RETRO: Byron Bay band The Swamps are Matthew Armitage on guitar / vocals and Matt 'Swanny' Swan on drums. They play a dynamic live show of forgotten gems and classics from the 1950s and 1960s.
RETRO: Byron Bay band The Swamps are Matthew Armitage on guitar / vocals and Matt 'Swanny' Swan on drums. They play a dynamic live show of forgotten gems and classics from the 1950s and 1960s.

Meet the band that played Margot's wedding

THEIR set of fun, funky and nostalgic 1950s and 1960s music was a perfect fit for the low-key weeding of Gold Coast actress Margot Robbie, but just as the Hollywood star, you can also enjoy the music of local dup The Swamps, right here.

Matthew Armitage and Matt 'Swanny' Swan only met in 2014 but their work together as The Swamps had made people dance and enjoy a good time at The Northern in Byron Bay, but they also have been at the busking stage at Bluesfest (2014) and at the Tent of Miracles at last year's Splendour in the Grass.

Armitage and Swanny also played a special show backing Pete Murray at his restaurant Franki Brown in Byron Bay, and have also traveled to Jindabyne for a tour in the snow, flown to Mt Isa to entertain miners, and rocked a fair few weddings around the Northern Rivers.

The Swamps share their love of American artists such as Buddy Guy, James Brown, Dick Dale, Chuck Berry, Doctor John and many more.

"At our shows, people can expect a band that plays some of the old repertiore, which was a 1950s and 1960s tradition too," Armitage said.

"We recorded a single in 2014, Treating Me Good, but The Swamps will stay playing rock classic since we have other projects developing original music."

"The music we play is like the soundtrack to a Tarantino movie, that's what a great gig feels to us."

Matthew Armitage said it was only a short time between arriving from his hometown in New Zealand and meeting Swanny.

"I decided to move to the Tweed / Byron area in 2014 but I didn't know anybody," he said.

"Before that, in 2013, I met Swanny through a friend and we organised a jam session, and we ht it off.

"I didn't see his for a while as he moved to Melbourne with his other music project, Elegant Shiva, so I started playing solo under my name and I am also part of local rock band Chesta Hedron.

But during a holidays trip back home that Matt Swan played again with Armitage in Byron Bay.

"We were runner ups at the Bluesfest Busking Competition, that was great because we had just started to play as The Swamps."

 

Actress Margot Robbie, star of Suicide Squad, was married in Byron Bay last month. (AP Photo/Joel Ryan)
Actress Margot Robbie, star of Suicide Squad, was married in Byron Bay last month. (AP Photo/Joel Ryan) Joel Ryan/AP

How The Swamps got Margot Robbie's wedding gig

BYRON Bay rock duo The Swamps were the live music entertainment at the wedding of Hollywood star Margot Robbie and husband British director Tom Ackerley, in Coorabell last month.

Vocalist Matthew Armitage said the referral for the gig came from a previous client.

"Margot Robbie's personal assitant was good friends with somebody who hired us to play at their wedding a couple of years ago at Ewingsdale Hall," he explained.

"Her Personal Assistant contacted us, and Margot really wanted live music and for it to be a party band, so we were recommended as a great Byron Bay party band.

Armitage and fellow band member Matt Swann met Margot Robbie about a week before the wedding.

"At some point we realised this family reunion we had been booked for was actually a surprise type of wedding," he said

"I called her assistant and explained we had quoted them for a wedding and we were not expecting to be a big party.

"We organise to meet up at the Gold Coast, before one of my gigs. I met Sophia, the person I had been talking to until that point, and another lady, Margot, but I did not realise immediately who she was.

"I've seen a couple of movies she's been in but in real life she looked very normal.

"The only thing was that not many ladies wear a baseball cap in Australia.

"They wanted to meet up, clear the air and apologise for all the secrecy. They didn't want to word to get out, they anted an intimate family affair and that's what it was."

Armitage said the duo has a couple of weddings booked in this year's calendar.



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