Byron Bay has a new live music venue called The Green Room, at the Byron Events Farm, the home of Bluesfest. The venue was launched on Saturday night, November 26 by Xavier Rudd and Bobby Alu who rocked out to 1500 adoring fans.
A permanent structure located on the Bluesfest site in Tyagarah, The Green Room name comes from the industry term of the artist dressing room. It also shares the double meaning of getting a barrel in surfing, which plays perfectly to Byron’s surfing culture.
In launching The Green Room, founder Peter Noble OAM reminisced – the first venue in Byron to attract crowds of 1000 plus in the 80’s, was the Byron Arts’ Factory. This was also lovingly referred to as The Piggery by the locals because it was formerly a pig slaughterhouse.
Peter Noble, Bluesfest Festival Director reflects:
“Dan Doepel and The Arts’ Factory put Byron Bay on the map as a home to the best Australian and International artists to perform. Acts such as The Pogues, The Ramones, Crowded House, the Violent Femmes, Buddy Guy, Canned Heat, The Wailers, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins and hundreds more.
Byron Bay’s population at the time was around 4,000 people, yet The Arts’ Factory sold out it’s 1,000 capacity time and again. Dan literally created Byron as the centre for the live arts. Bluesfest was originally called the East Coast Blues Festival, and that too started at the Piggery.
The much-loved venue closed in 1992 in its original form and so the opening The Green Room is a nod of thanks to Dan and The Piggery, for giving music the opportunity to define our region.
I hope that The Green Room will recreate the vibe that music events in Byron have brought for countless years and Saturday night at The Green Room really did.
Xavier Rudd supported by Bobby Alu sold out in advance, all 1500 tickets and people didn’t know what to expect. Then on the evening, so many people came up to me and said, ‘this has been a great evening’. We intend there to be many, many more.
Bluesfest favourite performing artist Xavier Rudd said “It was an honour and a blast to open The Green Room in Byron. We’ve needed a venue of this size and vibe for years, and I have no doubt that many more artists will play this mighty venue as they should”
The Hon Ben Franklin MLC Minister for the Arts, Youth, Indigenous Affairs and Tourism visited the site to officially open The Green Room on Sunday 27 November and said, “This region has desperately needed a venue like this for decades!”