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Bluesfest Sideshows You Can’t Afford To Miss This Year (Pt. 2)

Written by Jackson Langford on April 14, 2019

With Bluesfest just around the corner, music fans from all across the country are getting ready to pack up and head to Northern NSW to one of Australia’s biggest music events of the year.

However, unfortunately that’s not a reality for everyone so a whole stack of legendary artists on the bill are coming to capital cities to give you some once-in-a-lifetime shows. We’ve already broken down some of the essential sideshows here, but as the lineup is so massive, here are nine more must see performances from acts on the Bluesfest bill.

George Clinton

It is rare that we get an opportunity to see someone perform on our shores that continually pioneers, influences and evolves a genre, but George Clinton has done all that and more to funk and he is headed to Australia for Bluesfest and a few sideshows. Now with Parliament Funkadelic – a band that has helped him achieve all he has – Clinton says that this will be his final Australian tour before he retires from live performing. While it’s sad to see a true legend go, this will be one last hurrah that you’ll want to be a part of. After all, 50 years and over 30 albums speak to just how much of a staple the man has become in funk, and how he won’t be soon forgotten.

George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Saturday, 20th April 2019
Enmore Theatre, Sydney
Tickets: Ticketek

Thursday, 25th April 2019
The Forum, Melbourne
Tickets: Ticketmaster

Vintage Trouble

SZA once tweeted that “authentic isn’t nice. It’s authentic.” No five words better describe blues act Vintage Trouble. There’s a certain assertion and power that the act, fronted by Ty Taylor, wield in every live performance but they don’t compromise on the real. They don’t cut corners, they don’t mince words and they don’t sugar coat anything. The relentless energy they inject in every song is backed by old school sounds, and the marriage of the two makes for a truly invigorating listen. In fact, it’s music that will upper cut you. It will completely blindside you with its impact and, instead of being bitter, you’ll be writing Vintage Trouble a thank you card.

Vintage Trouble Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Wednesday, 24th April 2019
Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Tickets: Moshtix

Thursday, 25th April 2019
The Corner, Melbourne
Tickets: Eventbrite

Larkin Poe

Being descendants of one of the most revered creatives in modern history, Edgar Allan Poe, is no easy badge to bear, but sister duo Larkin Poe do it with fierceness, effortlessness and style. Their Haim-style vocals are painted with fiery guitar riffs and a real down south rock ‘n’ roll sensibility. Like other acts on the esteemed Bluesfest lineup, Larkin Poe are taking the traditional and giving it a fresh, new makeover. Band member Rebecca Lovell says “it’s a celebration of American roots music as translated by two sisters who are playing the blues in a modern age.” Sounds mighty fine to us.

Larkin Poe Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Monday, 22nd April 2019
Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Tickets: Moshtix

Wednesday, 24th April 2019
The Howler, Melbourne
Tickets: Moshtix

Trevor Hall

Of course, when seeing a band gives you the euphoric experience of a full on, no-holds-barred party, it’s telling of a great live music experience. But what is harder to achieve but equally as great is when an artist can leave you hanging on their every word. The intrigue that falls over a venue when Trevor Hall steps up to the stage to tell his stories is one that can disarm you at first, but one you find comfort in as well. An incredibly spiritual artist that incorporates everything he’s learned into his music, this is a show that’s gonna leave you with a new lease on life.

Trevor Hall 2019 Bluesfest Sideshows

Wednesday, 17th April 2019
The Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Tickets: Eventbrite

Thursday, 18th April 2019
The Corner, Melbourne
Tickets: Moshtix

David Gray

Living up to your countless awards and acclaims must be overwhelming pressure, but David Gray maintains an effortless cool about it all even over twenty years into his career. The 50-year-old remains completely committed to his creativity, which has evolved as society around him has. His breakthrough in Australia may have come in 1998, but 21 years later and Gray still feels fresh and able to adapt. Speaking with Music Feeds, Gray said he certainly still holds his old classics close to his heart.

“The thing about some of the old songs is they’re a crowd activator – they will flood you with emotion, and it brings you to life the second you start singing it.”

David Gray Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Sunday, 14th April
Riverside Theatre, Perth
Tickets: Ticketek

Tuesday, 16th April – SOLD OUT
Enmore Theatre, Sydney
Tickets: Ticketek

Saturday, 20th April – SOLD OUT
Palais Theatre, Melbourne
Tickets: Ticketmaster

Nahko & Medicine For The People

Not all music needs a message, but all music has one. Nahko & Medicine For The People remain entirely conscious of their message, though, and unashamedly keep it spotlighted at the forefront of whatever they do. But, underlying their message is a stunning and joyful amalgamation of acoustic guitars, relentless energy and intensely contagious percussion. On top of that, while Nahko’s message might be reflective of dire times both politically and environmentally, his spirit remains optimistic and positive. It’s that overwhelming feeling of conscious hope that will have you beaming long after the band leave the stage.

Nahko And Medicine For The People 2019 Bluesfest Sideshows

Wednesday, 17th April 2019
The Triffid, Brisbane
Tickets: The Triffid

Saturday, 20th April 2019
Metro Theatre Sydney
Tickets: Metro

Sunday, 21st April 2019
170 Russell, Melbourne
Tickets: Moshtix

California Honeydrops

Look, with a name like California Honeydrops, you can’t help but to smile. Luckily enough, the band are experts in making their fans smile. Despite it being over ten years since band members Lech Wierzynkski and Ben Malament began working together busking in a California subway station, the band has kept a tight stranglehold on that homely, organic feel to their music that gave them their big break. It feels like family, and one you’ll be a part of if only for a night if you make the smart choice and go to one of their sideshows.

California Honeydrops Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Wednesday, 24th April 2019
The Corner, Melbourne
Tickets: Eventbrite

Thursday, 25th April 2019
Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Tickets: Moshtix

Meshell Ndegeocello

25 years in the game is no easy feat to achieve, and with longevity naturally comes a jadedness and cynicism. However, Meshell Ndegeocello continues to flow with grace, poise and unmistakable talent. Championed as a pioneer in the neo-soul movement, her voice is so powerful and flooded with emotion that it’s almost tangible. The singer-songwriter, rapper, multi-instrumentalist and bassist has long proved that she’s not only a jack of all trades, she’s mastered them as well. Fans are in for a magical evening as Ndegeocello enchants and spellbinds them, as they see just why she’s such a groundbreaking and trailblazing artist.

Meshell Ndegeocello Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Saturday, 20th April
The Factory Theatre, Sydney
Tickets: Ticketek

Allen Stone

Allen Stone is one of those rare artists that comes along and leaves everyone enamoured, without objection. His music stylings take inspiration from music of the 60s and 70s in all its forms. Sonically, he’s reminiscent of the classic, chart-busting soul and R&B music from that era, but lyrically is more similar to that of the soothing folk music of the same time. He fuses all these influences into one, punchy performance so you best be quick to snap up tix to this not-to-be-missed show.

Allen Stone Bluesfest 2019 Sideshows

Saturday, 13th April
The Gov, Adelaide
Tickets: Bluesfest Touring

Sunday, 14th April
The Corner Hotel, Melbourne
Tickets: Bluesfest Touring

Wednesday, 17th April
Metro Theatre, Sydney
Tickets: Bluesfest Touring

Thursday, 18th April
The Triffid, Brisbane
Tickets: Bluesfest Touring

Bluesfest 2019 will be taking place from Thursday, 18th – Monday, 22nd April. Head here for the full lineup and set times.

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