The ever-diverse RBC Royal Bank Bluesfest in Ottawa announced its first wave of artists with some big headliners throughout the July 4 - 14, ranging from Rush, Dixie Chicks, B.B. King and fun. to The Tragically Hip, Weezer, Wu-Tang Clan and Skrillex.
According to the festival site Bluesfest will close with a bill featuring King, the Full Flex Express Tour featuring Skrillex, Cactus, Alejandro Escovedo, Los Lonely Boys, Los Lobos, Mitch Ryder and W.C. Clark. Meanwhile the July 8 lineup is also quite eclectic with Dixie Chicks, Belle & Sebastian, Neko Case, Sharon Van Etten, Fitz & The Tantrums, Cold Specks, Amadou & Mariam, Zeds Dead, Blue King Brown, Joe Robinson and Justin Townes Earle.
Special "early bird" tickets go on sale Thursday at 10 a.m. through Capitaltickets.ca with adult full festival passport and wristband priced at $195 and a similar package for youth set at $99. The early bird prices are in effect until Friday at midnight or while quantities last. The regular price for the aforementioned wristbands are $249 and $199, respectively. The complete schedule will be released in April.
The Ottawa Bluesfest is coming off a relatively smooth 2012 event following a 2011 festival that saw a stage collapse as Cheap Trick was performing. According to Spinner a report released last November laid the blame on poor stage construction by Groupe Berger (staging company) with some 19 "failings" cited under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
Here are the other bands confirmed for the RIBC Royal Bank Bluesfest so far: Stars, The Cat Empire, Ra Ra Riot, Zac Brown Band, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, She & Him, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, Animal Collective, Eric Burdon, Adventure Club, Alex Clare, Femi Kuti, Atlas Genius, Bahamas, Baauer, Benjamin Francis Leftwich, Blues Broads, Camera Obscura, A Tribe Called Red, Solange, The Knocks, Tommy Trash, Dawes, The Dunwells, Eddie Shaw, El-P, Flogging Molly, Frank Turner, Garland Jeffreys, Great Big Sea, Grace Potter and The Nocturnals, Hunter Hayes, The Joy Formidable, Passion Pit, Killer Mike, LP, Marianas Trench, Jon Cleary, Diamond Rings, The Harpoonist and The Axe Murderer, John Smith, Matthew Good, Grand Funk Railroad, Mother Mother, Sonny Rhodes, Ronnie Earl and The Broadcasters.