Dream­ing about sum­mer fes­ti­vals? No need – there are plen­ty of win­ter and ear­ly spring events hap­pen­ing around the coun­try, help­ing liv­en up these dark and drea­ry months. No tents involved.

Most­ly at cities and towns around the UK with sev­er­al mul­ti-venue events, one-day or week­enders, there’s plen­ty to choose from. Check these good­ies out…

Rockaway Beach 5–7 January

But­lins Bogn­or Reg­is is the loca­tion for this pop­u­lar event to start the year. Three nights’ accom­mo­da­tion is includ­ed in the price with hotels, chalets and apart­ments to choose from. Music starts around 12 noon each day. There’s also head­line DJ sets, takeover par­ties and silent dis­cos. The organ­is­ers try and avoid stage clash­es, so there’s less for your fuzzy New Year head to think about. Our picks: Bob Vylan, Ben­e­fits, Japan­ese Tele­vi­sion, Heart­worms, Hinds, Traams and Creep Show. Book Rock­away Beach

UK West Coast Folk Festival 12–14 January

Richard Thomp­son, Sker­ryvore, Eddie Read­er, Gaelforce, Tom Robin­son Band plus plus (33 acts in all) at Black­pool Win­ter Gar­dens. Buy tick­ets for UK West Coast Folk Festival

January Blues Festival 24 – 27 January

The Jan­u­ary Blues Fes­ti­val takes place in Jan­u­ary 2024 at The Forge in Cam­den, Lon­don. Events left for the month are: 23rd: Lau­rence Jones, 24th Ben Poole with spe­cial guests tbc, 25th The Bad Day Blues Band, 26 and 27th Dr Feel­go­od with spe­cial guests Eddie and the Hot Rods. Tick­ets avail­able here

Celtic Connections 18 Jan- 4 February

Glas­gow’s annu­al win­ter fes­ti­val has expand­ed into a mul­ti­tude of gen­res over its 30-year his­to­ry and now includes acoustic, tra­di­tion­al, indie, Amer­i­cana, Jazz, blues, orches­tral, exper­i­men­tal and more. The Bothy Band, Adwaith, Kate Rus­by, Kather­ine Prid­dy and Talisk are just a few names amongst hun­dreds. Celtic Con­nec­tions

Whirl-Y-Gig 24 January

Whirl-Y-Gig Win­ter Warmer – yes it’s still going strong. Return to Roots with Mon­key Pilot, Zion Train. Now moved to Stu­dio 9294 in Hack­ney Wick, a great lit­tle space for this friend­ly and fun event that always extends a wel­come to new­com­ers. Buy tick­ets for Whirl-Y-Gig

Independent Venue Week 29 Jan – 4 February

Not strict­ly a fes­ti­val but #IVW is one of the most impor­tant weeks of the music cal­en­dar, espe­cial­ly dur­ing these times of such uncer­tain­ty for our inde­pen­dent grass­roots venues. Get out and sup­port your local music palace – and par­take of this annu­al feast of music which sees venues host a whole slew of artists. The Trades in Heb­den Bridge is just one tak­ing part, with Eng­lish Teacher (this year’s ambas­sadors) and Splint on their line­up. Inde­pen­dent Venue Week

Lewes Psychedelic Festival 4 February

OK so this is, pre­dictably, sold out, how­ev­er there are tick­ets pop­ping up on rep­utable sites like Twick­ets, so keep your eyes peeled. All Saints Cen­tre plays host this year to TVAM, Acid Klaus, Kar­ma Sheen, MEMORIALS, VÄLVE, Sairie and more. Lewes Psy­che­del­ic Festival

Beam Me Up! 9th and 10th February

This is a dual venue event hap­pen­ing in Oxford and Lin­coln, since its incep­tion in 2023, Beam Me Up has curat­ed stel­lar line-ups of the lat­est in break­through UK tal­ent, along­side some more well known names. On Fri­day 9th Feb­ru­ary, Lin­coln Drill Hall is the place to be to see Deadlet­ter, The Rills and More. Sat­ur­day 10th shifts to Oxford with a num­ber of venues tak­ing part. Tick­ets to Beam Me Up!

Borderline 15–16 February

Show­cas­ing the finest in for­ward-fac­ing music from Ire­land and abroad. Across two nights in the heart of Dublin. Already set to appear: Antony Szmierek, Eno­la Gay, Miso Extra, Mount Palo­mar, Lam­bri­ni Girls, Spi­der and loads more. At the Work­man’s Club. Tick­ets on sale from 1 Decem­ber. Bor­der­line

London Calling 28 February

The sec­ond Lon­don Call­ing show­case event, across sev­er­al venues. 17 of the best emerg­ing UK and Euro­pean artists will per­form across The 100 Club, 21 Soho, The Low­er Third, Phoenix Arts Club and The Spice of Life. August Charles, Baby­moroc­co, Hyphen, Lyvia, Nxdia and many more. Lon­don Call­ing tickets

Simple Things 23–29 February 

Bris­tol’s dizzy­ing­ly packed fes­ti­val heads into its 10th year. The line­up is fab – Antony Szmierek, Gazelle Twin, The Bug Club, Max Coop­er live, Miss Tiny, Gilla Band plus lots more, and a clos­ing con­cert with Fever Ray. This is a mul­ti venue event hap­pen­ing around the city cen­tre, with venues close to each oth­er. Buy tick­ets to Sim­ple Things

Immersed Festival 29 Feb – 7 March

Immersed! in aid of Music Declares emer­gency is back with an elec­tri­fy­ing line­up of music, film, art, fash­ion, and the­atre. Lead­ing the charge is BOB VYLAN. This year’s event spans an entire week, fea­tur­ing Wales’s 1st Future Gen­er­a­tions Cli­mate Con­ven­tion accom­pa­nied by film screen­ings, art instal­la­tions, fringe gigs and a live stream Immersed! TV broad­cast. Immersed fes­ti­val

Bad Friday BBQ All-dayer 29 March

Son­ic Ton­ic presents Bad Fri­day, return­ing with a killer line up, fea­tur­ing School Dis­co, Mid­night Rodeo, The Fam­i­ly Bat­ten­berg, Vel­ve­tine, Hyp­so­line, The New Cut, Flip Beck­mann & Skut­ter­fly. At the Wind­mill, Brix­ton. £13 advance from Dice & WeGotTick­ets. Doors 3pm. Tick­ets for Bad Friday 

London International Ska Festival 29–30 March 

Cel­e­brat­ing Ska, Rock­steady, Reg­gae, Dub, 2 Tone and beyond since 1988, at var­i­ous venues. There’ll also be emerg­ing new acts and DJs per­form­ing across three events at the world famous Dix­ie Queen and two of Cam­den’s finest venues. Full fes­ti­val wrist­bands and sep­a­rate tick­ets are avail­able. Tick­ets avail­able

Fair Play 6 April

Man­ches­ter’s North­ern Quar­ter is the place – Fair Play annu­al­ly hosts a day of artists – and there’s no stint­ing on the quan­ti­ty. Marie David­son, Ugly, Sky­dad­dy, Cow­boy, Slap Rash, Com­fort and fab elec­tron­ic duo Uh will be appear­ing at a num­ber of venues. There’s more to be announced too. Fair Play link.

Peter Hook & the Light: An evening of Music & Conversation 12 April

An inti­mate, one-off evening of con­ver­sa­tion with Peter Hook, at The Star & Garter in Man­ches­ter, home to the mur­al of Joy Divi­sion. Pro­ceeds from this spe­cial Head­stock event will sup­port men­tal health char­i­ty Shout. The gig will take place in mem­o­ry of Ian Cur­tis who lost his life to sui­cide in May 1980. 

Buy tick­ets for Peter Hook & The Light: An Evening of Music & Con­ver­sa­tion at The Star And Garter, Fri 12th Apr 2024

Takedown Festival 13–14 April

At Portsmouth Guild­hall is this annu­al event fea­tur­ing for 2024 Kid Kapichi, Ter­rorvi­sion, Bad Touch, Fero­cious Dog, Skar­lett Riot and lots more. Info and tick­ets here

The Sound of Bassline 27 April

The Sound Of Bassline comes to Birm­ing­ham for an all-day affair under the Lab11 arch­es on Sat­ur­day 27th April 2024. 3:00pm til 11:00pm (Last entry 6:00pm). DJ Q, Slick Don, Big Ang and more. The Sound of Bassline tickets.

Buy tick­ets for The Sound Of Bassline – Birm­ing­ham at LAB11, Sat 27th Apr 2024

The Giant Syndicate 27 April

Fire Records stand out with their impres­sive, very indi­vid­ual artist ros­ter. The Giant Syn­di­cate is a 10 hour cel­e­bra­tion hon­our­ing Fire Records’ 40th Birth­day from 1pm to 11pm (bar open till 1am). The event takes place at Earth Hack­ney, the capa­cious and atmos­pher­ic restored Art Deco theatre/cinema. Giant Sand, The Dream Syn­di­cate, Mar­ta del Gran­di, Islet, Bas Jan, Gra­ham Reynolds, Imma­te­r­i­al Pos­ses­sion and more will be per­form­ing. Host­ed by Stew­art Lee, with visu­als by Inner­strings. Pre­sent­ed by the Giant Syn­di­cate and Eat Your Own Ears. Buy tick­ets for The Giant Syndicate

In the Round Festival 24 – 27 April

The Round­house, Cam­den, puts on this annu­al extrav­a­gan­za which ben­e­fits from the ground floor turned into a ful­ly seat­ed area. Shows this year are Tirzah, Vashti Bun­yan and Lon­nie Hol­ley plus a spe­cial trib­ute to Joni Mitchell for her 80th birth­day fea­tur­ing Emeli Sandé, Sam Ami­don, ESKA, Kate Sta­bles (This Is The Kit) and host­ed by Cerys Matthews. Awe-inspir­ing vocal­ist ESKA took part in a Joni Mitchell trib­ute in Cardiff (see images below). Check out The Round­house In The Round

Brick Lane Jazz Festival 26 – 28 April

Last year was this fes­ti­val’s inau­gur­al event and was a suc­cess – so here we are again! Events take place at The Tru­man Brew­ery and venues close by. This year choose from Oscar Jer­mone, Ego Ella May, Tara Lily, Zeit­geist Free­dom Ener­gy Exchange and plen­ty more play­ing all styles of jazz over the week­end. Get day or week­end pass­es. Brick Lane Jazz festival

The Great Escape 15–18 May

Brighton’s annu­al shindig tak­ing place all over the city, with an accent on new music. Of the 500 or so tak­ing part, here are just a few of the artists on the line­up: Bish­op­skin, Emme­line, Eno­la, Food House, Mock Media, Mal­ice K, Pic­ture Par­lour, House of Women, Night­bus, Pla­ton­ic Sex and Sirens of Les­bos. The Great Escape

Songlines Encounters Festival 16–19 May

This event takes place at Kings Place, Lon­don. It fea­tures music from across the world, this year from Argenti­na, Mon­go­lia, Moroc­co and Sudan. Argen­tin­ian ‘shaman-poet’ Soe­ma Mon­tene­gro will per­form off the back of her new album Cír­cu­lo Radi­ante and Sudanese funk out­fit The Scor­pios offer a sneak pre­view of their forth­com­ing new album. Buy tick­ets to Song­lines Festival

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