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Darwin Country Music Muster

It's a hoedown at the showgrounds! Darwin musician, promoter and serial festival organiser Andrew Arthur spoke to Off The Leash about Darwin’s first Country Music Muster.

A country music muster – how has this come about?   
The Territory is the soul of Australian country. Country music is deeply connected to the land and has always been very popular in the remote NT. All the big names have toured here and all have written hit songs inspired by their unique experiences – From Slim Dusty's ‘Plains of Peppimenarti’ to John Williamson's ‘Raining on the Rock’.  

Why is the time ripe to celebrate country music with a dedicated festival? 
Darwin has a long history of appreciation of country music. Back in the 70s there were multiple associations dedicated to the genre. One did try a festival at Robbie Robbins Reserve, and there were three years of shows with big names at the Amphitheatre. Katherine also had a community-based association that produced many quality shows but, unfortunately, over time, none of these opportunities have lasted. 
Our team organised the Adelaide River Music Muster for many years and we made the decision to move the festival to a greater population base. The Darwin music scene 
is building its capacity and we have world class acts that need a performance platform.    
What kind of day can punters expect?    
Phil O'Brien is MC, so we are gonna have some fun, laughs, great music and much dancing. There will also be tears – after all, it's country music. 

Tell us a bit about the line up, and the diversity of country music that will be on display.  
The program is intense, with 12 acts over eight hours. We are so pleased to headline with Australian country music legend and Northern Territory icon Warren H Williams and his fabulous band. Up and coming young gun, Cameron Cusack is currently on tour around Australia, while QLD sensation 8 Ball Aitken is fresh from his US shows. Wanita, queen of honky tonk, is a wonderfully eccentric live wire with a silky voice, and Katie Oliver sings with beauty and depth of the Katherine River and her hometown.
Kicking off the day will be Cashed Up, Darwin's sell-out Johnny Cash Tribute Show.  

Sat 30 Jun | 3.30pm-12am | Darwin Showgrounds| See the event listing

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