The line up for this year's Summertyne American Festival, which takes place in and around the Sage Concert Hall in Gateshead, just across the river from Newcastle, between the twentieth and twenty second of July 2012, has been announced. Possibly due to the recession which has hit the North East of England hard (another eight hundred workers were laid off yesterday) there doesn't appear to be as many big name acts this year. But it still looks like a good time will be had by all.

The headline acts this year are John Hiatt, Wanda Jackson and Dr. John. You have to pay to see them. Wise people (and those of us without £24.50 to hand over to The Night Tripper) hang out at the free stage on Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon). At first glance I would guess that the Saturday afternoon show will be the most fun although I shall probably pop over on the Friday just to catch the extremely talented Christi Andropolis.

There is also a tasty looking event on Sunday evening. Sarah Savoy's Cajun Home Cooking present an musical and culinary entertainment in which their music will be accompanied by a Cajun cookery demonstration. Yummy! And only £7.50 to get in.

For a real treat (perhaps I'll save up because Mrs MP would really enjoy it) there are a couple of three hour afternoon trips down the Tyne to the North Sea onboard the Summertyne Boat with live music being played as your sail along.

Check out the full lineup HERE.



  1. It kind of blows my mind, that you have an “Americana” festival over in Blighty.

    Then I think of the number of “Celtic” festivals over here in ‘merka, and I guess it evens out.

    Whatever: enjoy!

  2. Because, contrary to what you people (I think) enjoy believing, the people of the British Isles, Scandinavia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy and Spain do not hate the USA but love your “real” culture, probably more than you do. Ever since the 1920s we have revered especially your musical forms and have kept on revering them long after you have moved on to the latest craze. You would be amazed at the knowledge about American music that there is in Europe. It started with jazz, then the blues, then soul music and alongside these we have always loved American folk music and real (non-poppy) country music. Hank Williams and Gram Parsons are regarded as gods over here. When your artists come over here to perform (many of whom you have stopped going to see years ago) we treat them like royalty and they have a great time. Yours is a culture that craves the new all the time, we are a culture that delights in the traditional and in real talent (rather than talentless celebrity). So, real musicians, are respected here and as your American performers tend to be extremely accomplished on their instruments and as singers and songwriters we are particularly appreciated. This festival is no one off. Even in Newcastle you can get to see an American act twice a week or more. There are clubs that still play old soul music, rock and roll clubs and the blues is as huge as it ever was in our pubs. Because England is so small and the USA so big, an American would get to see more American acts, and more easily, in any English city than in their homeland. And remember, your folk music came from North Europe originally.