What’s On? Byron Bay Bluesfest: 29 March-2 April
It’s Easter weekend next week, and you know what that means, at least here in Byron Bay: It’s Bluesfest weekend. This five-day Byron Bay festival of music started in 1990 and now presents more than 200 performers on around seven stages with music playing from noon to midnight every day. That’s a lot of music to take in!
The Byron Bay Bluesfest 2018 features a range of musicians from huge international superstars to local bands, and it’s not just blues, there’s something for all music fans, from country to reggae, gospel to rock. Over the years, audiences attending the Byron Bay Bluesfest have been treated to performances by Bob Dylan, John Mayer, Zac Brown Band, John Legend, BB King, Paul Simon, Dave Matthews Band, and Lucinda Williams. That’s just a small list, check here for the previous years’ lineups.
The Byron Bay Bluesfest is held each year (this year, 29 March-2 April) at Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, located north of Byron Bay proper. The almost 300 acres provides space for over 100,000 people who annually come to the fest.
2018 Bluesfest Lineup Highlights
There are so many artists on each year’s Bluesfest lineup that it is impossible to name all of them.
A major headliner this year is Robert Plant and The Sensational Space Shifters returning to the Bluesfest stage, perfect timing as 2018 is the 50-year celebration of Led Zeppelin’s first ever performance. Accordingly, Plant and his band will play a number of Led Zeppelin tracks to celebrate.
Another superstar will grace the Bluesfest stage this year: Lionel Richie. Plus, if you attend, you’ll be treated to Australia locals John Butler Trio and Tash Sultana as well as Melissa Etheridge, Sheryl Crow, Lauryn Hill and Jackson Browne. Plus, returning to the stage are Eric Gales and The California Honeydrops, both were crowd favourites last year.
Just like last year, people attending the Byron Bay Bluesfest also will gain access to the Boomerang Festival, an Indigenous celebration that will include performances that will run Friday, Saturday and Sunday of Bluesfest. Performers include Yirrmal, The Strides, Benny Walker, Narasirato and Sorong Samarai. Purchasing Bluesfest tickets gives you access to all Boomerang programming as well.
Speaking of tickets, there are a variety of options available, but Bluesfest tickets are selling out quickly. There are five-day passes still available with prices from $630 for one adult. There are also three-day and one-day passes available from $475 for Friday, Saturday and Sunday down to $179 for Thursday only. Children ages 6-14 have special pricing and do need a ticket.
To and From the Bluesfest
The Byron Bay Bluesfest 2018 offers shuttles for attendees from Byron Bay, Lennox Head, Ballina, Bangalow, Brunswick Heads, Ocean Shores, and Mullumbimby areas. Fares are $5 each way on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday. This year, there will also be shuttle service from Pottsville to Chinderah stopping in Hastings Point, Cabarita, Casuarina, Kingscliff and Chinderah for $10 per person each way. (Cash only and exact change are necessary to ride.)
Kids Bluefest Program
There are a number of kids’ activities happening at Bluesfest 2018. Two sessions are available everyday from 2-3 pm and 4:30-5:30m pm, and keep in mind that all children must have a parent or guardian with them (it’s not a babysitting service!). The duo of Shorty the Clown and Mr. Bumsqueak will once again entertain the kids with magic and merriment. Kids also can look forward to sock monkeys, waster wars and much more when they attend one of his sessions. And finally, Taleigha from Sparkles Makeup will be doing face painting as well as Loomband bracelets, glitter tattoos and hair wraps.
Food, Markets and Charity Stalls
When you get hungry, if you need a break from the music, or you just feel like wandering the grounds, head over to the stalls. There you’ll find a vast array of food stalls that should suit any kind of taste. Either while you’re eating or after you finish, take a stroll through the market stalls and find some treasures to take home after your holiday in Byron Bay. Also, don’t miss out on checking out the charity stalls where you can learn about everything from the Orangutan Project to cystic fibrosis.
Stay at Broken Head over the Byron Bay Bluesfest Weekend
Choose affordable Byron Bay accommodation where you can crash after a long, busy day at Bluesfest such as Broken Head Holiday Park. You can easily grab the shuttle from Suffolk Park to the Byron Bay Bluesfest for any or all of the days, but staying here gives you the chance to relax in a quiet setting away from the busy festival grounds. Our picturesque location and excellent facilities won’t disappoint, and we bet you’ll appreciate a little time away from the festivities!
**Featured photo of Sheryl Crow (who is playing at Bluesfest 2018) is courtesy of Blues Fest Byron Bay on Facebook.