Maryport Blues Festival hits a high note as swinging 60s steal the show
Last updated at 20:03, Thursday, 02 August 2012
The 1960s stole the show at this year’s Maryport Blues Festival.
Chris Farlowe, Cliff Bennett and the New Amen Corner were the Sunday night headliners who ensured that the three-day event ended on a high note.
Bennett, of Rebel Rousers fame, may be in his 70s but he showed an energy and showmanship that belied his age.
He and Farlowe took the audience on a ride through their hits from the 60s.
New Amen Corner, who backed both singers, had their own all-too-short set and showed that they had the style, flare and fantastic vocals of the original group that achieved fame with hits such as If Paradise Were Half as Nice.
The festival kicked off smoothly on Friday at the town’s Wave Centre, opened by Whitehaven band the Solway Deltas.
Their ninth appearance at the festival saw blues classics performed alongside the band’s self-penned music for a tight set.
The festival has gone back to its roots and moved from a main marquee at Netherhall Rugby Club back to the town centre, with the main stage at the Wave Centre.
Throughout the weekend the town was heaving, and the town trail – a festival staple – was buzzing in the sunshine with pubs packed to bursting.
One publican estimated that his takings were about 20 per cent up on last year.
Forty-one bands played the trail, including 13 Stars, Secure Unit, Babajack, Lewis Hamilton and the Boogie Blues, Little Stevie and the Business, and Olly Alcock.
At the Wave Centre the quality of performances enthralled audiences, such as Friday headliner Krissy Matthews and Saturday’s Todd Sharpville’s Blues Review.
Man mountain Nick Moss was a powerful presence on stage with a voice to match and his second guest, Debbie Davies, engaged the audiences with her voice and personality.
Sunday’s acts included Ben Poole, 25, with his band, who some may argue has the guitar skills of legends such as Jimi Hendrix.
Also on the main stage was Marcus Malone, cool and smooth, who has been through every musical style since he started performing at the age of 13.
First published at 19:22, Thursday, 02 August 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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