Every year at Canberräng we aim to provide you with a truly unforgettable four days of social dancing. This year we’re proud to present a talented line-up of musicians and DJs from Perth, Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra.
THE DEPARTMENT OF SWING
The Department of Swing are ready to get your toes tapping as our opening band for 2018. Having safely made it through the most recent government by-elections, the Department of Swing is comprised of some of our favourite local musicians who between them have extensive experience, both nationally and internationally. Don't miss their Canberräng debut, which will feature specially selected tunes to have you primed for the weekend!
The Department of Swing are playing on Thursday 2 August at the Griffith Neighbourhood Centre at 7:30 pm. Entry included in Canberräng Pass or $20 at the door.
ANDREW DICKESON'S BLUE RHYTHM BAND
Simply put, the Blue Rhythm Band is a band for dancers. A definite favourite amongst the swing set, they know what dancers want and never fail to deliver. They do what Basie did – play 4 solid beats to the bar with no cheating! Travelling down from Sydney especially for Canberräng, these top jazz musicians are guaranteed to get you on your feet and swinging out hard all night long. Don’t miss them!
The Blue Rhythm Band are playing on Friday 3 August at 7:30 pm at Albert Hall, Yarralumla. Entry included in Canberräng Pass or $45 at the door.
Jessie is a sun-shy Perth red-headed jazz singer who enjoys swing music, dancing in her kitchen to Otis Redding, eating cheese at any given opportunity, and singing in the shower and every other (shaded) venue.
Her main musical passion is jazz, blues and roots music. Jessie has toured the world, performing in South East Asia, Germany, France, Spain and the UK. After stellar performances at Canberräng 2017, we are ecstatic to have this exceptional singer back in 2018 to dazzles our dancers once again.
We're delighted to have Jessie back by popular demand following her stellar success at Canberräng 2017. She will be performing in the Blues Room at the late night Friday and Saturday after-parties at the White Eagle Polish Club from 11:59 pm. Entry is included in the Canberräng pass or $25 at the door each night.
In addition, Jessie will be featuring alongside The BlackSchu Band on Saturday 4 August, and as part of the Dan McLean Hot Six on Sunday 5 August.
CBR big band
CBR Big Band are a collective of professional musicians from around Canberra, who share a passion for big band music. Led by trombonist Steve Davison, their musicianship and creativity drive their performances as they recreate authentic sounds from the 20-40s swing era and modern big band arrangements. Returning for their second year, CBR Big Band can’t wait to perform at Canberräng 2018.
The CBR Big Band are playing on Saturday 4 August at 10:30 am in Garema Place, Civic. Entry is free and open to the public!
The BlackSchu Band
John Black and Ben Schumann formed The BlackSchu Band and play classic swingin' tunes infused with blues and jazz. Every note counts with their infectious grooves, heartfelt vocals and wailing solos.
The BlackSchu Band have played at the Thredbo Blues Festival, the Australian Blues Festival, The Street Theatre 'The Bar on the Wrong Side of the Tracks' and most recently at the 2018 Jumptown Jam.
The BlackSchu Band will be joined by Jessie Gordon to play on Saturday 4 August at the Margaret Whitlam Pavilion at 2 pm (entry included in Canberräng pass or $30 at the door).
oz big band
The Oz Big Band are dedicated to recreating the music and energy of the great big bands of the 30s, 40s and 50s, playing the music of Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Tommy Dorsey, Jimmie Lunceford, Benny Goodman, Fletcher Henderson, Ella Fitzgerald and many more. Since bursting onto the Perth scene in 2006, this 18 piece outfit has played extensively for dancers and toured nationally, with multiple stints at Hullabaloo and the Melbourne Lindy Exchange. Bringing authenticity, high energy and a trademark big sound, the Oz Big Band know how to delight dancers and will keep you on your feet all night long. We are beyond excited to host them as they make their long-awaited capital debut at Canberräng 2018!
The Oz Big Band will play on Saturday 4 August at Albert Hall at 7:30 pm (entry included in Canberräng pass or $50 at the door).
THE DAN MCLEAN HOT SIX
Firm Canberra favourites, the Dan McLean Hot Six are known for their tight sets and ability to keep people up on the dance floor. Led by talented trumpeter Dan McLean, you'll be swept away with their energy and banter and won't want to leave the dance floor!
Following their well-received Canberräng 2017 performance, we are thrilled to have the Dan McLean Hot Six return for 2018, once again featuring vocalist Jessie Gordon, for another very special winery afternoon.
Catch them at the Lake George Winery on Sunday 5 August at 2 pm. Entry included in Canberräng Pass or $4o at the door.
Shaz loves all kinds of music. She loves the kind that makes you holler, tap your feet, shimmy all over, shake what your mama gave you, or shuffle off to Buffalo. For Shaz it doesn’t get better than music and dancing, whether it’s having a boogie in the lounge room or swinging out on a packed ballroom floor in New York City. Shaz is delighted to be back at Canberräng 2018 and we are beyond delighted to have her!
Richard's first DJ experience was at an end of year party in Canberra several years ago. Nervous at DJing for a 'big' event, he was shaking instead of dragging and dropping, triggering songs that were to be played later that evening in the middle of songs people were already dancing to. He quickly found out that sampling swing music in that way is not something that brings out the best styling in dancers!
Moving onwards and upwards, Richard quickly honed his skills and is now a regular amongst Canberra's talented DJs, with a knack for keeping the social dance floor jumping. As a dancer with a fondness for interesting melodies and quirky lyrics, Richard will play you songs that will bring out your best musicality and theatrical moves. Keep an ear out for his thoughtful and creative sets!
DJ SISTA FEMINISTA
Catherina has DJed extensively in Blues dance scenes nationally and internationally for over a decade, as well as for the non-dancing world of Blues music lovers. She mixes up genres and styles throughout her set with a connective flow that is unmistakably hers and as a blues dancer, she understands the difference between a great blues tune and a great blues tune that’s danceable. When she dances, she wants the music to be historically and socially conscious, representative of the community it comes from, accessible, joyous and above all...the Blues. And that’s exactly what you’ll get when she spins the Blues for you. If you don’t like the first couple of songs you hear, stick around; it’ll change sooner than you can order a drink!!
Max has been on the interstate DJ circuit for a few years now playing for swing and blues dancers at events such as Southern Blues, Hullabaloo, SLX and MLX, and he’s really looking forward to coming back to Canberräng for another year. He just loves strong female voices such as Dianne Reeves, Dinah Washington and Dee Dee Bridgewater, but you’ll also hear soulful ballads, funky blues, Chicago blues that verges on rock, and anything with a killer piano solo.
Along with the favourites, every single set Max plays has at least one track in it that he’s never played at an exchange before, so there’s always something new to look forward to. We can't wait to hear what he comes up with this year!
Di has a passion for hard swingin’ rhythmic tunes and loves nothing better than to unleash this on fellow lovers of swing music. Over the years she has DJ’d at Canberräng, Jumptown Jam, Balboa on the River, Munich Lindy Exchange and regular local events while living in Scotland. If you’re looking for the classics and a bit of fun, Di is going to deliver!