Country fest is Ipswich’s time to rock

COUNTRY music is infamous for its ability to polarise audiences - sometimes leading to heated arguments over the jukebox at the local honky tonk.

While we're probably not quite as militant about our country music in Australia, it is still a huge industry, and one that seems to be growing constantly, thanks in no small part to the Tamworth Country Music Festival and Gympie Music Muster. Add to that the success that Aussies like Keith Urban seem to have carved out for themselves in the spiritual home of country music.

Now it appears it is Ipswich's turn to hog a bit of that rather large spotlight.

The Hunter Valley's loss will be our gain, if the CMC Rocks Queensland turns out to be successful when it arrives next March (see today's p3 story).

At the moment I have little doubt that Ipswich people - regardless of their musical preferences - will turn out in droves for this three-day extravaganza of Australia and the world's top country music stars. A quick look at the line-up and you'll see that country fans will be treated to music from Big & Rich, Grammy-nominated Chris Young and Kristian Bush from band Sugarland.

For fans of these three acts, it will be their one and only chance to see them in the flesh in Queensland. Even for those who aren't quite so enthusiastic about this genre, the prospect of a huge international music festival comes with its fair share of economic benefits.



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