Music Legends, Movie Stars and Generosity of Spirit – Bluesfest 2011

By: Pepa Wolfe

  A mammoth six-day festival, hosting what many consider the best line-up to date, Bluesfest 2011 had it all. From bright sunny days to the traditional rain and mud, from international legends of music like B.B. King and Bob Dylan to the local sounds of Byron Ukulele band The Blackbirds, it was a celebration of community, culture, diversity and most of all, of music.

At the wonderful new site, the Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm just outside of Byron Bay, music lovers were treated to constant stream of world class entertainment and a number of thrills and surprises.

It was the year that the legendary Dylan finally played Bluesfest, and was heard by many but seen by few. The year that Elvis Costello appeared onstage with Mavis Staples, Grace Jones dazzled audiences with elaborate costumes and plenty of skin, and New Orleans sensation Trombone Shorty jammed with almost everyone. It was also the year of the film star, with both Aussie screen icon Jack Thompson and celebrated American actor and director Tim Robbins performing with their respective bands. Meanwhile, Bluesfest favourites such as Michael Franti & Spearhead, The Blind Boys of Alabama and Xavier Rudd didn’t disappoint, bringing the energy, style and generosity that, combined with a passionate and fun-loving audience, makes Bluesfest a genuine celebration.

Check back with Life Music Media for live reviews spanning the six days, as well as features on The Hands and RocKwiz Live, while Jack Thompson and Normie Rowe discuss their idols and speculate on the future of their band, The Original Sinners.

* Byron Bay Bluesfest 2011 – Day 5 – Photo Gallery
* Byron Bay Bluesfest 2011 – Day 4 – Photo Gallery
* Byron Bay Bluesfest 2011 – Day 3 – Photo Gallery
* Byron Bay Bluesfest 2011 – Day 2 – Photo Gallery
* Byron Bay Bluesfest 2011 – Day 1 – Photo Gallery