In previous years the Bay of Islands Music Festival has had some of the biggest overseas stars ever to perform in Northland.
There's been Jimmy Cliff, Shaggy, UB40 with Ali, Mikey and Astro, and Wolfmother to name a few.
But in the Covid pandemic world it's uncertain when international acts will be allowed to come to New Zealand, so the organiser of January's Bay of Islands Music Festival decided
to have an all-Kiwi line-up to ensure the show could go on.
And if the first announcement of acts for the January 8 festival at Kainui Road Vineyard near Kerikeri is anything to go by, it's going to be a goodie.
New Zealand music darling Benee will be joined by fan favourites The Beths and Tami Neilson at the festival. Tickets are on sale now and will be strictly limited.
Promoter Jackie Sanders of Jacman Entertainment said more exciting New Zealand acts will be added to the line-up soon.
The festival announcement on Thursday coincided with the #WEMAKEEVENTS Global Day of Action, highlighting the thousands of people behind the scenes who need events to happen.
The Bay of Island Music Festival is also significant for women in the events sector. Not only is the promoter female, but so is the site manager and the majority of the key personnel involved in the organisation of the festival.
Sanders said it's a thrill to have secured such a strong NZ-based line-up for the event, which will bring people back to the Bay of Islands.
"It feels good to be supporting the production crews and suppliers who are hurting so badly now with such a cracking festival. We encourage New Zealanders to add this event to their must-do activities this summer. And make time to explore the region, it's a bit of paradise in our own backyard."
Sanders had been talking to some amazing international acts to bring over for the festival, but Covid restrictions put the kibosh on that.
Benee is 2020's breakout indie pop phenomenon, a fervent audience growing around her groove-drenched sound and quirky lyrical take on the world. Her smash hit Supalonely has gone on to become one of the most popular songs of 2020, reaching platinum in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico and many more countries as its streams climb close to 2 billion.
The Beths' debut album Future Me Hates Me had irresistible pop rock hooks that drew acclaim worldwide, including from Rolling Stone. The album also made the shortlist for New Zealand's 2018 Taite Music Prize, and lead vocalist and guitarist Elizabeth Stokes has twice been nominated for the Silver Scroll Award, New Zealand's most prestigious songwriting honour.
Tami Neilson has a big-ballad voice that belts out country Americana, soul-infused R'n'B, Western swing or good old rock 'n' roll. New Zealand has taken this stacked-high beehive chick to their hearts, with multiple NZ Music Awards and hit albums.
The Bay of Island Music Festival tickets are $99 plus booking fees from www.eventfinda.co.nz
For more info go to www.BOImusicfestival.com