Wilko Johnson, The Orb For Belladrum 2016

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Rhythm and blues kingpin Wilko Johnson joins the main stage line-up at Bella, the former Dr. Feelgood guitarist who recently collaborated with Roger Daltrey of The Who will bring his unique guitar playing style to the festival for the first time. ‘I’

So said Wilko Johnson in a recent interview, having been diagnosed in late 2012 with terminal pancreatic cancer. But despite the doctors’ worst predictions he continues to perform and present himself with vigour and a new zest for life.

Also added to the bill are two acts who will be performing late night slots in the Hot House; electronic pioneers The Orb & performing on Saturday after indie headliners Circa Waves, the world’s first time travelling dance party Hot Dub Time Machine – who will take listeners right though the ages of music in chronological order from 1954 to the present with his interactive audio visual set.

Billie Marten, who made the BBC Sound of 2016 longlist, will be bringing her folky trills to the Black Isle Brewery Grassroots stage, along with London-Irish Celtic punk band, Neck. Roots Folk act CC Smugglers and busking Brixton bluesman Errol Linton will also be performing on the stage, which will be closed by MacFloyd in the late night slot who will be returning in 2016 with a journey through the classic material of Pink Floyd.

Formerly The Singing Kettle, Fun Box will be back opening the mainstage with their hits for younger generations on Friday, followed by firm festival favourites The Vatersay Boys. The La Fontaines make the jump up to the main stage in 2016 following their recent packed to the rafters Barrowlands show in Glasgow. Other indie acts announced in this round for the festival are; SAMA Best Hip-Hop act Spring Break who were formed at Bella, Catholic Action, Nieves, Schnarff Schnarff, Lional, The Side, Man Made, Bella’s Got Talent 2015 winner Leanne Smith and the Inverness & Kinloss Military Wives’ Choirs.

Appearing on the Grassroots stage for the now infamous Ceilidh on Thursday are crowd favourites Rhythm N Reel, funk & soul band The Leonard Jones Potential, folk-steppers Hoodja, Celtic rockers Gleadhraich, contemporary folk act Tannara, and the Inverness trad act Schiehallion.

There are many more acts still to be announced for the festival which, now in its 13th year, has the theme ‘Superstition’ in 2016. A limited number of Saturday day tickets are now on sale via Skiddle and retail agents: Eden Court and The Ironworks in Inverness; Sweet Treats in Dingwall; and Morrisons in Beauly.

Published on 24 February 2016 by Ben Robinson

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