Emerald's country music marvel
ONE win could be the first of many for local music artist Kalesti Butler who has been nominated for three awards at the 2012 Australian Country Music People's Choice.
Kalesti has been nominated for Best Song, Best Bush Ballad and Most Promising Future Star with the winners to be announced in Tamworth at the Tamworth Country Music Festival later this month.
"It's a pretty awesome honour to be a finalist," Kalesti said. "I can't believe I've done so well considering I've only recorded one song."
The song, The Closing of the Day, for which Kalesti received two nominations, was recorded after being named Bush Balladeer Star Quest winner for 2011.
"As part of winning, I got to record a song and that was the song I chose," she said. "My mum wrote it - one of the many songs she's written. I picked it up and felt a connection to it."
Kalesti will be performing at the Tamworth Country Music Festival, playing close to 20 shows in 10 days.
"I've done enough preparation last year to last that long," she said. "Everyone who comes to see you play, they come to enjoy the music and they really appreciate it.
"It's a really good feeling."
This year has been a busy one for Kalesti, who is based in Emerald with her partner and two children, performing at a long list of festivals throughout 2011.
"I sang in four different states in three months... and drove 10,000km to get to the festivals," Kalesti said.
"I enjoy seeing the country and travelling. There are a lot of places I haven't been to."
Kalesti's goal for the New Year is to record an album before heading out on tour again.