Final line-up announcement for Mostly Jazz 2023

Craig Charles plus Fred Wesley & The New JBs join the bill.

Music legend Fred Wesley and ‘Maestro of Funk’ DJ Craig Charles are the latest big name additions to Mostly Jazz Funk and Soul Festival from Friday 7th-Sunday 9th July 2023.

US trombonist Wesley is one of the founding fathers of funk. Serving as arranger and musical director/band leader for James Brown during the 1960s-1970s, he recorded such seminal tracks as Say It Loud (I’m Black And I’m Proud). He then went on to lead Fred Wesley and The JBs (recording Pass The Peas) and play with such acts as George Clinton’s Parliament-Funkadelic, the Count Basie Orchestra, Bootsy Collins, Bobby Womack, Young Disciples, Earth Wind and Fire, and many others.

Having previously stormed Mostly Jazz Funk and Soul Festival back in 2012, Fred Wesley and The New JBs return to the main stage on Saturday.

After taking a brief break, Craig Charles is also back on Mostly’s main stage – this time with added dancers. The actor, writer, broadcaster and DJ joins Sunday’s bill, where the BBC 6Music icon guarantees an inspired selection of crowd-pleasing funk and soul bangers!

Alongside the new A-list additions, the long-running festival has also revealed two Afterparties, which take place at the nearby Hare and Hounds, Kings Heath, Birmingham. Goldie, fresh from his main stage ‘band’ appearance, will be DJing on Friday 7th July, while rising local hero Sam Redmore takes to the decks on Saturday 8th July. Leftfoot DJs also appear on both nights, which start at 10pm. Tickets, which are limited, are on sale now.

With a line-up that spans genres, Brum’s famed Mostly Jazz Funk and Soul Festival 2023 sees previously announced appearances from Fat Freddy’s Drop, Kokoroko, Goldie (live), Jungle DJ Set and Crazy P Soundsystem (Friday); Ezra Collective, Smoove and Turrell, Heavy Beat Brass Band, Boca 45 and Young Gun Silver Fox (Saturday); and KC and The Sunshine Band, Incognito, Huey Morgan, Norman Jay, Jamz Supernova and Mica Millar (Sunday) – plus much more.

Alongside the music bill, the festival is also hosting a series of workshops, performances and activities with Birmingham Royal Ballet, street culture specialists High Vis Festival, and Dead Pixels (with their retro gaming caravan), plus Sofunk Dance Fitness, Drum N Bounce, The Swing Era, and dance tutor/dancer Ed Quigley.

With the full line-up now revealed, Mostly Jazz has also issued a call-out for volunteers. A variety of roles are available for those aged 18+, who gain free entry for the full event in return for two shifts. More information on how to apply can be found on the Mostly website.

Mostly Jazz Funk and Soul Festival runs from Friday 7th-Sunday 9th July. Tickets are on sale now from £57 per day or £145 for the full festival (plus booking fee). A Payment Plan is also available.

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