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The Local Festival Lineup

Alongside this year's exceptional headlining artists we have what we call our Hometown Heroes - the support acts that are renowned for bringing outstanding talent to the festival each year, in an eclectic range of form and style. 

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"Gifted, Creative and Rooted in the Blues" - Blues Matters Magazine 

The Andy Taylor Group are a young and electrifying trio hailing from the Orkney Islands at the north of Scotland. Critically acclaimed as one of the most exciting up and coming young blues talents in the UK by Blues Matters Magazine, the trio have been captivating audiences the length and breadth of the UK and Europe at festivals and venues including; The Great British Rhythm & Blues Festival, The Skegness Rock & Blues Festival, The Edinburgh Blues Club, and many more. With Andy Taylor on Vocals/Guitar, Marcus Cordock on Bass and Dylan Pepper on Drums. 

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A well known name from Orkney in the folk and blues scene, expect rich and lively performances from some of Orkney's top musicians.



Stoatfinger is a three piece blues/folk/Americana outfit formed in 2022. 
Dan Rhodes and James Groat, both familiar faces in numerous Orkney bands, are joined by Antony Hodgson, a veteran of the Sussex folk and Americana scene. 
Mixing well known and offbeat covers with original songs, they are equally at home amplified or delighting the crowd in acoustic bar-room sessions, swapping instruments and genres as they play.

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“Leah Seator is a real find, a great singer with power and passion” – Blues Matters Magazine

Bad Apple bring together five familiar faces from the local music scene in Orkney; Leah Seator on Vocals, Colin Drever on Guitar, Will Scott on Bass, Wayne Drever on Guitar and Malcolm Dowell on Drums. Fusing riff heavy blues/rock tones with plenty funk and soul, their set is sure to please any crowd.

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Country, blues, swing - maybe some honky tonk - a favourite from many Orkney Blues Festivals of years past including our sold out Burray Blues Show in 2022.

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Sounding like the illegitimate child of Tom Waits and the Shangri-las, Almost Blue return to the Orkney Blues Festival with an exciting new show. 
Fronted by Ann McTaggart on vocals and Andrew Want on guitar, the lineup this year features Steven Heddle on guitar, Tom O’Brien on bass, and Dave Stevenson on drums. 
Almost Blue promise an eclectic set, mixing the traditional blues idiom with a seasoning of surf rock, finger-picking, and Latin rhythms.

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John Dearness has been writing, performing and recording songs incorporating early blues, country, folk, rhythm and blues, and rock influences. 
12 in Slate is the second release and are his stripped back, blues songs, gritty, earthy tracks centred around voice, guitar and fiddle. Which is set for digital release on Friday the 1st of September.
He hopes you enjoy 12 in Slate and the stories the songs are based around. He also looks forward to the following albums taking influences from blues, rock and acoustic popular music.
He is always blessed with fantastic Orcadian musicians around him creating lifey live versions of his recorded tracks.
Deep.Roots.Last Music

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Just like everyone else attending the Orkney Blues Festival, Bluetones 42 love blues music. 
Based around Forres and Elgin, the band comprises friends and family who have been playing together for many years. Playing a mix of original material and some lesser heard covers, the band’s collective musical influences include the old hands like BB King, Hendrix and Clapton, along with contemporary blues players such as Joe Bonamassa and Josh Smith.
They have a simple philosophy: good music is good music and it’s there to be enjoyed by all, bands and audiences alike. 
Their second performance at Orkney Blues, Bluetones 42 know just how appreciative the audiences are. They know that everyone’s there for a good time and they want to play their part in making that happen.

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Formed in 2019 with many decades of experience collectively under their belts, Pleepsin' Joe are a 4 piece cover band with a mission to provide an eclectic setlist that isn't bound by genres or era's. From upbeat rock anthems to soulful blues classics and everything in between, their diverse repertoire guarantees something for everyone to enjoy.
Band members include Kieran Whitten on guitar, Martin South on drums, Sarah Hague lead vocals and Pete Thomas on bass.
Pleepsin' Joe played the Blues Festival last year with a blues-focused set and are very much looking forward to returning. 

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Details coming soon

The Blues Festival Weekend
Friday 22nd to Sunday 24th September 2023


Our festival home and hub during the weekend is The Royal Blues Club, upstairs at The Royal Hotel.

Royal Hotel
55-57 Victoria Street

KW16 3BS


We have four venues in Stromness

during the festival weekend - The Royal Hotel, The Stromness Town Hall, The British Legion and The Ferry Inn.

View Venues information

Opening Hours


8:30 pm – 1:00 am


2.00 pm – 1:00 am


2:00 pm – 12:30 am

Opening hours are subject to individual events and the venues themselves - above is a rough approximation of when festival events will start and finish in Stromness at the weekend.

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