Courtney Conway. Jonny Taylor.
MANDURAH’S country music scene may be alittle bit quiet this weekend as withlocal performers dominating the line-up atthe Boyup BrookCountry Music Festival.
Courtney Conway, Jonny Taylor, BillyHigginson and Vicki Lee will all make their way down for the 29th annual eventto celebrate everything country.
“It’s our Tamworth,”Lee said.
“There are a lot of eastern states andinternational artists who come and the whole town comes alive for the fourdays.”
Over the four-day event, 15,000-17,000people will descend on the small shire of 1700 to celebrate the whole culturewhich revolves around the music genre.
“There’s something for everyone,” Higginsonsaid.
“It’s not just music; there’s a ute andtruck muster, a vintage car show and they alldrive through the streets to beginwith.
“Then the buskers will start.”
“The vibe is fantastic; people come up toyou in the street or at the bar and just say, ‘hello’,” Conway added.
“I played there last year and was hopingthey’d have me back.”
Out of the 23 country acts on the bill, thefour Mandurah singers make up just under a fifth of those playing across theweekend and as the home of the Western Australian Country Music Awards, there’sno surprise Mandurah also has some locals nominated for that as well.
Jasmine Atikins, a regular at some ofMandurah’s live music venues, is also up forBest Junior Artist.
Mandurah also has a 100 per cent chance ofbeing the home of WA’s Best Independent Single of the Year with the only twopeople up for the award being Conway with hertrack 21 Days and Taylorfor Brighter Than YouFeel and You’ll Never Break Me.
The two local singers continue the award nominations with both of them upfor Best Songwriter of theYear.
Tayloris also up for Best Male Artist and Best Independent Album, for Something to Say and Conway ishoping totake out the Best Female Artist and Best New Talent.
“I’m really excited to be nominated,” Conway said.
“It’s really an honour.”
Having so many locals in the festivalline-up doesn’t surprise the young country singer, describing Mandurahas an overgrown country town itself.
For fellow Mandurah country singershowever, it’s a different story.
Both Lee and Higginson’s are old favouriteson the Boyup Brook line-up, with both acts describing the festival as a homeaway from home.
But when it comes to being in their hometown, they believe the country music genre, while successful in Mandurah, is anunderground sensation.
“I think people would be surprised how wellthe artists from here go,” Lee said.
It’s a music culture which the pair want to change in Mandurah, bringing it out of the shadows.
This has led to the creation ofa country music club.
The club brings local and national acts toperform once a month for lovers of the genre.
It’s their way of bringing a little bit of Boyup Brook to Mandurah, celebratingall things country, not just the music.
The Boyup Brook Festival is from February 13-16.
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