THOUSANDS of music fans are expected to pack out a number of venues during the eagerly-anticipated Swanage Blues Festival.

The three-day event, starting on March 1, is a firm favourite on the blues calendar, attracting an international audience.

Among the performers strutting their stuff this year are the Riotous Brothers, the Robin Bibi Band, Blues Machine, The Smokin’ Benny Brown Band, Zoe Schwarz and Blue Commotion.

A number of street buskers are also set to appear in and around town, including at Swanage’s railway station.

Central to the event’s laid-back atmosphere is the chance for aspiring performers to play alongside established musicians, such as Robin Bibi, at the festival’s Electric Jams.

There are also open mic sessions with Johnny Sharp & Martin Froud, and Stan’s Blues Jamboree as well.

Organiser Steve Darrington – who has played on more than 50 albums – is also a regular performer at the event.

A spokesman explained: “Regular fans love the friendly atmosphere and the wide range of electric and acoustic music available in the pubs, restaurants and hotel bars – 10 of which are close by in the High Street.

“To see many of the bands elsewhere can cost £10 a gig. But here, purchase of a single £10 weekend wristband ensures a warm welcome at 60 gigs in 15 indoor venues.

“Some hotels report bookings of three years in advance. Swanage Blues Festivals are enormously popular and wristband sales may be limited so it’s a good idea to buy your weekend wristbands and programmes in advance to avoid disappointment.”

For information and wristband booking visit