The Great Escape announces First Fifty shows

Some of the most exciting new artists around will perform at venues around east London ahead of the festival in Brighton next year

Roisin O'Connor
Wednesday 20 September 2023 10:00 BST
Birmingham duo Big Special
Birmingham duo Big Special (Press)

The Independent is thrilled to confirm its return as The Great Escape’s exclusive news partner for 2024, as the festival unveils its lineup for the First Fifty shows taking place this November.

Known as the ultimate live destination for new music in the UK, The Great Escape will showcase 50 artists from next year’s lineup at venues around east London on 15 November.

At Moth Club, The Independent will host Birmingham duo Big Special, whose electro-punk sound serves as the backdrop for their socially and politically astute lyrics, plus genre-bending artist King Isis, and Canadian quartet Mock Media.

Other artists on the First Fifty lineup include Sheffield’s rising star Gia Ford, rock band Picture Parlour, and pop singer Tom Rasmussen.

Tickets for each gig are priced at £7 and are on sale now. All shows are 18+.

TGE 2024 is scheduled to take place between 15-18 May in Brighton, with the bustling seaside town playing host to over 450 up-and-coming artists across more than 35 venues. Tickets for the festival are on sale now.

Last year, The Independent’s stage was headlined by rock legends The Pretenders, following superb sets from indie/alternative band English Teacher and LA solo artist Blondshell.

Fans queued around the block as early as 4pm for a rare chance to see The Pretenders perform at intimate Brighton venue The Old Market. On typically excellent form, frontwoman Chrissie Hyde led the band past curfew, telling the fans “we don’t wanna go!” following a sublime rendition of their hit song, “Don’t Get Me Wrong”.

The ongoing partnership between TGE and The Independent means readers will continue to get exclusive behind-the-scenes access and reports both before and during next year’s event.

It also continues the Indy’s tradition of supporting the best new and emerging artists, from pop to R&B, rap and rock. Its commitment to new music is evidenced by its flagship Independent TV series, Music Box, which has featured artists such as Scottish singer-songwriter Lewis Capaldi, rapper Ms Banks, and Brit Award-nominated singer-songwriter Tom Grennan during the early stages of their careers.

This year, Music Box has already featured exclusive performances from critically adored singer-songwriter Billie Marten, Grammy-nominated artist Andrew Bird, rapper Che Lingo, fast-rising Irish singer Nell Mescal, R&B artist James Vickery, and indie duo Dolores Forever.

The ninth series is due to drop this Autumn and will once again give both emering and established artists the opportunity to perform their original songs in a unique, stripped-down setting.

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