Blackjack Billy - credit David Jackson 03

CMC Rocks the Hunter
Sunday March 16, 2014 :

CMC Rocks The Hunter, now in its fourth year at Hope Estate in the Hunter Valley, is Australia’s biggest country and roots event and continues to highlight future country stars on a yearly basis. In the case of self-confessed “red neck rockers”, Blackjack Billy, this was no exception. Lead by outrageous front man Rob Blackledge, the band made an impact on the main stage Sunday afternoon. The band was responsible for the biggest selling hit on itunes last year by an unsigned country artist. ‘Booze Cruise’ sold more than 150,000 units, not bad for a band without a record deal and barely known on the American touring circle.

The band took the stage at CMC owning it from the outset. Entertaining the 15000 crowd with songs like ‘Get Some’, ‘Born To Ride’, ‘Blood, Sweat & Beer’ and of course, the well-known ‘Booze Cruise”. With lyrics like “mix you up a red neck margarita, you know the one, it’s straight tequila”, and a willingness to take a stage show to an extreme, this band will no doubt go on to bigger things once their debut album is released.

As I watched the stage antics including climbing the side stage tower, doing back flips on concrete and being piggy backed around stage, I can’t help but think I was witnessing something special on the ground level. Hailing out of Nashville, this high octane, loud country outfit are destined for bigger things.

Reviewer and Photographer: David Jackson

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