Deni Blues & Roots Festival – Full line up for 2014 announced

– Press Release



Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Boz Scaggs, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, The Wailers, Soul Rebels, Neil Murray, Harry Hookey and more!

John Mayer, Dr John & The Nite Trippers, The Doobie Brothers, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic  Zeros, Gary Clark Jr, Russell Morris, Jasmine Rae and Cash Savage and the Last Drinks already announced!


After an Award winning first year and 2014 Early Bird Ticket sales going through the proverbial roof, Deni Blues and Roots Festival announce the 2nd and final artist announcement for Festival’s sophomore event over the Easter Weekend of 2014 – Saturday 19 April and Sunday 20 April – in Deniliquin in southern New South Wales.

The second round of artists announced for the 2014 Festival are Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Boz Scaggs, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, The Wailers, Soul Rebels, Neil Murray, Harry Hookey, Peter McWhirter, Jackson Firebird, Owen Campbell, Shaun Kirk, Joel Sulman, Michael Gorham and Frank Macias.

The two day Deni Blues & Roots Festival is unique for southern NSW and provides a great festival for music fans in the Southern States utilising the massive Deni Ute Muster site which is just 3 hours from Melbourne, 4 hours from Canberra and less than 5 hours by road from Adelaide. The purpose built site has had millions of dollars of permanent staging and lighting infrastructure, toilets and showers and bar facilities installed in recent years. Both events have been underpinned by overwhelming community support with an army of volunteers, contributions from many local businesses and great vision from the steering committee that established and built the site at Deniliquin. The inaugural Deni Blues & Roots Festival in 2013 also took out the Best Festival Award at the Inland Tourism Awards earlier this year.

Minister for Tourism and Major Events, George Souris said, “The NSW Government is pleased to support the Deni Blues & Roots Festival, which last year attracted many visitors to the region, and contributed more than $1 million to the local economy.

 “Testament to the calibre of the event, the inaugural Deni Blues & Roots Festival was winner of the Festival & Events Category at the 2013 Inland Tourism Awards.”

 Member for Murray-Darling, John Williams, said, “I’m delighted that the NSW Government’s investment in Regional tourism has increased and remains a firm commitment, last year delivering around 73 million nights of accommodation and $9.3 billion in tourism expenditure.

 “This year, the Deni Blues & Roots Festival continues to showcase world-class entertainment, which will attract heightened tourism into our community and help boost the local economy.”

The artists announced today join John Mayer, Dr John & The Nite Trippers, The Doobie Brothers, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Gary Clark Jr, Russell Morris, Jasmine Rae and Cash Savage and the Last Drinks for the Festival’s return in 2014.

Co-promoter, Michael Chugg from Chugg Entertainment said, “It’s a thrill to make our 2nd line up announcement for the Deni Blues & Roots festival including Boz Scaggs, Michael Franti and Spearhead and Steve Earle and the Dukes. It’s a huge coup to have Elvis Costello and The Imposters in Deni especially as they’re not appearing in Melbourne. Along with John Mayer and The Doobie Brothers, it’s going to be a great Easter Weekend!”

Harold Clapham, Chairman of Deni Play on the Plains Festivals, said today “We thought that last year was amazing and now we are blown away by this year’s line-up. To see and hear and get close to John Mayer and Elvis Costello at the best outdoor music venue in regional Australia will be something not to be missed.”

Co-promoter Rob Potts, CEO, Rob Potts Entertainment said “We now have another sensational international and local line-up headed to Deniliquin at Easter for two days of the best live music you could hope for. With the weather at its best for the year over Easter, it all adds up to a music lover’s paradise – two massive stages, great camping facilities, plenty of grass and room to spread out and only three hours from Melbourne. We’re really excited to be back for year number two of the Deni Blues and Roots Festival.”

The second round of artists confirmed to appear at the Deni Blues & Roots Festival in 2014:

 Elvis Costello & The Imposters

It’s pretty much impossible to corral the musical curiosity of a luminous career spanning 4 decades, in which Elvis Costello has carved out his own special place in the pantheon of rock history. A swag of nominations and awards litter that historic trail – evidence of the respect and awe this performer commands from his peers. Such diversity and credibility over that number of years tells its own story of legend. Many fans will have gold plated memories of his performances with The Attractions, The Imposters and for concert appearances with pianist Steve Nieve.  Note that this will be the only opportunity for Victorian fans to see this musical legend outside of his appearances in Sydney and Byron Bay.

Many others will remember the wide range of Elvis Costello songs delivered by artists as varied as Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Dusty Springfield, Robert Wyatt, and the gospel vocal group The Fairfield Four. More recently he gate crashed his own horizons by ‘collaborpartying‘ with The Roots, producing Wise Up Ghost, one of 2013’s finest musical offerings and Deni Blues & Roots Festival are thrilled to have Elvis Costello & The Imposters grace our stage in 2014.

Boz Scaggs

A casual listen to the Grammy award-winning Boz Scaggs’ discography makes one thing obvious: Boz Scaggs is a man of prolific talent as a singer, songwriter and guitarist. His explorations in blues and R&B, rock and jazz have produced lasting work and a career that has brought with it acclaim, a loyal following and an enduring respect among musicians.

Boz Scaggs is best known for his 1976 breakthrough album Silk Degrees and the hit singles from it including Lido Shuffle, Lowdown, Georgia and We’re All Alone.  His 1977 follow up album, Down Two Then Left, containing another slew of hits including Still Falling for You and Then She Walked Away. 

Boz Scaggs career spans over 50 years and he’s back with his first new album in five years, Memphis, where he puts a distinctive touch on classics like Rainy Night in Georgia, Corinna Corinna and Mixed Up, Shook Up Girl, as well as on a couple of originals.

One thing is for sure. Boz Scaggs’ debut performance at Deni Blues & Roots Festival is set to become stuff that legends are born of.

Michael Franti and Spearhead

Michael Franti knows all about the power of music, along with his band Spearhead they have earned a reputation for the communal spirit they create with their extraordinary live shows and their 2014 Deni Blues & Roots Festival performance will be no exception.

Singer, songwriter, guitarist and philanthropist, Michael Franti, and his band Spearhead, are heading back to Australia with their tenth studio album All People, an album that has seen Franti look to his primary influences referencing a wide range of music icons including John Lennon, Bob Marley, Johnny Cash, Marvin Gaye and The Clash.

One of the most positive and conscious artists in music today, Michael Franti’s musical journey started with his punk and hip-hop beginnings and for those not familiar with his latest project, expect to hear an evolution on his usual meld funk, reggae, jazz, folk, rock and hip hop.

Steve Earle & The Dukes

Singer-songwriter, actor, author, political activist, producer – Steve Earle is one of America’s greatest living storytellers. His tales, encapsulated in songs such as The Galway Girl, Hard-Core Troubadour, Jerusalem, Goodbye’s All We Got Left, Guitar Town and his anthemic Copperhead Road, have filled 14 albums and earned him 3 Grammy Awards.

A protégé of legendary songwriters Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, Steve Earle quickly became a master storyteller in his own right, with his songs being recorded by Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Waylon Jennings, Travis Tritt, The Pretenders, Joan Baez and countless others.

Steve Earle & The Dukes will be showcasing Steve’s 15th studio album, The Low Highway – a road record written about what he experienced from the window of his tour bus while travelling across the United States – for his first appearance at the Deni Blues & Roots Festival.

Backed by a new line-up of The Dukes (& Duchess) featuring The Mastersons (Chris Masterson on guitars and wife Eleanor Whitmore on fiddle and vocals), Kelly Looney on bass and Will Rigby on drums, Steve Earle rolls through a bumper taster from this new album and his bulging back catalogue, his Dukes providing “a rustic soundtrack laced with an aching fiddle, twangy pedal steel and ragged guitar” (Edmonton Journal).

Grace Potter & The Nocturnals

Grace Potter has a voice you rarely stumble across, a smoky, assured voice that spans effortlessly from a whisper to a soaring cappella within a single breath and after captivating the crowd at their Bluesfest debut earlier this year, and it won’t take you long to see why Grace Potter & The Nocturnals have established themselves as one of the most exciting and energetic live acts around today when they take the stage in Deni next year.

Grace Potter & The Nocturnals’ self-made 2005 debut album, Nothing but the Water, revealed a musically sophisticated young band inspired by the music of the late ’60s/early ’70s and fronted by a then-21-year-old dynamo whose nuanced singing, organ playing and songwriting belied her age.  The follow-up, 2007’s This Is Somewhere, confirmed that the band had no interest in following trends but was instead in pursuit of timeless expression as it forged its identity. On 2010’s self-titled third album, toughened by a half decade of nonstop touring, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals flexed their rock ’n’ roll muscles and confirmed that they were in it for the long haul.  The release of their most ambitious album to date, The Lion The Beast The Beat, in 2012 saw Grace and the boys streamline their vintage signature sound, with a bunch of songs that are, just as the title suggests, powerful, pitch perfect stories.

Equal parts seductive and dangerous, live this evocative voice and commanding presence translates her inventive, soul-searching poetry to life and is sure to have you transfixed for her entire set and leave you covered in goose bumps. If you’re up for a dance, don’t miss this big personality light up the stage with her effortless stage presence and sweeping soul voice at the Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014. 

The Wailers

The Wailers are on a mission …. and it is to keep Bob Marley’s music alive !!

It’s impossible not to groove along to The Wailers with their sunshine and ‘good-feeling’ classics: Jammin, Is This Love, Exodus, Lively Up Yourself, I Shot The Sheriff, One Love, People Get Ready, Stir It Up, Redemption Song’ and so many more.

The iconic Wailers were formed in 1969 when Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, and Peter Tosh recruited the Barrett brothers to play on hits such as Lively Up Yourself, Trenchtown Rock and Duppy Conqueror. The history of the band during Marley’s lifetime is well known and their music has sold in excess of 250 million albums worldwide.  The current Wailers band members are Aston “Family Man” Barrett on bass; Dwayne Anglin on lead vocals; Cegee Victory on backing vocals; Keith Sterling on keyboard; Drummy Zeb on drums; and Audley Chisholm on rhythm guitar/backing vocals.

Today – as always, The Wailers continue their worldwide campaign of promoting peace, love and equality through the message of reggae and Rastafari. Nor have they forgotten their social consciousness, currently spearheading the ‘I Went Hungry’ charity, designed to use funds designated for touring bands’ lavish ‘riders’ to benefit the World Food Program (WFP) in conjunction with the United Nations, feeding thousands of starving children around the globe.

Now well into their fifth decade, their journey is far from over as the world awaits The Wailers’ next move in their ‘One Love’ revolution.  “Our music is the magic,” says Fams “the oxygen of the people. It’s the message of roots, culture and reality, meant to spread peace and love to all.”  A perfect motto for the Deni Blues & Roots Festival – peace and love to all!

The Soul Rebels

Mixing R&B, funk and hip-hop, with a traditional brass band style, The Soul Rebels unique, catchy – infectious sound is quickly earning them a worldwide fan base. The Soul Rebels initially formed when percussionists Derrick Moss and Lumar LeBlanc met as members of Harold Dejan’s Young Olympia Brass Band and made the timely decision that they wanted to reinterpret the tunes they were hearing on pop radio within the context of old school New Orleans brass and marching bands.

The now eight piece band have totally blurred the boundaries between the old and the new world and to date have collaborated with the likes of Metallica, Green Day, Suzanne Vega, Alabama Shakes and Arcade Fire and have shared the stage with legendary artists such as The Roots, Bootsy Collins, Robert Plant & Jimmy Page, Counting Crows, Drive By Truckers, James Brown, Roy Hargrove, Allen Toussaint and many more. They harness their horns and enthusiasm to create a party-like atmosphere when they play live and have been billed on shows with the likes of Kanye West, Snoop Dogg and Cee Lo Green.

Selling-out shows throughout the US, The Soul Rebels combine top notch musicianship and showmanship and songs with grooves that celebrate life in time-honoured New Orleans style. Brassy, groovy, funky, horny … Get ready, get excited and prepare to party to the contagious grooves of The Soul Rebels at Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014!

Neil Murray

Neil Murray first appeared in the early eighties as a founding member of the Warumpi Band.  The ensuing three albums and twenty years of performing propelled contemporary indigenous music into mainstream Australia, yielding such classic songs as My Island Home and Blackfella Whitefella. 

 Neil Murray has since become one of Australia’s most respected and influential singer/songwriters and has enjoyed a solo career since 1989. In 1995, Neil was awarded the APRA Song of the Year for “My Island Home” originally written for the Warumpi Band, and the song has gone on to become something of an unofficial anthem and featured in the Sydney 2000 Olympics.

Neil Murray performs regularly at festivals and live music venues in Australia and overseas and we’re thrilled to have him join the line-up for the 2014 Deni Blues & Roots Festival.

Harry Hookey

Inspired by the likes of Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Steve Earle and Leonard Cohen, Harry Hookey first started performing with his three brothers in rural Victoria as the Hookey Family Band before cutting his teeth as a solo performer in the noble art of busking on Melbourne streets over the past 5 years.

Performing came naturally for Harry and whilst he and his brother Jack were backpacking overseas they tried their hand at playing in the US scene. In 2012, Harry won the US based International Songwriter’s Competition in the unsigned category for Misdiagnosed and graduated with a Law Degree from the University of Melbourne. Faced with an enviable career crisis, Harry wisely decided to pursue a more stable profession in the music industry.

Harry Hookey’s new EP Sometimes was released on 11 October and all the tracks reflect this huge transition in Harry’s life: “I gave up my job at a law firm, & strayed from the path that was laid out for me. I took off my tie, grew out my hair, and started singing folk songs. All these songs are about searching. Not that I really knew what for, I never really knew what I was getting myself in to, but I certainly knew what I was escaping”.

We’re sure you’ll agree that escaping was the best thing Harry Hookey could have done when he takes the stage at Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014. 

Peter McWhirter

Even before he recorded his first album Lucky As A Seven, Peter McWhirter’s star was already shining brightly.

The debut’s moniker says a lot about this amazingly talented singer- songwriter. Barely out of his teens when he penned the opening track and debut single Humm, it raced straight to the top of the country music charts.

Now with his debut album in stores and the CMC Music Award for 2012 New Oz Artist of the Year in his trophy case, the 22-year-old has his sights set on the future and is ready to take on the music scene with his own unique signature of mainstream country.

Be sure to catch his set when he rips up the stage at Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014.

 Jackson Firebird

Spiderbait’s Kram couldn’t have put it better when likening Jackson Firebird to AC/DC meets John Spencer Blues Explosion. Comprising Brendan Harvey on guitar/vocals and Dale Hudak on drums, bottle bin and vocals, Jackson Firebird are the creators of foot-stomping Blues infused Garage Rock in its most spirited form.

Rugged, explosive, full-tilt Aussie rock & roll – Jackson Firebird have it in spades and have recently delivered one hell of a mighty wallop in the form of Cock Rockin’, the duo’s high-octane debut and 10 tracks of scorching garage rock: growling guitars, dirty riffs, and super tight beats, hits delivered not just from a kit but via a mic’d up, upside down ‘bottle bin’.

Raised in regional VIC on a diet of Back In Black, Elvis, Spiderbait, the Easybeats and Gunners, the lads behind Cock Rockin’ will be sure to leave you wild-eyed and breathless at the Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014.

Owen Campbell

Owen Campbell has been playing guitar since he was 9 years old and is one of Australia’s most talented slide guitar players and songwriters.  With his gravelly blend of blues, roots, soul and country, and a voice that belies his 28 years, he creates a perfect blend of melody that’s simple, but right, as is the way with blues.

It’s honest music that tells a story, rich with influences from The Band, Van Morrison, Townes Van Zandt, a little Johnny Cash, and the raspy emotion of Ray Lamontagne, Owen Campbell’s bluesy drawl melded with a soulful slide guitar, beckons his audience to join him in his steamy, swampy, growling world.

Owen has been touring non-stop, impressing audiences all over the globe, from Ireland and the UK, India, Austria and Papua New Guinea, to the highest Blues Festival in the world; The Himalayan Blues Festival in Kathmandu (2008/2010), Nepal and now he’s packing his bags to join us at Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014.

Shaun Kirk

 One of the most exciting talents to emerge from the Australian music scene today is singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Shaun Kirk. Hailed for his electrifying live shows, Shaun’s one-man-band set up of guitars, harmonicas, pedals and gadgets, must be seen to be believed. One journalist quips, “Shaun Kirk has taken to the guitar like the proverbial duck to water, add to that a howling vocal, rock-solid harmonica and a variety of foot-operated percussion, it’s a mind-bending combination he makes look easy.” (Rhythms Magazine)

 Renowned for being one of Australia’s most relentless touring acts, Shaun has played at a number of Australia’s prolific music festivals including Byron Bay Bluesfest, Port Fairy Folk Festival and St Kilda Festival. His popularity with audiences saw him voted as the winner of the ‘Youth People’s Choice’ award at the Blues at Bridgetown 2012 as well as ‘Best New Artist’ at the St Kilda Festival 2013.

Joel Sulman

Bred in Byron Bay and now residing in Albury, Joel Sulman grew up with a wide range of musical influences and has developed his own unique style utilising his powerful voice, eclectic guitar work and cheeky percussion.

Although a relative newcomer to the scene, in the last 12 months, Joel has been supported the likes of The Whitlams, Allensworth, Shaun Kirk, Diesel, Claude Hay and many more.

Teamed up with a band of amazing players, Joel puts on a dynamic, powerful show!

 Michael Gorham

 Inspired by soulful blues stars Gary Moore and Joe Walsh, the psychedelic eccentricity of Jimi Hendrix and Jeff Buckley, and the raw power of Bruce Springsteen and Dave Grohl, Michael Gorham, has achieved many career milestones and has an impressive list of accolades to his name.

Michael was a Finalist in the ACMF and ASA National Songwriting Competitions, the 20th Anniversary of Youth Rock, and has graduated from the prestigious Talent Development Project at the Sydney Entertainment Centre. He was also one of eleven soloists chosen to perform at ENCORE held annually at the Sydney Opera House.

Michael’s self-titled EP will be out in early February 2014 right in time for the Deni Blues & Roots Festival!

Frank Macias

 Frank Macias is a guitarist, singer, songwriter and music producer from San Antonio, Texas.

Often referred to as the ‘real deal’, Frank is the founding member and leader of Frank Macias & Los Amigos, and for the past 18 years he has played with some of the best musicians in Australia including Hamish Rosser of the Vines, Chris Masauk of Radio Birdman and Henry Correy.

Whether he’s singing with gentle menace or bending new curves into a blue note, he is a master of tension and release, and his every wayward impulse is riveting. Make sure you catch him in full swing at the Deni Blues & Roots Festival 2014.

Deni Blues & Roots Festival

Conargo Road, Deniliquin, NSW

Saturday, 19 April 2014

– and –

Sunday, 20 April 2014











Tickets available from, the Deniliquin Blues & Roots Office or 03 5881 8259

Twitter: #denibluesfest

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