Gold Coast band, LEMAIRE won the Gold Coast division of the Airlie Beach Festival of Music competition, “Passport to Airlie”, on the weekend, taking out top spot in the Gold Coast region.
Passport to Airlie is set up as a series of rounds that bands from across Australia compete in to secure a spot in the prestigious national grand final, which takes place at the Airlie Beach Festival of Music in November.
LEMAIRE front man and lead guitarist, Sebastian Lemaire, said the win was a pleasant surprise.
“The win was definitely unexpected, there were so many unique and talented performers throughout the three heats,” Mr Lemaire said.
“We almost forgot it was a competition, we were just there watching really good music,” he said.
“To be deemed the winner was an amazing feeling, and to represent [the] Gold Coast at the biggest original band competition in Australia is such an honour.”
LEMAIRE has only recently established itself as a band, only playing a handful of shows over the past two months.
Bass guitarist and supporting vocalist, Riley Jones, said the band was hoping to bring an even better performance for the national grand finals of the competition.
“We plan on writing a ton of new songs for the Airlie Beach Grand Final, as we know the competition is going to be fierce,” Mr Jones said.
“It’s amazing to work with such a talented, connected group of musicians,” he said.
Mr Jones said he and Sebastian Lemaire had been friends since school, and said drummer Benji Guerrero and keyboard player Jack Parmenter were recruited through the Facebook group, Gold Coast Musicians Network.
“We just work so well as a team,” he said.
Passport to Airlie event coordinator and general director, Fiona Cook, said she has been running the competition for three years, and has watched amazing talent come through the competition.
“This year was one of the hardest for the judges to vote on as everyone that applied were of the highest stand of talent,” Ms Cook said.
“For the judges to pick a winner was not an easy task for them, as it came down to numbers in the end,” she said.
“The judges took into account the crowd’s response to LEMAIRE’s performance and their very catchy music.”
Ms Cook said working with live music and local talented musicians was something that made her very proud.
“The importance of supporting live music is grounded in the notion that everyone has a story to tell and those who listen have something in their life that the music can resonate with,” Ms Cook said.
“Each finalist was out of this world with talent and I could not be prouder of each and every one,” she said.
To find out more about the Airlie Beach Festival of Music, visit their website.