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Elton John World News: I Guess That's Why They Call It The Bluesfest

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Promoter Says Policy is Preventing Elton From Playing Byron Bay

Thursday 17 May 2012 @ 16:22 - GMT

Promoter Michael Chugg has joined in support of Bluesfest, due to the shadow a Byron Bay Council music festival policy has cast over the beloved event.

Musicians such as Kasey Chambers, Ben Harper and John Butler have voiced their support. The Byron Bay council events policy singles out music as the only form of event to be banned in the Byron Bay Shire.

Chugg has responded to the rules with the following statement:

"I wish to see a more liberal policy that does not impose conditions that are unacceptable to me & the Australian Music Industry. I would point out that my company had spoken to Mr Noble About using the BLUESFEST site for a concert with Sir Elton John In November this year 2012 but the ridiculous short sited policy of the council has once more seen a major event go to Regional  Queensland."  

Peter Noble and the Byron Bay Blues and Roots Festival have been such an important part of my musical world over the years and I can honestly say I would not have the career I have without their support, writes Kasey Chambers.

Ben Harper says, "This kind of thing is not supposed to happen in Australia, other places perhaps but not there. You have something so special, please do not diminish it in this way."

John Butler states:

 "I am writing to express my concern over the proposed Byron Shire Council Music Event policy which sees to limit two concerts or festivals a year to the area. Obviously Bluesfest and Splendour are the first to come to mind and if they were both within the Byron residential precinct , like they both used to be, I might appreciate the validity of this policy, however with the Bluesfest site now being out of this area, I do not see the problem for more shows to occur at this site. The new site has relieved traffic and a myriad of other problems within the Byron Shire and it's infrastructure." 

A message from Bluesfest Festival Director Peter Noble says:

"We only need a little over 500 signatures to get the petition debated on the floor of the State parliament we have almost 9,500  individual petitions lodged so far, and need 10,000 to get this crucial thing done. Now that the Splendour site in Byron shire has been given an approval to hold 3 major events on their land by the NSW state government the festival quota in Byron shire under the Events Policy of 2 festival yearly is taken up - and IF the council do not amend their policy  We would need to move away from Byron shire once our current approval expires in 2020. This is not right.''

Bluesfest has started a petition to have the Byron Bay events policy overturned.

To sign the petition, visit

http://www.bluesfest.com.au/pages/?PageID=206.