No doubt about it, Cooly Rocks On Festival 2016 continues on the tradition in entertaining & thrilling rock & rollers with its 1950's nostalgia extravaganza. Perhaps not quite as expansive in terms of bands variety and numbers as its predecessor, the Wintersun Festival, but nonetheless it was another fantastic Rock & Roll week in Coolangatta, Queensland celebrating all things 1950's including music & dancing, fashion & culture , hot rods display & cruising, floats & parades, Miss Pin ups and dance competition, merchandise galore and a lot more. Queensland's weather lived up to its reputation and brought glorious sunshine all week. Those rockers from south of the border coming in from their respective cold & chilly climate really appreciated the warm sunshine. Yes, there was some rain later on Sunday afternoon but the party atmosphere and dancing continued on indoors irrespective. Believe it or not, some even danced in the rain when the Retro Rockets played at the Griffith Street stage outside the Sands hotel.
All weekend, there was dancing on the main streets of Coolangatta during the day when bands played in the various outdoor stages. There was more dancing with bands playing in the Sands hotel, Coolangatta hotel and in the Marquee stage. Come at night, live music and dancing moved on to the various venues such as Twin Towns, Seagulls, Kiara Surf Club, Banora Club and Tweed Civic Centre.
Personally, I am more than happy with the bands playing at Cooly this year which has a good mix of rock & roll and rockabilly bands. My personal favourites were Little Billy, Twang, Atomic Hi Tones, Retro Rockets, Ezra Lee & the Havoc band, the Jivecats and the Fuelers. Unfortunately, I didn't get to see all the other rockabilly bands such as The Flyin' Saucers, Koffin Rockers & Miss Teresa. I also didn't venture out dancing much in the various venues at night but from various reports, all the venues especially Twin Towns were packed with dancers all week. I did however dance at Twin Towns on Sunday night when Buddy Love & the Tremors and Rockin' Bodgies were the featured bands on the night.
Of course, it was not all rock & roll as there was a selection of swing or jump blues music from the Jivecats as well as a swing dance on Saturday night organised by a swing group from the Gold Coast. Another bonus was seeing the Screamin' Eagles performing Eagles tributes at the Harley-Davison bikes stand on Sunday afternoon.
The street parade on Saturday morning was another highlight for me. Good to see quite a few rock & roll dance clubs represented in the parade this year. And of course, one cannot miss hearing the roar and thunder of the hot rods & kustoms cruising the main streets of Coolangatta on Saturday and Sunday nights. Truly a carnival atmosphere in Coolangatta all week. There were many more activities happening during Cooly Rocks On 2016 including the dance competition, merchandise stores, dance classes, Miss Pin Ups & Poodle competitions. I just wish I could do them all.
And finally, what a great opportunity to catch up with rock & rollers from all over Australia and in particular those from Perth, Adelaide and Sydney all sharing the same passion for all things 1950's themes & style.
Here's a sample of videos of bands playing at Cooly Rocks On 2016 .....