‘Nutbush’ world record smashed at Australian outback music festival

‘Nutbush’ world record smashed at Australian outback music festival

Credit: Matt Williams

That's about as Aussie as it gets.

For anyone in Australia, it’s almost guaranteed that you know what ‘Nutbush City Limits’ is. And we don’t just mean the classic song by Ike and Tina Turner. No, we’re talking about the absolute phenomenon that happens whenever that classic song comes on. 

Ingrained in our collective muscle memory, the nutbush is that wild dance we all start doing when we hear Tina Turner wail ‘A Church House, Gin House’, that has somehow become mandatory at every Australian school disco, cringey family event and wedding reception.

Stay up to date with what’s happening in and around the region here

Now in the most Australian news ever, a new world record was set today in the heartland of outback Australia, as more than 4,000 revellers at the Birdsville Big Red Bash music festival annihilated the world record for the Largest Nutbush City Limits Dance.

Punters peppered the sprawling red desert plains in remote Southwest Queensland, as 4,084 boot-scooting bush dancers kicked up the dust in wild and wacky costumes to the 1973 Tina Turner soul classic.

The new world record destroyed the previous mark of 2,878 dancers, which was set at the 2021 Birdsville Big Red Bash.

From tutus, dinosaurs and hippies to mullets, wigs and bilbies – a sea of colourful characters ignited the outback for an unforgettable bush doof like no other.

The spectacular dance took place below the Simpson Desert’s legendary 40-metre-high Big Red sand dune – the largest of its kind in the world.

A world record with a good cause to boot, participation via registration in the event raised more than $60,000 for the festival’s charity partner, the Royal Flying Doctor Service.  Each punter paid a $15 registration fee to dance in the event.

With today’s Nutbush effort, the festival pushed its collective RFDS fundraising total to more than $435,000 since 2016.

Credit: Matt Williams

Speaking to the crowd, festival owner and Managing Director of the Outback Music Festival Group, Greg Donovan, said; “We all have a fantastic time doing this dance each year, and the money you pay to participate goes directly to the RFDS – every cent of it, so thank you so much. What a spectacular site to see; you are all legends!”

The Big Red Bash will conclude tonight with performances from festival headliner Jimmy Barnes, country queen Kasey Chambers and a slew of other beloved Australian music acts including Mark Gable, Richard Clapton, Sarah McLeod, The Lachy Doley Group and Ash Grunwald.

Later today, the festival will also host a Doggie Desert Fashion competition to crown the outback’s most fashionable fur babies.

Running from July 5-7, 2022, the Big Red Bash is conservatively estimated to bring $15 million in economic benefit to regional and outback Queensland. In Birdsville, the renowned Bakery is reporting daily sales of close to 1,500 curried camel pies and 900 coffees as festivalgoers travel through to the event.

The outback town is usually home to a population of around 150 people.

Nominated for ‘Festival of the Year’ at the 2022 Queensland Music Awards, The Big Red Bash is produced by the Outback Music Festival Group, which also stages the Broken Hill Mundi Mundi Bash in outback NSW.

Tickets are still available for the August Broken Hill Mundi Mundi Bash that will be headlined by Midnight Oil, Jimmy Barnes, Missy Higgins, Jon Stevens, Kasey Chambers, Daryl Braithwaite and many more. For more information, head here