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Kelis Heading To BIGSOUND, Sweet Relief! This September

30 May 2024 | 7:30 am | Mary Varvaris

Kelis will be exclusive to Queensland.

Kelis

Kelis (Supplied)

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The boys will be heading to the yard this September, with Milkshake star Kelis announced today as BIGSOUND’s keynote speaker AND the headliner for this year’s Sweet Relief! event.

Heading to Brisbane (Meanjin) in partnership with QLD Music Trials and QMusic, the generation-defining polymath will deliver a major keynote presentation at BIGSOUND 2024, candidly sharing her whirlwind success story on Thursday, September 5 ahead of her exclusive live performance at Sweet Relief! festival, which is set to go down a few days later on Saturday, September 7.

The second edition of the festival, hosted by QLD Music Trails, will take over Brisbane’s Ballymore Stadium on Saturday, 7 September, across two stages.

While more artists will be announced in due course, the Milkshake singer will be joined at this year’s Sweet Relief! by some of the country’s favourite homegrown acts: The Presets, Electric Fields, Haiku Hands, Dameeela, and JUNO.

In a statement, festival organisers quipped about the announcement of Kelis, “Damn right, it’s better than yours.”

Kelis’ addition to the BIGSOUND bill follows the first announcement of conference speakers, which arrived earlier this month and featured the likes of Amy Taylor (frontwoman of trailblazing Aussie punk band Amyl & The Sniffers), Casper Mills (4AD), Dev Sherlock (SXSW), Korda Marshall (Mushroom Group), Naomie Abergel (Sound.xyz) and Roxane Dumoulin (ATC Live), among others.

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QMusic and BIGSOUND CEO Kris Stewart said of the latest announcement: “BIGSOUND lights up the heart of the Fortitude Valley each year with a flurry of music lovers, brilliant minds and world-class performers. It’s a pleasure to get to partner with QLD Music Trails to bring to the city someone who encompasses all these things and more, Kelis, for what will undoubtedly be an incredible Keynote speech and festival performance.”

The sentiment was shared by QMF CEO Daryl Raven, who added: “QLD Music Trails is dedicated to enriching the cultural identity of Queensland. With the backing of the Queensland Government, we're proud to champion our diverse music community and offer a beacon of hope in challenging times. Sweet Relief! provides a stage where homegrown talent can stand alongside global icons. We're flipping the script, turning up the volume, and proving that music is unstoppable. This is our moment to unite, celebrate, and let the music do the talking.”

Queensland’s tourism minister, Michael Healy, also weighed in, saying, “Through Tourism and Events Queensland, we made a commitment to bringing global singer-songwriter Kelis to Brisbane, which is a major coup for the city’s music scene. Following BIGSOUND’s annual takeover of Fortitude Valley, Sweet Relief! will provide music lovers an excuse to extend their stay in this great city.”

BIGSOUND 2024 will run from Tuesday, September 3 to Friday 6, in its usual home of Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley precinct. Early bird delegate passes are on sale now – head here to register for yours.

Pre-sale tickets (with the best price attached) go on sale at 11 am AEST on Tuesday, 4 June – sign up here to access those tickets. General tickets will be available at 11 am AEST on Friday, 7 June, via the Sweet Relief! website.

BIGSOUND 2024 CONFERENCE LINEUP

Kelis – Artist (USA)
Amy Taylor – Amyl & The Sniffers (AUS)
Adam Ryan – The Great Escape / Festival Republic (UK)
Ben Buchanan – Creative Artists Agency (CA)
Bradly Palmer
– Concord Music Publishing (USA)
Casper Mills – 4AD (UK)
Dev Sherlock – SXSW (USA)
Elijah – Artist / Thought Leader / DJ (UK)
Elliott Lefko – AEG / Goldenvoice (USA)
Korda Marshall – Mushroom Group (UK)
Naomie AbergelSound.xyz (USA)
Patrick Daniel – Reeperbahn (GER)
Roxane Dumoulin
– ATC Live (FRAN)

SWEET RELIEF! 2024

Saturday 7 September - Ballymore Stadium, Brisbane

KELIS (EXCL) – THE PRESETS (LIVE) – ELECTRIC FIELDS

HAIKU HANDS – DAMEEEELA – JUNO

+ more to be announced