Crowds flock to battle of the bands in Airlie Beach
ABOUT 400 people flocked to the Whitsunday Sailing Club on Sunday afternoon for the Passport to Airlie battle of the bands.
The event saw six soloists and two bands competing for the chance to play at the Airlie Beach Music Festival taking place from November 8-10.
Soloists Kym Jones, Luke Andrews, A.J. Shoesmith, Tara Wells, Sharon Van Den Berg and Sam Hutchinson and bands Peace and Plenty and Cactus all had just 30 minutes to impress a panel of judges and win the crowd.
Event organiser Andrew Pattinson said the artists were required to perform at least two original songs “so it pushed a lot of people and that was great”.
“The crowd got right behind everybody and every single artist was stoked,” he said.
At the end of the afternoon, soloist Sam Hutchinson from Maryborough was announced as winner of the grand prize.
Local music enthusiast and judge Steve Andrew said Sam con- nected quickly with the crowd and had them cheering for her during her songs.
“She has a special talent and showed everyone what she’s capable of,” he said.
Sam, who rocked the house with her rendition of Cyndi Lauper’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, said she was really excited to be annouced as the winner.
“I’m really looking forward to playing at the festival this year. It will be a great experience and a chance to meet with some great Australian musicians,” she said.
Second and third places went to Cactus and Peace and Plenty, both of whom won tickets to the festival and a place in the line-up for next year.
Mr Pattinson said Sunday’s event was a “huge success”, both in its own right and as a promotion for the upcoming music festival, featuring 74 acts.
For more information vist www.airliebeachmusicfestival.com.au.
POWERHOUSE PERFORMANCE: Steve Andrew, Annie Freeman, battle of the bands winner Sam Hutchinson and event MC Glen Taiapa on Sunday. Sam took out the competiton to win a spot in the lineup at the inagural Airlie Beach Music Festival.
PRIZES GALORE: Passport to Airlie judge and master of ceremonies Glen Taiapa with Kylie Telford, who won a three-day ticket to the Airlie Beach Music Festival, worth $245 via a charity raffle supporting junior sailing, which was held at Sunday's event.