Bliss N Esso, Sheppard and more
Thousands of music lovers descended on the Civic Centre Gardens at the weekend for the seventh annual North West Festival, with headline acts including Abbe May, Hands Like Houses, Sheppard, and Bliss N Eso.
Dubbed the region’s premier music experience, the event brings renowned artists to Port Hedland to provide the people of Hedland and neighbouring towns with the same entertainment as seen in big cities.
The festival is also a chance for local artists to showcase their talent to raise their profile and perform alongside internationally acclaimed acts.
Port Hedland musician Bella Blakemore was the first local artists to take to the stage with her soothing acoustic pop folk vocals.
Next up was Roebourne two-piece JoKeira, whose lyrics are inspired by the land and history of the Pilbara.
Perth-based singer-songwriter and human rights campaigner Abbe May kicked off the strong line-up of artists, winning the crowd with her guitar- slinging and powerful lyrics.
May said it had been an unreal experience to return to Port Hedland after performing at the event in 2013.
“I like the experience of going to new places, new terrains and different environments — going outside of my comfort zone,” she said.
“Because I come from a small town myself, I feel like I’m always coming home when I come to places like this.
“People really look after you here and bend over backwards to make life easier . . . to have a celebration like North West Fest is fantastic for the area and for artists like us.”
Five-piece Canberra band Hands Like Houses and indie pop band Sheppard kept the crowds going before hip-hop trio Bliss N Eso wrapped up the night with a highly energetic and crazy show.
Jonothan Notley, known as MC Bliss, said the band were stoked to visit Port Hedland for the first time and rock out with the town.
Punters returned to the Civic Centre Gardens the next evening for the all-ages family event, the North West Festival Sunday Sundowner. The event featured another impressive line-up with Will Smith, Megan Kelly, Carla Geneve, and Sam Perry captivating audiences under perfect Pilbara weather conditions. Sam Perry, best known for winning the seventh series of The Voice Australia in 2018, wrapped up the evening with a live looping set, including heavy basslines and break-beat, beat boxed rhythm.
The event was hosted by the Town of Port Hedland and BHP.
Pilbara perfect conditions at the North West Festival Sundowner.
Bridget Tesar, Sandra Murgia, Samantha Whitehead, and Darrin Hovey.
Fiona Lucky, Aimee Middis, and Sheena Yadav.
Imogen Williams and Tara Fitzgerald.
Hands Like Houses.
Jess O'Neill and Liam Chittleborough.
Sofiya Sam and Heidi Ward.
Sam Perry performs.
Donovan Nelson and Jaye Fitzroy.