“Rockin in the Ridge" : Jimmy Little Memorial Music & Arts Festival 20

Published on 22 May 2023


This June long weekend, 10th and 11th, is shaping up as a weekend of rhythms and melodies not to be missed as planning is near complete for the two-day music and arts festival. The council’s events team have been full on ensuring all things are in readiness to deliver a massive two days of acknowledging and remembering the late worldly acclaimed musician, Mr. Jimmy Little. With headline acts featuring some of Australia’s most iconic artists including Kasey Chambers and James Blundell the event should attract a great gathering from across the region.

The festival is focused on recognizing and celebrating the late Indigenous musician Jimmy Little and his legacy and contribution to this country while reconnecting community and residents throughout the Shire and region through Music and the Arts.

Kasey Chambers has been hugely popular, 5 of her twelve studio albums have reached No. 1 on the ARIA Albums Chart, Barricades & Brick walls (September 2001), Wayward Angel (May 2004), Carnival (August 2006) Rattlin' Bones (April 2008) and Dragonfly (January 2017). In November 2018 she was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame and has won an additional fourteen ARIA Music Awards with nine for Best Country Album. Her autobiography, A Little Bird Told Me which was co-authored with music journalist, Jeff Apter, and was released in 2011.

James Blundell is no stranger to the outback and has been acknowledged by many as the act that single-handedly shaped modern Australian country music by infusing his influences of John Mellencamp, The Band and The Angels with the storytelling ethos of Slim Dusty and his lyrical insight, sharp wit and empathy for the average working man. This combined with his handsome good looks and country charm ensured there was no stopping his success across all demographics. In 1992, James found mainstream success thanks to the smash hit single, “Way Out West”, with former Australian Crawl front man, James Reyne. The song debuted at #28 on the ARIA charts before peaking at #2 a month later. The song was ranked #22 on the ARIA End of Year Singles Charts while his platinum selling album, “This Road”, came in at #28 on the ARIA End of Year Albums Charts above acts including Madonna, AC/DC and Roxette.

James Blundell is one of only a handful of today’s country artists who live the authentic life of a country singer. When he’s not touring - he’s managing his family-owned property in Stanthorpe QLD. He is an artist of substance and longevity thanks to his unique perspective showcased through song. With support performances by Ex Angles and GANG gajang members Buzz Bidstrup and Mark Callaghan, bluesman Buddy Knox , The Stiff Gins and local band Justus , local songstress Kelsey Barker and more the event is not to be missed.

The event is also supported by street stalls and sideshow alley so an opportunity for the whole family, bring a chair and a blanket, kick back on the sports fields oval and be treated to performances from some of our countries most acclaimed artists and musicians.

Our major supporters, NSW Government, John Murray Art Gallery, Walgett Hunt Camp Fish Newsagency, Lightning Ridge Bowling Club, Jimmy Little Foundation & Jimmy Little Thumbs Up organisation have come together to support a talent quest with significant cash prizes on offer in a bid to encourage local artists to perform on the big stage.

The closing date for this is 27th May, all promotional and informational resources for potential stall holders and contestants’ info relating to the talent quest are now available on Councils website.

Events Team (02) 6828 6100, Mr. Mason Allen, lroffice@walgett.nsw.gov.au, Sandra Bladen sbladen@walgett.nsw.gov.au or Mr. George McCormick gmccormick@walgett.nsw.gov.au


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