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Issue 1668

Words by Tom Parker

Editor’s Note

The first whispers of Bluesfest have started reverberating through Australian households. Who’s the Grinch changing the Chinese whispers with each succession? The murmur begins with Iggy Pop before Jack Johnson is uttered and then The Saboteurs and Nathaniel Rateliff – is someone really trying to maintain the chain or are they happily sabotaging to the profit of Bluesfest’s colossal lineup? It seems the latter but why wouldn’t you given the credentials embellishing Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm’s open ranges this Easter.

That’s right. Bluesfest is nigh and so forth come the world’s greatest interpreters of folk, roots, blues, Americana and soul. That’s five genres of mountains more that will be represented Down Under in late April. Nathaniel Rateliff and his merry men, The Night Sweats, festoon our cover this week and it’s an exploration into a mushrooming reputation that dominates its appending cover story. If there was ever an attitude that worked in this whirlwind of an industry, it would be a penchant for flippancy without irreverence. Rateliff keeps things light, and it works.

In other Bluesfest editorial, we chat to the enigmatic Ray LaMontagne as well as bonafide legend George Clinton before he embarks on his final-ever Australian tour. Stoner metal band Sasquatch give us the rundown on what gets them revved up in this world while the very first Melbourne International Comedy Festival shows rear their heads. Strap in legends, 1668’s taking you to the moon.