Festival calls ‘Mr Whitsunday’
KIERAN McCarthy is “Mr Whitsunday” when it comes to the music scene in Airlie Beach.
At least that’s what Airlie Beach Festival of Music founder Gavin Butlin believes, and it’s the reason he’s given the local legend a spot on the main stage line-up for 2018.
But Kieran won’t be playing solo to the 3000-strong crowd at the Whitsunday Sailing Club.
The man who’s played more than 4000 Whitsunday gigs in 30 years mostly alone, will finally be supported by an eight-piece band comprising some of the best musicians in Australia.
This includes locals Mark Roberts and Tony Fossey; Damon Stone, Johnny Zak and well known guitarist Jimmi Hocking; Clare O’Meara, Michael Caruana and the Melbourne Ska Orchestra.
Originally planning to play songs from his latest album, Kieran says they’ll instead be playing old including November and the Whitsunday anthem Blue on Blue.
“The only non-original song will be Diamantina Drover which is an old Red Gum song and one of the last things Phil Emmanuel recorded with me before he passed away,” Kieran said.
“The plan was for Phil to get up on stage and do that with me so we’ll be performing it in his honour.”
Describing himself as humbled “and a little bit frightened”, Kieran was looking forward to the gig.
“There’s going to be a lot of talent on that stage – they all show me up a bit,” he joked.
See Kieran McCarthy & The Spare Parts this Sunday at 2.20pm.
GREAT TRIP: Creek To Coast host Scotty Hillier with his son Bailey in the middle and Moonshine Deckie Mick Marshall holding a sailfish they caught while filming.