A Day On The Green (ADOTG) has become an Australian icon in the music festival world. Born in Victoria in 2001 and celebrating 17 years this year. This festival is one of the most successful and respected outdoor concert events.
Being able to bring your own food, the popular ‘picnic of the day’ prize, resident DJ and party master Grand Master Baitz spinning the tunes between bands, the chance to meet artists at the signing desk and the hugely popular merchandise range are some of the little extras that go into making a day on the green such a great day.
The events run throughout the summer months from October to March with around 30 concerts per season in all the major wine-growing regions around Australia. A day on the green has spawned four albums and three TV specials. The live events are a highlight of the summer concert calendar.
This event at the beautiful Leconfield Winery in McLaren Vale, sported some of Aussie musical royalty. Headlined by John Farnham and supported by Daryl Braithwaite, Richard Marx, Russell Morris and Bachelor Girl the day promised to be one to remember.
Between the artists they covered approx the last four decades of music Aussies had grown up listening to.
The weather promised to be a repeat of the last ADOTG held at Leconfield which started off fine and ended up with drenching rain. Luckily this day the rain only drenched the crowd in short bursts with spells between just long enough to allow us all to dry before the next soaking.
Bachelor Girl kicked of the day, bringing back some of their most notable hits. The crowd was relatively thin on the ground at this stage. but that soon changed as Russell Morris took to the stage. Morris pleased the crowd with his repertoire which included the perennial crowd favourite ‘The Real Thing’ Morris still rocks hard despite his age and the crowd eagerly lapped up every song.
Richard Marx took the stage as the crowd swelled and the weather threatened. Marx possibly best known for his song ‘Hazard’ (which he insists is not a true story) kept the crowd enthralled with his incomparable style of ballads, interspersed with rocky numbers. ‘Now and Forever’, Right here waiting’, ‘Endless summer nights’ and his amusing anecdotes of an Americans interaction with the Aussie culture.
Daryl Braithwaite has a discography as long as the proverbial piece of string. From the early days with Sherbet to today. Braithwaite has spawned some of Aussie music most iconic tunes. To say he sung his heart out would be an understatement. This legend of Australian music just effortlessly took the crowd through some of his enormous catalogue of hits through the years. From early Sherbet numbers such as ‘Howzat’ through to ‘As the days go by’ and ‘Rise’ And of course finishing with the now iconic Braithwaite number “Horses’.
Jonh Farnham was the headline act and by the time he hit the stage, the crowd was at capacity and eagerly anticipating watching him perform the much loved songs from the ‘Whispering Jack’ album that had been promised. Farnham didn’t disappoint his fans – but then when does Farnhm ever disappoint – I’ve yet to see, or hear of a performance by this man where he has failed to give his fans 100%. To say that Farnham is Aussie music royalty is no exaggeration. The professionalism and smooth delivery from Farnham and his crew is nothing short of perfection. The ‘Whispering Jack’ tunes just flowed like fine wine, the rain stopped and started and at one stage was as hard as it had been all day, but hardly anyone noticed as John Farnham held the crowd in the palm of his hand and treated them to gems such as ‘Pressure down’, ‘A touch of paradise’, and ‘Reasons’.
Many performers younger than Farnham have long since slowed down or stopped completely. I can’t see John Farnham ever slowing down. And that voice sounds as fresh and strong as it ever did. He looked and acted much younger than his 69 years and it’s clear that he enjoys performing for a crowd just as much today as ever, and the crowds love him just as much as ever.
I was proud to have witnessed this Aussie Icon performing at such an iconic music festival. A Day On The Green certainly knocked the competition out of the ball park when they put together this line up.
A concert to remember.