Great Southern Nights concert series on the hunt for venues

LIVE: Amy Shark on stage at Newcastle's Wests NEX in 2019. Picture: Paul Dear
LIVE: Amy Shark on stage at Newcastle's Wests NEX in 2019. Picture: Paul Dear

The NSW Government is hoping to amp up the state's live music scene once again with the return of Great Southern Nights in March and April 2022.

ARIA-award winning indie pop artist Amy Shark and Yolngu rapper Baker Boy join Jessica Mauboy, Jimmy Barnes, Missy Higgins and Peking Duk as the first artists of the line-up, with shows to be held from March 18 to April 10, 2022.

Following its hugely successful debut in 2020, Great Southern Nights made its debut in 2020. Two live events were held in southern Sydney as a part of the series at the George IV Inn in Picton and Hurstville Entertainment Centre.

Western Sydney minister Stuart Ayres said Great Southern Nights would be welcomed by industry and music lovers alike following another challenging year of COVID-19 restrictions.

"Great Southern Nights celebrates the very essence of live music in Australia - it's about getting artists on stages, gigs in venues, and audiences back enjoying performances by our talented creatives right across the State," Mr Ayres said.

"Last year more than 75,000 tickets were sold for 1100-plus gigs at over 300 venues, and we know the appetite is there to get out and enjoy live music in Sydney and regional NSW which is why we must continue our vaccination efforts in coming weeks and months."

Great Southern Nights will feature live music performances from household names, emerging talent and grassroots local acts. It will be delivered by the NSW Government through Destination NSW in partnership with the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA).

"Great Southern Nights was designed with COVID-safety in mind, supporting shows of all sizes, in all kinds of live music venues, and giving industry a leg up to get back to work," Mr Ayres said.

Amy Shark, who won the ARIA Award for Best Australian Live Act in 2020, said she couldn't wait to get back to touring.

"I'm super excited to be playing as part of Great Southern Nights," Ms Shark said.

"Needless to say every artist, every band, every DJ, just everyone is looking forward to playing shows to real life people, so make sure you get behind it."

ARIA chief executive Annabelle Herd said the ongoing challenges from the pandemic had been very hard for the creative industries, but Great Southern Nights would give everyone something to look forward to.

"Great Southern Nights is about artists and crew doing what they love, and what they do best - putting on a show for an audience that wants to get back to the thrill and emotion of hearing live music," Ms Herd said.

"We look forward to supporting hundreds of artists and venues through the Great Southern Nights program again in 2022."

Venues can apply to be part of the Great Southern Nights program at: greatsouthernnights.com.au.