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Stellar Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival playing schedule

Media Release from Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival
March 31 2014

Stellar Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival playing schedule announced

The inaugural Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival is only weeks’ away and today (March 31) organisers announced the playing schedule for the stellar line-up and further details of the day.

The non-stop, full production music festival to be held on Saturday April 26 2014 kicks off when gates open at 10.30am at the Queenstown Events Centre.

The winners of a festival busking competition will take to the stage at 11am before handing over the musical baton to the driving sounds of the King Leo Blues Band.

The Johnnys will bring their Johnny Cash classics to the stage before the fifteen-strong Fly My Pretties – featuring some of the biggest names in the business – do their thing.

Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival director Grant Hilton said he envisaged crowds would fluctuate throughout the day as people popped in at various stages to see their favourite acts.

“Many will come early and set up for an eight hour extravaganza of music, food and entertainment,” he said.

“Others may come along with the family just for the day and some will arrive later into the festivities to rock on into the night.”

International artists Elvis Costello and the Imposters will wow the crowds from 4.30pm starting off the evenings’ entertainment, closely followed by the Doobie Brothers at 7pm and Kiwi favourites The Black Seeds at 9pm.

The festival will see up to 15,000 people enjoying the very best in blues, soul and rock and roll accompanied by an exciting array of local food, beer and wine.

“We’ve got some fantastic food and beverage options available for festival goers as well, to add to the ambience of the whole day,” said Mr Hilton.

“We’ve put a lot of thought into making sure there’s something for everyone, such as salmon kebabs and burgers from High Country Salmon, Francesca’s wood-fired pizzas and Asian fusion food.”

Other food highlights include tasty South American-style pasties from the Empanada Kitchen, healthy wraps from Pita Pit, bubbles and delicate oysters at the Akarua Oyster Bar, Devil Burger’s premium gourmet burgers, gluten-free goodies from the Food Den, Patagonia’s popular ice-creams and coffees, sushi from Hikari Izakaya and more.

Festival bars will provide a wide range of wines and Monteith’s beers throughout the day.

Transport to the inaugural Queenstown Blues and Roots will be a breeze with an extended service and special deals for ticket holders.

Local transport company Connectabus will offer a discounted rate of $5 from anywhere on the Queenstown transport system to the event, while NZSki Express Transport will offer $10 return fares with pick up points from the Pig & Whistle in central Queenstown, Ramshaw Lane in Arrowtown, Peninsula Road in Kelvin Heights and Nerin Square in Lake Hayes Estate. Buses will run from 11am to 11pm.

Full transport details are on the website. For those who still wish to drive to the venue, car parking is available at $20 per car and can be purchased on the day or on the website when buying a ticket, with a percentage of proceeds going to a local community group. No large campervans or buses – strictly private vehicles only.

Tickets for the first Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival are available through the website, by contacting 0800 BLUESQT (0800 2583778)

2014 Queenstown Blues & Roots Festival line-up
10.30am Gates open
11.00am First act on stage – Busking competition winner TBA
11.30am King Leo Blues Band
1.00pm The Johnnys
2.30pm Fly My Pretties
4.30pm Elvis Costello & the Imposters
7.00pm The Doobie Brothers
9.00pm The Black Seeds
10.30pm Festival finish


The Acts

One of the enduring worldwide favourites of the 1970s, The Doobie Brothers will bring their celebrated catalogue of rock music to Queenstown. Throughout the 70’s and 80’s they evolved from a mellow, post-hippie boogie band to a slick, soul-inflected pop outfit.

Extolling smart pop hooks and warm, soulful vocals along the way, the group racked up a string of gold and platinum albums, along with a number of radio hits like ‘Listen to the Music’, ‘Black Water’, ‘Long Train Runnin’, ‘Takin’ It To The Streets’ and ‘China Grove’, lacing their country-rock with an enjoyable dash of funk.

With founding members Tom Johnston and Pat Simmons, and 30 year-plus veteran John McFee, the Doobies will be performing as an eight-piece band including Tony Pia, Ed Toth, John Cowan, Marc Russo and Guy Allison.

Elvis Costello has followed his musical curiosity in a career spanning almost four decades with a back catalogue of over 40 albums covering nearly every genre of music. He is probably best known for his performances with The Attractions, The Imposters and his solo shows with pianist Steve Nieve.

A swag of nominations and awards include Grammy Awards, ASCAP’s prestigious Founders Award, an Oscar nomination and being inducted into the Rock’N’Roll Hall of Fame -- evidence of the respect and awe he commands from his peers.

Over the years he has worked with and written for the very best names in the music industry and most recently gatecrashed his own horizons by collaborating with The Roots, producing Wise Up Ghost.
Elvis and The Imposters (Steve Nieve, Pete Thomas and Davey Faragher) are promising their Queenstown audience an incredible Costello musical encyclopedia ‘refresher course’ with a selection of songs from the past, present and future.

Fly My Pretties first entered New Zealander’s hearts and minds in 2004, with the assembly of a talented and exciting group of Wellington-based musicians for a special project. From that first successful season, sell out tours and platinum albums followed.

The eight-strong Black Seeds, with instruments including vocals, guitar, saxophone, trumpet, bass, drums, bongos, keyboard and wood block, have two double-platinum selling albums in New Zealand and successful European album releases, while The Johnnys, formed in 2011, are renowned for their sensitive, character-filled renditions of all the Cash classics coloured with spine-tingling vocal harmonies and infectious undertones of the Pacific.

King Leo will draw on the classic hard-driving sounds of Chicago, Texas and New Orleans – and his experience playing in the U.S. with a variety of blues bands and such masters of the genre as Bo Diddley -- to bring high energy, good-time music and dancing to Queenstown.

© Scoop Media

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