Koalas on Magnetic Island benefit from fundraiser Jazz and Koalas

Congratulations to Sandra Beynon for pulling off another Jazz and Koalas event at Sandi’s on Magnetic Island last Sunday 22nd August 2021.

The event was a sellout and judging by the frivolity of the patrons, a much-needed diversion from the constant threats of lockdown, cancellations and general confusion about where we are all headed.

Joined by island local, Andrew Djaski, on trumpet, and  Townsville guitarist, Jeremy Hawker, plus the very competent Graham Ross on drums, the music spilled out over 4 hours.

After a special set by some music students, Sandra Beynon took to the stage with a set of tunes made famous by Ella Fitzgerald.

Later, Sandra would get the crowd swinging to some samba tunes with a full set of bossanova made famous by Astrud Gilberto.

Of course, the idea of the event is to raise money for the Magnetic Island Koala Hospital and lots of raffle tickets and donations later, just over $1000 was handed over to Dr Ali Bee, local vet and woman behind the koala hospital on the island.

“There’s a constant need for donations to help us feed the injured and sick koalas which come into our care.  We’re extremely grateful to Sandra for putting this event on for the third time.  It was a great day to raise awareness of the need to treasure this precious creature, wherever we might be in Australia,” said Dr Bee.

Special thanks to our transport sponsor, Sealink Queensland.

Murmurs abound as to whether the event will re-brand to enable the inclusion of other music genres.  Perhaps next year’s event will be “Jam for Koalas” or “Groovin’ the Koalas” or  even Rockin’ the Wildilfe”.

Sandra Beynon is a Brisbane-based vocalist and event organiser with Body and Soul Music and Events, and also My Chilli Festival.

 

Jazz and Koalas on Magnetic Island 2021

It’s happening again!   Magnetic Island’s favourite jazz event is taking place on Sunday 22nd August 2021 at the beautiful foreshore location of Horseshoe Bay at Sandi’s Bar. 

The event was conceived by Body and Soul Music and Events’ CEO Sandra Beynon, to fill in some time while on holiday with London-based jazz singer, Trudy Kerr.

It raises money for the island’s koala hospital, hence the title of the event.

“We need all the money we  can get to help care for our little special friends on the island. Cars, illness and accidents mean they are brought into my vet clinic and we rely on donations and sponsorships to help us continue our work in returning them to good health where possible, and then releasing them into the wild once they are ready,” said Ali Bee of Magnetic Island Koala Hospital.

With international travel still not happening, regular Trudy Kerr won’t be able to fly in for some tropical fun, but long-time friend and festival organiser, Sandra Beynon, will be keeping her spot on the stage warm until better times come again.

Sandra is one of Australia’s most versatile singers, covering rock, country, pop, as well as jazz.

Having just appeared at Warwick’s Jumpers and Jazz in July Festival on 18th August, Sandra will again sing her Ella and Astrud Tribute repertoire.

Sandra will be accompanied by Townsville guitarist, Jeremy Hawker, who also teaches.

The inimitable Andrew Djaski will feature on flugelhorn and vocals, and his colleague and fellow island-dweller, Graham Morris, will be on the drums.

Look forward to meeting some up-and-coming players as Jeremy Hawker’s Guitar Studio students will take to the stage to strut their stuff.

“Entry is by donation – so make that a gold coin or a lovely bouncy polymer note – we’re grateful for anything,” said Ms Beynon.

No need to book – just swing by and enjoy the vibe and help out a good cause while you’re ther

Jazz and Koalas organiser Sandra Beynon with Trudy Kerr, and Ali Bee of Magnetic Island Koala Hospital.

 

Chillogan Chilli Festival is Covid-Safe! http://bodyandsoulmusic.com.au/blog/wp-admin/post-new.php

Organisers have worked long and hard to get their event plan approved by Queensland Health.

Measures in place include:

  • Safe One-Way Entry and Exits
  • Non-contact Ticket Scanning with automatic contact tracing
  • $3 Red Face Masks
  • Screening Questions at entry
  • Extra space between stalls
  • One-Way traffic flow areas in Hellfire Alley
  • Grid-marked seating areas on the lawn
  • Sanitiser in key locations
  • Dedicated sanitisation  staff in Bar area

“It’s a great deal of extra administration to bring an event like this in line with government expectations.

“We find it anathema that a 50,000 capacity stadium can have patrons seated directly next to each other, yet as a small event of up to 2000 people, we have to dedicate many hours of time to getting our ducks in a row to provide patrons the ability to socially distance,” said Sandra Beynon of Body and Soul Music and Events.

“Our bottom line takes a hit too because instead of 43 stalls, we can only have 34,” she said.

Patrons safety is our priority now and we have taken all steps possible to ensure the best environment for enjoying a fantastic afternoon and evening out, celebrating all things chilli.

“Logan residents and those travelling from afar, are really super-keen to come along to try new chilli products, see some super challenges on stage, and enjoy live music and dance performance,” said Ms Beynon

There is something for the whole family – the kids can enjoy a pony ride, spend hours in the animal nursery cuddling the cute critters, jump on two inflatables, have their face painted, not to mention enjoy some special treats like snow cones and fairy floss.

Nick from Outback Kids will also be there with his fabulous array of toys – just in time for Christmas!

For the big kids, we have Hellfire Alley, our one-stop shop for all things spicy and delicious.

We have some of our favourite food vendors there – Neshama Catering, Firing Line Low-Slow Cooked Barbecue, Carlos Tacos, Little Mamak Malaysian, Red Oriental Dumplings and wood-fired Pizza Gal.

For the sweet-lovers, enjoy treats from Oh Waffles, Sister Bake, the Iced Tea Company, Hierba Santa Organic flavoured drinks, and awesome ice-cream from Qld Ice Cream.

We are working with the Beenleigh Scout group this year as they will be providing the much-needed cheers for the brave challengers on centre stage, as well as providing usher services to keep those one-way flow areas safely working.

Scout Recycling Centres area collecting our cans and bottles and benefiting from the proceeds of the refunds.

Come along and support this festival, now in its third year, against all odds!

Visit the website for all information and ticket link, or visit the Facebook page and Event.

Logan! Get your Chilli on!

 

 

 

A Halloween Briz Chilli Fest for 2021

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any hotter, Briz Chilli Fest will be taking things to the next level in 2021.

The festival is moving to coincide each year with Halloween and in doing so will create one of Brisbane’s most fun family events!

Hot as Hades!  Spicy and Spooky!  Ghost Peppers and Ghouls – the fun of combining Halloween with Hotness is something that

Halloween Briz Chilli Fest2

Body and Soul Australia Music and Events is taking on with gusto.

Patrons will of course be encouraged to dress in Halloween costume to be in the running for prizes for different categories.   Including a chilli-aspect in the costume will get extra points from  judges.

Skulls, flames, grim reapers – they are all images which abundantly adorn the chilli industry marketing landscape – and now they will have found a home at Halloween Briz Chilli Fest!

“We had to move the festival from its usual June date because of Covid uncertainty, and then we decided to place the Gold Coast Cheese Chilli & Chocolate Festival in that time-frame instead, so we had to move Briz Chilli Fest,” said organiser, Scarlett Habanero.

Looking at the calendar, October seemed a good time and then we realised that Halloween was in that month. What a great way to bring families together for an even more fun event in Brisbane,” she said.

The event is currently finalising a new venue to allow for more space to do a broader range of activities for children and adults alike, so stay posted by following the Facebook page.

It may even be a two-day event, given that Halloween is on Sunday 31st October in 2021, so a super-spooky night-time event on Saturday 30th October and an event more suitable for very young children on Halloween Sunday, 31st October, is in the planning.

Be prepared for a super-fun event that will become a much-anticipated date in the Brisbane events calendar.

“We are going to have so much fun planning Halloween Briz Chilli Fest ; just bursting at the seams with ideas and excitement,” said Habanero.

 

Logan gears up for its annual Chilli Festival!

It’s been a tricky year for event organisers and we at Body and Soul Music and Events are no exception.

As we are also involved in the live music industry, gigs are now seem a distant memory and, like many musicians, our incomes from music were decimated.

Briz Chilli Fest 2020 had to eventually be cancelled, despite waiting as long as possible to see how things would “pan” out with the pandemic.

Our two day Chillogan event scheduled for November at the beautiful Logan River Parklands also became a victim of Covid-restrictions and border closures.

But we are excited to bringing you a pared-down version of our planned two day extravaganza.  Chillogan Lite will be held at the Beenleigh Town Square on Saturday 5th December, 2020, much to the delight of Logan residents.

The first Chillogan in 2018 was held at the square and received a great reception for a first-time event.

The square is an easy solution for smaller-scale Chillogan thanks to its great infrastructure – large stage, covered area for the Afterburn Bar, some grassed areas for people to enjoy, toilet facilities and ample power on site for our vendors who need it and want to avoid having to pay a levy for a powered site.

All in all, the site is a godsend for cash-strapped event organisers.

Event organisers motivation for creating Chillogan was to provide an opportunity for local businesses to become suppliers, to take ownership of an event which will continue to grow year by year, and to bring to the sparse event landscape in Logan, a family-friendly event that offers entertainment for all ages, based on the love of the chilli.

Chilli-heads in Logan area already champing at the bit to participate in the five chilli challenges, to stock up on some great artisan chilli products, talk to chilli-growers about how to manage their own plants and to chow down on some creative chilli food creations from our vendors.

Body and Soul Music and Events is again supporting Cystic Fibrosis Queensland with this event, hosting raffles and auctions on the day as well as donating a share of event profits.

The Viking Breed Social Motorcycle Club Brisbane Ipswich Chapter will agian be hosting the Viking for a Day Auction where patrons vie for the chance to ride pillion on the back of a range of great bikes, on festival day, en masse – what a super fun and thrilling opportunity for the closet bike enthusiasts among us.

The event’s Covid-Safe  measures include:

  • Sani-Scouts roaming the festival offering hand sanitiser to patrons
  • Red Chilli Army masks available for purchase at the gates or online with tickets ($1 from each mask goes back to our Covid-devastated Balinese villagers who tailored the masks for us),
  • Patrons on site at any one time will be capped at 1000, with a total of 2000 tickets available for purchase.
  • A one-way service system at the AfterBurn Bar
  • Spacing between stalls to prevent crowding

We are excited to be able to bring a festival to Logan in 2020, and hope to see all the dedicated chilli-heads and their families from 2pm to 9pm on festival day.

Logan!  Get your chilli  on!

Briz Chilli Fest and Chillogan Festival organiser nominated for fund-raising award.

Organiser of Briz Chilli Fest, Chillogan Festival and the new Gold Coast Cheese  Chilli and Chocolate Festival, Sandra Beynon, was delighted to hear of her recent nomination for a Cystic Fibrosis Queensland Diamond Award for fundraising. 

Ms Beynon’s festivals donate 10% of nett profits to Cystic Fibrosis Queensland as well as hosting fund-raising activities during the course of the festival.

Brisbane Chilli Festival
Waterfront Park Newstead is hotting up for this chilli festival!
Viking Breed Social Motorcycle Club
Chillogan Chilli Festival

One very popular fundraiser is the Viking for a Day Pillion Ride Auction by Viking Breed Social Motorcycle Club Brisbane Ipswich chapter.

“It’s a great day and we love getting amongst the people and showing our rides, and seeing the absolute delight on the faces of the people who win the charity auction to hop on the selected bikes and have a ride with all of us mob,” said Mark Pritchard, spokesperson for the club.

“I’m so lucky to have the support of the boys from Viking Breed.  They are well-known for their charitable pursuits and when I approached them through a friend, they were right there with me for my very first festival in 2018 at the Bulimba Golf Club,” said Ms Beynon

Earlier this month,  Ms Beynon had to take the touch decision to cancel Briz Chilli Fest and Chillogan Festival for 2020 due to Covid-19 making it impossible to predict a successful outcome.

“I really feel for charities at the moment with all their annual fund-raisers not going ahead, and things just being so hard for them to get much-needed funds to continue their valuable work,” she said.

I am really hoping that 2021 will be a better, more predictable year for festival organisers so that I can continue to support Cystic Fibrosis Queensland.

As an asthmatic, the cause touched me because I can imagine what it’s like to suffer every day of one’s life with a disease as debilitating and insidious as Cystic Fibrosis.   When I heard some of the speakers at one of their charity balls a few years ago, it spurred me on to try and help where I could.

I feel so sad that I am not able to donate much this year, but just last week I held a very small Ekka at Home event at my house and some neighbours and friends popped by and ate home-cooked Dagwood Dogs, Strawberry Sundaes, played some fun home-spun games in Side-show Alley, drank some Ekkapolitan cocktails at my bar – all via donation.  We raised $250.00.  Not a lot, but it’s something.  And if more people could do small things, it would all add up to enough to help fill the void in fund-raising that is currently being experienced by charities like Cystic Fibrosis Queensland.

I am hopeful that my last festival Gold Coast Cheese Chilli and Chocolate Festival will go ahead in early December 2020, but even if it too has to be cancelled, I will have laid the foundation for a fabulous event in 2021.

I am humbled by the nomination and look forward to meeting some of the other nominees at the Diamond Jubilee Cocktail Party award evening in March 202 1 at the beautiful Greek Club in South Brisbane.

 

Gold Coast Cheese Chilli & Chocolate Festival – South-East Queensland’s newest food festival!

Who doesn’t love a cute mascot?  And they don’t come much cuter than ChiChi our golden mouse.  He’s a serious foodie as you can see.  Spicy, creamy or chocolatey – he’s into it.

Huge thanks to Zac MacDonald  Digital Photography and Digital Media for producing the animated logo as well!

Gold Coast Cheese Chilli & Chocolate Festival
ChiChi the Gold Mouse

And that’s just what our patrons can expect on Sunday 13th June 2021 at the beautiful Broadwater Parklands, Southport.

Brought to you by the organisers of Briz Chili Fest, Chillogan Chilli Festival and Jazz and Koalas Magnetic Island, we know it’s going to be a great day.

Live music, market stalls, food challenges on stage, lots of grass to spread out your rug or chairs, and plenty of shade for the sun-conscious.

Enjoy the best of Queensland winter and put this event on your 2021 calendar.

If you’d like to participate, drop us a line at info@mychillifestival.com.au or visit the website  where you’ll find the online application form. 

Organised in accordance with Queensland Health Covid-Safe Event Planning Guidelines.

 

THE DECLINE AND THE INCLINE – where will Covid19 take musicians from here.

https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/ywg9em/where-do-you-turn-when-the-music-industry-skews-your-mental-health
https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/ywg9em/where-do-you-turn-when-the-music-industry-skews-your-mental-health
When the music industry skews your mental health.

Like many musicians and artists, my livelihood was annihilated once venues were closed.  About $7000 worth of bookings just gone up in smoke.  And we all know how hard it is to secure bookings in the first place – just sheer determination, terrier-like commitment to following-up inquiries, negotiating fees etc.  So, it’s just heartbreaking to have this happen to an already struggling industry and its cohort of gig-hungry musicians in a venue-starved environment

So few good gigs, so few well-paying gigs, so many great musicians not playing as much as they should be, and then there’s the young musicians just struggling to make a start, with stars in their eyes, and nobody willing to pay them more than a bowl of nachos in some cases.

We are an industry already on the brink of extinction.  So will post-COVID19 be better, or worse?  Will it be a nice ride, or a heavy incline back up to where we were before.

The website I Lost My Gig has collated the massive cost of lost gigs during COVID19 – it’s already gone past a staggering $340 million!

i believe that unscrupulous venues will use COVID19 as an excuse to pay musicians even less than the paltry fees they were already earning.  ‘We lost so much money, we can’t afford to pay musicians much until we get back on our feet,” that’s the kind of discussion I fear may happen once venues open up again.

Reputable, large and gambling-based venues will hopefully maintain their high standards when it comes to paying musicians – venues like Twin Towns Resorts, Kedron-Wavell Services Club and the likes.  Great clubs, great supporters of live music and giving back to the community.  Great clubs where Body and Soul Duo, Trio and Missy Vader and the Dark Force have enjoyed being on stage, treated professionally and paid properly.

Brisbane live music
Queensland’s premier duo specialising In functions and anything else that needs great music!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sandra Beynon Vocalist, Sean Mullen Guitar

Brisbane-based 4 piece band kicking arse with 70s and 80s classic rock.
It’s the smaller, less financial and/or less reputable and more exploitative venues that I worry about.  The venues that already host nights where 5 bands play for $5 entry and young, vulnerable and naive musicians get paid in drinks and, maybe, the said bowl of nachos.  Will it devolve to “pay to play”, openly and without any pretence of wages of any kind?

We all know that these venues will need live music to bring back the “zing” after the desolation we have encountered with lockdown.   But just how much will they be prepared to pay for that “zing”.   Will they have any budget for the zing?  Or will the musicians again become the whipping-boy/girl for an ailing hospitality industry?

Am I being too hopeful to believe that the arts will be more appreciated after the extended closure of venues; will people more keenly appreciate music and what it brought to their lives, or will venues continue with the solo artist playing in the back corner of the back bar, being dwarfed by screens and relegated to “background noise” in a crowded bar?

As someone who cut their musical teeth in a 7 piece band in the 80s, I’d dearly like to see that same opportunity extended to the young, emerging artists and bands today.  And that they be paid!   Can we switch off the big screens and focus on the artists?  Can we pay them a decent hourly rate and appreciate how much joy they (usually) bring to an audience?

My hope and prayer for our troubled industry is that each musician stand their ground and refuse to swallow the “we can’t afford to pay you” line if it comes their way.  For in doing so, we stand together and can hopefully improve the music industry from the struggling thing that it has been, to a new, freshly-blossomed industry that has learned to appreciate its water before the well runs dry.

I wish all venues the best of luck in picking up the pieces after the enforced closures, and that they can grow from the experience.

I wish all musicians good luck in re-establishing themselves in the industry, and in holding their ground when it comes to pay and conditions.

Now is a time for a fresh start.  Let’s not waste it.