VIDEO: Stars align for festival launch

COUNTRY music fans have been waiting about 355 days for this, but tonight the Tamworth Country Music Festival will be officially opened in Toyota Park at 7pm.

It’s the 42nd year of the world’s second-biggest country music party. And with thousands of visitors in town early, Friday night's party won’t be one to forget.

The event will kick off with whip-cracker Nathan Griggs on stage to perform amazing feats. Hosted by the Sunny Cowgirls and headlined by Adam Harvey and Troy Cassar-Daley, it will cap off last year’s sellout The Great Country Songbook Tour. Adam and Troy were impressed with the size of the stage, which is bigger than any they’ve had in Toyota Park.

“I haven’t played it for years, because I normally don’t get here until Tuesday and then I run around, so it’s special to do it this festival,” Troy said.

“It’s great that it’s completely different to our normal festival shows, because we’ll do as many songs as we can fit in from The Great Country Songbook.”

Adam said he remembered coming to the opening concert with his parents as a teenager and walking across from the motel they stayed in.

“I remember watching the singers on the big stage, so this is pretty special for me,” he said. “We’ll kick the festival off in style and it’s a good one for the families.”

They will be joined by Melbourne’s Lachlan Bryan, Nashville-based Australian singer-songwriter Audrey Auld and 2013 Toyota Star Maker Kaylee Bell for the free concert. 

Tamworth mayor Col Murray said the opening concert promised to be a spectacular start to the festival.

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