Paisley’s annual Spree festival has today announced its biggest line-up yet – with Glasvegas, Gruff Rhys, PP Arnold and Hue and Cry among the acts coming to town this October.The festival will take place over nine days from 11th to 19th October with the bulk of the action in a specially-erected Spiegeltent beside Paisley Gilmour Street station – and with a bigger tent than in previous years allowing 500-person shows.
Now in its eighth year, the festival is one of the centrepieces of Renfrewshire Council’s major events programme which has made Paisley one of Scotland’s key cultural destinations in recent years.
The Spree 2019 was programmed by Regular Music – who work with some of the biggest names in the industry as the team behind the Summer Nights at Kelvingrove Bandstand and the Edinburgh Castle Concerts – and is this year sponsored by Tennent’s Lager.
The festival kicks off on Friday 11th October with a tribute to one of Paisley’s most celebrated musical sons – A Gerry Rafferty Songbook, featuring Roddy Hart, Emma Pollock and Rab Noakes.
Monday 14th sees Hue and Cry in the Spiegeltent – a venue and location fitting for a band for whom one of their biggest hits, ‘Looking for Linda’, was set on a train to Paisley.
Platinum-selling indie-rockers Glasvegas perform their only full-band Scottish date of the year the next night, before Super Furry Animals frontman Gruff Rhys brings his solo show to the Spiegeltent on Wednesday 16th.
London’s First Lady of Soul PP Arnold is next up on Thursday 17th with songs from her six-decade career working with stars including Rod Stewart and the Small Faces, Barry Gibb, David Bowie, Eric Clapton and Oasis.
The Friday night sees multi-award-winning singer-songwriter Karine Polwart bring her Scottish Songbook – a collection of Scottish pop classic spanning more than 50 years.
And the festival ends on Saturday 19th with anarchic magic from comedy headliner Jerry Sadowitz, followed by what will be a lively late-night closing party all the way from Tennessee, USA, with the inventors of ‘rockgrass’ Hayseed Dixie.
There’s also two late-night comedy shows on Friday 11th and 18th, headlined by Mark Nelson and Gary Little and compered by Fred MacAulay and local lad Scott Gibson.
Renfrewshire Leisure are programming Spree shows at Paisley Arts Centre, with the ones announced so far being Lost Map’s Lost Weekend Sunday Social featuring the Pictish Trail, Fell, Molly Linen and Callum Easter (Sunday 13th), Paisley in Song featuring Michael Cassidy and Andy Monahan (Frightened Rabbit) on Thursday 17th, and ex-Arab Strap musician Malcolm Middleton plus support (Saturday 19th).
And the Spiegeltent will also host an all-day festival within-a-festival on Saturday 12th with LNP Promotions ever-popular ModStuff celebration of all things Mod, for which the line-up will be confirmed soon.
More will be added to the bill over the summer with details still to be announced for The Wee Spree – a programme of children’s entertainment over the October school holidays – and the Spree for All fringe festival, with a range of shows in other venue across Renfrewshire.
Duncan Frew, Tennent’s Lager’s Commercial and Marketing Director (UK), added: “Tennent’s are delighted to partner with the Spree Festival in 2019.
“The festival continues to go from strength to strength, developing a national profile through an impressive programme of local and international artists and activity. We look forward to working with organisers and local community to help build on this success.”
Louisa Mahon, Renfrewshire Council’s head of marketing, communications and events, added: “The Spree has grown in recent years to become a fixture in Scotland’s festival calendar – and we are delighted the expanded capacity this year has allowed us to attract some of our biggest names yet.
“Not only will that bring music fans from across the country to see what Paisley has to offer but the growth in the event will help bring a real festival feel to the town, and a boost the local economy.”
For more information on the festival, see www.thespree.co.uk.