Rhythm Festival announces new stages as prog giants Hawkwind confirm

16:11 27 February 2012

Acts booked for this year’s Rhythm Festival have been announced - at what will be a hugely expanded event.

Organisers of the festival at Old Warden Park in Bedfordshire which has celebrated veteran artists since 1996 have revealed the confirmed acts for the August Bank Holiday weekender, which for the first time includes dedicated folk and rhythm and blues areas.

Highlights on the two main stages include fabulous progrockers Hawkwind, two-tone ska band The Beat, The Damned, Crazy World Of Arthur Brown, Trojan records’ Dennis Alcapone and rude boy King Hammond.

And elsewhere there are treats too in the new folk and rhythms big top stages.

Organiser Jim Driver said the new folk stage “mixes the finest emerging new folk talent with the best of classic British folk and roots.

“The emphasis in 2012 is on bringing gifted young performers into Rhythm Festivals, joining the veteran acts who have always been its main-stay.”

The folk line-up on Friday includes BBC Radio 2 Horizon Award winner Lucy Ward. World-music inspired alt folksters Jamie Smith’s Mobon, Peatbog Faeries and The Men They Couldn’t Hang.

On Saturday founding Dire Straits rhythm guitarist David Knopfler will take to the big top stage as well as Beds’ Faeries Wear Boots, comedian folk singer Richard Digance, The Ian McMillan Orchestra, The Travelling Band, The Strawbs and Australia’s Wishing Well.

Show of Hands, Edinburgh’s vibrant three-piece Lau, the marvellously theatrical Moulettes, Katriona Gilmore and Jamie Roberts, Damh The Bard, and Ivor Novello Award winner Scott Matthews round off the folk stage on Sunday.

Big hitters on the R&B stage include Wilko Johnson, Mitch Laddie Band, Big Boy Bloater and Lucy Zirins with many more promised.

For ticket details, including early bird offers go to rhythmfestival.com

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