FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – MEDIA RELEASE
With three stages as part of the inaugural Murwillumbah Country Roots Fest, the challenge for audiences was to ensure there were three unique areas for different artists to showcase their music. The main stage, dubbed the Wollumbin Stage will be the main hive of activity for the four days, however the additional two side stages are an essential part of the festival, which has a specific focus on ‘the music’.
The two side stages, named The Men’s Shed Stage and The Opry Stage, feature an impressive live music line-up running across the Saturday to the Monday. Each features specific programming to embrace a certain atmosphere, all with a design of enjoying music in the extreme. For organiser and musician Lou Bradley, who is also performing as part of the festival, the programming for each stage was to give it its own style. “The three stages are three different ways an artist in these genres can and do perform,” she says. “Under bright lights as a main event, in the shed or backyard with friends, and in the lounge room or local hall for a trusting audience to sit quietly and listen.
The Men’s Shed Stage has a namesake, the ‘Men’s Shed’, who have been involved in the stage creation and build. “There’s a local men’s group called The Men’s Shed,” says Lou. “They are a retired mob of fellas that build stuff for the community and just get to hang out together in a space where they can have cups of tea and build things. They are making the signs for the stage.”
The Men’s Shed Stage, despite its name, is for men, women, girls and boys and will feature something for everyone to embrace musically. It is considered the ‘fun stage’ where the programming includes shed music, Bluegrass, beer and a chance for the artists to let their hair down. For Lou, the concept was to create a relaxed atmosphere that would bring out the personal side and give a chance for new friendships to be made.
“There will be a very high quality of acts, who can be perhaps a little more relaxed,” she says. “There will also be lots of local bands and up-and-coming bands and singer-songwriters. The Men’s Shed Stage (and women’s) will also host Richo’s Roundup – that is our breakfast show that will be on the Saturday, Sunday and Monday at 8am. This will be a songwriters in the round style event with a sensational sausage breakfast experience. There will be gluten and preservative free gourmet sausage sangas to go with the songwriters and Richo’s Roundup.”
The Men’s Shed Stage features an enviable line-up across the weekend that includes the likes of The Jay Seeney Band, women in docs, Psycho Zydeco, The Hillbilly Goats, Davidson Brothers, Caitlyn Shadbolt, Gretta Ziller, Greg Storer, Paul Greene, Lachlan Bryan, Damian Howard, Matt Cornell and Bob Corbett to name a few.
The Opry Stage, was designed specifically to embody the ethos of the revered venue of the same name in Nashville, Tennessee. The point behind the stage was to be a true representation of the artist with a quiet listening and seated audience. The unplugged seated venue will see each artist perform to just one mic only to sing their songs. For Lou, it is a chance for artists to present their work in the best way possible.
“Our finest songwriters and Bluegrass and old-timey music will be on the Opry Stage,” she says. “Some you will see on all or one of the other stages, but this will be up-close-and-personal and a very real experience for both the artists and the audience. This is also an alcohol free stage.” The Opry Stage features an impressive line-up throughout the festival that includes the likes of Matt Henry, Bill Chambers, Jemma Nicole, Mustard Courage and Brothers 3, to name a few.
There is now also the chance for festival-goers to camp onsite across the four days of the event. There will be up to 500 unpowered sites, which can host up to four people on each site, and up to 150 powered VIP sites.
The Murwillumbah Country Roots Fest is held at the Murwillumbah Showgrounds in Murwillumbah NSW, 45-minutes north of Byron Bay and 45-minutes east of Nimbin. Day, weekend and four-day passes are available from www.MCRFest.com For more information and tickets, please visit www.MCRFest.com