We Gotta Get Into This Place!

The Animals (UK), Eskimo Joe, Rick Price and more join 10th anniversary Airlie Beach Festival of Music line-up

There will be no wanting to “Get Out Of This Place” when The Animals take to the stage at the 10th anniversary Airlie Beach Festival of Music from November 4-6.

Hailing from an era when Britannia ruled the airwaves, The Animals marched in formation behind only The Beatles, as the second British band to top the American charts after the ‘Fab Four’.

Featuring original members John Steel and Mickey Gallagher alongside Danny Handley and Bobby Ruiz, The Animals are set to deliver a performance worthy of a festival celebrating a decade of bringing live music to the heart of the Great Barrier Reef.

Fans will be treated to The Animals’ greatest hits including House Of The Rising Sun, We Gotta Get Out Of This Place, Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood, Bring It On Home To Me, Don’t Bring Me Down, It’s My Life, and more.

Having neither visited nor played the Whitsundays before, John Steel said his first impressions from investigating online were that it “looks amazing”.

“I’m sure the weather will be perfect and everybody there will be up for a good time,” he said.

“The onstage set up and the crew will be top class… fans can expect to see and hear a cracking good band performing timeless classics from The Animals repertoire – just sit back and enjoy it, we won’t let you down.”

Meanwhile, representing Australian rock royalty will be Eskimo Joe, whose 35 ARIA nominations to date are surpassed only by Silverchair, Powderfinger, John Farnham and Kylie Minogue.

Eskimo Joe’s juggernaut Black Fingernails, Red Wine spent a monster 62 weeks in the ARIA Top 50 Chart, and their single, Foreign Land, brought home two APRA Awards for Most Played Rock Song on Australian Radio and Best Rock Song Of 2010.

Guitarist Stuart Macleod said the band was looking forward to returning to a familiar destination he described as “truly one of Australia’s most precious locations”.

“Airlie Beach is one of those towns that definitely has a great party atmosphere,” he said.

“We can’t wait to play, but also to walk around the town itself, soaking up the good vibes.”

Describing themselves as “ridiculously stoked to be performing again” after the impacts on live music of Covid-19, Macleod urged “each and every one of y’all to come and celebrate with us”.

“Expect a lot of smiles and a lot of your favourite tunes – beach party y’all!” he said.

A famous face from the festival’s home state of Queensland, will be singer-songwriter Rick Price, whose catalogue of hits, including APRA Song Of The Year ‘Heaven Knows’, spent much of the ‘90’s on high rotation throughout radio stations across the southern hemisphere.

Singing the blues on the line-up will be Lloyd Spiegel, one of Australian Guitar Magazine’s Top 50 Australian guitarists of all time.

Other artists now announced include two-piece musical circus Lily and King, festival favourites Innocent Eve and national Passport to Airlie winners Lash 78 (2019) and Mardi Wilson (2021).

Since taking out the title of the Airlie Beach Festival of Music’s Australia-wide talent search last year, Mardi Wilson has been making waves in the industry with her unique surf-folk style and emotive lyrics.

“It makes my heart beat a little bit fast,” she said, when asked how it felt to be finally returning to the festival and taking her place on its iconic waterfront main stage.

“I feel completely honoured and so excited to be amongst all those artists – I can’t wait to just get up on that stage and do my thing.”

Festival founder, Gavin Butlin, said he was thrilled to make this second line-up announcement and honoured to welcome such high calibre acts.

“It’s been hard keeping a lid on this one while the details have been finalised but now that the cat’s out of the bag so to speak, we’re expecting to see a big surge in ticket sales,” he said.

Tourism Whitsundays Chief Executive Officer, Rick Hamilton, said for this reason alone, music fans would be well advised to secure a spot.

“The Airlie Beach Festival of Music is the perfect event for visitors to package with a diverse array of accommodation and tours, but due to its ever-increasing popularity I would suggest booking now to avoid disappointment,” he said.

“This is one of those weekends you don’t want to miss, and a unique chance to experience live music in the Heart of the Great Barrier Reef.”

The Animals, Eskimo Joe, Rick Price, Lloyd Spiegel, Lily and King, Innocent Eve, Lash 78 and Mardi Wilson, join previously announced main stage acts including Ben Lee, Rogue Traders, the Badloves, Bill Chambers and Mi-Sex.

Tickets cost $300 for a three-day pass, which includes access to the preceding Passport to Airlie Grand Final on Thursday, November 3, and official After Party on Monday, November 7 – both headlined by Superjesus frontwoman Sarah McLeod.

The Airlie Beach Festival of Music is supported by the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ) and featured on the It’s Live! In Queensland events calendar.