Tash Sultana leads Bluesfest 2021’s second lineup announce

Ziggy Alberts, Kev Carmody, Ian Moss and more also appear on the festival's all-Australian announcement

Bluesfest have revealed the second lineup announcement for next year’s festival, with the likes of Tash Sultana, Ziggy Alberts, Kev Carmody and Ian Moss all set to perform at the 2021 event in April.

It’s the festival’s first all-Australian lineup announce, featuring an eclectic mix of homegrown acts that also includes Hiatus Kaiyote, Russell Morris, Briggs, Kim Churchill and more.

The second announcement adds to an already-huge lineup of 50 local and international acts including headliners Bon Iver, Patti Smith and Jimmy Barnes along with George Benson, John Butler, Xavier Rudd, The Cat Empire and more.

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After festival organisers were forced to cancel this year’s event due to the coronavirus pandemic, Bluesfest 2021 is set to take place between April 1-5 at its usual home of Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, just north of Byron Bay.

Sultana will perform with their new backing band for their Bluesfest appearance, eschewing the loop-based solo approach they’ve traditionally taken.

“I’ve got to a point where the music I’ve written is beyond the capabilities of looping,” commented Sultana. “I’ve decided to get a backing band to play the written parts live and I’m looking forward to performing them at Bluesfest next Easter.”

In an interview with NME back in April, Sultana expanded on their reasons behind employing a backing band.

“I need to do this for myself. I know I can play alone, that’s really easy for me. But I don’t know I can do this so I need to prove it. I haven’t shared the space with people for a long time,” they explained. “With this album, I didn’t want to have any limitations, sonically. I realised, ‘Hang on, I can just sing this song. I don’t have to do the whole shebang’. So I went on a quest to find a band.”

Festival Director Peter Noble says this is the first of a number of all-Australian lineup announcements to come.

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“We are setting ourselves up to put on another great Bluesfest albeit in a brand new way. There will be challenges, and we expect to be presenting a festival with a lower capacity and potentially outdoors in order to have a safe event,” Noble commented in a statement.

“It is sad for us to see that a number of festivals will not go ahead,” he added, acknowledging the “disheartening” recent cancellations of both Woodford Folk Festival and Port Fairy Folk Festival.

“However, we are working with Government to present a safe event and be part of the return of ‘live’ music in this country.”

Tickets for next year’s event are on sale now.

Bluesfest 2021’s second announcement lineup is:

Tash Sultana
Ziggy Alberts
Kev Carmody
Ian Moss
Hiatus Kaiyote
Russell Morris
Briggs
Kim Churchill
Mama Kin Spender
All Our Exes Live in Texas

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