The Twilight at Taronga concert series ticks off a hefty amount of Sydney in summer ideals – harbour views at dusk, alfresco live music, and a zoo-fringed lawn to sprawl out on with shared treats and mates. Add in ’90s Aussie rock legends meets Triple J gold of the diverse line-ups, and you've got yourself a pretty bloody great way to spend a waterfront sunset. American Express Twilight at Taronga will complement the growls, squeaks and hisses of the menagerie with classic and newer artists. AMEX card holders can nab first-round tickets from October 23, zoo and Twilight members can score them the following day, and the rest of the proletariat can find seats from October 26. The opening weekend will see grunge and punk-infused rock in the limelight with performances by You Am I and Magic Dirt, as well as a tribute set to Australia’s favourite Sweeds by Björn Again. The remainder of the February sets cover diverse music tastes with the music of the Whitlams, Xavier Rudd, Hoodoo Gurus, the Waifs, Aloe Blacc and James Morrison. March will merge generations of local indie performers, with the sun setting over lady powerhouse Vera Blue, folk-rockers the Paper Kites and 1980s pop-rock band Do-Ré-Mi, as well as the musical comedy finale lead by the Umbilical Brothers. A caravan of Sydney’s favourite food trucks will be rolling past the giraffes and lions to sling yet-to-be-confirmed human snacks on the day. There’ll also be on-site bars to keep you hydrated, and this year you ca
While French wine and garden dining might immediately entice Sydney’s Francophiles to this annual Parisian summer party, the music at this year’s So Frenchy So Chic will really bowl them over. With a completely lady-powered line-up, the festival is supporting France’s recent wave of successful female artists making their way to the front of the country’s traditionally male-dominated music industry. On stage, you’ll hear Camille Dalmais’ award-winning album Le Fil, which features the playful Triple J 2006 hit ‘Ta Douleur.’ She’ll be joined by the electro-pop band Yelle and Clara Luciani who is the quirky former front woman of psych-punk rock band La Femme. They’ll also welcome new talent Cléa Vincent who started performing at Paris’ open mic nights before breaking into the national limelight with her Youtube hit, 'Château Perdu'. Beyond these exciting feme-focused performances, one of the best things about So Frenchy So Chic is spending the day drinking Champagne on the grass. If you’re smart, you’ll pre-order the hampers, which include roasted chicken or ratatouille baguettes to goose egg meringues and berry salads with crème fraiche. Prefer to follow whatever the joie de vivre brings on the day? There’ll be stallholders selling mussels, oysters, charcuterie, raclette, crêpes and macarons. Plus, the Cointreau Fizz bar will be pouring Laurent Perrier Champagne, rosé, cocktails, Bordeaux wines and Provence beers.So Frenchy is a family-friendly festival and kids under 12 can
Get ready to do your public holiday differently, joined by thousands of other electronic music fans and some of the best international DJs, at Electric Gardens Festival. Taking place across the lush Centennial Parklands on January 26, the 2019 edition of the festival will be headlined by Underworld. If you grew up going to clubs in the '90s you will have certainly had a dance to their Trainspotting mega-hit, 'Born Slippy'. The opening drones of the drum-heavy hit will be sure to bring back nostalgic dancefloor memories to the open-air festival. They'll be joined by Colombian-American DJ, music producer and record label owner Erick Morillo, who will bring his electronic-house beats to life on stage. The UK's Eats Everything will also make the trip over the pond, while local stalwarts Set Mo and Bag Raiders will bring their much loved danceable DJ sets to the mix. Ibiza superclub Amnesia will be bringing a taste of the the Balearic Islands to Centennial Park with their beaming lasers, industrial-sized cannons and epic production values – plus a three-hour headline set from British techno producer Patrick Topping. Whether you're an old school techno fan, an EDM newbie or you just love a day out filled with great music, Electric Gardens will be sure to bring the vibes come the public holiday, so snap up your first-release tickets ASAP. More artists will be announced for the festival in the coming weeks.
George Clinton laid down the funk beat that has inspired more than five decades of musical evolution, from R’n’B and disco to post-punk and hip hop. His invitation to the Byron Bay Bluesfest has inspired this genre changemaker to take a final tour of Australia. He’ll be giving Sydney fans some extra love at an Enmore Theatre performance on April 20, 2019 in the lead-up to the festival. Since the 1960s, Clinton has broken ground with Parliament’s outlandish, science-fiction fashion and doop-wop vocal style, and Funkadelic’s psychedelic, rock-oriented sound. Leading both groups, and then spearheading a musical merger, Clinton created and still leads the music collective of rotating artists, Parliament Funkadelic. After amassing 77 years of wisdom, recording three platinum albums and more than 40 Rn''B hit singles, his performance is sure to be splendid final Aussie hoorah. Die-hard fans will be be ready to tear the roof off with hits like ‘Give Up the Funk’ and ‘P-Funk (Wants to Get Funked Up)’.
Before adding their harmonies to the choir of other bluegrass-folk performers at the 2019 Byron Bay Bluesfest, the three-woman act I’m With Her will share their new album with Sydneysiders. Four years since their first impromptu collaboration, these three independently successful American artists will perform their 2018 debut album See You Around at Sydney’s City Recital Hall. See You Around is storytelling music that is raw and intimate, played on guitar, fiddle, banjo and mandolin with seamlessly blended vocals – they seem, at times, like a one singer with three voices. The women behind the strings, Sara Watkins, Sarah Jarosz, and Aoife O’Donovan, each bring their own tone and experience to the tightly-knit group, and they have a bundle of awards among them: Watkins from her time spent fiddling for band Nickel Creek, while O’Donovan performed on the critically acclaimed Goat Rodeo Sessions, and Jarosz taking home a Grammy for best folk album. See them combine all their strengths on April 16, 2019, as they celebrate the 30th anniversary of Bluesfest.
This Compton-born, postmodern bluesman has garnered a strong reputation among his American rock, country and folk brothers and sisters since he started strumming for the big time in 1994. In less than 30 years, Keb’ Mo’ (aka Kevin Roosevelt Moore) has produce 14 albums, won four Grammy awards and received another 11 nominations. The singer-songwriter and guitarist will visit Sydney on April 16, 2019 at the Factory Theatre for a solo performance. This will mark his third stop on a national tour before his Byron Bay Bluesfest appearance, where he’ll continue to celebrate the festival’s 30th anniversary. Look out for early hits like ‘She Just Wants to Dance’ and more recent creations from his collaborative album TajMo, which he produced in 2017 with multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Taj Mahal, who’s known off-stage as Henry Fredericks. Keb' Mo' now hails from Nashville, where he’s cultivated a strong following for his American roots music. His open-hearted sound is influenced by many eras of rock, jazz, country and pop, and he has collaborated with a multitude of artists across these genres. Now 66 years of age, Keb' Mo' is also known for a considered political and social stand, actively supporting initiatives like Vote for Change and the No Nukes Group while also tutoring young aspiring musicians, and once performing in the White House for former US president Barack Obama.
This sister act from Atlanta doesn’t shy away from raw rock sounds when they perform their American roots southern blues. They’re bringing this classic genre into the modern soundscape, sprinkling elements of pop and social references into their grungy old-school tracks. You can hear this exciting fusion as they tour Australia in celebration of the 30th anniversary of Bluesfest in Byron Bay. Rebecca and Megan Lovell both play multiple instruments and collaborate on vocals and songwriting. Tracks like ‘Beach Blonde Bottle Blues’ and ‘Preachin’ Blues’ are imbued with creative lyrical work that has been attributed to the their family lineage – the pair are distant relatives of the writer of macabre tales Edgar Allan Poe, and the band is named after their great-great-great grandfather, Larkin Poe. Catch their Sydney sideshow on April 22 at the Oxford Art Factory, before they hit the stage at the 2019 Bluesfest.
These regular Bluesfest stars are returning to Byron Bay for the annual festival after touring the country in celebration of its 30th anniversary. Nahko and Medicine for the People will bring their high-energy performance to Sydney Metro Theatre on April 20 before kicking on to the 2019 Bluesfest. The six-man band’s live performances are always an uplifting experience, provoking emotional crescendos with their acoustic guitar-based anthems. Singer-songwriter Nahko Bear fronts the group with lyrics focussed on bridging social and cultural divides. Their 2016 album Hoka was extremely well-received and Nahko’s solo work My Name Is Bear topped charts in 2017. Expect an amalgamation of rock, pop and alternative sounds in their 2019 performances.
Listening to Ray LaMontagne’s smooth, ethereal songs is the perfect way to decompress after a long day, and if you’re in dire need of some musical rejuvenation, you’re in luck. He’ll share his soothing folk and soul melodies with Australian audiences on a national tour before appearing at the 30th Byron Bay Bluesfest. He'll visit the State Theatre in Sydney, too, on April 24, as part of the Bluesfest birthday celebrations to give Sydneysiders who can’t make it to the annual festival a chance to hear his award-winning set list. It’s been ten years since LaMontagne performed for Australian audiences, so he’s bringing a little support from his home in the US and inviting John Stirratt to join him on stage. Stirratt is the bass guitarist and one of the founding members of the Grammy Award-winning band Wilco. Together, they’ll perform hits from across LaMontagne’s seven studio albums, which capture a whole story across their song range. Fans will be listening out for popular tracks like ‘Beg Steal or Borrow’ which was nominated as song of the year in 2010, or more recent jams like ‘Such a Simple Thing.’
Trevor Hall’s engaging live performance won over Australian blues and folk fans in 2017 at Bluesfest, and he’ll return next year with another refreshing set for the festival’s 30th anniversary. Before he takes to the famed stage that celebrates rock, blues and everything in between, Hall will visit Sydney, too, to perform an intimate gig at Oxford Art Factory (Apr 17). Focusing on inclusive spirituality and emotional healing, Hall’s live performances often take on a religious or meditative quality. He skilfully blends folk, rock and reggae with references to divinities and the use of Sanskrit – the sacred language of Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. This spirituality extends beyond the stage, when Hall makes his annual pilgrimage to India to support children living below the poverty line. The American artist also puts a lot of faith and power in the hands of his fans. Rather than releasing his 2017 album The Fruitful Darkness through a record label, Hall enlisted his fans (who he calls ‘the villagers’) to contribute to its independent release over the course of a year through his Kickstarter online campaign. The villagers will be listening out for album favourites like the gently echoing ‘My Heart, Your Heart’ and the rolling ‘What I know’ when Hall arrives in Australia in 2019.