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Wollongong City Council

Wollongong CBD programs hitting all the high notes

Thursday 17 December 2020

Two free live music programs around different locations and participating businesses in the Crown Street Mall, Wollongong will have you dancing in the street.

Since October, CBD Sounds & Crown Street Takeovers has seen a selection of local musicians and bands take to the stage at various locations around Wollongong.

Both programs were the result of Council’s increased investment in CBD activation and marketing activities to support the regional and local economic recovery post-COVID.

“This year has been an especially challenging one for local artists as COVID restrictions has severely limited performance opportunities here in the Illawarra,” Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM said.

“We’ve taken up the challenge of creating live performance opportunities that support our local music community including the roll out of two great music programs that boosts patron numbers at businesses by showcasing great local talent.”

CBD Sounds brings together participating local businesses and restaurants with local musicians and bands. Since October, we’ve held 35 performances across four locations with plans to continue this program over Christmas and into the new year.

As part of this program a number of well-known local artists and bands have taken to the stage including producer and performer Godriguez and international Jazz and Soul performer Freyja Garbett.

For Freyja Garbett, CBD Sounds was an awesome summer initiative for artists on the “Coal Coast”.

“[This year] all of my performance work was cancelled for six months including some incredible performances I had been looking forward to for many months — a Blues fest in Byron Bay and an Australian tour with my band. My primary income disappeared for quite some time,” said Freyja.

When asked about her thoughts on the program, Freyja said that she felt lucky to be involved.

“I’ve noticed a shift over the last few years. It seems more creatives are moving here from Syd and Melb. It’s nice being part of the community knowing that things will likely flourish as time goes by. These initiatives for live music certainly help cement the Illawarra’s enthusiasm for the art,” she said.

Participating venues in the CBD Sounds program include The Swallowed Anchor, Pot of Gold Mexican Cantina, Retro Groove in Globe Lane and the Crown Street Mall stage.

Another great music program that’s finished on a high note is round two of the Crown Street Takeover. Held over four Friday’s in November this year, this program brought bands and musicians to perform in the evenings in the Creative Container on the Mall.

During this month we saw over 400 young people join us in the Crown Street Mall to listen to great tunes and enjoy an outdoor live music performance from well-known bands such as Satin Cali, Scabz and Scab Baby.

Crown Street Takeover was jointly funded by Wollongong City Council and Renew Wollongong and was produced by DJ Breda who also created the art installation in the container for the shows.

CBD Sounds Live Music Dates & Locations

Crown Street Mall Stage

  • Thursday 17 December, 11.45am – 1.45pm
  • Friday 18 December, 11.45am – 1.45pm
  • Saturday 19 December, 11.45am – 1.45pm
  • Wednesday 23 December, 11.45am – 1.45pm
  • Thursday 24 December, 11.45am – 1.45pm

The Swallowed Anchor

  • Friday 18 December, 6-9pm

Pot of Gold Mexican Cantina

  • Saturday 19 December, 7.30-10.30pm

Retro Groove, Globe Lane

  • Sunday 20 December, 1 – 4pm

Keep an eye on the Wollongong CBD Facebook page for the latest updates on events, programs and live music in the Crown Street Mall.