Queenscliff’s the king of festivals

Set against a backdrop of sun, surf and sea, this month’s Queenscliff Music Festival will feature a staggering and incredibly varied array of exciting and eclectic local and international talent.

Its reputation as one of Australia’s great music festivals will no doubt be enhanced by headliners Xavier Rudd (Friday), Bernard Fanning (Saturday) and The Temper Trap (Sunday) as well as a host of indie, blues, rock’n’roll, country and soul performers, making sure everyone’s music tastes are well and truly satisfied.

Hiatus Kaiyote frontwoman Nai Palm will perform a solo set that promises to be as soulful, progressive and individual as all of her former releases.  Yothu Yindi & The Treaty Project features Gavin Campbell (Filthy Lucre) in a reinvigorated formation that will mix the band's classics and new material with an electronic twist.

Aussie roots outfit The Beautiful Girls are playing their only Victorian show this year at Queenscliff and will perform their first two albums, Morning Sun and Learn Yourself, in their entirety.  New Orleans-based funk master Jon Cleary and his Absolute Monster Gentlemen will include songs from Go Go Juice, which won last year’s Grammy for Best Regional Roots Music Album.

The festival will also feature The Teskey Brothers’ dynamic Melbourne-via-Motown sound, the powerhouse pipes, wind and strings of mega soul ensemble The Bamboos, and singer-songwriter and Jebediah frontman Bob Evans. Country songstress and nine-time Golden Guitar winner Beccy Cole, bluesy rocker and guitarist Mia Dyson, and country/blues husband and wife duo Hat Fitz and Cara join the line-up along with Perth rock’n’rollers The Southern River Band, indie artist Stella Donnelly, Allysha Joy, Jazz Party, Little Georgia and The Wilson Pickers.

Overseas acts include Brooklyn-based multi-instrumentalist Gabriel Garzon-Montano, NYC trio Too Many Zooz, Canada-based Irish singer-songwriter Irish Mythen, Nashville-based Canadian country singer Lindi Ortega and countrymen The East Pointers. Hawaii’s Ron Artis II brings one of his three bands, The Truth, to Queenscliff for a set of blues, jazz and soul, and smoky-voiced Travis Bowlin brings his roots vibe Down Under from the US.

If roots and world beats are your thing, look no further than Lamine Sonko & The African Intelligence – one of two 10-piece ensembles playing the festival.  The other is Melbourne’s Sex on Toast - dripping in ‘80s pizazz and described as Saturday Night Fever meets Boys II Men.

Aussie icon Russell Morris, blues/soul/gospel queen Caiti Baker, Melbourne folksters The Mae Trio, Cherry Bar soul DJ Vince Peach, Melbourne’s Didirri, North-East Arnhem Land’s Yirrmal and Geelong girl band the Sweethearts will also perform over the three days with Apollo Bay teen rockers The Refuge, 15-year-old musician Heath Robertson, and his singer-songwriter mother Andrea Robertson.

Award-winning comedian, writer and musician Sammy J will make sure there are laughs aplenty at Queenscliff, while the QMF Comedy Show will feature side-splitting stand-up routines from four of Australia's funniest: Ivan Aristeguieta, Harley Breen, young talent Demi Lardner, and Nath Valvo.  As in previous years there will also be an arts component to this year’s line-up, as well as plenty of colourful entertainment options for the kids and locally grown gourmet food and wine for the adults.  It all adds up to making the Queenscliff Music Festival a must for families as well as lovers of all types of music.

The Queenscliff Music Festival is at Princess Park, Queenscliff, from November 24-26.  For tickets, go to trybooking.com/book/event?eid=265096; for line-up details and further information, go to qmf.net.au