Blues ‘n’ Roots proves a glo­ri­ous hit

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Festival - Tanya MacNaughton

THE scene was set for an­other glo­ri­ous West Coast Blues ‘n’ Roots Fes­ti­val on Sun­day and it cer­tainly de­liv­ered.

Ex-Canberra busker Kim Churchill thanked those who got to Fre­man­tle Park early, de­spite the heat they were en­dur­ing watch­ing him on the Main Stage at mid­day.

The raw vo­cals of Beth Hart drew a steadily in­creas­ing crowd to the Big Top stage, her West Coast Blues ‘n’ Roots de­but de­liv­er­ing a mem­o­rable set with songs in­clud­ing Bet­ter Than Home off her forth­com­ing al­bum plus My Cal­i­for­nia and Bang Bang Boom Boom.

Queen of soul Mavis Sta­ples con­tin­ued the Big Top party, the singer tak­ing the crowd back to the Amer­i­can civil rights move­ment (she marched from Selma to Mont­gomery with her singing Sta­ples fam­ily) with songs I’ll Take You There and Re­spect Your­self.

Back on the Main Stage, Xavier Rudd and the United Na­tions got fans shak­ing their booty and feel­ing the sun­shine as the re­cently formed band de­buted songs off this month’s al­bum Nanna.

It may have been a warm day but Paul Kelly Presents The Merri Soul Ses­sions were some cool cats and the tal­ented en­sem­ble in­clud­ing Dan Sul­tan, Clairy Brown, Kira Puru and Vika and Linda Bull were a tour de force of soul.

David Gray’s The One I Love re­ceived a rap­tur­ous ap­plause as the sun set be­fore mov­ing on to the com­pul­sory Baby­lon sin­ga­long.

One man’s scuf­fle with se­cu­rity did not faze Scot­tish singer Paolo Nu­tini’s set full of swag­ger, while tar­tan scarves, tam­mies and flags from his home­land could be seen among the throng of ador­ing fans.

Fre­man­tle favourites John But­ler Trio re­turned to their roots and closed the Main Stage, with a slightly marred per­for­mance of old and lat­est ma­te­rial off Flesh and Blood af­ter be­ing told by or­gan­is­ers twice he had to cut songs to fin­ish on time.

Ge­orge Clin­ton and Par­lia­ment Funkadelic lived up to their name, fin­ish­ing the Big Top in funky style.

Pic­tures: Elle Borg­ward

Left: Ge­orge Clin­ton and Par­lia­ment Funkadelic in ac­tion at the Blues ‘n’ Roots Fes­ti­val; Above right: The John But­ler Trio; Be­low right: The ever-pop­u­lar Paul Kelly.

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