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Ed Sheeran, B. Goodes, DELS, Yanny Mac and HighTide at Latitude Festival 2011!

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Ed Sheeran, B. Goodes, DELS, Yanny Mac and HighTide at Latitude Festival 2011!

Latitude Festival 2011. OMG. I’m so excited, I’m only just holding off the urge to turn the CAPS LOCK on. And this article’s only just started. That’s how excited I am. And with good reason.

This year’s festival looks to be an eclectic mix of music and arts performances, including a diverse range of acts from the local area, from poetry to pop, rap to rock. Newcomers to the festival include rapper DELS, feel-good band The B Goodes and rising star Ed Sheeran. Returning to Latitude are High Tide Theatre Company, who regularly collaborate with the festival, and performance poet Yanny Mac.

Ed Sheeran. Mmm. (Just thinking about how cute he is.) The singer/songwriter (now officially my favourite redhead) has recently rocketed to fame. Sheeran has worked alongside Amy Wadge, Wiley, Just Jack and Example to name but a few, played over 600 gigs in just three years, and even performed his popular song The A Team on Later… With Jools Holland. And he’s still not worn out. With a crazily hectic festival season ahead, including performances at Leeds, Reading and the Isle of Wight, Ed Sheeran is going to be big – and not in an overweight kind of a way. Check him out whilst you can. (I know I will be.)

Rock ‘n’ rollers the B. Goodes are an energetic and fun band. They’ve been gigging locally since their formation at the end of 2008, but at Latitude, they’re looking forward to performing for a much wider audience. After their involvement with BBC Introducing, the band was chosen to perform on the Lake Stage by Radio 1 presenter Huw Stephens. “If somebody says ‘yeah I like you, you’re good’ it gives you some confidence,” says bassist Jay Goodrich, who incidentally has awesome hair. Latitude is a big opportunity for the retro-inspired rockers, and Jay hopes they’ll “go somewhere else after it.” (I don’t think he means just the pub.) So which other artists will he be looking out for at the festival? “I really want to see a guy called DELS,” he says.

DELS is also a local act – he’s an MC from Ipswich, who I believe to be the coolest graphic designer ever (and graphic designers are pretty cool). DELS has worked with many other artists, such as Roots Manuva, Ghostpoet, Micachu and the Shapes and Joe Goddard of Hot Chip, and the result is a funky blend of indie electronica, synth and hip-hop. (Saying that made me feel so with-it!) Having just released his debut album, GOB, which has been receiving some brilliant reviews, including an amazing five stars from the Sunday Times, DELS is certainly one to watch.

A former member of poetry collective Aisle16, festival veteran Yanny Mac has performed at Glastonbury, The Edinburgh Fringe, and the Port Eliot Festival. In 2006, he and Pikey Paddy performed as a double act in the poetry area, before returning to compere the next year. Yanny Mac also performed solo in 2008 and 2009, making this his fifth appearance at Latitude. The ‘pikey poet’, as he calls himself, whose blog addresses serious issues such as ‘Nigella’s Tits’, is a witty and clever act, and will no doubt add a dash of silliness and fun to proceedings.

HighTide are also no stranger to festivals – their plays have successfully transferred to the Bush Theatre, Hay-on-Wye, Edinburgh, and even the National Play Festival in Brisbane, Australia. This year, Latitude’s Theatre Arena will feature Incoming, an emotional debut play by former poet laureate Andrew Motion. Incoming premiered at Suffolk’s annual HighTide Festival, where it was highly praised by the Guardian, The Times, and The Stage amongst others. A controversial piece about the war in Afghanistan, Incoming tells the story of a soldier killed in action and the family he left behind, and promises to be an intimate and poetic performance.

So there you have it – five brilliant local acts, and five more reasons to be excited about Latitude. (As if it’s not exciting enough already!) What are you waiting for? Grab your sunhat and tan lotion (and your anorak and wellies, this is England after all) and get down to Southwold!

Latitude Festival will take place at Henham Park, Southwold, from Friday July 15 to Sunday July 17. Don’t miss out, buy your tickets here!

Crowd photo by Jen O’Neill
Words: Daisy Jones


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