Growing out of humble beginnings as a small, foodie-orientated festival, Valley Fest is the brainchild of Luke Hasell, who took over his family farm in 2014 when both his parents sadly died within a few years of each other.
His first port of call was to make the farm organic, his second was creating Valley Fest – both to honour his fun-loving parents and also to help generate a local conversation about organic farming, our environment and where our food comes from.
But with veteran Bristol musician and promoter John Blakeley looking after the lineup, Valley Fest’s musical offerings have grown year on year and is now among the South West’s best small festivals. John heads up music bookings, promotion and artist agency Ear Trumpet Music, as well as juggling various musical projects of his own, which span bouncing Balkan folk outfit Sheelanagig and 12-piece afrobeat collective No Go Stop.
Valley Fest 2019 will see some of the biggest names in the festival’s history
Valley Fest 2019 will see some of the biggest names in the festival’s history, as well as it’s much-loved smorgasbord of sounds across the sonic spectrum.
Headlining this year’s Valley Fest is Razorlight, Tom Odell, Basement Jaxx (DJ set) and Leftfield (DJ set); with other highlights including Normal Jay MBE, The Magic Numbers, Icarus, Dutty Moonshine Big Band, Stealing Sheep, Nubiyan Twist, The Nextmen, Cut Capers, Ishmael Ensemble and many more.
You can view the full Valley Fest lineup here, but to get us started, John Blakeley has handpicked his top five acts not to miss at Valley Fest 2019:
Basement Jaxx (DJ Set)
We’ve been wanting to put something on this big for years – and this is the year. I’ve wanted to book these guys after I first saw them at Glastonbury in 2000, so we just can’t wait for Basement Jaxx to bring the house down over the Lake on Friday night.
We’ve always been a huge fan of Rozi and she’s been up to the festival before with This Is The Kit. With her new album What a Boost just released, this will be the perfect dreamy Saturday afternoon set.
the perfect dreamy Saturday afternoon set
Nubiyan Twist / ONIPA
After the main stage closes on Saturday night, get over to the second stage for an Afrobeat dance party with Nubiyan Twist and ONIPA. Sharing some the same members, Nubiyan twist are renowned for their big line, bringing a large afrobeat sound with elements of hip hop and soul; whilst ONIPA will get down and dirty with their subsonic synths and big highlife beats.
Stealing Sheep will take the penultimate slot on the Lake stage on Saturday night. If you’ve not heard them yet, this is one not to miss – an all-female lineup bringing stylishly-delivered electro pop songs, with a healthy barrage of synths and layers of percussion.
stylishly-delivered electro pop songs, with a healthy barrage of synths and layers of percussion
Wow, how lucky we are to have such a massive star at Valley Fest this year. BRITs Critics’ Choice Award winner and Ivor Novello-winning songwriting sensation, the master of the ivories will be the perfect close to the Lake Stage on Sunday evening, bringing his heartfelt songs and keeping the party alive for the final night.
the master of the ivories will be the perfect close to the Lake Stage