Here at Mirage we love live-music and Dashville Skyline delivered the goods. There is something truly spiritual about listening to music around a campfire with friends. Add the local banter and a llama named ‘Hamish’ and your weekend is pretty much set.
by Matilda Ferguson. All images by Beth Carson Photography
Dashville Skyline 2016 runs off the success of the inaugural 2015 festival with returning favourites Melody Pool, Magpie Diaries and the ever-charming William Crighton.
While last year we braved the heat, this year we braved the cold and wind to hang with some truly gifted individuals. Around 1,000 pitched tents, rolled out their swags and stomped their boots to the sweet sounds of Americana music.
Friday proved to be a great start to the festival with William John Jr opening the festivities wand Frank Sultana & The Sinister Kids rocking us into the night. Our hearts melted at Jess Robeiro heart-ranching performance while Dashville regular and fellow Novocastrian James Thomson & The Strange Pilgrims proved talent exist outside of Sydney with killer original set.
The night was not over yet as Mr William Crighton and all his ruggedness graced the stage as men and women both swooned to hear his glorious voice. None other the charismatic Henry Wagons & The Only Children closed the night with an electric performance including stage dives and let us not forgot his sequined blazer.
Everyone woke a little dusty that Saturday morning but good coffee from the team at Sprocket keep us going. It was a full day of performances and fun in the sun with Hamish the llama taking full advantage of the bar as Davey Craddock & The Spectacles took to the crowd with an intimate and acoustic performance.
That afternoon, Dashville born and raised Matt Johnston performed an acoustic set with his band The Magpie Diaries under the trees of his property creating a sense of community as though you and your friends are sitting around a campfire telling stories.
Local girl Melody Pool and her band took to over the main stage showcasing a raw and organic talent that oozes an alt-country vibe. Come sunset it was Dashville’s infamous ‘Sunset Super Round’ where one-by-one bands take to the stage to pay tribute to the music they love with classic covers.
Saturday night we were joined by Australian singer and songwriting legend Brian Cadd as he performed to a front row lined with old-bats swooning over the memories of him from their teen years back in the 70’s It was newcomers Skyscraper Stan and The Commission Flats that followed on The Porch stage with frontman Stan Woodhouse delivering an outstanding performance and stealing the crowd.
Dashville always invites its friends from across the seas and this year it was The Brothers Comatose from San Francisco that graced us with their broad-stoke Americana bluesy sound. Offering up a southern-esque charm and cheeky flare the mix-stringed band of four just might win my heart this year.
The Dashville Progress Society filled the stage to close off the night. It was every man, woman and his dog on that stage fronted by the Johnston brothers, Matt and Dan. They called their fellow artist’s James Thompson and Melody Pool up to end the night in a fun-filled set that lead the party back to the camping grounds.
Sunday was all about recovery and winding down with soft tunes playing all day to end with a roast amongst friends. This is a festival run on love and the energy of the Johnston family so please grab yourself some boots and join the family next year for Dashville Skyline 2017.
Please also check out The Gum Ball and Pigsty in July located on the Dashville property.