Gold Coast Magazine

Unforgettable Moments from the 2024 Blues on Broadbeach Festival

Relive the unforgettable moments from Blues on Broadbeach 2024, a festival that brought together Grammy-winning artists and Australia's finest rhythm and blues talent
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Blues on Broadbeach, now steeped in 23 years of history, continues to make its mark as an essential event on the international blues circuit. This year’s festival brought together a diverse and impressive lineup of Grammy-winning American artists and talented musicians from across the globe, solidifying its status as a must-visit stop on their Australian tours.

The festival’s reputation has grown steadily over the past decade, drawing an increasing number of international acts and putting it firmly on the global map. The likes of Melissa Etheridge, a revered icon of the genre, were among the world-class artists who graced the Gold Coast festival this year.

This year’s lineup was the most international in the festival’s history, according to Festival Director Mark Duckworth. The festival welcomed a diverse range of artists from across the United States and New Zealand, such as Samantha Fish and Jesse Dayton, Ana Popovi?, Jon Cleary, Eric Bibb, Hi Rhythm Section, and Fat Freddy’s Drop.

“Our strategy for the past ten years has been to attract more and more international acts to the festival and that has put us on the map globally, allowing us to become a welcome stop for international touring artists of the likes of Melissa Etheridge,” said Mr Duckworth.

This year we welcomed outstanding artists from all over the USA and New Zealand; Samantha Fish and Jesse Dayton, ***Ana Popovi?, Jon Cleary, Eric Bibb, Hi Rhythm Section, Fat Freddy’s Drop and the list goes on!”

Yet, the festival was not merely an international affair. It also showcased the finest of Australia’s rhythm and blues talent. Local acts like Karl S Williams, Mitch Grainger, Dana Gehrman, 8 Ball Aitken, Hussy Hicks, Dallas Frasca, Chase The Sun, and Buddy Knox, to name just a few, took to the festival’s 16 stages, performing for eager and enthusiastic crowds.

Lloyd Speigel, Australia’s most awarded blues man, praised the festival, describing it as a ‘home’ where Australian blues players could take the big stage. For international artists too, Blues on Broadbeach felt like a home away from home. Samantha Fish, a US artist, expressed her excitement at seeing familiar faces from back home in the US performing right there on the Gold Coast.

The festival’s popularity was evident in the packed venues and streets bustling with fans. Restaurants extended into the precinct, creating a lively atmosphere for the annual blues celebration. An estimated 150,000 music fans attended this year’s festival, contributing more than $20 million to the local economy.

Local venues, including Den Devine, were filled to capacity throughout the event. The owner, Daniel Eagles, described the festival as “absolutely brilliant”, reflecting the sentiments of many attendees.

In a first for the festival, New Zealand music royalty Fat Freddy’s Drop performed their only Australian show for 2024 on a sunny Sunday afternoon at Kurrawa Park. They were joined by local favourites Tijuana Cartel and Sydney’s BOOMCHILD, further highlighting the quality of Australia’s rhythm and blues artists.

Ana Popovi?, another US artist, reflected on her experience at the festival: “It felt fantastic to play for the Australian audience again after such a long time. The rain didn’t scare them, and we had a phenomenal show. The audience was totally into it. Now I’m ready for the Australian tour. Thank you, Blues on Broadbeach.”

Blues on Broadbeach has once again proven that it’s not just a music festival. It’s a celebration of the blues genre and a testament to the power of music in bringing people together, regardless of where they come from. Here’s to many more years of fantastic blues music on the Gold Coast.

Stay tuned for Blues on Broadbeach 2025 Updates….

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