Groove to the rhythm, feel the beat and jazz things up with these 5 great music festivals over the next few months.
Broadbeach Jazz Weekend
You’ll have to get in quick for this one. This completely free event features outdoor stages and venues, roving street entertainment and eclectic street markets. Enjoy live performances by Wilbur Wilde’s Blowout, George Washingmachine’s Gypsy 5, Caxton Street Jazz Band and Galapagos Duck.
The entertainment has been expanded this year to include not only mainstream jazz but also to have more of a fringe and family feel. Kids’ favourite Lah Lah’s Big Live Band will perform and there’ll be an array of activities for people of all ages throughout Broadbeach over the weekend.
When? August 15-16, 2015.
Caloundra Music Festival
Hoodoo Gurus, Baby Animals, Ben Lee, Xavier Rudd, Angus and Julia Stone, San Cisco and Pseudo Echo are among the acts for this hugely popular family-friendly event. Held adjacent to Kings Beach, within walking distance to Bulcock Beach, the CBD and many accommodation and dining outlets, the festival offers four days of sun, surf and soul.
The festival has built a special relationship with the musicians of New Orleans and the international flavour continues again this year, along with some of Australia’s most popular musical artists. Get a preview taste at the Caloundra Music Fringe Festival, from September 25 through to October 6, where comedian Jimeoin will hit the funny bone with a comedy act on October 1 in Kings Park.
When? October 2-5, 2015.
Noosa Jazz Festival
Legends of the Australian music scene, Colleen Hewett and Wendy Matthews, will be among the acts for this festival where patrons relax on picnic rugs and lounge chairs by the Noosa River. Hewett’s recently released album, Black and White, covers genres from ballads to country and blues, while Matthews is promoting her newest album Billie and Me, a tribute to Billie Holiday.
The Festival Village has multiple stages with more than 45 performances as well as workshops, master classes, jazz river cruises, the legends lunch series, big bands, swing bands, soul bands, jazz bands and Australian Jazz royalty. Also among the huge line-up are Emma Pask, Jan Preston, Feel The Manouche with George Washingmachine, Brisbane Jazz Club Big Band, and Ingrid James and Louise Denson’s Wild Silk Strings Project. The festival also has a great Youth in Jazz program.
When? 3-6 September, 2015.
Gympie Music Muster
Aussie superstars, Sheppard, who exploded onto the world stage last year with their hit, Geronimo, will headline the Gympie Music Muster with their upbeat folk-pop party vibes. Australia’s largest charitable music and camping festival is held in Amamoor Creek State Forest, 90 minutes’ drive north of Brisbane.
The Muster has raised almost $15 million for community groups and charities since it began 34 years ago. Proceeds from this year’s event will go to Youngcare, who create choice, dignity and independence for young Aussies with high care needs.
The event is a celebration of country music in the widest possible interpretation of the genre. Acts this year include Adam Brand, Mary Chapin Carpenter (USA), Troy Cassar-Daley, Amber Lawrence, Ian Moss, The Bushwackers, Chad Morgan, Frankie J Holden & Wilbur Wilde, Kevin Borich, James Bludnell, Keith Potger, former Goanna front-man Shane Howard, Mental As Anything, and Ross Wilson.
When? August 27-30, 2015.
Norfolk Island Jazz Festival
The first four festivals we’ve listed here are all in south-east Queensland (yes, it’s a happening place) but the fifth is a wing and a hop across the sea. The Norfolk Island Jazz Festival is one of the best-loved events on this sub-tropical island and you’ll find the locals are just as much in the festival spirit as you are.
Kick back on the grassy verge of a sparkling lagoon while the likes of Feral Swing Katz, Andrew London Trio, The Jazz Factory, George Washingmachine Quartet and Camille Te Nahu entertain you. Wherever you go on the island, the views are amazing, while the historic buildings, rich local culture and friendly people are as magical as the jazz. At night, the cool sea breeze makes it easy to party until early morning.
When? 30 November-3 December, 2015.