ARTISTS have been finalised for next year's Tunes in the Tropics country music festival in Fiji.
O'Shea, Catherine Britt, Travis Collins, Ashleigh Dallas, Peter Denahy, Mickey Pye, Jonny Taylor, Luke Dickens, Darren Coggan, Damian Baugley (from the Viper Creek Band) and Brigginshaw have all been booked for the week-long festival.
It is one of country music's most relaxing events, if you don't count the last one being interrupted by a cyclone.
Organised by Tamworth-based Chris Watson Travel, Tunes in the Tropics has become a popular festival and the next one is set down for August next year.
Along with entertainment each night, songwriters in the round is being introduced to the festival, while some artists will also be taking fans on deep sea fishing trips.
Among the artists booked for next year, Travis Collins and Ashleigh Dallas are regulars at the Fiji festival, with Ashleigh even having a song on her last album, Fiji Time, inspired by the location.
Country music is no stranger to Fiji's Hideaway Resort, which has been hosting a live country music festival and prior to that a line dancing group, for more than a decade.
Chris Watson first took a line dancing group there after he had visited the resort on a previous holiday.
For five years, line dancing groups visited the resort for an annual holiday.
Then in 2010 the first festival of live country music was held, headlined by John Williamson and Felicity Urquhart.
Called the Oz Country Music Festival, it returned the following year with artists such as Kasey Chambers, Luke Austen, Shane Nicholson and The Sunny Cowgirls.
It was next held in 2014 under the new name Tunes in the Tropics, and Beccy Cole, Morgan Evans, Mike Carr and Amber Lawence were some are the artists to perform.
While the last one – in February this year – saw about half of the audience booked unable to make it after Cyclone Winston hit the island, it managed to provide much needed support to the country, with an auction raising money for the aid effort.
The area surrounding the resort had been spared from the worst of the cyclone, which had left a trail of destruction further north.
While the start of the festival was delayed as it was due to start the night the cyclone struck, the entertainment was able to proceed when flights resumed from Australia and the fans and artists arrived.
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