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IN CAMERA: Red Rooster Festival 2024

When: 30th May – 1st June 2024

Where: Euston Hall, Suffolk, England

Grey skies and a little light rain were never going to dampen anyone’s spirits or spoil the occasion of Red Rooster’s 10th birthday party. Celebrating some of the very best in blues, soul, and roots music that’s around today, this ever-popular festival had once more sold out all of its advance tickets ensuring that thousands of folks would again be making their annual pilgrimage to the delightful surroundings of Euston Hall in Suffolk.

Thursday evening featured a lovely set from the alt-country rock band Brown Horse from the nearby city of Norwich. They would return again the next day to play on the Shack Stage on the other side of the estate’s lake and their guitarist and singer, Patrick Turner rightly earned the title of the hardest working man at the festival when he also popped up on the Little Red Rooster stage a bit later that afternoon when he joined Santa Rita for a couple of songs on fiddle.

Friday had a number of the brightest jewels in this year’s Red Rooster crown, not least an absolutely blistering set from the North Mississippi Allstars. Not content to rest on their laurels Luther and Cody Dickinson from the band were back shortly afterwards to join their considerable forces with the Take Me To The River All Stars which featured four original members of The Hi Rhythm Section, who played on every Al Green record as well as alongside Ann Peebles, Otis Clay, and Syl Johnson. This musical extravaganza of New Orleans and Memphis Music also featured Stax Records legend William Bell who proved that even at 84 years of age he had lost none of his vocal power and sheer class.

The evening’s entertainment on the main stage ended with Galen & Paul, the critically acclaimed collaboration of the celebrated solo artist and multi-instrumentalist Galen Ayers and Paul Simonon. As if we should be any doubt that Simonon had once played bass guitar with The Clash, the duo covered ‘The Guns of Brixton’ from The Clash’s London Calling album.

The sun finally made a belated appearance on Saturday and just as it began to go down first Sister Suzie and Andy Twyman and then the garage psychobilly blues duo Snakemilk – think here of Tom Waits’ ‘Goin’ Out West’ gone even further west – turned in a couple of brilliantly diverse but equally captivating performances.

Before another fabulous Red Rooster Festival drew to a triumphant close with the legendary American swing band Asleep At The Wheel playing their last ever UK festival show as part of their Happy Trails tour, though, my personal musical highlight of the whole weekend came courtesy of The Hanging Stars. If there was any real justice to be had in this world then this cosmic country outfit from London would be absolutely huge.

Photos: Simon Godley

Thursday at Red Rooster 2024

Friday at Red Rooster 2024

Saturday at Red Rooster 2024

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.