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Rhys Crimmin wins 2019 Toyota Country Music Busking Championships

29 January 2019

Tonight, Rhys Crimmin was named the 2019 Toyota Country Music Busking Champion, after battling it out with nine other finalists in front of huge crowds at the Best of the Buskers Concert at Toyota Park.

Rhys has been travelling the world since 2005 playing as a solo musician at festivals, pubs, clubs, bars and hotels. Armed with guitars, didgeridoos, harmonicas, kazoos and foot percussion, Rhys impresses crowds with his unique style that he likes to call ‘Aussie Country Roots Folk Reggae & Dirty Foot Stompin’ Blues’.

The Froombsons, a collaboration of best friends Chet and Sonny French, Ivy Simpson and Jack and Reid Toombs took out second place. It was the young group’s first busking experience and the first time they have all played together.

Terrigal’s Emma Powell took out third place as well as the People’s Choice award. It was the 14 year old’s first time at the festival, although she has been performing for over five years and has supported a number of high profile artists, including Adam Harvey at the Country Turns Pink concert earlier in the festival.

The championships are one of the Toyota Country Music Festival Tamworth’s most hotly contested events, with hundreds of buskers vying for the championship title, watched on by thousands of Festival fans. 

Busking on the boulevard of dreams has become a rite of passage for country music artists, with many including Troy Cassar-Daley, Kasey Chambers, Beccy Cole, and Keith Urban starting out by busking during the Festival.

Mr Wayne Gabriel, Chief Marketing Officer, Toyota Australia said: "Each year the Toyota Country Music Busking Championship uncovers incredible talent among the many hundreds of buskers lining Peel Street.

Toyota is proud to support grassroots programs such as this, and we congratulate Rhys, the Froombsons, Emma and all the other buskers who have entertained the crowds of country music fans in Tamworth this week.”

Tamworth Regional Council, Manager Country Music, Mr Barry Harley says the importance of the championship and busking cannot be underestimated.

“For many artists, busking in Tamworth is the start their journey as a country music artist. It has proven to be a successful launchpad for many of today’s top artists and leads to other opportunities such as Toyota Star Maker.” 

As winner of the 2019 Toyota Country Music Busking Championships Rhys will take home some great prizes, plus an opportunity to perform at the Opening Concert in 2020.

Tamworth Regional Council acknowledges the Gamilaroi/Kamilaroi people, who are the Traditional Custodians of this land. We would like to pay respect to Elders past and present, and extend that respect to other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living in and visiting our region.