Featured / Social / 30th November 2023
Wet and wild: Music lovers rock on at Bungle Rumble!
The blast that was Bungle Rumble
by GEORGIA SPENCE
Bungle Rumble has done it again. Despite setbacks the event was a showstopper and highlighted how the community will come together... rain, hail or shine!
The rain did not hold back, however, neither did the community, as Bungle Rumble amassed at Coonabarabran’s showground for one of the most anticipated events of the year.
Head-bopping music and the rumble of community singing, stomping and clapping created an unforgettable atmosphere for all who attended.
While close to 1000 tickets were sold, around 500 attended due to inclement weather conditions.
Weather restraints also led to a late start, however, the show went on.
Volunteer organiser, Kodi Brady said he was happy with how the day turned out, despite the set backs.
“We are feeling very blessed to have pulled it off with the odds of mother nature against us,” Mr Brady said.
“It was a hard gig to get over the start line, but once it got rolling, most of us had a ball – wet and all!”
Cultural dancers from both local and coastal mobs set the scene for unity, respect and connection to occur. They were followed by an eclectic line-up of performers, who put on a show that blasted off into the late evening.
Born and bred local, Rebel Black opened the stage, offering her melodic wisdom through songs and stories about her life and the people in it.
Millie Mills dazzled the town with remarkable vocals and Andy Penkow dedicated his song, ‘Aussie Rain’, to Coonabarabran.
Not long after his set, the rain started sprinkling.
However, the rain was no match for a town ready to rumble, as the crowd danced to the groove of The Summit champion, Isaac Compton.
As day turned to night, stage lights lit up the Bungle Rumble mural, created by the talented Jules Ruttley.
Her dot work was inspired by the original event poster and represented the Warrumbungle mountains meeting the sunset and stars.
Community spirit was at an all-time high when Chocolate Starfish performed a memorable set in all their rock ‘n roll glory.
Kids were dancing on stage, while lead singer Adam Thompson kept patrons engaged as he jumped down into the crowd for a boogie and a sing-a-long.
Ballz ‘n All topped off the night with classic rock hits, creating many a head-banging moment for the increasingly energetic crowd.
Bungle Rumble was enjoyed by patrons of all ages, including children who gathered to run around with glow-in-the-dark swords and wands.
Market stalls lined the showground, offering local goods and included the Regional Australian Bank, which donated $2000 towards the event.
Bungle Rumble organisers are hoping for the return of the event, with plans for it to be held every second year.
“Our small team of organisers are grateful to everyone who got involved. The passion, the showdowns, the laughs, the cries and stress all paid off,” Mr Brady said.
“Well done to everyone who braved the weather. Those of you who didn’t – you missed out on an amazing show!”
Chocolate Starfish’s Coona connection
by jimmy whalan
Everyone who attended the Bungle Rumble on Saturday will know how good a show Chocolate Starfish can put on, but what you may not know is that the band’s lead singer, Adam Thompson was the deb partner to local woman, Vivian Evans.
Mrs Evans said she and Adam went to school together at Wanganui Park High School in Shepparton, Victoria.
“Adam lived out of town on a dairy farm, but we went to the same high school together, and when the deb came around, I was finally brave enough to ask him to be my deb partner,” Mrs Evans said.
Mrs Evans said she and Adam were actually cooking buddies in home economics class in high school, and they would get up to all kinds of mischief – including the occasional tea towel fight!
She said the connection through deb partners wasn’t just held by her and Adam, but also their parents.
“My Mum and Dad actually did their debut with Adam’s parents, so we’ve got that connection a long way back,” Mrs Evans said.
“So, although I met Adam in high school, my Mum and Dad actually used to hang out with his parents.”
Mrs Evans said she and Adam actually tried to re- enact some of their deb dance moves at Bungle Rumble, as they did the Pride of Erin during Ballz n All’s performance on the night.
“It was such a good time, we had lots of fun and it’s always a laugh with Adam,” Mrs Evans said.
“He’s quite a character, but also a very gentle soul and a caring person.”
Mrs Evans and Adam have kept in touch since high school and she has attended a number of Chocolate Starfish shows when they perform in their home town of Shepparton.
“I always try to go when he performs in Shepparton, and I try to get a whole group of friends from our year group to go, which is great fun,” Mrs Evans said.
“He also performed at our school reunion a number of years ago.”
When they were in high school, Mrs Evans said she had no idea that Adam was into music.
“I’ve heard in interviews that he used to sing a lot at home in the shower, but I didn’t know at the time,” Mrs Evans said.
“When Chocolate Starfish started to hit the heights back in the early days, I didn’t know because I was teaching up in Arnhem Land – back before the days of social media!”
Chocolate Starfish to make a return?
Mrs Evans said the 2357 Development Group was working on a grant application with the Coonabarabran Local Aboriginal Land Council (CLALC), with hopes to bring Chocolate Starfish back to Coona for a school-holiday program, including a two-day music workshop.
“Adam runs a business called ‘Muso Magic’, which helps kids in mostly remote areas to write songs about wellbeing and create music videos – he does a fabulous job,” Mrs Evans said.
“Fingers-crossed he’ll be back in January, because just look at how great he was with the kids at Bungle Rumble, having them up on stage, singing, dancing, and creating lifelong memories.”
1981: Vivian Evans and Adam Thompson, pictured at their Debutante Ball.
2023: Vivian Evans reconnects with Adam Thompson at the Bungle Rumble.