Scotland's long association with roots music continues in the summer when the third instalment of the Southern Fried Festival takes place. A celebration of Americana, country, blues, Dixieland and, of course, good eating will be crammed into a few venues around the city of Perth across three days, with many late-night attractions included.
Southern Fried 2010 starts on Thursday 29th July with a free launch party at the Twa Tams on Scott Street, featuring Perth's own bluegrass/ Americana outfit Red Pine Timber Company.
Carolina Chocolate Drops
The concerts and sessions start on Friday 30th July, running until Sunday 1st August, beginning with a superb double-bill of the multi-talented, multi-instrumental complexities of Carolina Chocolate Drops and the awesome vocal-harmonics of The Holmes Brothers with tickets costing £17.60. After this fine billing, there are also the 'Late and Southern Fried' sessions with Nashville-fiddle player Craig Duncan, country-chanteuse Elizabeth Cook and soul-roots fusion outfit, Phantom Limb, all for one price - £15.50. Be warned - it says 'late' and it means 'late' with Phantom Limb due on stage at 12.45am!
Saturday sees the all-star celebration, 'The Roots of Elvis', starring Del Amitri's Justin Currie, Tim Eriksen, Holly Williams and many more performing the roots-side of Presley's work. Tickets are £18. Some of the same performers, including the vocally-talented Tim Eriksen will join in the evening's 'Late and Southern Fried' session, again until the early hours (£15.50).
Sunday welcomes the contemporary blues and roots sound of Seasick Steve, a man who has delivered ramshackle rustic rock 'n' roll with homemade instruments (including his Diddley Bo) and elevated his infectious songs, rhythms and smile to millions across the globe, without compromising his roots. Tickets are £24.75.
There are oodles of free and low-priced concerts throughout Saturday and Sunday - I recommend trying to see Rachel Harrington at the Salutation Hotel at 3pm on the Sunday, excellent voice and her recent "City Of Refuge" album is worth seeking out. She is also playing a few dates of her own (click on her name for details).
And of course, there will be beer and food commonly associated with the Deep South - you may just need a diet at the end of it all.
Festival passes covering The Holmes Brothers/Carolina Chocolate Drops, The Roots of Elvis and Seasick Steve plus the Late and Southern Fried sessions cost £60 - not available online (phone: 01738 621 031).