Entertainment

Council pulls pin on Agnes blues and roots festival

8 Ball Aitken performs at the 2013 festival.
8 Ball Aitken performs at the 2013 festival. Christopher Chan GLADV230213ESSA

THOUSANDS of blues and roots fans will be left disappointed after the six-year long annual event at Agnes Water was scrapped.

A favourite on the Gladstone region calendar, more than 3000 people attended this year's Agnes Water Blues and Roots Festival in February, and local artists had been encouraged to make their mark at the event.

It grew dramatically since starting in 2009, with a second music stage introduced in 2013 and Richard Clapton headlining this year.

But the Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre wiped the festival from its annual calendar of events saying it was no longer needed.

Blues and Roots catered to a relaxed atmosphere and appreciative crowd with artists along the lines of The Black Sorrows and Phil Emmanuel.

However, an independent organiser will try to fill the shoes of the popular blues weekend in November next year, with plans for a 1770 Music Festival, catering for all genres of music such as rock, punk, indie, country, reggae, blues and metal.

It will be an all-ages initiative that coincides with Schoolies Week, giving parents another option to send their teenagers to instead of Airlie Beach and the Gold Coast.

The crowd at the Agnes Blues and Roots Festival.
The crowd at the Agnes Blues and Roots Festival. Mike Richards

Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre acting manager performing arts Michael Bloyce said he was aware the "Agnes folk were looking at doing it themselves", but said it was not the council's sole responsibility to run music events.

"We had done it six years in a row and council made a decision not to deliver it a seventh time," he said.

"It's not council responsibility to run festivals in perpetuity. Normally you put it on if there is a need in the community. So that was done many years ago."

Mr Bloyce said the council was not against major events, with a panel dedicated to planning entertainment for the region.

"It was an event that attracted some support, some years more than others," he said.

"We might in later years see a need for a festival."

Agnes Blues and Roots Festival.
Agnes Blues and Roots Festival. Christopher Chan GLADV230213ESSA

1770 Music Festival organiser and founder Maurice Nicholson said although he was disappointed the blues and roots festival was finished, the region needed to look forward to the benefits of the new festival - a plus for central Queensland businesses as well as music lovers.

"I knew there was going to be a lull there and I wanted to create something for all demographics," he said.

"Opportunity knocked and now I am trying to get the whole town on board.

>> What bands would you like to see at the 1770 Music Festival? Have your say in comments

"We want to create a relationship (with local store owners) to increase their revenue. They might be a small business in Gladstone or Bundaberg and they can set up their stall there.

"If you bring anyone to the town, they are future people to buy and it does a big circle."

Mr Nicholson, a musician himself, said he was looking for sponsors and would hold meetings this week to discuss camping options for the public.

The Discovery Coast Sport and Recreation Grounds donated its venue for the event.

Some hot, up-and-coming Australian bands will also be attracted to the event.

AGNES WATER BLUES AND ROOTS HISTORY

  • Festival started in 2009
  • 800 people attended in 2012
  • The "Full House" sign was hung up in 2013 and $400,000 was injected into the region
  • Over 3000 people attended in 2014 with 35 bands

Main acts

  • Richard Clapton, Hipshooters, L'il Fi & The Dirty Rascals, 8 Ball Aitken, Benny Walker, Jack and the Bom, Busby Marou, Jon Stevens, Shaun Kirk, Kate Leahy, Joe Camilleri, Phil Emmanuel, Mason Rack, The Black Sorrows

Topics:  agnes water blues and roots festival, festival, gladstone entertainment, music



Nine males, one female; divers watch turtles get frisky

Mating season ends this month.

One female, nine males, this is all part of nature for turtles

Firefighters battle Bruce Hwy blaze

BLAZE ON THE BRUCE: Firefighters are battling a blaze along the Bruce Hwy.

Smoke covers Bruce Highway

EISTEDDFOD: Little ladies show their talents on stage

Alexis Morrissy - Junior Classical Championship, 11 years & under.Photo Mike Richards / The Observer

IT'S THAT time of the year when the frilly costumes come out.

Local Partners

What's on the small screen this week

Jessica Marais in a scene from the TV series The Wrong Girl.

A NEW romantic comedy debuts while footy codes ramp up for finals.

Airbourne talk drop bears, beer and taxes

Airbourne have a new album coming out and a new tour on the way.  Photo Contributed

Airbourne release album for the aussie battler

Pippa Middleton had 3000 private photos stolen

Author Pippa Middleton

Author's account hacked to access 3000 private photos

Gruen star discovers the body's limits in new hit TV show

Todd Sampson tries out MMA fighting during TV series BodyHack.

Gruen star pushes the limits in new TV series

Deftones return to Australia with string of dates

Deftones are back in town. Photo Contributed

World renowned nu-metal pioneers return

How the Gruen guy's t-shirts took on a life of their own

Documentary filmmaker and Gruen panellist Todd Sampson.

What started out as simple workwear has become a trademark

'Flex muscles': Gladstone suburb drops $120K

BUYERS are scooping unprecedented deals by “flexing their muscles at the table”

Few bright lights for property after mining downturn

The Gladstone Regional Council wants associated LNG companies like Bechtel to be apart of the EIS housing accommodation strategy from the outset of the projects and not mid-way through.

Tannum Sands continues to write its own property success story

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Market opens as Gladstone sellers drop prices to force sale

VENDORS are dropping the price on houses to force a sale.

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual