Goolwa Music Venue Nationally Recognised

May 10, 2024 9:27 am in by
The Murray Delta Juke Joint has been listed as one of the Guardian's top live music venues in Australia. Photo: David Lloyd, supplied.

The Murray Delta Juke Joint has been recognised by The Guardian as one of the top live music venues in Australia.

The publication has included the Goolwa-based cultural gem in its list of 16 of the best performance spaces in the country, after people from around the country nominated around 300 venues.

“I frequent many great music venues throughout SA but The Murray Delta Juke Joint is by far my favourite venue due the atmosphere, the incredible sound, and it being a small venue so it has a very intimate feeling. It’s definitely my very happy place to be”, Alison from Hackham West wrote to The Guardian.

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Other South Australian venues included in the list are The Semaphore Workers Club, The Crown & Anchor (AKA Cranker) and Thebarton Theatre.

Formerly The Wreckers Bar, the Goolwa venue was snapped up by musicians, David Lloyd and Greg Button, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and was remodelled into a Southern American-style music theatre with authentic voodoo embellishments, celebrating blues, soul, jazz and other original music.

David Lloyd says he was inspired by his travels in the United States.

“I fell in love with the juke joints over there … this is modelled really tightly on juke joints of New Orleans and Louisiana… and because of COVID it became a seated venue, we invite people to bring in a cheese platter, it’s a social place to gather,” David Lloyd said in a radio interview this morning with ARN’s Jennie Lenman and Adam Connelly.

He added that he is so grateful for his supporters and collaborators, including business partner Greg Button, who is also a sound engineer, and the volunteers who help run things.

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“This string of wonderful locals who have just chipped in and helped us, I don’t have to worry about managing the door because we have this group of folks who just come in and do it for us, it’s wonderful I’ve got to say.”

The Murray Delta Juke Joint is also working to keep the independent live music industry alive, banding together with other SA venues to lobby for more government support. The ‘Independent Live Venues Association’ comprises the venue, along with The Gov, the Wheatsheaf and the Three Brothers Arms in Macclesfield.

Hear more from David Lloyd from the Murray Delta Juke Joint speaking with ARN’s Adam Connelly and Jennie Lenman via the audio play window below: