SURFn’ink tattoo festival set to reel in the crowds
WHEN it comes to entertainment, expect the unexpected with Australia's international tattoo festival, SURFn'ink, being held at the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre from today until Sunday.
AS well as tattooists from around the world and local and interstate artists, in celebration of the fifth year of this much-loved festival, SURFn'ink organisers have put together an entertainment line-up that is full of surprises.
Rockabilly band The Bobkats and rock and blues outfit Route 66, Gold Coast Rockers rock'n'roll dance group, Soulfire fire twirlers and dancers, a live performance by Elvis (aka Dean Vegas) and legendary tattooed Aussie Rocker, Angry Anderson, will bring music, dancing and action-packed entertainment to this year's SURFn'ink.
Organiser Lindsay Hall says this year's line-up is the most diverse in SURFn'ink's five year history and expects to see a whole new demographic coming along just for the entertainment value in this year's festival.
"There's something for everyone and as always, kids are welcome to come along and share in the party atmosphere with their family," she said.
"Some people come to SURFn'ink just for a tattoo. Others come to see the latest trends, watch the international artists at work and decide on what style or tattoo they would like to get.
"Many just come for the entertainment."
People dressed as convincing zombies will enjoy free admission today and the entertainment will have a taste of the shuffling dead about it.
Among the night's tattoo competitions, one of the highlights will be wrestlers from the Australian Wrestling Alliance, who will battle it out in full zombie regalia.
The wrestlers will return from the dead for performances on Saturday and Sunday as well.
Saturday visitors will get down to the rockabilly sounds of The Bobkats in the lead-up to the Miss SURFn'ink Pin-up pageant and tattoo contests.
Sunday will be a musical extravaganza and people dressed as Elvis will be admitted free.
Blues and rock combo Route 66, featuring local Jason Kafoa, will have you out of your seat.
Jason, who has enjoyed recent airplay with his moving ballad Ocean Grave, said he loved coming back to the SURFn'Ink event on the Gold Coast.
"I've been playing around here for 20 years with different bands," he said.
"I think I'm the only entertainer who has been there (at SURFn'ink) since the start. I have a lot to do with the South Sea Islander community and I like to put back in to the local community."
Gotta Rock and the Gold Coast Rockers will have people up dancing with a demonstration of this classic and fun dance style.
Let these passionate rockers take you back on a high-energy trip to a bygone era.
On Sunday night at the Convention Centre will rock to two very different sounds with Gold Coast's own world famous Elvis tribute artist Dean Vegas on the main stage from 6pm and gritty Aussie rocker Angry Anderson performing from 7pm.
Dean was invited to SURFn'ink as a guest judge in the inaugural Elvis Tattoo Competition and will complete his appearance with a spectacular, 45 minute Vegas-style show with all the favourite music from the Elvis era.
Dean Vegas, who once performed with Elvis' original band The Jordanaires, says he is really looking forward to performing at SURFn'ink and adding his Elvis 'expertise' to the judging panel.
In honour of Elvis' birthday (January 8), the 60th Anniversary year of Elvis' music in 2014, and the guest visit by Dean Vegas, SURFn'ink organisers are offering free entry on Sunday to anyone dressed as Elvis.
Angry Anderson has been the lead vocalist with the hard rock band Rose Tattoo since 1976 but is also recognised for his acting roles and charity work.
Some of his iconic songs have included Bad Boy for Love from 1977, Suddenly from 1988 and 1990 Australian number 1 Bound for Glory.
As well as this array of music for all tastes, Lindsay said SURFn'ink tattoo competitions were always great fun and the 'Freak of the Show' event was an annual highlight.
This year, organizers have introduced a new category called 'WTF' which is expected to attract a range of disastrous tattoos including incorrect spelling, bad 'backyard' ink and 'spur of the moment' tattoos to mark a night on the town or an overseas holiday.
For more on the entertainment, arts and events at SURFn'Ink visit tattoofestival.com.au