‘Bigger and better than ever’ - Organisers reveal new features ahead of the 2019 Dereham Blues Festival

Andy Fairweather Low performing at the 2017 Dereham Blues Festival. Picture: Doreen Aitken.

Andy Fairweather Low performing at the 2017 Dereham Blues Festival. Picture: Doreen Aitken. - Credit: Archant

Organisers behind one of the highlights of Dereham's entertainment calendar is promising an event 'bigger and better than ever'.

This year's Dereham Blues Festival has added an extra day to the event, kicking off with the opening concert on Wednesday July 10.

International performer Hamilton Loomis and his band, featuring Grammy award-winning saxophonist Fabian Hernandez, will start the blues and roots music event at the mid-Norfolk town's Memorial Hall.

Local man Ron Sayer is the support act and will be backed by The Shunters.

Dereham Blues Festival. Pictures: David Bale

Dereham Blues Festival. Pictures: David Bale - Credit: Archant

READ MORE: Over 50 musicians to feature at town blues festival.

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Festival chairman Harry Collins said: "The annual Dereham Blues Festival is always eagerly anticipated each year. This year even more so, being longer spread over five days in including a top international blues artist from the US.

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"What a start to this year's blues festival the opening concert is going to be. A few tickets for the opening gig are still available but don't leave it too long as they will sell out.

The Dereham Blues Festival. Picture: Ian Burt

The Dereham Blues Festival. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

"The Dereham Blues Festival makes a huge and vibrant lift to the town centre. So come on down. I guarantee you'll have a fabulous time."

Following the opening concert, the town centre will be filled with back-to-back blues events for four days instead of the usual three from past years.

A total of 13 venues ranging from pubs, bars, cafes, restaurants, the cricket club and the railway station will host 50 different blues acts drawn from East Anglia, UK, and further afield. And more than 100 free gigs will see live music pouring out into the town's streets.

Dereham Blues Festival. Picture: Doreen Aitken

Dereham Blues Festival. Picture: Doreen Aitken - Credit: Doreen Aitken

READ MORE: Extra day announced for Dereham Blues Festival as plans well underway for 2019 event.

The blues jam sessions are returning and will be put on at various venues in the town. People are reminded to bring their own guitars.

The festival has also launched a new website this year where the full programme is available to view. Users can view all the events by artist, venue or date and time. They can also select acts from the full schedule to build a personalised timetable to keep as they tour the town.

And finally, another first for the festival will see a CD being produced entitled Dereham Blues Volume 1, featuring many of the bands that will be performing. It will be on sale during the festival and from the website.

Tickets can for the opening concert can be purchased online at www.derehambluesfestival.org.uk.

The 2019 Dereham Blues Festival runs from July 10-14.

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