Bluesfest will turn 30 in 2019. Festival Director Peter Noble is pretty excited about his first announcement for the new season, especially with Jack Johnson and Ben Harper making return visits.
“We have two of our most highly requested, as well as favourite artists ever headlining, and both coming for exclusive performances,” Peter said in a statement. “Jack Johnson will return for his first performance since 2014, except for when he is in the area surfing and sitting in with friends, and Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, since 2015, when they reformed after a seven-year hiatus, and played their premier festival performance at Bluesfest.
Ben Harper first played Bluesfest 22 years ago. “Ben Harper’s first performance at Bluesfest 1996 remains one of the most important in the history of our event, and actually gave us the inspiration to move out of being a purely Blues festival and evolving into being Australia’s first Blues & Roots Music festival, even creating the genre, Peter said.
“Jack Johnson first played Bluesfest five years later in 2001, and once again Bluesfest has never been the same. Jack’s roots-based, surf lifestyle, environmentally aware music instantly struck a chord with our audience.
There are a few debuts for Bluesfest 2019. “First timers include the incredible I’m With Her, Larkin Poe, Kurt Vile, Greensky Bluegrass, and in saving some of the Best for last, the long-awaited return to Australia for his first performances since 2005, as well as his Bluesfest debut, an artist who truly has achieved greatness, Ray LaMontagne,” he said.
Bluesfest 2019 first announcement
Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals
George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic
St Paul & The Broken Bones
Nahko and Medicine For The People
Kurt Vile & The Violators
The Black Sorrows
The California Honeydrops
I’m With Her