7 very good reasons why you need to attend the Tamworth Country Music Festival.

Tamworth Country Music Festival
Thanks to our brand partner, Tamworth Country Music Festival

Tamworth, New South Wales: Australia’s country music capital.    

It's home to the Golden Guitar, the best finger buns in Australia (in my humble opinion. Hello, Markers Cake Shop), and, of course, the Toyota Tamworth Country Music Festival

Ten days of festivities that see Tamworth, one of my home states' biggest regional hubs, transform into a city filled with music, markets, events and, as we're lucky to boast each year, some of the country’s biggest country music stars. 

I've still got that "proud local" feeling whenever I think of Tamworth. I spent my high school years in Tamworth, and my primary school years visiting every other weekend. 

It was the place we’d go to get our groceries, new clothes, and if we wanted to, see a movie. 

Growing up in the small town of Barraba, 90km north-west of Tamworth, it was our regional hub. 

Every January, come the Country Music festival, it turns into another incredible world. A world where you walk down Peel Street (Tamworth’s main street), that has turned into a big runway of festivities for 10 days. I remember passing buskers, stalls selling everything from clothes, art, cowboy boots, wood works and local food, to seeing my first sights of whip-cracking, line dancing, and Keith Urban singing. 

THE Keith Urban. 

I remember the town couldn't contain themselves as our Keith took the stage.

And that’s not even the half of it. 


There are concerts, rodeos, free events in the parks for the kids, and so many activities there we once enjoyed as a family. I've had so many fun, wholesome memories from the TCMF (permission to call it that). 

And if you haven’t experienced it yet before but have contemplated making the trip? Well, I'd say you NEED to. 

So, as a local, I have it on good authority to give you 7 good reasons of my own as to why you should visit the Tamworth Country Music Festival in 2022. Here it goes.


1. It’s an Australian rite of passage.

Just like Vegemite on toast, a trip to Uluru and Poh cooking on our TV screens, the Tamworth Country Music Festival is iconic to this country, and an Aussie rite of passage to experience for your own eyes. 

So pull out your RM boots, whack on your Akubra (not mandatory, but definitely recommended to get into the vibe of the event) and you'll be ready for a few days of fun, and real, live, authentic music experiences. 

Make your way over to The Tamworth Hotel and check out their live bands, grab a beer (or a Pea Blossom Lemonade, a local favourite) at The Welder’s Dog bar, and wander down to Peel Street to experience the buzz of the festival, then head on over to Bicentennial Park for your free concert. 

Yes, the best part of the Toyota Country Music Festival is that you can do a lot of it on foot. And free. 

2. Let me reiterate: it’s FREE.

I'm not kidding.

The biggest venue in the city is Toyota Park, a full size, full production stage set up in Tamworth’s Bicentennial Park. 

Every night, FREE concerts are held, with big names like Adam Brand and Travis Collins taking to the stage. The dynamic Fanzone precinct is also a FREE opportunity to get up close and personal with artists.

It makes it ten times better that it's free, so it's accessible to everyone and anyone, young families or couples, groups of friends (and everyone in between) to wander in and out as they please. It's basically perfect for anyone that enjoys any type of live music, a fun night out on foot, delicious food, impeccably friendly vibes from locals and the like, plus a (socially-distanced) dance in excellent musical company.


3. In terms of numbers… it’s a pretty big deal.

If numbers can help do the talking for a moment here.

Did you know Tamworth's own Toyota Country Music Festival is the largest music festival in Australia? It's also the largest country music festival in the southern hemisphere AND among the top 10 festivals in the world? 

Heck, that blew me away, and I've been going for years.

Offering a little bit of Nashville right here in New South Wales, this 10-day event sees hundreds of artists performing across several venues, usually bringing tens of thousands of visitors to Tamworth, which is already home to around 60,000 people. 

And the best thing? Tamworth accommodates everyone. From Caravan Parks all the way to five star accommodation at the Powerhouse Hotel. They're raring and ready to welcome you, in any type of stay or experience you're hoping to have. Would definitely recommend that if you're not local, you get in pretty early with your accommodation as it books out fast.


4. You can get up close and personal with some of Australia’s biggest stars.

It's pretty cool that the Tamworth Country Music Festival has launched the careers of some of Australia’s biggest country music stars like Keith Urban, Troy Cassar-Daley, Beccy Cole and Lee Kernaghan. 

I can remember my parents telling me a story of how one year at TCMF, they saw Keith Urban even before he'd moved himself to Nashville and found his huge success that we know of him today. 

It all pretty much started in 'lil ol' Tamworth. So you never know who you'll find. 


Next year, artists like ARIA Hall of Fame inductee, Kasey Chambers, country music luminary Troy Cassar-Daley, esteemed songwriter Graeme Connors, the duo of Felicity Urquhart & Josh Cunningham (The Waifs) and admired performer Fanny Lumsden will join the festival line up.  

And at night the festival comes alive with artists performing in multiple venues across the city. Making it an unforgettable live music experience.

5. There’s actually more to it than country music.

So Tamworth’s main thoroughfare (Peel Street, which you'll be able to rattle off that knowledge like a local now) is turned over to pedestrians during the festival so the foot traffic can enjoy the street art, street performers, hundreds of buskers and market stalls. 


It's such a nice wander around with kids or a group of friends to try the food, and listen to the talent that's come to visit, or homegrown talent you haven't discovered yet.

You can get a good taste of what the district has to offer, and the best thing? You can support businesses who are coming out of one of the worst droughts the region has ever seen. 

Always important to support local (and up-and-comers) where we can.

I must say too: the dedicated food zone has ALL kinds of cuisines to sample, both local and international and of course. Plus, the country show-inspired family zone has plenty of carnival rides, show bags and outdoor games for the younger ones to keep entertained. I can vouch that it's an event that isn't bound to entertaining just one age group.

Plus, being in town also gives you the opportunity to explore the smaller sights around the Tamworth area. 

Nundle is known for its Woolen Mill, boutique shops and Hanging Rock lookout for some of the best scenery around. As for Barraba, my hometown, it has some of the best Silo Art in the district, and it's also on the doorstep to the Warrabah National Park and some amazing walking tracks.

They’re all around a one hour drive in different directions outside of Tamworth, so definitely worth some day trips.

6. Next year the festival celebrates 50 years. Woah.

The next festival in January 2022 (I'm already counting down) will celebrate the past, present and future of the industry – which has been running for an incredible 50 years.


The milestone 50th anniversary will be offering a mix of traditional, Americana, blues, roots, Alt-country, bluegrass and honky-tonk, which will be the best mix of sound to celebrate where the festival and its history has come from.

And in a nod to five decades of the festival, the 50th anniversary will be celebrated in spectacular style with a concert featuring an all-star line-up (YES) held at the Tamworth Regional Entertainment Conference Centre on Wednesday, 19 January 2022.

Get it marked in your calendar, is basically what I'm getting at here. Done? Done.

7. It's all about new music, new people and new experiences.

It's what I've always loved about this festival.

Dubbed as ‘Australia’s country music capital’, the Country Music Festival truly heroes Tamworth and celebrates its authentic country roots. Tamworth and the local community are so lucky to welcome an eclectic mix of talents and offer those experiences every year to Aussies from around the state (and around the country too). 


The festival and everyone who performs definitely bring a sense of freedom and discovery to Tamworth for that 10 days of celebration, and it gives us festival-goers a real authentic experience, unmatched by any live event. 

The atmosphere is electric, and as someone that grew up attending the Tamworth Country Music Festival, it's most definitely worth checking out in person with your kids or loved ones.

One of the best parts is that the festival brings in all walks of life, and it's the atmosphere and candidness of the performances that bring all these walks of life together.

Quick! Head to the TCMF artist page to check out the official artist guide for January 2022, and even secure your tickets. 

Feature Image: Facebook/@tamworthcountrymusicfestival

Tamworth Country Music Festival
It isn’t a question of whether you like country music, it is a question of whether you enjoy real, live, authentic music experiences! The Toyota Country Music Festival, Tamworth isn’t just for loveable aussie larakkins or die hard country fans, it is a real deal, true Australian rite of passage. A cornerstone summer celebration and must-experience event for all ages and all music tastes. And the best part is, we can experience it right in our very own backyard.