Bluesfest Indigenous stage manager Peter Jangala (at front) with Yvonne Stewart, Troy Cassar-Daley, Lewis Walker, Mick Kay and Bluesfest Director Peter Noble at the launch of the Indigenous stage.
Bluesfest Indigenous stage manager Peter Jangala (at front) with Yvonne Stewart, Troy Cassar-Daley, Lewis Walker, Mick Kay and Bluesfest Director Peter Noble at the launch of the Indigenous stage. The Northern Star

Indigenous artists perform at Bluesfest

INDIGENOUS artists from Australia and overseas will perform on the InDIG stage at Bluesfest in April.

The new stage, launched last week, will showcase artists from Australia and the Southern Pacific Rim.

Bluesfest director Peter Noble said he was thrilled to be working in tandem with Events New South Wales to present a 2009 Indigenous stage featuring the best of Aboriginal, Pacific Rim and Torres Strait Islander artists.

“I’ve long supported Indigenous Australian arts, music and land rights, so I am extremely proud to see this wonderful fruition of all our efforts to date as an expression of reconciliation following ‘the nation’s official apology’ to our Indigenous peoples,” he said.

Byron Shire Mayor Jan Barham has congratulated Events NSW and the Blues Festival on the initiative and support for Indigenous performances.

“The dedication of a stage for Indigenous performance at the 20th anniversary of the Blues Festival is a great initiative,” she said.

“The Blues Festival has over the years given the spotlight to many Indigenous performers and for the 2009 event it will be a fantastic addition to the anniversary event.”

Bands to perform on the New InDIG stage include The Saltwater Band, Christine Anu, Archie Roach and Ruby Hunter, Dan Sultan, Te Vaka, Yilila, Tribe of Jubal, Buddy Knox Blues Band, Stiff Gins, Ngaiire, Marlene Cummins, Tommee, Rode Worx, Matty Devitt Band and Paul Patten.

Since its inception, the world’s best talent has graced the Bluesfest stage, from blues, roots and soul heavy weights like Buddy Guy, Bo Didley, James Brown, Burning Spear, and George Clinton, through to chart topping superstars Ben Harper, Jack Johnson, Ray Davies, REM, John Fogerty, Dave Matthews Band, John Mayer and Sinead O’Connor to name but a few.

The festival also regularly presents the best of Australian talent – and over the years has featured artists such as Kasey Chambers, Yothu Yindi, John Butler, Missy Higgins, Troy Cassar-Daley and The Cat Empire.

Bluesfest has had the honour of twice being nominated as Best International Music Festival by US concert bible “Pollstar” in 2005 and 2006.

Bluesfest will be held at Belongil Fields over the Easter long weekend starting on Thursday, April 9.

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