Mountain Rock with Kevin Borich on stage
Music festivals have a long and chequered history in New Zealand. The first large outdoor rock music festival was The Great Ngaruawahia Music Festival in 1973. The largest was the 1979 Nambassa festival, one of several Nambassa festivals held around that time, in Golden Valley, just north of Waihi.
"There are regular jazz, folk, ethnic and country music awards and festivals, some of which have been in existence for decades. Large music festivals, for example Sweetwaters Music Festivals, Nambassa and The Big Day Out have been staged periodically since the 1970s", says Te Ara Encyclopedia of New Zealand.
Parachute Music Festival is a Christian music festival held in New Zealand. It was one of New Zealands largest music festivals and it is the Southern Hemispheres largest Christian music festival. On March 27, 2014 Parachute Music released a statement on its Facebook and its website announcing that Parachute Music Festival would no longer be running.
Nambassa 1979 was the largest music event in New Zealand. "Nearly 60, 000 came, making it, per capita, the world’s largest festival of its type." "Nambassa will be remembered for many things. It was the largest campsite, the biggest and brightest party, and the best attended and most successful musical and cultural event ever in New Zealand."
Past recurring events
- Brown Trout Festival - 1980, 1983 - on a farm east of Dannevirke
- Nambassa: A New Direction, edited by Colin Broadley and Judith Jones, A. H. & A. W. Reed, 1979.