Feel the power of the blues at this fantastic autumn music series
Bluesfest returns to the Royal Albert Hall this autumn (Sunday October 26 – Friday October 31 2014) with a great line-up of blues, soul, jazz, rhythm and blues and gospel music. Check out the full Bluesfest line-up below and book your seats pronto.
Who's playing at Bluesfest 2014?
Slap-bass master Mark King leads the latest incarnation of the blue-eyed funk boys, still featuring keyboardist Mike Lindup and nowadays with King's brother Nathan on guitar. They'll be cranking out '80s hits like 'Lessons In Love' and 'Running In The Family'.
- Critics choice
US soul-jazz singer Porter has had critics, fans and musicians raving thanks to his stunning Grammy-nominated debut 'Water', but he's the real deal live too. He returns to London to perform at Bluesfest once again, playing from his third album, 'Liquid Spirit', and combines the deep soulfulness of John Lucien, the hipness of Kurt Elling and the streetwise lyrical style of Gil Scott-Heron in his prime, bringing an earthy emotional power to all that he sings.
- Critics choice
The legendary Celtic soul mystic's more recent output has flitted between blues, big band jazz, R&B, skiffle and folk. Tonight, though, Van The Man returns to Bluesfest for the third year running to sing – as you might expect – the blues, incorporating both his own hits and the rich rhythm & blues of other artists which helped shape him. It's an area in which he's well versed from his early days throatily leading the Belfast garage band Them. Perhaps there'll also be some closing highlights from his seminal albums 'Astral Weeks' and 'Moondance'.
- Critics choice
After recent excursions including a tour with his band The Imposters, where the set list was decided every night with a giant Wheel of Fortune, and an album with The Roots, everyone's favourite grumpy, bespectacled new wave uncle returns to his own roots – playing the blues. Fittingly, he's doing so at this year's Bluesfest, headlining the event's third date with a solo set. Prepare for him to pump it up as usual with a full gamut of his razor-sharp, sarky-but-sweet blues-pop.
Also performing tonight is noted rhythm and blues singer/songwriter Georgie Fame, playing with his innovative ska and jazz-influenced pop band The Blue Flames – you'll likely recognise their upbeat 1964 hit 'Yeh, Yeh'. A fine double bill.
The raw, powerful voice of this Californian singer-songwriter brings to mind one Janis Joplin, which is no bad thing. Her performance at this year's Bluesfest will no doubt include material from her 2012 album 'Bang Bang Boom Boom', but we'd be very surprised if she didn't also break out her 1999 hit single 'LA Song (Out Of This Town)'. Also on the bill is renowned US blues guitarist Robert Cray.
Not under any circumstances to be confused with Cheryl Cole, US singer and songwriter Sheryl Crow brings her to close Bluesfest.
Though her blues chops are strong, Crow's songs are also heavily influenced by country music, which you can hear in pretty much all of her hits from across the years. These include the gravelly chart-rock of 'If It Makes You Happy', the shuffling earworm chorus of 'Everyday Is a Winding Road' and – most famously – the bluegrass-dipped rolling hooks of 'All I Wanna Do'. Material from her most recent album, 2013's 'Feel Like Home', should also feature heavily in tonight's set.
For more information, visit the Bluesfest website.
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