This Is Not A Drill: Kesha Is Headlining Bluesfest In 2018


In news that absolutely no-one saw coming, US pop superstar Kesha has been added to the Bluesfest 2018 line-up.

The ‘Praying’ singer will join acts such as Youssou N’Dour, The Wailers, Seal, Michael Franti & Spearhead, and Robert Plant in Byron Bay over Easter next year. It’s the first time ever that a contemporary, mainstream pop star has headlined the long-running festival, which usually programs acts from the worlds of blues, roots and world music.

While some might see it as a leftfield choice, it’s not without precedent: rapper Kendrick Lamar was controversially booked to headlined the festival back in 2015, which annoyed — but eventually won over — the blues purists.

Kesha’s not the only one that’s been added in this round: the festival has also revealed that Sheryl Crow, Melissa Etheridge, Newton Faulkner, Holy Holy, and Ásgeir will all be joining the bill. Check the full updated line-up below — and bear in mind that Bluesfest has many, many more acts to go before the full line-up is settled.

Bluesfest takes place over the Easter long weekend at Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm near Byron Bay. Tickets are on sale now.

Bluesfest 2018 Line-Up

Sheryl Crow
Melissa Etheridge
Seu Jorge
Ziggy Alberts
Newton Faulkner
Afro Celt Sound System
Harry Manx
Holy Holy
William Crighton
Elephant Sessions


Youssou N’Dour
Michael Franti & Spearhead
Jackson Browne
Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit
Rag ‘N’ Bone Man
The Original Blues Brothers
Jimmy Cliff
The Wailers
Benjamin Booker
Hurray For The Riff Raff
Canned Heat
Walter Trout
Andre Cymone
The Teskey Brothers
Robert Plant And The Sensation Space Shifters
Lionel Richie
The John Butler Trio
Tash Sultana
The New Power Generation
Chic featuring Nile Rodgers
First Aid Kit
Jose Gonzalez
Gov’t Mule
Lukas Nelson & Promise Of The Real
The California Honeydrops
Eric Gales
Bobby Rush
Joe Louis Walker
Rick Estrin & The Nightcats