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HomeMemphis Blues Challenge


Norwood Live
8th June
Doors 7.00pm

63 Deluxe
Big Bill Bourke Blues band
The TinMen

Tickets: online $25 (no booking fees)
At the Door (if available) $30

Norwood Live
31st August
Doors 7pm
Brett Littlefair
Blackwood Slim
Craig Atkins
Peter N Miller

Tickets: online $25 (no booking fees)
At the Door (if available) $30

Buy tickets to both the band final and the solo/duo final for $45!


ARBA Memphis Blues Challenge 

The aim of the ARBA Memphis Blues Challenge is to provide the means for acts to compete for the opportunity to represent ARBA, South Australia and Australia in Memphis Tennessee, at the annual International Blues Challenge (IBC).

Since the inaugural challenge in 2015, this annual event has captured the imagination and attention of blues lovers in Adelaide and beyond. Capacity crowds are the norm at both the heats and final, ensuring an electric atmosphere as the acts strive for the opportunity to compete at the IBC in Memphis. 
The enormous public support helps generate enough income to pay for the travel and accommodation expenses of the band and solo/duo act that represent ARBA and South Australia at the IBC each year.
The Memphis Blues Challenge helps raise the profile of the local blues scene and provides the opportunity for a money-can't-buy experience at the IBC for local acts.

2024 Memphis Blues Challenge Participant info and rules

MBC Final 2019
MBC Winners

ARBA Memphis Blues Challenge Winners

Lazy Eye / Mick Kidd with Dave Blight
2016: The Associates / Nikko & Snooks
2017: Steve Brown Band / J.J Fields
2018: One More Mile / Ben Ford-Davies
2019: Holler & The Bones / Tin Can Alley
2022: The Honey Badgers / Frankie & Savva
2023: Paul 'n Dave

ARBA Honour Board

ARBA Representatives at the International Blues Challenge (Memphis)

Between 2016-2020, ARBA sent bands and solo/duo acts to 5 consecutive International Blues Challenges. Covid caused the 2021 IBC to be cancelled and prevented ARBA acts participating in 2022. ARBA once again sent a band and solo/duo act to the 2023 IBC.
In addition to playing in the challenge, and making many friends and fans amongst the big crowds that attend, our acts have made the most of the many opportunities; networking, jamming, media interviews, exploring Memphis and other parts of the USA, two of our acts have also recorded albums whilst in the USA for the IBC.
Each year ARBA enters our "Blues Album of the Year" into the Blues Foundation's Best Self-Produced CD Competition.
All of the Memphis Blues Challenge winning acts, as listed on our Honour Board have gone on to represent ARBA and South Australia in the quarter-finals of the IBC and we are very proud of all of them. Some of our acts have gone further than the quarter-finals and 2 of our Blues Albums of the Year have been finalists (being amongst the final 5 Cd's).

Significant IBC Placings
2017: The Associates (Band Semi-Finalist)
2019: Ben Ford-Davies (Solo Semi-Finalist)
2019: "Tales of a Rich Girl" Kings & Associates (Finalist Best Self Produced CD Comp)

2020: "Kicking Back the Blues" The Streamliners (Finalist Best Self Produced CD Comp)
2023:The Honey Badgers (Band Finalist)*
2024: Paul n' Dave (Duo Semi-Finalist)
*2nd Australian band to make the Finals in 38 years of the IBC.

International Blues Challenge Information

ARBA at the IBC