Saturday, 24 March 2012

CMC Rocks the Hunter 2012 Festival

CMC Rocks the Hunter 2012 Festival
Line up’s, Reports, Photos, Videos, Interviews and CMC Awards

The CMC ROCKS the HUNTER 2012 FESTIVAL, took take place over March 16 – 18, 2012.
Now in its fifth year, CMC Rocks has a reputation for offering Australian music fans mind-blowing line-ups not seen anywhere else in the country.
 It is held in Hope Estate perfectly located in the heart of Pokolbin in the Hunter Valley, 15kms from the township of Cessnock and less than 2 hours drive north of Sydney and set on 420 acres of picturesque vineyards and offers breathtaking views. The Hunter Valley is one of Australia's oldest and most respected grape growing and wine producing regions.  The warm sunny climate and rich soils are ideal for growing grape varieties such as Semillon, Verdelho, Chardonnay, Shiraz and Merlot
Over 3 days, CMC “country rocks” the luscious surrounds of the estate with an  impressive program of big international and national roots and country music artists.
US country stars Tim McGraw and Faith Hill headlined CMC Rocks the Hunter 2012! 

CMC Rocks the Hunter 2012 Line up
(Australian Acts unless otherwise stated) Source

 4.35pm - 5.30pm McAlister Kemp, 6.05pm - 7.05pm Sherrie Austin (USA), 7.45pm - 9.00pm Steve Forde,
 9.45pm - 11.00pm Beccy Cole

 4.00pm - 4.35pm  Luke Austen,  5.30pm - 6.05pm  Jetty Road , 7.05pm - 7.45pm  Sunny Cowgirls,
 9.00pm - 9.45pm  Jayne Denham

11.45am - 12.45pm James Blundell ,  1.20pm - 2.20pm Shane Nicholson ,
 2.55pm - 3.55pm Jim Lauderdale (USA), 4.30pm - 5.30pm Craig Campbell (USA),
 6.05pm - 7.05pm The McClymonts,  7.45pm - 9.00pm Lee Kernaghan,
9.45pm - 11.00pm Dierks Bentley (USA)

10.30am - 11.45am Davidson Brothers , 12.45pm - 1.20pm Kaylee Bell (NZ),
2.20pm - 2.55pm Harry Hookey, 3.55pm - 4.30pm Travis Collins ,  5.30pm - 6.05pm Peter McWhirter , 7.05pm - 7.45pm Felicity Urquhart,  9.00pm - 9.45pm Catherine Britt

10.30am - 11.15am Pete Denahy,  11.50am - 12.50pm Jedd Hughes (USA),
1.25pm - 2.25pm Tracy Lawrence (USA),  3.00pm - 4.00pm Tex Perkins & The Dark Horses ,
4.35pm - 5.35pm Eli Young Band (USA),  6.15pm - 7.15pm Wynonna Judd (USA),
8.00pm - 10.00pm TIM McGRAW & FAITH HILL (USA)

 11.15am - 11.50am Buddy Goode,  12.50pm - 1.25pm Harmony James,  2.25pm - 3.00pm Kirsty Akers
 4.00pm - 4.35pm Morgan Evans, 5.35pm - 6.15pm Mcalister KEMP,  7.15pm - 8.00pm O'shea

Rockin Good Time in the Hunter  
Report 17/18 March 2012  (

RAIN, hail or shine (Photo) - country music fans have dealt with two of the three so far at the 2012 CMC Rocks the Hunter music festival.

After a boiling 30C start to the festival on Friday, yesterday's rain helped to cool things down if make car parking in the paddocks a bit more interesting.

Nashville-based Aussie singer songwriter Sherrie Austin helped to open the three-day festival in her first performance on home soil in more than a decade.

"It's been wonderful," said Austin, who moved to the US and starred in the TV series The Facts of Life in her late teens.
"It was a great show last night.  "Country music fans, they'll sit through a tornado. They're amazing."
Austin featured songs from Circus Girl, her first studio album in eight years.
"I haven't even played with a band in eight years, it wasn't just coming back to Australia," she said.
"But it was totally natural. I felt totally at home. "I had to go back and re-learn my earlier songs because I don't sing them anymore."

Grafton sisters The McClymonts played an energetic set yesterday, featuring several songs from their forthcoming album Two Worlds Collide, to be released on May 1.

The man in the black hat Lee Kernaghan played his hit Boys From The Bush as well as a tribute to Slim Dusty.

Today, the main stage is dominated by Americans artists including Tracy Lawrence, Jedd Hughes and the Eli Young Band.

International headliners Wynonna Judd, in her only Australian show, and Tim McGraw and Faith Hill close the festival tonight.
Aussie Tex Perkins also plays the main stage with his band The Dark Horses.

Wynonna on her way to The Hunter 
Veteran radio host Trevor Smith asked Wynnona Judd what fans could expect in her Rock The Hunter set :

When you're on stage in Australia, what will the set comprise of roughly?
Wynnona: I'm such a work in progress, not least because I never know what I'm going to do on stage - and that's the beauty of live. That's why I say there will always need to be movies and theatres and the live performance because something remarkable happens between the singer and the listener. That live thing where you come on stage and everything's uncertain and there's that raw, unpredictability and you just feel like you're flying. It's the closest thing to flying I've ever experienced.

You're gonna hear classic music from the past - from the '80s and '90s when Mom and I were playing all over the place, being "America's sweethearts", I think they call us at the time. You're gonna hear that, and you're gonna hear the song I did with Jeff Beck - I Wanna Know What Love Is - the rock classic. Then I'm gonna turn around and sing some kind of poetry that the Baby Boomers will identify with, because I just finished a record of all classics because we're losing our legends in country music

Tim and Faith wow at The Hunter 
Report 18 March 2012 -  (

Faith Hill Live at
CMC Rocks The Hunter 2012
18 March 2012
CMC Rocks the Hunter wrapped up on Sunday with the biggest day in the festival's five-year history.
Aussie Pete Denahy kicked things off before Americans Jedd Hughes and Tracy Lawrence played the main stage.

Aussie rocker Tex Perkins looked at home with his band The Dark Horses and their hour-long set broke up a day dominated by American artists.

The Eli Young Band and McAlister Kemp prepped the crowd for music legend Wynonna Judd's only Australian performance.

Judd's flame-red hair could be seen from the top of the hill as her powerful, soulful voice carried to every corner of the festival site.
Passing showers didn't seem to bother the 10,000-strong crowd, and the rain made for a spectacular, if short lived, rainbow.
After some playful banter with a fan known as "Lou" , she finally invited the man up on stage and he was happy to oblige, dancing around as she wore his cowboy hat. (photo)  Wynnona closed her hour-long set with her famous ballad “I Want To Know What Love Is”, inspiring a crowd-wide sing along.

American husband and wife duo O'Shea kept energy levels up as the crowd restlessly waited for another husband and wife duo - Tim McGraw and Faith Hill - to close the festival.
It's the first time the country music power couple have toured Australia together.
Hill opened the two-hour set with a 45-minute show featuring her hits including Breathe, The Way You Love Me and This Kiss before McGraw joined her on stage for a duet.

The man in the black hat then took the reigns for his own 45-minute set, featuring songs from his new album Emotional Traffic, before Hill once again joined him for the finale.

*** Highlights from the festival will air on the Country Music Channel on April 21 from noon

"This Kiss"
Tim McGraw & Faith HillCMC
Rocks The Hunter 2012
The Stage at CMC Rocks the Hunter 2012 - Photo

CMC Rocks Sunday Hot babes! - Photo

CMC Rocks Sunday – Main Stage - Photo

Kirsty Akers -  Live Photo

McAlister Kemp - Live Photo

The McClymonts - Photo
Live Photo - Live Photo -  Live Photo

Eli Young Band  - Live Photo

Jim Lauderdale (Saturday) - Live Photo

Dierks Bentley – Live Photo - Photo

Tracy Lawrence - Live Photo

Wynnona Judd signing autographs - Photo

Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Wynnona & her husband to be Cactus Moser after the show - Photo

Faith Hill "This Kiss" Lucky Tim!!!! - Live Photo
Tim & Faith - Live Photo

Tim McGraw – Live PhotoLive Photo  - Live Photo
Tim & Faith and Storme Warren - Photo

A Young Tim & Faith fan ! – Photo
CMC Rocks the Hunter 2012 Slideshow  - link

Watch the CMC Rocks timelapse camera. Three days of festival awesomeness in three minutes >   YouTube

CMC Rocks The Hunter 16th, 17th, 18th March 2012 (Distortion on audio)  >   YouTube

Dierks Bentley and the guys head to Australia in an all new DBTV.
Take a look at how Country & Cold Cans went over in the land down under
 in Episode 57 >    YouTube

Tim McGraw - Live Like You Were Dying - Live at CMC Rocks The Hunter 2012
 >    YouTube

Felicity Urquhart and Wynona Judd-Interview
17 March 2012 caption
Felicity Urquhart from “Saturday Night Country” ABC local radio talks to Dierks Bentley on phone about babies, country, bluegrass, his album HOME and working with and touring with Aussie country star Lee Kernaghan.
**  Then from (16 minutes) a wonderful candid face to face interview with Wynnona Judd who had flown 7,000 miles to do one show at Rock the Hunter 2012. This was Wynnona’s first ever Australian radio interview after 28 years in the business. She’s still a girl with a guitar!

ABC Country is a digital radio station from the ABC, available on DAB+ and online

Wynonna Judd chats to Felicity Urquhart from Saturday Night Country about her music and what it's like to be in Australia for the first time
 >   Download the audio file   (Right Click Save As) Courtesy ABC Country. Thanks Felicity!
Jasmine Rae and Peter McWhirter
 with their CMC 2012 Awards
The CMC Awards winners 
On Friday the 16th of March CMC announced the recipients of its annual, viewer voted CMC Awards.
The winners were announced at a special ceremony at the Hope Estate Winery (photo) as part of the CMC Rocks The Hunter 2012 festival, and were presented by Mark and Jay O'Shea.

New Oz Artist of the Year was given to Peter McWhirter who's had a great year in the aftermath of releasing his debut record Luck As A Seven.

Oz Arist of the Year was given to young singing dynamo Jasmine Rae who was graciously presented with her award from the reigning, longtime title holder Adam Brand.  (photo)
Aussie boy done good overseas, Keith Urban took out two awards on the night including International Artist of the Year and Video of the Year for 'Without You.'

Finally, the inaugural CMC Hall of Fame Award was presented to a true legend of the industry, James Blundell.  (photo)

The ceremony also included fantastic live performances from US singer songwriter Craig Campbell (photo), and local performers Catherine Britt (photo), Travis Collins (photo) and O'Shea (photo).

The CMC Awards Winners:
New Oz Artist of the Year: Peter McWhirter
Oz Artist of the Year: Jasmine Rae
International Artist of the Year: Keith Urban
Video of the Year: Keith Urban - 'Without You'
Hall Of Fame Award: James Blundell
SOURCES – Daily Mercury, CMC Channel, ABC Country, Facebook,

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