Bluesfest Snapshot: Kate Miller-Heidke

Bluesfest Sunday
Photo by KT Bell

I have enjoyed Kate Miller-Heikde for some time and her music has punctuated important times in life, including the wedding of two very dear friends of mine. As I prepared to hit Bluesfest, I realised I had never seen Kate perform live, an oversight I was determined to remedy. Kate hit the stage in a gorgeous vintage frock and a demure smile which instantly had the crowd cheering. Her beautiful vocals were even more evocative live than in her recordings and her stage banter was just so adorable in her reserved way.

Very early in the set she performed Caught in the Crowd, that song about a kid being bullied at school. I have always loved that song and live it was even more haunting than ever before, it actually brought a tear to my eye.

One of the things I love about live performances is the banter and stories artists tell. This was Kate’s only performance at Bluesfest and she told of her arrival at the festival. Their carload arrived on site but struggled to find the artist entrance. They stopped and asked a volunteer marshall for assistance and directions. The volunteer asked why they wanted the artist entrance to which Kate replied “We’re performing today”. The volunteer didn’t believe them and told them they “didn’t look famous” and demanded they play him something. Guitarist Kier Nuttall begrudgingly cobbled something together but the volunteer remained unimpressed and unconvinced that they were in fact performers. By now, Kate and Keir would have been rightfully grumpy and after some more stuffing around, they eventually were given directions and let go on their merry way, but not before the volunteer had one last thing to say.

He asked, that if they were performing that day, could they give him a shout out on stage, to “Awesome Dan”.
She dutifully dedicated Dreams (with the lyrics: “I love you, but you don’t even know my name”) to “Awesome Dan, you f*cking c*ckhead” to which the crowd erupted in laughter and applause. Suffice to say Kate Miller-Heidke put on a sterling performance which will stay with many of us for years to come.

Timber and Steel‘s photos of Kate Miller-Heidke’s Bluesfest set can be seen on KT’s Flicker.

1 Comment

  1. BNELive said,

    May 31, 2011 at 23:52

    A full audio recording of the Bluesfest set is uploaded at with the permission of Kate

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