Crowded House at Bluefest 2010.
Crowded House at Bluefest 2010. Jay Cronan

Bouquets all round for Bluesfest

10CC’s lead guitarist Rick Fenn reckons the 2010 Bluesfest is ‘up there with the best festivals in the world – and we’ve played quite a few’.

Despite a last minute panic caused by British Airways leaving the band’s keyboards in London, they played a flawless set on Sunday night – enhancing precious memories for the Boomers present and guaranteeing themselves a healthy future.

Their witty art-pop songs were taken to a new level of rockiness, especially on an almost Floyd-like intro to Art For Art’s Sake.

Fenn said the band was very happy with their show.

“We had a great time.”

He also said he was really impressed with the new location and the level of organisation.

Police and emergency services were also pleased, reporting a weekend free of major incident. It is believed 100 people were cautioned for marijuana possession.

While Crowded House wooed a packed Mojo tent, 10CC were followed on Sunday by Roger Donaldson, Supertramp’s former frontman – but the night wasn’t just for nostalgics.

Annabelle Commerford of Byron Bay is only 20, and she said Donaldson was easily the highlight of Bluesfest for her, with an awesome offering of all his old hits.

At the other end of the age spectrum was Silka Kurth of California, who had travelled to see her son perform as Eli Jebadiah, the lead guitarist in the warmly-received Poor Man’s Whiskey.

It had been a fantastic experience for him, she said.

Ms Kurth said it was fabulous to see the variety of grand masters at the festival. She had enjoyed The Break but Buddy Guy was ‘hands down the best’. Imelda May and the Gypsy Kings also rated highly.

The festival had been ‘fabulously organised’, she said.

“It reeks of class and professionalism. People have been so friendly and the every one of the workers has been helpful.”

Ms Kurth said she thought Bluesfest boss Peter Noble deserved a ‘10 out of 10’.

The man himself said he was ‘thrilled at how things had gone’.

There had been some teething problems with traffic management but this was to be expected, Mr Noble said.

“I’m very happy with the site,” he said.

Saturday had been a sell-out, though he thought numbers might be down for some of the other nights.

Feedback from festival goers across the board had been that the site was much easier to get around than Belongil Fields

Music fans started leaving Byron Bay yesterday.

The stayers enjoyed a sunny laidback day, choosing either to rock to the Bo Diddley groove (plus beer keg percussion) of Australians the Mason Rack Band, or chill to the folk lyricism of Patty Larkin, among others.

Punters were anticipating sensational closing sets from Newton Faulkner and The Fray last night.

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