The 10th annual Bendigo Blues & Roots Summer Showcase/Fundraiser will be staged on Sunday 1 March across two stages at the Rifle Brigade Hotel. Solo and duo acts will serenade music fans on the glorious balcony and bands of all shapes and sizes will keep you dancing via the Rifle’s renowned Carpark Stage.

The packed list of acts set to perform at this Showcase event will again include some of Bendigo’s best, along with some fresh faces from the larger blues, soul, jazz, folk and original music circuits. All who’ve put their respective hands up to support the not-for-profit community music festival – across two stages, in the Rifle’s Carpark and the beautiful balcony overlooking Bendigo’s enviable arts precinct.

As always, these artists are donating their time and talents, as do the Festival’s volunteer committee and crew, to help kick start the kitty to pay for the Festival itself, to be staged on November 5-8, 2020.

Along with a bunch of other great artists playing their first BB&RMF Summer Showcase event will be one of Melbourne’s hottest properties on the live music circuit right now: Blues Roulette. The brainchild of bassist BenWicks who, along with regular session drummers and keyboard players, plays backing band and host to an ever growing list of top class front men and women from the Australian blues scene. On any given night you might see Blues Roulette feature Geoff Achison, or Andrea Marr, or Ian Collard, or Fiona Boyes or Lloyd Spiegel, or other seemingly random combinations of Melbourne’s best or touring interstate artists. But it’s not just the names and the talent involved, it’s the vibe they consistently perpetrate thanks to the Blues Roulette formula – no set lists, no charts, “no net” – they spin the wheel and let it all happen live and raw and in the moment. Keep an eye on BB&RMF’s social media for news on who Blues Roulette’s guest artists will be on 1 March.

Other Summer Showcase first timers this time around include: Rory Phillips, the young phenom from Tumut NSW who made a huge number of fans at his BB&RMF debut in 2019; Ramble Town, Central Victoria’s most exciting new Rockabilly comprising some of the finest musicians getting around; Melbourne folk/blues master Matt Katsis; sublime QLD (now Melbourne-based) singer/songwriter Maja; exquisite young jazz duet Strawberry Jamz; and Union Street Blues Club will present two of its most popular ensembles: Drivin’ South and Black Cat Bone! One of Australia’s most respected guitarists Shannon Bourne will be joining the fray to play a solo set, hot off the heals of a whirlwind visit to Memphis USA with Melbourne’s incredible blues quartet Checkerboard Lounge and will have some inspiring stories to tell, between performing his original compositions and reinterpreted blues grooves.

Returning to lend their support again will be local legends Bill Barber & The Revelators, Grim Fawkner, EricaHawkey Band (with a fresh new CD on offer), Patrick Lionel (now based in Melbourne), Castlemaine’s new favourite musical daughter Jess Parker and local songbirds Alex & Dan.

To continue to fund this predominantly free festival, your support and assistance is needed. So spread the word and bring a bunch of friends if you can, to the Rifle Brigade Hotel on March 1st and help continue to grow the burgeoning music scene that has been revitalized over the last few years in Central Victoria. On behalf of participating venues, local and visiting artists, and all of us who enjoy a wide range of live music to be enjoyed on a weekly basis, ‘Thank You’ for your ongoing support of grass-roots music events!

Tickets for the March 1st Showcase event are available at the door on the day and are $20 for adults, $5 for under-18s (with under-12s free).

The live music will start at 11:30am sharp and continue through till 9pm. For full program and further info, please subscribe to BB&RMF via all the usual social media channels and keep an eye out for updates.

AT A GLANCE Date: Sunday 1 March 2020, 11:30am-9pm Attraction: Live music from over 15 quality acts across 2 stages Ticket price: Adults $20, Under 18s $5, Under 12s free Venue: Rifle Brigade Hotel, 173 View Street Bendigo, VIC 3550