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News February 28, 2024

John Fogerty Was ‘Blindsided’ by Country Fest Queensland Cancellation

Senior Journalist, B2B
John Fogerty Was ‘Blindsided’ by Country Fest Queensland Cancellation

John Fogerty claims he was caught off-guard by his abrupt removal from the lineup of Country Fest Queensland 2024, for what was meant to be a special coming-out hoedown.

The U.S. rock legend was announced last month as headliner for the two-day country music feast, his first performance in these parts since 2012 with organisers promising a full set of Creedence Clearwater Revival classics.

A statement posted on the festival’s social channels on Tuesday (Feb. 27) dropped a bombshell. “Due to unforeseen circumstances, John Fogerty will no longer be attending our Country Fest Qld lineup 2024 2024 event,” reads the statement. “We are working hard on a revised line up and will have more information coming soon,” the message adds.

Ticket holders who no longer wish to attend due to the “non-appearance” of Fogerty can liaise with ticketing partner Oztix to secure discuss refund options, the post reads.

Fogerty’s camp, however, issues its own, contradictory statement.

“I was ready to celebrate with you all for my one and only show this year in Australia when the Country Fest Queensland blindsided me yesterday by canceling my appearance,” reads the comment attributed to Fogerty.

“It was posted that I would not be appearing due to unforeseen circumstances. Well I can tell you my friends, I was not the reason for the ‘unforeseen circumstances.’ I was ready to come down there and excited to celebrate getting my songs back with all of you.”

Fogerty, an inductee into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame as a member of CCR and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, has crafted a bank of hits over the years, including “Centerfield,” “Proud Mary,” “Susie Q,” “Fortunate Son,” “Born on the Bayou,” “Bad Moon Rising,” and “Have You Ever Seen the Rain.”

For fans of Fogerty and CCR, a live set featuring those standards is manna from heaven.

For decades, Fogerty was caught in one of the music industry’s sorriest legal sagas, which followed a fall-out with Fantasy Records’ late boss Saul Zaentz, who took control of the U.S. artist’s publishing in 1980. 

At one particularly low ebb, Fantasy sued Fogerty for copyright infringement, claiming that his ’80s release “The Old Man Down the Road” was essentially a copycat of CCR’s “Run Through the Jungle”.

The case was litigated through a jury trial, which found in Fogerty’s favor, rejecting the claim that he infringed his own song.

The damage done was enough for Fogerty to refuse to play CCR songs live, until a breakthrough last when he regained control of those copyrights.

Morgan Evans, Lee Kernaghan and James Johnston are among the “tractor-load of talent from around Australia” on the bill for the Queensland country music event, set for March 30-31 at Dittmann Bull Pit, Bloomsbury.

No further comments will be made at this time, a rep for NQ Licensed Events tells The Music Network.

Fogerty is expected to issue another statement in the coming hours.

Country music is flying high here and around the globe, led by the likes of Morgan Wallen and Luke Combs, with Beyonce and Lana Del Rey flushing the genre into their own fanbases with forthcoming, country-themed projects.

According to Luminate data for the first half of 2023, Australia is the world’s No. 3 market for country music, behind only the U.S. and Canada.

During that time, Aussies streamed country music 1.1 billion times in the first half, based on the top 500 songs in the genre.

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