Recently 'Cigány Weaver' had the lovely chance to adventure up to the Sunshine Coast hinterland for two boutique music festivals, Maleny Music Festival & Neurum Creek Music Festival. Both run by committed hardworking volunteers and community groups, they were a joy to perform at.
Maleny Music Festival
You know those gigs where no one listens or cares, and that’s fine – you just have to get through it and hold out for the gigs where people do listen and do care. Turns out, you just gotta hold out for Maleny Music Festival! I’ve loved Maleny ever since I first went there and did the cheese factory tour (delicious), so I was chuffed when we were asked to perform. We drove up on a fine Friday afternoon, with our first gig taking place that night.
As I've learned, Maleny has strong ties to my favourite festival of all time (Woodford Folk Festival), having housed the gigantic festival before it's relocation. I definitely witnessed this connection on our first day; while the Maleny festival is a lot smaller than Woodford, both share so much heart. That night we played our first show of the weekend to a packed crowd, and we felt so loved and respected as musicians.
After the show, I had to go grab my bag from the car and was stopped about five times by well-wishers, eventually making it back to my billet’s house at 1am with a gigantic smile on my face. The next morning, I went for a run around Maleny to get my bearings, instead getting very lost (a classic move by me). There are definitely worse places to get lost though x
Going in to the festival on Saturday, we caught a few great acts like Sian Evans and Fred Smith, whilst also doing a whole bunch of relaxing. After a few hours, some of the guys and I headed back to one of our billet’s houses and had a cosy jam session. Eventually it came time to play our second and final show of the weekend, and it seemed that word had spread. As we arrived at the venue 20mins before our timeslot, the room was already full! Later, we were informed that not only was the venue at full capacity, but security were holding back another 20 or so people listening from outside!
That stage was a happy and safe place for me. Everyone listened and laughed at even my worst banter attempts, and we sold out of our CD’s directly after the show. The next morning I was up early and heading home to Brisbane with a big ol smiley heart.
Neurum Creek Music Festival
Our time at Neurum Creek Music Festival in September was brief, chilly and very sweet. We were scheduled to perform on the first night, but unfortunately had another gig booked the next day back in Brisbane so couldn't stay after our show. Nevertheless, it was a great experience yet another unique and relatively unknown community-run festival!
We drove to Neurum via the Dayboro route which was very serene...until the winding roads began! Rory’s car couldn’t take to corners slowly or it would lose traction for the hills, which meant a few high speed turns, leading to a bit of nausea in the back seat. But we soldiered on and made it to Neurum Creek in the end, unscathed.
I bought a great beanie from a local lady, then we all settled in to the Green Room, where we were provided with fruit cake and pretzels (what a combo). We watched the acts before us, a highlight being singer-songwriter Danny Widdicome accompanied by jazz trio Trichotomy. After a long wait, it was finally our turn! We could tell the audience was itching for a dance, so we tried to keep things lively. The welcome they gave us was very warm, and yet again our CD’s all sold out!
The lame part was definitely having to leave at 11:30pm to get back to Brisbane, but it was all worth it. Thankyou so much for having us Neurum Creek & Maleny! x