The biggest multi-day music festival to be staged in Australia since Covid will rock the Simpson desert when the Birdsville Big Red Bash kicks off on Tuesday July 6.
While some of the original line-up have been caught in Covid lockdown organisers have worked hard to ensure the event will go ahead with an impressive line-up of artists with Paul Kelly still topping the bill.
The re-booted line-up for the 2021 Big Red Bash also includes Ian Moss, John Williamson, Daryl Braithwaite, Russell Morris, Glenn Shorrock, Thirsty Merc, Ross Wilson, The Black Sorrows, Vika & Linda, Wendy Matthews, Busby Marou, Chocolate Starfish, Eurogliders, Sarah McLeod, Bjorn Again, The Chantoozies, Brian Cadd, Caitlyn Shadbolt, The Crack Up Sisters, Kyle Lionheart and The Big Red Bash Band.
Kate Ceberano, Mi Sex, Steve Balbi, Mark Gable, Shannon Noll, Dragon, The Radiators and Furnace and the Fundamentals are unable to perform at the event due to Covid restrictions.
Thomas Busby and Jeremy Marou said Big Red Bash is definitely one of our favourite gigs to play.
It was a great surprise to get the late call up for this year and we will make absolutely sure to give you the best show that we can give." Busby Marou performed at the 2019 Big Red Bash.
Joe Camilleri said it was fabulous to be sharing the stage with this star-studded cast of musicians again at the Big Red Bash Birdsville.
"It's the most unique gig anywhere in the world. So bring your boots, quilt jacket and most of all ...your groove... it's always a blast...let's have a ball," he said. The Black Sorrows performed at the 2018 Big Red Bash.
Festival organiser Greg Donovan said they were sad to lose some artists.
"But we are also very excited about the new artists joining our line-up, and cannot thank them enough for stepping up to join us at the event next week. It's been an absolute rollercoaster of emotions as we've worked through these plans to ensure we can present a line-up of iconic performers. We've sadly lost some Oz rock legends, but are grateful that we've also gained some new Oz rock legends. It's going to be one hell of a party in the desert," he said.
Preparations for the Big Red Bash event continue in Birdsville with the full support of Queensland Health and Tourism and Events Queensland.
Event organisers are working closely with Government officials to ensure that their approved Covid Safe Event Plan continues to meet or exceed current requirements to keep everyone safe. (
"I would like to thank our amazing event team who have been and continue to work incredibly hard in a very challenging and dynamic environment to enable us to put on a memorable festival that will be loved by all who are able to attend," Mr Donovan said.
While numbers will be down because of border closures, the 10,000 capacity event will be staged on a massive 1.3 million m2 open air site, and the size of the concert and plaza area is enormous - it is almost the size of 9 footy fields which allows 6.3 square metres for each ticket holder (based on a crowd of 10,000). Widened walkways and large 90 square metre campsites are also part of the plans that allow event organisers to easily accommodate Covid safe rules and social distancing.
The event is ticketed so organisers have all details for contact tracing, and the sanitisation plans are extensive. There will be a dedicated medical team from Queensland Health on site, including pathologists to administer rapid COVID tests on site and a procedure for isolating and supporting any positive cases in a secure off-site location is in place.
All Big Red Bash ticket holders have been encouraged to check and respect the latest guidelines from State and Territory governments - with a warning that the strong Police presence on Queensland roads will mean travellers will be turned around if found to not be following the current rules.
While the Terms and Conditions do not require event organisers to give a refund or roll over tickets, they are working on developing a solution for ticket holders.
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