STACKS of huge acts have joined the bill for the Hay Mate Buy A Bale drought-fundraiser concert.
But, it’s Tamworth local artist Aleyce Simmonds who plans to make a big splash.
Playing alongside Aussie pub rock legends like John Farnham and Daryl Braithwaite, Simmonds said she’s honoured to share the stage.
“It’s amazing, John Farnham has been my absolute idol since I was a little girl so the thought of that is just mind-blowing,” Simmonds said.
From the land herself, Simmonds has seen firsthand the affects of drought on the region and the toll it takes on families and farmers.
“I’ve definitely seen it from both angles, from a farming perspective and from a town perspective because my parents live on the land, on a property out of town,” she said.
“They’ve had to sell their livestock, buy water – while they’re in a lucky position in that they don’t rely on it 100 per cent for their livelihood it’s still been devastating.”
Simmonds manages the CitySider Motel in town, and said she’s seen numerous cancellations from families who just can’t afford the time away from feeding or the cost to stay.
“They’re scrambling to get it together, it’s been really devastating to see,” she said.
The concert will raise money for Buy A Bale, to deliver much-needed resources to farmers suffering in drought.
Also on the bill is Guy Sebastian, The Veronicas, Jon Stevens, Andrew Farriss, Adam Harvey and Tim Wheatley.
Simmonds said she hopes the event brings not only the financial assistance farmers desperately need, but can boost morale in what is a difficult time for most.
“Touring the country singer you get to see a lot of the land,” she said.
“The cities are so caught up in what’s going on in the city, it’s amazing now that it’s making such a big ripple effect and people are banding together.
“I’m so honoured to be part of it in our hometown because it would have been a real shame not to have a local artist on the bill.
“I’m just so happy that it was me, I just need to make sure I put my best foot forward and make Tamworth proud.”
The Hay Mate Buy A Bale concert gates open at 12pm on Saturday October 27, at Scully Park in Tamworth, with the concert starting at 1.30pm.
Tickets are available from ticketmaster.com.au.