ALFA MIST [LIVE] • ANIMALS DANCING • AUSECUMA BEATS [LIVE] • AVANTDALE BOWLING CLUB [LIVE] • BEBETTA • BOB MOSES [LIVE] • CLUB COCO ft. CC:DISCO! & RAPHAËL TOP SECRET • DERRICK MAY • DRMNGNOW [LIVE] + CURATION BY STILL HERE • EMMA DONOVAN & THE PUTBACKS [LIVE] • GERD JANSON • GORDON KOANG [LIVE] • INTERSTELLAR FUGITIVES • KATIE DROVER • KMLN [LIVE] • KORNÉL KOVÁCS • LEON VYNEHALL • MARGARET DYGAS • MARK FARINA MUSHROOM JAZZ • MARTHA VAN STRAATEN • MERVE • MILAN RING [LIVE] • MILDLIFE [LIVE] • MILLÚ • MOXIE • NU GUINEA [LIVE] • OCTO OCTA B2B ERIS DREW • OLIVER HUNTEMANN • OLIVER KOLETZKI • OSCAR JEROME [LIVE] • PEACH • PORANGUÍ [LIVE] • ROZA TERENZI [LIVE] • SAORISE • SESSION VICTIM [LIVE] • SHANTI CELESTE • SIMO CELL • STAVROZ [LIVE] • TIANA KHASI [LIVE] • WATA IGARASHI • WAX'O PARADISO • YOUNG MARCO
It's time for us to take you down once again to the banks of the mighty Murray River, as Strawberry Fields Festival announces its return to the wildlands of Tocumwal this November 29-December 1.
This year's edition marks its 11th instalment, bringing together a unique blend of DJs and live artists, plus a community of hugely devoted fans for a truly unforgettable weekend!
A mix of international guests and beloved local acts will take to the stages of Strawberry Fields this year, making the trip out to the borderline well worth your time.
Lucky punters have snapped up their tickets in the ballot, with the Early Bird and Round 1 tickets selling out in record time. Make sure you get in quick to avoid any disappointment!
The creative brain behind the gorgeous artwork this year is Minna Leunig (famed artist Michael Leunig's daughter), with the artwork designed to capture the magic of the Australian bush & Murray River - the true headliners of the event.
Without any further ado, let's meet them now, the class of 2019. We're going in alphabetical order because everyone's a star at Strawberry Fields.
Growing up in Newham, East London, Alfa Mist began his musical journey as a grime and hip-hop producer. The self-taught pianist and sometimes rapper soon found himself drawn to the jazz, world music and film soundtracks he discovered through sampling. His sound blends melancholy jazz harmony with alternative hip-hop and soul.
Animals Dancing is one of the most trustworthy names in Melbourne when it comes to bookings and legendary sessions of musical indulgence. Take a punt and see what mystery guest they've got lined up for a day on the Murray River for this edition of Strawberry Fields.
Ausecuma Beats formed as a combination of musicians from Australia, the Senegambia region, Cuba and Mali... hence the name Ausecuma, combining the four regions into one word. As a result, Ausecuma Beats as a band stands for unity among diverse peoples, and it shows through their combined influences. With four percussionists, Ausecuma Beats creates a complex rhythm that virtually forces your body to move.
Avantdale Bowling Club is the newest project from hot-footed New Zealand MC Tom Scott, whose previous projects have included Homebrew, @peace, Average Rap Band, and more. Scott's isn't a name that you may have come across without a vetted interest in Kiwi hip-hop, but back home he commands attention. After listening to his new track "Years Gone By," you'll understand why.
Bremen's Bebetta is a playful, colourful and charming personality who likes to inject everything she does with a sense of fun. Her goal is to make people happy away from the troubles of everyday life. In order to make this happen, she has years of DJ'ing and music collecting experiences – and not only from clubs or festivals. Bebetta also puts on her pyjamas and regularly streams her famous live-session 'Bebetta In Bed' around the world. Have a cup of tea, relax and be a part of it.
Bob Moses, the Vancouver-bred duo consisting of Tom Howie and Jimmy Vallance, came to life in the Brooklyn underground scene in 2012. Meshing guitar licks, a moody smoulder and a dash of dance floor ambience with lyrical depth and classic song writing, the duo created a sound that appeals equally to club goers and rock music fans. The duo have dominated Glastonbury, Coachella, EDC, Lollapalooza and even Ellen. Now, it's Strawberry Fields' turn.
"Less chin stroking, more dancing". CC:DISCO's t-shirt really says it all. You can catch her playing disco, house and boogie cuts, all with her heart at the controls. A mainstay of the Melbourne club scene, CC triggers a joyous feedback loop that infects the dance floor. There's no pretension – only pure feeling.
Born in Detroit in 1963, Derrick May is considered one of the founding fathers of techno music. As a part of the "Bellevue Three," alongside Juan Atkins and Kevin Saunderson, May developed a style that was futuristic, emotional, physical and cerebral. "None of us knew this would be ground-breaking or revolutionary," May recalls. "We had no idea what we did would change the world." Three decades on, May remains an iconic figure.
DRMNGNOW – aka Neil Morris – is a Yorta Yorta independent artist based in Naarm/Birraranga (Melbourne). Communicating messages of searing Indigenous empowerment, Morris has a sound and approach that makes him one of the most unique artists in the country. Morris takes a striking interdisciplinary approach to his craft as an MC, instrumentalist, poet and songwriter.
Acclaimed indigenous vocalist Emma Donovan and Melbourne rhythm combo The PutBacks come together to give a performance that's both hard-hitting and heartfelt. The music has a gritty, uniquely Australian sound – a real tour de force of funk and soul. Make sure you go see what all the fuss is about.
Eris Drew is a DJ, producer and self-described "trans ecstatic" from the prairies of Illinois, USA. A long-time resident at Chicago's Smart Bar, Drew often plays b2b sets with her partner Octo Octa and is a DJ for The Bunker in New York City. If that wasn't enough, she also gives talks around the world on rave history and shamanism, is a noted LGBTIQ+ advocate and mentors aspiring DJs and electronic musicians. Is there anything she can't do?
Over the past few years, audiences around the world have also found out what insider types already knew Gerd Janson is a DJ versatile enough to rock just about any dance floor. A DJ who cares about the profession of DJ. A DJ worth hearing. Janson reconfigures the classics you already knew in an unexpected way and introduces you to new classics, a few months (or even years) before you'll hear them played everywhere else.
Gordon Koang hails from the Upper Nile region of what is now South Sudan. Accompanied by his cousin Paul Biel, Gordon performs a blend of traditional Neur rhythms and original compositions in English, Arabic and even his native language of Neur. His spirited, worldly performance is not one to be missed.
Interstellar Fugitives was founded upon a mutual love of breaks, jungle and the 90's rave scene. Named after the Underground Resistance album from 1988, Interstellar Fugitives is a project which pays homage to the past as much as it does the future. Top dogs of the Melbourne scene and already festival favourites, DJ Sarah and Georgia Bird are ready to take Strawberry Fields to the next level.
Every weekend for some 15 years, Katie Drover sat comfortably at the controls in one of Melbourne's thriving clubbing spots, with the dance floor hanging on her every move. Today, after following her heart and ears to the other side of the world, she is DJ'ing, writing music and running the label Dokutoku Records in Berlin. Not bad for someone who spends the other half of her life working as a mathematician. When you see her at Strawberry Fields, it will all add up.
An international shapeshifting duo, KMLN (pronounced "chameleon") unites Italian producer/multi-instrumentalist Christopher Tooker and Canadian DJ/producer Shawna Hofmann. Be it prime-time or a sunrise set, they adapt and deliver sets that blow minds and bring your dance skills to the next level. Expect live instruments, syncopation, organic meeting modern, and the future meeting the past.
Described as a "dizzying, kaleidoscopic and rhythmically adventurous release," Kornél Kovács' debut album The Bells was a raging success. It came second in Mixmag's top 50 albums list, fifth in DJ Mag's and was named one of top 20 electronic albums of 2016 by Pitchfork. Kovács has since cemented his position as one of the most prominent producers and DJs around.
All the way from Pembury in the UK, Leon Vynehall has based his entire career off one simple motto: "Be brave." With cuts ranging from slow-mo ambience to thudding jungle, Vynehall is an ever-evolving artist – and one the world is quickly taking more and more notice of.
With a sound born in New York, ripened in London and refined in Berlin, Margaret Dygas is an artist whose sound possesses a true international resonance. With her broad musical background fuelling her desire for electronic experimentation within her music, her productions and DJ-sets incorporate the deep and dub-influenced sound she loves, whilst retaining the driving funk of her musical past.
Mark Farina – known for his trademark style of Mushroom Jazz – has solidified himself in the world of dance music as a trailblazer. Whether it's as a DJ, producer or tastemaker, Farina is a bona fide house music icon. After three decades criss-crossing the globe, he shows no signs of slowing down – remaining innovative, humble, and firmly rooted in the underground.
The sound of Martha van Straaten can be described as the patchwork of a thousand joyful days in the sun. Her fond love for colourful tunes from all over the world is the pure essence of treasures and discoveries she has made on her never-ending journey. While travelling, she dives deep into the local culture, absorbing all the patterns, habits and sensual sensations of her surroundings. She then translates it into a multi-ethnic collage of sound, of which Strawberry Fields will get a taste this coming November.
From the sparkling city of Angels to humble Australian outback bedroom beats, Milan Ring's music is a rendezvous between polarities, laced with spiced Caribbean rhythms. A singer, rapper, guitarist, producer and engineer, Milan directs each and every aspect of the creative process, from the first chord struck on the guitar to the final master. This one-woman powerhouse is perfectly illustrated to us in her live show, creating loops, dropping beats, triggering samples and effortlessly leading with the guitar, engaging us with her honest & unique vocals.
Merve is a Melbourne based DJ and curator. Born and raised in Collingwood, Merve grew up amongst its dynamic street life, gay saunas and punk clubs. Laying her rhythmic roots as a programmer and agent, she has become a key selector in the Melbourne electronic music community. Her sounds aspire for a rhythmic exchange that scrambles any axis and connects dancers to a wider vibration, a harder jack, a higher groove.
Mildlife take the musical canvas, rip the lids off the paint tins, and throw vibrant splashes of colour into kaleidoscopic jams. The four-piece bonded over the desire to push musical boundaries on record, and developed a tight live show bolstered by wild improvisation. Bringing the songs alive on stage is a process of transformation – the audience moulding the songs, the songs moulding the audience. Mildlife cast themselves as the cosmic funk house band for a party at the edge of the universe. Join in.
Millú weaves a brave lineage between techno, electro and their derivatives, combining contemporary starkness with the industrial palette of bygone cold wave eras. Think smoke machines and bodies moving in the dark and you're getting close. Her sets are eccentric, led by a distinct ability to saunter between genres and tempos, re-contextualising our perceptions of when and where records should be played.
With a touring schedule ever growing at a rapid pace, Moxie continues to take her unique culmination of expertise to clubs and spaces around the globe – seamlessly fusing anything from classic Chicago house to obscure left-field breaks, or glittering disco with energetic percussive rollers, entertaining and educating club goers wherever the journey takes her.
Naples-formed, Berlin-based duo Nu Guinea creates sounds that are influenced from the idea of an exotic, far-off distant place. By combining various music genres that are related to dance-floor music in its purest sense, they create a distinct sound, palpating genre routes floating from obscure disco to world-ethno music.
It shouldn't be surprising that Brooklyn-based producer Octo Octa (AKA Maya Bouldry-Morrison) had already logged tireless years as a fringe IDM artist and sound designer before her debut EP Let Me See You lasso'd a mighty wave of international house-heads to the dance floor. The EP helped push underground house label 100% Silk onto everyone's radar in 2011, and Bouldry-Morrison hasn't looked back since.
German DJ Oliver Huntemann plays sets that recall elements of Berlin engineering, persuasive logic, hypothermic reduction and gruesome Darwinism. It's definitely one of the more different-sounding artists with a place on the bill at Strawberry Fields, but you're only doing yourself a disservice by not investigating further.
I am O.K. reads the name of the new album by Berlin-based producer, DJ and label owner Oliver Koletzki. The title's ambiguity is, of course, deliberate: there's a deeper meaning hidden behind the humorous facade that is Chrisse Kunst's hand-drawn cover, depicting an unadorned thirteen-year-old Oliver sporting nerd glasses and a striped jumper: I am Oliver Koletzki, raw and authentic. For his fifth studio album, Koletzki looks towards the unaffected freshness of back in the day – and thus, consciously, returns to his roots.
Oscar Jerome has been honing his craft as a musician and writer since a young age. He has worked as vocalist, guitarist and composer with countless acts and grown through the thriving South London music scene. In his solo project Jerome brings all of his influences together, citing artists such as Gil Scott-Heron, George Benson, John Martyn, The Clash, Ali Farka Toure and J Dilla as inspiration. Motivated by politics, spirituality and life experiences, Jerome's creative vision is to always make music with sincerity.
Though she might only be in the first chapter of her career, ascendant London DJ Peach has a catalogue of trustworthy co-signs behind her. She was recently announced as one of the guests for Ben UFO's blockbuster XOYO residency, playing with Objekt, Call Super and Karen Gwyer. Before that, her dreamy track "Silky" was released on Intergraded – a new imprint for emerging artists launched by Midland. Ben and Midland are quite handy DJs to file Peach's evocative style alongside. Like them, she adopts a loose view of genres and categories – sounds bleed into one another, joined only by an ability to impact dance-floors.
When he isn't trawling the flea markets and records stores of his native Paris, discovering those obscure party hits that never were, Raphaël Top-Secret can be regularly heard rocking some of the best underground parties around the world as far as Sao Paulo, Melbourne, Tokyo or Vancouver. Not afraid to push the boundaries of club music, Raphaël can be heard moving effortlessly between everything from boogie, downtempo, rap, reggae, afro-Caribbean synth bangers, ambient or industrial dance to the deepest late 80's and early 90's house.
Roza Terenzi's productions are prime for interstellar communication; sublime mind dance, warehouse bleeps and dawn-ready breaks that will inevitably find union between earth people and other beings. This is even more apt in her immense DJ sets, astutely linking these outer limit genres as one through common sound, tone and rhythmic drive.
Saoirse's first foray into the field of electronic music came at a very young age, accompanying her mother to free parties and raves in her home country of Ireland. It was at these parties that her young ears began to make sense of the sounds from the likes of Leftfield, Fluke and Orbital – and a close allegiance to electronic music was forged. As a DJ, Saoirse is confidently in control of her sound. Expect dub, ambient, house, jazz, electro, garage, techno and some surprises, alongside a unpredictable and cheeky mixing style coupled with palpable passion and creativity.
With their record collections spanning several decades of hip hop, funk and soul as well as frequently vinyl-only house and techno selections, Session Victim have a visceral connection with the tracks they spin. It's the passion for uncovering dusty vinyl treasures, and the soul that can be captured on a miniature moment in wax, that inspires both their DJ sets and production environment.
Placed firmly at the epicentre of Bristol's currently buoyant house music scene, Shanti Celeste has already proved her salt as a multi-talented artist over the course of the last twelve months. From her work as a producer, DJ, vocalist, label-owner and promoter, what's strikingly clear from all of it is a connoisseur's taste in house, disco, techno and electro that belies her young age.
Simo Cell is a French rising talent, originally from Nantes. Now Paris-based, this producer differentiates himself with his singular style that melds UK codes to a wider electronic music background. His two first EPs on Dnuos Yvitil and Fragil Musique illustrate an affiliation to the Bristol scene, but also other inputs acquired after several years playing and travelling worldwide. As a DJ, he officiates on very original and adaptive repertoire. Listening to a Simo Cell's set is always unpredictable and full of discovery.
Known for injecting an ethnic, acoustic and organic vibe to electronic music, Stavroz are four friends that have pocketed releases for the likes of Kindisch, Laut & Luise, Delicieuse, Bedrock and their own label Moodfamily. Their intimate live sets and unique DJ sets have been quickly picked up, sending them on regular trips abroad. This all comes in-between their weekly show on Belgian National alternative radio Studio Brussel, where they display an uncanny ability to combine the old with the new and the east with the west.
Wata Igarashi has quickly emerged as one of Japan's leading DJs and producers. He has been exploring the deeper side of techno through well-received EPs on Midgar, The Bunker NY, and DJ Nobu's Bitta label, as well as standout tracks on compilations on Semantica and Time to Express. By day, Igarashi works as a sound producer and the skills he has developed through his work are reflected in his productions, which are distinguished by their subtle and carefully polished feel. Igarashi pursues a similar sound in his DJ sets, developing a distinctive take on the more trippy and psychedelic brand of techno Japan has become known for.
Soundtracking the cosmic verandah of Howard Arkley's suburban weatherboard paradise, Wax'o Paradiso's splendid krautback discotheque consists of magic possums Andy Hart, Edd Fisher and Simon TK. Dubbed the Dimboola triangle of lost groove, Wax'o has popped up in floating rooftop gardens, luscious convents, shipping containers, train yards, supernatural amphitheatres and even smack-bang underneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge. United by a penchant for kitsch Australian psychedelia, and a firm belief that Pavlova is indeed the Queen of the dessert, the Wax'o Paradiso family is hellbent on getting you hell bent.
It now seems a long time since DJ and producer Marco Sterk – AKA Young Marco – was one of the Amsterdam underground's best-kept secrets. In 2018 alone, he's spent more time in the air than he has on the ground, traversing the globe to perform lauded DJ sets of genre-defying eclecticism. You'll find Young Marco working the dance floor with both unexpected twists and "unclassics" from a dizzying array of similarly-minded styles. One night, you might hear tropical rhythms, Afro gems and Middle Eastern disco obscurities; on another, it may be thrusting techno, skewed synth-funk or industrial strength jack-tracks. Whatever you get at Strawberry Fields, you're in for a treat.