Goats hit town

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - THE GROVE - An­gelique Pat­ter­son

THERE is no place bet­ter than home for the Hill­billy Goats, who are cel­e­brat­ing their re­turn with three shows this weekend for all of their fans.

The high­light of the tour for the Goats has been play­ing to full houses at the Tam­worth Coun­try Mu­sic Fes­ti­val and be­ing blown away by the re­sponse of the au­di­ences ev­ery sin­gle show.

‘‘It was pretty in­cred­i­ble - you’d do an amaz­ing show and leave the gig in such high spir­its, think­ing that was the BEST show, then the next day you’d do an­other show or two and leave feel­ing the same,’’ Goat Girl Mah­ney Wearne said.

‘‘It’s such a fan­tas­tic feel­ing to do 19 shows in a row and feel so blown away by the re­sponse each and ev­ery time.

‘‘We did a show of hands ev­ery gig to gauge where our au­di­ence had come from and 50 per cent of the au­di­ence each time had seen us be­fore at other fes­ti­vals around the coun­try and the other half were ‘Goat vir­gins’ em­bark­ing upon their first Goat ex­pe­ri­ence. To us that means a lot that people keep com­ing back as well as rec­om­mend­ing their friends and fam­ily to see our show.’’

Re­turn­ing on a high, the Goats have sunk into the re­al­ity of wet sea­son in Ju­lat­ten - mud, gum­boots, mould, and re­wash­ing en­tire wardrobes and linen cup­boards - but they wouldn’t want to be any­where else.

‘‘We have a lot of foun­da­tions, fans, and what we like to call Goat Fam­ily, in the north so it’s great to bring our show home with re­newed en­ergy and new ex­pe­ri­ences,’’ Mah­ney said.

‘‘Ev­ery time we leave there’s dis- cov­er­ies and ad­ven­tures that put new twists on our out­look and in turn our show, so it’s great to be wel­comed home with open arms and share those ex­pe­ri­ences.

‘‘And in true Goat style we never stand still and are al­ways chal­leng­ing our­selves with new con­cepts, in­stru­ments, for­mats and ma­te­rial push­ing our­selves to the next level. If you haven’t seen us in a while you won’t recog­nise us in our cur­rent form as the six-year evo­lu­tion from be­ing a pub ‘‘ cov­ers band’’ to a ‘‘ show band’’ is quite ex­treme.’’

Fol­low­ing their Wel­come Home tour, the Goats have the whole year booked with fes­ti­vals big and small, along with fi­nal­is­ing their new live al­bum they recorded be­tween Christ­mas and New Year.

‘‘We’re about to hear the fi­nal mix on that and move on re­leas­ing that some­time next month. That al­bum’s all about the songs we love to play on stage that haven’t quite made it to our two ma­jor record­ings of moun­tain mu­sic,’’ Mah­ney said.

‘‘ We’ve been ap­proached by a ma­jor pro­ducer which is fan­tas­tic but we’re still not get­ting too ex­cited about that as we’ve got a whole lot go­ing on as in­de­pen­dent artists.

‘‘We’ve got a whole year booked and we don’t have many free week­ends left, so we’re re­ally look­ing for­ward to play­ing at the Court­house again and catch­ing up with the lo­cals.’’

The Goats will be in Port Dou­glas to­mor­row night, Fe­bru­ary 28, at the Court­house Ho­tel at 7.30pm be­fore head­ing to Yorkey’s Knob Boat Club on Satur­day and In­n­is­fail on Sun­day.

Pic­ture: ANDREW PAT­TIN­SON

GOATS COM­ING HOME: Hill­billy Goats at the Air­lie Beach Mu­sic Fes­ti­val

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