Record crowd predicted for the 2013 Deniliquin Ute Muster with the announcement of US country superstar Alan Jackson as the headline act.By Tyla Harrington
Muster HQ in Deniliquin has been buzzing since Sunday’s announcement that US country superstar Alan Jackson will be headlining this year’s Ute Muster.
Muster organisers say ticket sales have surpassed all other years for the amount sold at this time of year, while Ute Muster patrons have taken to social media in their droves to welcome Jackson’s signing.
Event organisers expect the Grammy-winning American will help deliver a record crowd for the Ute Muster’s 15th anniversary, but are yet to announce whether Jackson will headline the Friday or Saturday night concert at the Conargo Rd Ute Muster site.
Newly appointed Play on the Plains Festival general manager Kathie Heyman said the event’s best ever crowd of more than 25,000 — set in 2010 when Aussie rockets Cold Chisel re-formed for the event— should be in danger this year.
Deniliquin and Townsville are the only places outside of capital cities where fans will be able to see Jackson on tour.
‘‘I hear a lot of people talk about the 2010 event,’’ said Ms Heyman, who is inviting locals to come meet her at the Ute Muster site from 5pm tonight.
‘‘It’s hard to go higher than that but with the announcement (on Sunday) I think we could reach that height again.
‘‘We’re so excited about Alan Jackson coming to Deniliquin .
‘‘He’s sold almost 60 million albums .
‘‘There’s been a lot of hard work by the board and the whole team (to get him here). We’re so happy to have him for the 15th anniversary.
‘‘We’re aiming to reach 2010 (numbers) and we welcome everyone to come be a part of the world record attempts (most utes and most blue singlets).’’
Tickets sales for this time of year are ‘‘well above’’ any other year and ‘early bird’ tickets are expected to sell out ‘‘very quickly’’, according to Ute Muster marketing manager Karla Notley.
She said the response to the Jackson announcement had been overwhelming.
Miss Notley said the international superstar was a perfect fit for the muster crowd.
‘‘Everyone is just so excited,’’ she said.
‘‘We’re hoping this year will break all records. It will just be amazing.
‘‘It’s a great thing for us (Play on the Plains Festival Pty Ltd) but also for the town.’’
Jackson is a two-time Grammy-winning artist in the elite company of The Beatles’ John Lennon and Paul McCartney when it comes to success.
He has not only sold nearly 60 million albums worldwide, but scored nearly 40 top-10 hits in Australia.
Some of Jackson’s biggest tunes include Good Time, It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere, Little Bitty and I’ll Go On Loving You — each spent a month at the top of the Australian music charts.
The last time the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame member was in Australia, in 2011, all of his shows sold out within hours, making it the fastest selling country music tour in Australian history.
With the Ute Muster’s headline act confirmed, tickets for the 2013 event are now on sale and organisers are urging people to book early.
Early bird Ute Muster tickets are $150 for adults and $75 for children (aged 13 to 17), but are only available until May 24, unless they sell out earlier.
Tickets can be purchased from Muster HQ in Hardinge St, Deniliquin, or online at the muster’s website.
Regular tickets prices are $180 for adults and $90 for children.
For more information, or to book your ticket, drop into Muster HQ, phone 5881
The Deniliquin Ute Muster is held on Friday, October 4 and Saturday, October 5.
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