AUSTRALIA’S largest Battle of the Bands is about to come to a head at the fifth annual Festival of Music
in Airlie Beach.
Across the country from Adelaide to Cairns, musicians have been battling it out in their hometowns for
the chance to perform at the Whitsundays’ premier event.
Thirteen regional winners have walked away victorious from their respective ‘Passport to Airlie’ heats,
scoring sets at one of the Airlie Beach Festival of Music’s 18 venues over the weekend of November 10-
The biggest battle of them all however is still to be fought at a grand finale hosted by Airlie’s Magnums
There, after two solid days of performances enjoyed by festival crowds, one outright winner will be
decided by three judges.
The ultimate prize is $1000 cash and a spot on the main stage line-up at the 2018 festival.
But as last year’s joint winners know only too well, there is also great kudos that walking away with the
title can bring.
Newcastle alternative rock outfit The Venom Lips (formerly In Motion), are now making big waves in
the music scene and will use the festival to debut their new EP.
Likened to modern bands such as Kingswood and Royal Blood, with classic rock influences from early
Soundgarden and Led Zeppelin thrown into the mix, this three-piece act are set to share a stage with
veterans of their trade.
Likewise Townsville Blues artist Tim Griffin said he couldn’t wait he couldn’t to play with the “grown-
“It’s a great opportunity to perform in front of a large number of people and a good validation of where
you’re at in your career and how close you’re getting to the top of your game,” he said.
Tim will be dedicating his performance to the festival’s former volunteer ambassador co-ordinator
Steve Andrew who passed away from cancer earlier in the year.
“Steve was quite a handy harmonica player and he would have been up there with me on stage if he’d
still been here,” he said.
“Come one, come all, let’s celebrate his life.”
Festival founder Gavin “Butto” Butlin said the Passport to Airlie competition started as a way to bring
up-and- coming bands into the event.
“That’s why we have festivals so you can broaden your horizons and discover new music at the same
time as seeing the old legends we love,” he said.
“And it’s huge for the bands. A lot of these guys have gone from just doing gigs in their hometown to
entering this competition.
“Tim Griffin is now going to be on the same stage as Leo Sayer. He’s gone from playing in small pub gigs
around Townsville to that, which is just incredible.
“And it’s the same for The Venom Lips. Now they’re going to be on the same stage as Shannon Noll, the
Baby Animals, Sneaky Sound System and the Sex Pistols – these legends that have sold millions and
millions of records.”
The Venom Lips will play the main stage at 4.30pm on Saturday, October 11 and Tim Griffin is
scheduled for Sunday at 2.30pm.
The 2017 Battle of the Bands finale will take place at Magnums from 10am-4.30pm on Friday,
November 10 and Saturday, November 11.
The winner will be announced on the main stage at 5pm on Sunday, November 12.
Festival tickets cost $260 for a three-day pass or $130 for a single day.
For the full festival line-up or to book tickets and accommodation, visit
www.airliebeachfestivalofmusic.com.au, email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0408
The Queensland Government is proud to support the Airlie Beach Festival of Music through Tourism and