PREVIEW: Black Deer Festival 2022

PREVIEW: Black Deer Festival 2022

When: 17th – 20th June 2022
Where: Eridge Park, Kent, England

Despite coming ever so close to being the first festival back after the pandemic, Black Deer Festival has been away since 2019 but is back in 2022 with the best Americana trappings you’ll find in the UK and a genuinely stellar line-up. Let’s take a look at the five essential things to do in a field in Kent on the weekend of 17th-19th of June.

Immerse in the Live Fire Stage

Now, you might think, “this is a music site, where’s the music?” but we’ll come to that. First thing to do is find out where the Live Fire Stage is in 2022. Why? Well, that’s where you’ll find a whole selection of food demos, mainly focused on the best BBQ this side of a Texas cookout. The best bit is that you get to taste the burgers, steaks, ribs, and whatever else they magic up, as part of the various competitions over the weekend. Most of the UK’s best BBQ chefs will be in attendance, so make the most of the tips and tricks just in time for the UK summer BBQ season.

Embrace the Roadhouse

It might look and feel intimidating, with the biker gear hanging up, and the customs bikes on show outside, but The Roadhouse is an almost perfect re-creation of an American bar. It’s got an incredible look to the inside and plays hosts to some of the most hardcore sets of the weekend. Previous highlights include a dazzling late-night show from The Sheepdogs and a mid-afternoon treat from Paul Cauthen. The 2022 line-up for The Roadhouse is yet to be announced but there will 100% be some special sets to come.

Experience the Songwriters Sessions

Tip no. 1, in fact the only tip, GET THERE EARLY! The Songwriters Sessions have grown in popularity over the first couple of years of the festival and host some of the biggest names around – Billy Bragg in 2019 was a definite highlight. The premise then… songwriter, their guitar, and a stool. In a tent. And they just play songs, tell stories, and give a peek behind the big stage setup at the heart of the music. And it’s a stellar set of names in 2022: On Friday it’s Imelda May, Emily Barker, Caroline Spence, and Irish Mythen; Saturday is genuine Nashville royalty Cam(!),paired with the UK’s own Lady Nade, Kezia Gill, and Robert Vincent; and Sunday is Native Harrow, John Smith, William Prince, and Bess Atwell.

Fall in love with Cam

If there was one act who is guaranteed to have us all in the palm of her hands on Saturday evening it’s Cam. Though she hails from California originally, Cam’s a Nashville big hitter. With songs like ‘Burning House’, ‘Country Ain’t Never Been Pretty’, ‘My Mistake’, and bonafide classic ‘Village’ from her debut album paired with ‘Classic’, ‘Redwood Tree’, ‘Till There’s Nothing Left’, and another stone-cold song for the ages, ‘Diane’, added to the thoroughly winning stage presence, Cam is the act to not miss across the weekend.

Check out the best of Americana

Hiss Golden Messenger. Drive-by Truckers. Wilco. Courtney Marie Andrews. The War and the Treaty. Israel Nash. Shovels & Rope. Caroline Spence. There are too many to mention, like, the whole line-up! It’s a mix of country, folk, some blues, a bit of rock, all the variety that makes Americana the genre for everyone. These are acts that don’t make many trips across the pond as well, pandemic aside, it’s been a while since Hiss, DBT, Wilco, Shovels, et al graced a UK stage, and possibly never since they played a festival. If you like roots music, there really are artists that’ll grab you by the lapels across the weekend.

You can still buy day tickets, or weekend tickets for the full shebang over at the Black Deer Festival website, prices from £81(ish) for a day ticket to £210(ish) for weekend camping.

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.