WHILE the Tamworth Country Music Festival begins in just six days time, music hopefuls and Aussie legends are already flocking to the city for some pre-festival action.
It might only be early days, but as the countdown until festival kick off is under way, there’s already an extensive gig guide for those early arrivals.
On Friday, the camping grounds were declared officially open, with an influx of guests expected to start arriving in the city over the weekend.
From the Tourist Information Centre to the Australian Country Music Hall of Fame, the city’s entertainment hot spots are opening their doors from Saturday for the occasion.
Among them is Johnny Taylor, who will be performing at the Diggers’ Courtyard from 8.30pm, Saturday and Shane Teinaki at the Tamworth Services Club at 8.30pm.
On Sunday, Two Gals will perform at Wests’ Leagues Club from 7pm and there’s the Oasis Band at the Oasis Hotel from 5.30pm – just to name a few.
On Sunday, residents and visitors are invited to the annual Balladeers concert at the Kootingal Bowling Club.
The event begins at 10am until 4pm with performances by Big Al, Tommy Maxwell, Lynette Guest, Patti Morgan, Tracy Coster, Rodney Walker and more.
A gold coin admission is required with a barbecue, morning tea and raffles.
A courtesy bus is also available, but inquiries should be directed to Maureen Gardner on 0408 211 843.
The early line-up of artists and festival festivities follows on from the success of the CMAA Academy of Country Music held in the city this week, which saw the likes of country stars including Lyn Bowtell, Kevin Bennett, Fanny Lumsden and Kasey Chambers take young artists under their wing and teach them about the industry.
Tamworth is gearing up to become the city that never sleeps for the next 10 days, with a program jam packed full of special events.
This year’s festival will showcase more than 2700 official events and activities, that will be staged throughout the festival, including the countdown period. There’s almost 600 acts in addition to talent quest entrants, the musicians and more than 350 buskers in Peel Street - performing in 120 official venues.
The festivities officially kick off on Friday, January 20, where the Festival officially opens with a concert at Toyota (Bicentennial) Park, featuring some of the industry’s biggest names.