Q&A Scene: Steve Montgomery, from Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival

Tell us about Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival?

[pullquote]My family for their support and encouragement, music…it is such a powerful leveller…and love…that runs right through everything…[/pullquote] The Newport Ska, Reggae and Rocksteady Festival is a one day event to be held on Sunday 19 March at the Substation in Newport. It is a labour of love and came about in 2015 when my old friend Stranger Cole indicated he wanted to return to Australia(he’d previously been here a few times) to do some shows so we built the festival around him and it was a success. Whilst it was a lot of hard work organising things, we were encouraged to run another one. It celebrates the deep connection Melbourne has with the sounds that came from Jamaica in the sixties and we wanted it to be a celebration of those grooves. Melbourne is an amazingly musical city and there is a deep appreciation of Jamaican music here…this is reflected in the bands that play around town, the radio shows on air and the bands who play around Australia. To be able to put together a line up that includes current and foundation artists is a real pleasure and to be able to share it is an exciting opportunity.

What, or who, inspires you?
My family, music and love would be the three things I would mention. My family for their support and encouragement, music…it is such a powerful leveller…and love…that runs right through everything…

Which song do you wish you wrote?
Enjoy Yourself by Prince Buster…though he did cover that from an earlier hit….you get one go at life so you might as well have a crack and make it as positive as you can….

What do you love about curating events?
Getting people excited to be involved. It’s been a real team effort. Putting together the pieces in a big jigsaw puzzle and then watching the day unfold. I’ve had amazing support from my friends and associates with this project and we wanted to present acts and collaborations that you mightn’t normally see around Melbourne and of course getting see and work with Jamaican legends who were making this music 50 years ago and still perform like they did back then. It is still current, it still moves people and I love it…

How would you describe Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival in food form and why?
Home made apple pie…..with cream….lots of beautiful ingredients baked together with a hint of cinnamon. The kind my mum used to make…put together lovingly for everyone to enjoy.

What’s your scene?
Ska, Rocksteady and reggae. I love it all and Melbourne is a great place to live and enjoy this music. I’d go as far as to say that this is the liveliest it’s been for a while with a whole host of bands playing shows around town and the country regularly… and I’ll mention just a few who play the offbeat with their own flavour… Melbourne Ska Orchestra, The Ska Vendors, Johnny Longshot, Shanty Town, The Moonhops, The Resignators, The Kujo Kings, Loonee Tunes, The Strange Tenants, No Nonsense, Bustamento….then you have PBS’s Jamaica Jump Up, any number of radio shows dedicated to this music and so on….it’s a great thing….

About the Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival

The Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival are proud to announce the return of the second ever festival which is set to blow the roof off The Substation in Melbourne’s western suburb of Newport on Sunday 19 March.

Stop That Train! Headlining the festival will be a Jamaican foundation Rocksteady duo set to stun the faithful gathering at the beautiful and historic multi-arts centre platform The Substation. The festival is run by local Newport residents and really puts the Melbourne suburb on the map for this specialist music festival. “We knew we were doing something right when after one year we had international acts approaching us to be on the bill for the next one. We really get a kick out of putting on the event.” stated Festival Co-Director Mik Weir.

After a successful first round in 2015 where Stranger Cole headlined a wonderful day of Jamaican grooves this boutique festival has once again put together a world class line up and will feature local, interstate and international artists as the sounds of young Jamaica are celebrated in the unique space that is The Substation. Ska, rocksteady and reggae have had a profound effect on modern music and the festival is proud to bring some of the finest exponents of the music to Newport.

“Whilst it’s a lot of work putting it all together, we believe it stands alone as we are mad crazy fans of the genres of music represented so it is lovingly curated with the punter in mind. On the day punters can enjoy an amazing array of talent under the one roof, food trucks, a bar and the after party across the road at the Newport Bowls Club from 8pm” said Steven Montgomery Festival Co-Director.

Experience connections with fellow ska, rocksteady and reggae music fans and new fans alike all coming together to celebrate the energy from a jam-packed bill. Fun times are guaranteed as the festival showcases some unprecedented and never to be repeated again in the world line ups. Miss this and you’ll miss the unique setting of some very magical musicianship along with special bragging rights of having seen some truly stellar performances.

Stay tuned for the incredible Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival line up set to be announced in the new year. A very limited amount of Early Bird and PBS 106.7 FM subscriber tickets are available right now for $55. Taking place at The Substation in Newport on March 19 from 1pm – 7.30pm. Kids free! For tickets go to the venue website at thesubstation.iwannaticket.com.au

Newport Ska, Reggae & Rocksteady Festival 2017

Sunday 19th March
1pm – 7.30pm
The Substation
1 Market Street, Newport
Limited $55 Early Bird & 106.7 PBSFM Subscriber tickets on sale now

Tickets via venue website www.thesubstation.iwannaticket.com.au

About Mandy Hall 835 Articles
Mandy is a music photographer & writer. She runs Mandy Hall Media, which includes Photography, Social Media marketing, PR & Graphic Design for the music industry. She is also a web developer - she created and supports this website.

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