since his first Golden Guitar in 1980.

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In the years in between Allan has experienced the highs and lows of a very successful and hugely varied career. His song On the Inside (the theme for the television Prisoner) reached No.1 in Australia and New Zealand, No.3 in England and made the Country Charts in the USA. At last count, Caswell has had well over 900 songs published and over 500 recordings of his songs released worldwide. Allan’s career as an entertainer has taken him to almost every town in NSW, every state in Australia, to New York, LA, Nashville, New Zealand, East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2010 Allan celebrated 30 years since his first Golden Guitar win and 30 years as one of Country Music’s most respected singer/songwriters.

STEPHEN R CHENEY

STEPHEN R CHENEY

Stephen is a full time International Entertainer with 35 years of experience and knows how to entertain any audience with over 8000 shows already performed.

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He has toured in USA and regularly in New Zealand.He is a songwriter of world class and has enjoyed success in Europe, USA, New Zealand and has far off success in such places as Taiwan,UK, Netherlands and Russia. Stephen has recently been receiving industry accolades from around Europe and the rest of the world with his song writing and performance skills and recently featured in a radio special called The Life of Stephen R Cheney. Stephen has released 18 CD’s and a DVD.  His latest recording project, a series called The Tribute Series, Vol 1, Vol 2 and Vol 3, sees some of his original songs mixed with his covers of some of the great Country Classics. He has also recorded a gospel album.

PAM CLARKE

PAM CLARKE

Formerly from the Broken Hill area in north western NSW, Pam knows the land

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and its hardships, having been raised in the NSW outback and living on a sheep station. Becoming involved in the music industry in 1989, Pam successfully juggled her two lives as a singer-entertainer and partner in primary production before moving to Queensland’s Sunshine Coast in 2003 where she released her fourth album and more recently, her long awaited album number five, “I Love Music”. Pam regularly entertains at Seniors Associations, Clubs and venues around Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast, and plays keys in a country music club band.

COLOURS OF GRAY

COLOURS OF GRAY

Colours of Gray is a unique group with a blend of vibrant colour. This group have a rich sound

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made from the four unique young talented musicians, that over the early years of their lives, have dedicated themselves to learn and master their musical instruments. By themselves they are the Grays, but together they blossom into the Colours of Gray. This is an ensemble that combines the classic spunk of youth with a flavoured gifting of fun tones and relevant messages. Starring Johannah on vocals and keys, Emily on keys, bass and backup vocals, Reuben on drums and percussion and Sophie on keys and back up vocals. 

DARREN COLSTON

DARREN COLSTON

Darren Colston is a Multi-Award Winning singer-songwriter, very much in the Troubadour mould.

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His emotive songs, delivered in fine voice, are unmistakeably Australian, unmistakeably Country and unmistakeably “Darren Colston”. A true Storyteller, Darren has that happy talent for injecting his songs straight into the heart of the audience. Delivered intimately, in his unique style and with just his voice and acoustic guitar, Darren’s show is a “must see”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COUNTRY HORIZON

COUNTRY HORIZON

Country Horizon features husband and wife team, ​Larry and Wendy Woods

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​from the Southwest of Western Australia, they all styles of Country Music with the emphasis on good listening, enjoying the music and having fun. With their song writing ability and cover songs they enjoy being on tour, covering Australia and meeting people and friends at their shows. When at home they like to help promote young and upcoming artists with workshops. At the 2015 festival they will be compering the Walk Ups each morning at the Gateway Tavern.

ANGELA EASSON

ANGELA EASSON

Springing forth from the hills of Adelaide, Angela is a vibrant, up-and-coming singer/songwriter.

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Blitzing Australia’s modern country scene with her hard-earned reputation for mixing infectious melodies with her intensely personal lyrics, Angela is rightly regarded as a rising star. After dedicating over two decades into her passion for music and natural talent for songwriting, Angela released her debut full length album ”Wanted” in November 2015. Featuring reflections on love, loss, and life, Angela crafts tales to her unique combination of American and Australian country music. Her first single “Once Upon A Time” reached #14 on the national Country Tracks Top 30 charts earlier this year, with predictions for “Wanted” to have many more chart topping singles still to be released. Wanted revels in being the culmination to date of a life well lived – as a young hard-working mother of two, Angela’s ideals and tireless work ethic have informed her decisions and paid off in from very way from early on.

DWAYNE ELIX

DWAYNE ELIX

Dwayne performs clubs, festivals, and special events throughout Australia and New Zealand, as a singer and multi- instrumentalist.

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He is known for his banjo-playing floorshows and also presents a fully costumed tribute to Hank Williams. Dwayne Elix & The Engineers work the Sydney club scene, where they have a large ‘50s rock’n’roll dance following. Dwayne was recently inducted into the South Australian Walk of Fame, and received the SA Great  Award. Dwayne has 15 albums to date.

EMMA JENE

EMMA JENE

Young inspiring Emma Jene has found her passion for Country music

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while she was in America representing Australia at the World Championships of Performing Arts Olympics against 56 Countries and filled one of her dreams to win for Australia receiving a Bronze Medal. Her first album “Dare To Dream” epitomises her dream, is to be well known across Australia and share her love of country music with all with this special gift she has been given.

ALLISON FORBES

ALLISON FORBES

After kicking off the year in the Toyota Star Maker Grand-Final in Tamworth

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Allison is about to release her much anticipated second EP “Augustine”. With producer Shane Nicholson back in the drivers seat, this secures her spot tightly in the alt-country scene here in Australia with a unique blend of Americana and folk-infused country that will have you tapping your toes and tugging on the heartstrings. With insightful lyrics and addictive melodies, Allison has an individual way of telling stories that leaves you experiencing them and questioning yourself.”

LEE FORSTER

LEE FORSTER

Country roots and traveling many tracks give great life experiences anyone. Lee,

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born and raised in country Victoria, grew up in a country music family. Lee has been singing, playing lead guitar, writing songs and taking the necessary steps to help hone his country music career for over 20  years. Lee has performed all over the country.  Lee loves his country music and his live shows cover everyone from Slim Dusty to Brad Paisley. “Longnecks and Rednecks” is the title to Lees latest album. This album is a fun drinking songs album produced by Stuie French and Lee. It is also a duet album with Stuie. Both fellas are traditionalists when it comes to country music, who love the old stuff, especially Merle Haggard, George Jones, Buck Owens and Slim Dusty. .

 

CRAIG GILES

CRAIG GILES

Years of constant traveling, a string of successful albums and hit-singles plus endless awards and accolades

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 that just keep coming, has well and truly earned this entertaining artist a prominent place amongst the cream of Australian entertainers. Craig Giles is acclaimed as ‘Mr. Versatile’, by media and fans alike, owing to his ability to adapt his rich voice to his immense and varied repertoire, which spans the spectrum of Ballads through to all styles of Country and on to Rockabilly and the ever popular 50’s-60’s Rock and Roll.

PAUL GIBBS

PAUL GIBBS

Following a finalist spot in Star Maker, singer/keyboardist Paul released an album in 1994.

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He made the finals for New Talent of the Year at the 1995 Toyota Country Music Awards. Paul is the Musical Director for the The Southern Stars The Australian Independent Country Music Awards Band.

TERRY GORDON

TERRY GORDON

Terry Gordon was honored with the coveted award of Country Music Entertainer of the year 1993,

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not only as a tribute to his recent touring and recording success, but also  as a mark of respect for his 30 continuous years as a multi-talented performer. Since beginning his distinguished  recording career, he has released 25 singles and 20 albums. His versatility as a balladeer, songwriter, bush poet, comedy performer and TV host has established Terry as one of CM’s finest entertainers. During a career of continuous travel, he has criss-crossed the length and breadth of Australia literally dozens of times. Terry has performed in all kinds of venues – from weather-beaten tents to the most modern TV studios and entertainment centers. On stage he has worked alongside just about all the greats of the industry. In 2005 Terry was awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for his services to  Country Music.

BILL GRAY

BILL GRAY

Since Bill’s first performance with the Geelong Bellarine Country Music Club, in February 2012 Bill has

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hit the country music scene with a bang. Bill attended the Academy of Country Music in Tamworth in January 2014 and with his fast growing line of merchandise, Bill is serious about his music and the direction he is taking. In 2013 he achieved over 250 live performances and has just finished recording his new albums, tributes to merle haggard and Dwight Yoakam. He now has shows spreading across Australia and is a popular artist at many Festivals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BEC HANCE

BEC HANCE

Hoisting her swag of accolades, Bec Hance walks the country road

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as one of only a few women making their mark in the traditional country genre. This talented singer/songwriter has along list of admirers around the nation both for her honest, funny, catchy or melancholy lyrics as well as her engaging personality. Her beautifully crafted lyrics evoke strong emotions. She classes herself as an Australia artist who retains the traditional sound country music  in Australia and the US were built on bringing them together with a modern twist. Bec has firmly cemented her place in the industry with back to back nominations in the Golden Guitar Awards in Tamworth for Bush ballad of the Year in 2013 and 2014. 

HEARTBEAT

HEARTBEAT

A professional duo who do what they love, and love what they do. HeartBeat play a vibrant mix of rock n roll, country rock and other popular dance favourites. 

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Every now and then you will hear an act that makes you say “Wow they’re good!” – HeartBeat is one of those acts. With the rich vocal talents of Grant Manson combined with the sweet harmony of his wife Carol, this pair are shaking up the baby boomers wherever they appear. With over 30 years experience in the industry Grant and Carol listen to what the crowd want and play the songs people want to hear. With a history between them of music and dancing this couple have the act to provide the audience with an energy filled night of entertainment which leaves the crowd wanting more.

SHARON HEASLIP

SHARON HEASLIP

Sharon has kept up her love of traditional style country music

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and its people through performances at festivals and shows in Qld & NSW. Her melodic easy listening style of singing and stage professionalism, along with her happy friendly smile is guaranteed to light up your day. She is one of Australia’s leading female vocalists of bush ballads and country songs.

JOHANNA HEMARA

JOHANNA HEMARA

Johanna is a city girl with a love for country music. As such, her vocal versatility and contemporary country music style is unique.

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Johanna’s influences range from the great country music artists of the past through to the country, rock and pop icons of today. Her sensational new album Starting Over, produced by Herm Kovac, features a mixture of her own songs and those written by some of the finest songwriters from Australia and Nashville. Johanna’s first single Starting Over reached #21 on the Country Tracks Top 30 chart in February, and the second single The Flame looks set to follow suit. And in March Johanna was the 2010 Frank Ifield International Spur Award winner, giving her access to the U.K. market.

KATE HINDLE

KATE HINDLE

​Kate Hindle is originally from Collie in Western Australia and is 18 years old, now living in Tamworth

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Music has played a big role in Kate’s life, she started learning how to sing and play guitar when she was 9 years old and began performing out in public when she was 11 years old. In 2013 Kate released her third Album called “Keepin’ It  Country”; recording it at Apollo 10 Studio’s with Mark Donohoe. The Album has 12 tracks including an original called “Slow Dancing”. In Tamworth in 2013 at the Golden Medallion Awards, Kate was honoured to have won the Gold Medallion for New Talent of the year and went on to win,the top award judged by Australian Media/Radio Networks as well as the audience, 2013 National Female Artist of the Year. Kate received a scholarship from the Australian Bush Balladeers Association to attend the Tamworth Academy of Country Music in 2014 as well as 2015.

 

 

 

 

 

JESS HOLLAND

JESS HOLLAND

​Jess Holland is a Mudgee born musician and her latest release 

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everyone’s playlist in 2015. Jess says she is really comfortable with the way her latest offering “Whole Lot To Say” sounds. It features some rippin’ rock tunes, as well as some beautiful ballads. There are also some classic blues elements and even a bit of a bluegrass sound that truly showcases her vocal ability. If her career trajectory so far is anything to go by, Jess is quickly earning herself the reputation as one of the hardest working independent musicians in the industry today, and she is nowhere near ready to take a rest.

GRAEME HUGO

SANDRA HUMPHRIES

SANDRA HUMPHRIES

In 2003, Sandra released her first solo album Every Road, and followed that up with the acclaimed Take The Pain Away – both produced by Bill Chambers.

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Her unique talents saw her reap plenty of awards and accolades including Independent Female Vocalist of the year at the 2004 TIARAs and Vocal Collaboration at the same awards in 2005 with Bill Chambers. But Sandra stepped past previous marks with her sensational new album I’m Worth It, a sublime collection of strong country songs, which saw her as a finalist in Album of the Year at the 2009 Australian Independent Country Music Awards. The album has produced two Top 5 and one Top 10 national chart hits thus far. When it comes to pure country, no-one does it better.

MICHAELA JENKE

MICHAELA JENKE

Hailing from the Barossa Valley in South Australia, 21 year old Michaela is an up and coming singer/songwriter.

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Her unique voice blended with her guitar skills has already enabled her to support and share the stage with some of the big names in the Australian country music scene, supporting artists such as Bill Chambers and Amber Lawrence. She has  won numerous awards at the Port Pirie Music Festival and this year’s Laura Country Music Festival. Michaela is passionate in sustaining the roots, the stories, and the honesty of country music, yet entwines a fresh approach to the country genre.

 

GLENN JONES

GLENN JONES

For the last 35 years Glenn has travelled Australia with his very own style of country music.

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A student of our early music pioneers Tex Morton, Buddy Williams, Slim Dusty etc. Jonesy has moulded a very unique style of ballads, poetry and yarns into his performance and is regarded as one of Australia’s finest traditional Country Music performers. Since 2006 Glenn has enjoyed the lead role in the Gold Coast production “AUSTRALIAN OUTBACK SPECTACULAR”. A role which has enhanced his stage and story telling abilities. With 14 albums to his credit and a string of awards, Jonesy is a must see for all traditional country music fans.

WARREN MAHONEY

WARREN MAHONEY

​Warren as part of Camp Oven Country organises the daily walk ups at Apex Riverbeach Caravan Park.

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CAMERON MASON

CAMERON MASON

At 18 Cameron signed a publishing deal with Nashville’s Loosends Music. His band appeared at Festivals and shows all over Victoria and supported US singer/songwriter Don King on his Australian tour.

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Cameron formed Runaway Train, which won the Battle of the Bands in Tamworth, and received a Golden Guitar nomination. Songwriting has always been a passion for the Bendigo based singer/songwriter , and his latest album Changes displays the diverse range of Cameron’s writing style, from the thought-provoking track “Count Your Blessings” to the more lighthearted style of “What Am I Gonna Do”. “A Good Woman” is the latest single to be released from the Changes album, Cameron continues to be a hit with the modern country music fans and the traditionalists alike. He is a great country artist who is sure to leave the fans wanting for more.

TOM MAXWELL

TOM MAXWELL

A 1995 Toyota Star Maker finalist, Tom has carved his own niche in Australian Country Music 

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through successful touring, recording and interacting with his fans. He’s won a number of awards, ranging from Bungendore’s Stan Coster Memorial Bush Ballad Awards to the top five of the Golden Guitar Awards in Tamworth. From his home base at Moonbi, Tom travels the countryside promoting his seven successful albums, the latest of which is appropriately titled On The Road, Volume 2. He was inducted into the Avenue of Honour and Rocky Page Hall of Fame in 2008.

NEIL McARTHUR

NEIL McARTHUR

Neil is a very popular bush poet and his verse and humour have entertained audiences across Australia.

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He is one of the compere’s at the Poet’s Breakfast at Mildura and has received wide praise for his performances.

KARIN PAGE

KARIN PAGE

After an amazing set of performances at the Toyota Concert for Rural Australia in Tamworth, Karin Page from Perth has been crowned the 2016 Toyota Star Maker winner.

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was crowned the 2016 Toyota Star Maker winner. Karin’s Toyota Star Maker win comes off the back of a beautiful ballad and an upbeat anthem that ended with a toe-tapping reprise of “Stuck in the Middle with You,” to the crowd’s delight. Her new album will be released in the bear future.

SELEEN McALISTER

SELEEN McALISTER

After the success of her first studio album, “Truth About Us”, Seleen has headed back

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into the studio to start work on her new album. Teaming with acclaimed Golden Guitar songwriters, Allan Caswell and Drew McAlister, to release her single “She’s Getting Stronger. A heartfelt song of empowerment, it takes a strong heart to love but it takes a stonger heart to continue to love after it’s been hurt. This last year has been a year of highlights with a run of tours and special appearances throughout Queensland. “Creating this new music has been an exciting journey in my career, from telling my stories to telling the stories of others all through this new music”.

NEILLYRICH

NEILLYRICH

The chemistry between this hot new Duo is sure to set the stage on fire.

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Matthew McNeilly and Amelia Richards were two of the young guns in their respective homelands in country music and now  have come together to form a duo which will bring their love of traditional and contemporary country music from both countries to their audience. Their single ” Love Hate Kinda Thing” has debuted on The Hot FM Top Country 100 Hits at No 95. NeillyRich are set to amaze their audiences and take them on a journey with their music.  

SLIM NEWTON

SLIM NEWTON

Slim is a West Australian who became famous when he recorded span The Redback On The Toilet Seat

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for Hadley Records in 1971, earning three gold records and a Golden Guitar at the inaugural (1973) Golden Guitar Awards. He travelled briefly in 1972 with the late Tex Morton and did many Australia-wide tours with the Rick & Thel Show until 1987. He was presented with a Living Legend award at Kempsey in 1997 and the Pioneer Award at the TIARAs in Tamworth in 1999. In 2009 he received Australian country music’s highest accolade, being elevated to the Roll Of Renown. These days Slim is involved with the Tex Morton travelling museum with Trevor Day and Noel Smith of Dingo Track Records.

STEVE PASSFIELD

STEVE PASSFIELD

Steve Passfield is well known as the leader of the award winning Handpicked Band

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and with his first solo album Goin’ it Alone released in March 2007, Steve was nominated for the 36th CMAA Instrumental of the Year, the Tamworth Independent Artists Recognition Awards for Male Vocal & Instrumental Award and five Australian Country Music People’s Choice nominations for Best Male Vocal, Most Promising Future Star, Best Album, Best Song and Best Bush Ballad. Steve picked up the Golden Guitar and with the recent release of his album Timberman & Other Tales, Steve is showing that persistence pays off, 13 great tracks showcasing his songwriting and composition skills that will surely open some new doors. The first single Old Friends recently hit the Country Tracks Top 30.

EVAN PLATSCHINDA

EVAN PLATSCHINDA

Evan has performed dozens of shows all over Australia which also includes my own 4-5 month tours

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and takes in a lot of remote outback locations. Having recorded 6 albums in that time and written several songs, some of which have earnt him recognition in a number of awards, such as grand finalist in the Australian Bush Balladeers Star Quest in Tamworth, Gidgee Coal Awards in Pitsworth QLD. and the Northern Territory songwriters awards. Throughout these tours and festivals he has had the pleasure to perform with many of the best artists in Australian country music.

 


JAY PODGER

JAY PODGER

​Jay Podger is the true blue country singer/songwriter/yodeller of today

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​Born in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains in a small country town of Bombala. He was raised on pure country music and has captured his surroundings in the songs that he writes and sings about. Jay has a knack of entertaining crowds with his own style and ability to sing, yodel and play guitar. If you like a ballad or a honky tonkin’ swing song, Jay is the bloke as an all round entertainer. His humble personality has made him a very likeable artist.

REG POOLE

REG POOLE

Reg is one of the great story tellers of Australian Country Music - a big man

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with a big voice to match. From the first chord of his Maton Guitar, he captivates the audience. It’s as if time stands still, as this 3 times Gold Guitar Winner take you on a journey of discovery about the people and places in this vast land. What you see is what you get, the genuine article, a fair dinkum Australian who puts his heart and soul into his music.

KIM RITCHIE

KIM RITCHIE

Kim is a country singer and variety singer with a difference. Although blind since birth, Kim has become

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a very accomplished entertainer. She loves singing and playing the guitar, has a devilish sense of humour and an excellent recall of the people she has met. In October 2004 Kim released her first CD “Ambition” which contained 16 songs of her favourite country artists such as Patsy Cline, Anne Murray, The Judds and Linda Ronstad. Her latest CD “From Me To You” is a compilation of country and gospel songs. She also has a DVD, Live At The Albion Hotel 2009 that features a range of songs that are not on either CD. Kim’s passion is the love of music which she enjoys sharing with the audience.

KIARA RODRIGUES

KIARA RODRIGUES

Born in Melbourne and now residing in Brisbane, 17yr old Kiara started singing country at the age of eight,

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PETE SMITH

PETE SMITH

Pete has earned the reputation of being one of Australia’s best showman on the Australian festival circuit.

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He brings to the stage an honest, refreshhing approach to performance, which is hadr to find these days. His influences are of a bygone era in Australian Country Music, but they are still alive and well as you will see in one of Pete’s shows. He released his 6th Album “Western Star” at the 2010 Tamworth Country Music Festival and with the demand for his albums he will be starting a few new projects this year. Named as one of Australia’s Top balladeers in the Gold medallion Awards in 2010. Pete released his 7th Album Come Fly With Me in January 2012 and saw a touch of success being a finalist in the T.S.A Awards.

JUSTIN STANDLEY

JUSTIN STANDLEY

​Justin is one of the most exciting new talents to enter the country music arena

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​His extraordinary vocal range, brilliant song writing ability and beautiful disposition are all the ingredients to ensure Justin is one of Australia’s brightest stars of the future. Justin’s album showcases his rare talent. he shot to national prominence after appearing as atop 12 finalist on the Australian X Factor in late 2012 on a quest to find his children. Justin is recognised as a great musical talent and a big hearted man. He was atop 10 finalist in Toyota Star maker in January this year in Tamworth.

CRAIG STEWART

CRAIG STEWART

Craig is a singer/songwriter from the Mid North Coast of New South Wales.

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A two time Toyota Starmaker grand finalist, Craig is known for his ability to weave Australian stories into song. A graduate of the CMAA country music college, Craig is gearing up to release his latest all original album at this year’s festival.   Whilst he is still remaining tight lipped about the content, he has described it as “a very special project that I’m certain will leave every audience member with a much greater understanding of just what it means to be able to call yourself Australian.”

THE ROUGH DIAMONDS

THE ROUGH DIAMONDS

Hunter Valley sisters, Cec and Em, bring their music to life with strong vocal harmonies

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and their down-to-earth personalities. Since 2006, they have performed at several major music festivals and venues throughout NSW and QLD. The Rough Diamonds have also hosted many fundraisers to help others in times of need. Their music has received consistent radio airplay within Australia, the UK, and USA. The Rough Diamonds are currently recording their second full album with acclaimed country music producer, Simon Johnson. The girls are excited to be spreading their wings and taking their music further afield in 2016! Their current single “Followin’ the Dream” is about just that.

LACHLAN BRYAN AND THE WILDES

LACHLAN BRYAN AND THE WILDES

Lachlan Bryan is a Melbourne, Victoria native with a heart steeped in drama and imagery  of country and roots music.

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His intelligent lyrics, extraordinary vocal croon and sharp wit have established him and his band The Wildes as the must-see alternative country act, defying all expectations of the genre. The Gold Guitar winners smashed their way up the ARIA Country Charts with the release of their new album late last year whilst winning accolades for Lachlan’s song writing. Playing standout performances around the country Lachlan has toured with the likes of Steve Earle and Paul Thorn and graced major festivals stages and extensively toured in the USA. His new album ‘Black Coffee’ recorded with his remarkable band The Wildes has created quite a buzz. Not only winning Alternative Country  Album at the 2014 Country Music Awards his third studio record has once again gathered a superb set of reviews.

RODNEY VINCENT

RODNEY VINCENT

Rodney’s show and standing in the Australian entertainment scene is no accident. It is the result of a long,

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hard apprenticeship which he says “started a while a go”. From his first engagement playing guitar in an old time dance band at his local hall, to New Faces where he got his first big break, Rodney has survived the highs and the lows of the industry. After his appearance on the New Faces, Rodney joined the Channel Nine Singers on the “In Melbourne Tonight” show which featured Graham Kennedy, Ugly Dave Grey, Bert Newton and other household names.

BRYEN WILLEMS

BRYEN WILLEMS

Bryen Willems fronts a five piece band called Bryen and the Bayou Boogie Boys –

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playing a mix of originals and drawing from a virtual treasure trove of the best country, blues, swamp and southern rock from the last 50 years. Bryen’s second album was released in January 2012, titled NO BAND HERE TILL FRIDAY. Recorded at Unit 4 Studios, with producer Gary Brown – the album is a honky-tonkin’ collection of originals, obscure covers and well known classics. In addition to fronting his own band, Bryen also has the privilege of playing bass or guitar and providing backing vocals for one of Australia’s top country vocalists Nicki Gillis with whom he’s worked for a number of years. Bryen has worked as an announcer in country radio on Sydney’s 2RRR88.5FM and at Festival 101.5FM during the Tamworth Country Music Festival.

JR WILLIAMS

JR WILLIAMS

Born and raised in the country, it is probably his intimate daily contact with the land that gives JR

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his ability to relate so well to his large following, on what seems an almost “person to person” level. One of the finest hard working performers in the industry JR is at his best in front of a crowd, what you see with him is what you get. After a trip north! with Bill Chambers, a group of Australia’s best country musicians and a handful of great songs were carefully selected and a long awaited album “Mustering Time“ was born. JR knows that life is ever changing like the seasons, and because music and nature are in natural harmony it is important to be always changing as an entertainer.

Mildura Country Music Festival