For the first time since 2010, the AFL Grand Final pregame entertainment will not feature an international artist. Paul Kelly will lead an All Australian line-up including hit pop acts Dean Lewis, Tones & I, Conrad Sewell, country superstar John Williamson and veteran performer Mike Brady. Kelly, Lewis, Sewell and Tones & I along with AFL Chief Executive Gillon McLachlan met the media at the MCG on Thursday, and each singer was presented with a special jumper, a composite of Richmond and GWS playing jumpers.
It will be Paul Kelly’s second appearance at the AFL Grand Final, he previously shared the stage with Tim Rogers and The Temper Trap in 2012. The 64-year-old, multi award-winning singer-songwriter will perform several songs, one of which will be the 1986 song Leaps and Bounds, in which he sings of being "high on the hill, looking over the bridge to the MCG". In November this year, Kelly will release a multi-disc collection Songs from the South 1985-2019, ahead of his Making Gravy Tour (taken from his 1996 song How to Make Gravy), performing in Perth, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane during December.
Toni Watson aka Tones & I is a Melbourne-based singer-songwriter, best known for hit song Dance Monkey, which has reached number one on the singles charts in Australia, NZ and several European countries, and peaked at No.8 on Billboard’s Bubbling Under 100 Chart in the US. The official music video currently has close to 35 million views on YouTube. This week, Dance Monkey spends its eighth consecutive week at No.1, setting a new record for most weeks at top position on the ARIA singles chart by an Australian female solo artist, previously held by Kylie Minogue’s Locomotion, which spent seven weeks atop the chart in July and August 1987.
Lewis is a Sydney singer-songwriter, whose break-up anthem Be Alright spent five consecutive weeks at number one the ARIA singles chart last year and was certified seven times platinum, and also peaked at No.23 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. Lewis will also perform at the postgame show at the MCG in the evening, which is free to everyone regardless if they hold a Grand Final ticket.
Conrad Sewell will perform the Australian national anthem Advance Australia Fair before the coin toss. Brisbane-born singer Sewell is best known for his Australian number one single Start Again, which won Song of the Year at the 2015 ARIA Awards. His first studio album, Life, debuted at number one on the ARIA albums chart in May this year.
Rounding out the entertainment, John Williamson will perform Waltzing Matilda, while Mike Brady will once again lead the crowd in Aussie rules anthem Up the Cazaly, 40 years after the song was first released (it was commissioned by Channel Seven for its broadcast of the 1979 VFL season).
After the entertainment line-up was announced in early September, McLachlan said: “The Australian music industry is as diverse and as strong as it has ever been, so to be able to have all these talented artists be a part of Grand Final day is fantastic…Australian performers who have broken through on the global stage mixed with award-winning artists and some of our most well-loved and well-known songs will be sure to make the 2019 Toyota AFL Grand Final a memorable one.”
Sources: afl.com.au, The Age, Noise11.com, Wikipedia
Article last changed on Friday, September 27, 2019 - 12:15 PM EDT