12 September, 2023
Casey set for a good time in the round
CLASSIC feel-good country music is set to ring out of the Mareeba Rodeo arena in three weeks, with ARIA award-winning artist Casey Barnes set to take centre stage at Savannah in the Round for his third year.
Debuting his latest song, Never Give Up On A Good Time, at the Gympie Music Muster recently, he hopes to make his new hit the “unofficial anthem” for this year’s Savannah event.
Producing loved hits such as God Took His Time On You, Get To Know Ya, Kiss Me Like You Mean It, and Small Town, Barnes's songs have become staples in the country music scene.
Being his third year at the event, he is no stranger to Far North Queensland, dubbing it one of the best events he’s played at.
“I love it up there, actually. There’s lots of good memories from playing,” he said.
“The festival keeps getting bigger and better every year, so I can’t wait to come up and bring in a brand new show – it’s going to be a pretty rockin’ night.
“I think the most recent (Savannah in the Round) festival was really special because it was just off the back of Covid-19 and it was just great to have live music back again, you know.
“We had that big drought of everything, being shut down with no festivals, and Savannah was one of the first to come back, and it was just so great finally step back on a stage perform in front of people.”
Set to bring in new vibes and his new single, Barnes hopes locals and visitors to the festival will get down to Never Give Up On A Good Time, which had festival-goers raving at the Gympie Muster.
Telling the story of a good old country party, the collaboration between Barnes and American artist Eric Paslay has already been well received by fans, with over 50,000 streams on Spotify in a week.
“It’s called Never Give Up On A Good Time, which pretty much sums it all up, and we want everyone to learn the words between now and October and to get the whole crowd singing along,” he said.
“Whenever you debut a brand new song, it’s always a little bit nerve-wracking because you have no idea how the crowd is going to react, and thankfully, when I played it at Gympie Muster, we had everyone going, and by the end of the song, everyone was singing the chorus.
“It’s just a fun track, and it's so much fun to play live, so I think it’s going to be a good match for Savannah in October.”
Set to play at 6pm on the Friday night, Barnes will spend his time off stage talking with other artists and watching their sets.
Barnes said he was particularly keen for Daryl Braithwaite, Jimmy Barnes and Brad Cox’s sets.
“It’s really cool how you have two different nights – like Friday night is more real country whilst Saturday is more of a rock theme,” he said.
“I think everyone is in for a treat, and I am especially looking forward to seeing Brad Cox. I think he is an absolute superstar, and we are really good mates, and he really supports me and my love for music.
“I think it’s funny because obviously, I share the same last name as Jimmy and even when I was starting out people always asked if we were related.
“We hadn’t met Jimmy until this year at the ARIA awards in Sydney and he is one of the nicest blokes you will ever meet and so is Daryl.
“I remember when we did a festival with him a couple of years ago, and he was literally about to walk on stage after we had finished our set.
“So, the boys and I were backstage kicking a footy around – we are big AFL fanatics – and he was about to go on stage, and then he sees us kicking the footy, stops, comes back down the ramp and kicks the footy with us and then goes straight back up on stage and performs an incredible set.
“It was one of the coolest things I have ever done.”
Barnes is encouraging people to listen to his new single and learn the words, with Savannah set to kick off on 6 October.
▪ Listen to Casey Barnes new single on YouTube, Spotify or Apple Music