Hitchin's very own music festival brings in the crowds
16th July 2012
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Once more, Rhythms of the World brought thousands of people to Hitchin for the weekend. Most of the hotels were fully-booked and most shops did a roaring trade in wellies and waterproofs.

The wettest summer (if you can call it that) for a century gave a terrible start to the festival, as several bands couldn't play. That included the fabulous North Herts Jazz Band. Ironically, one of the Rhythms aims is to promote youth music and it was this very band that was unable to open the festival.

A few hours of sunshine during Saturday afternoon saw the crowds roll in and enjoy some amazing bands from North Herts and across the world and by the time the rain started again just after 7, stalwart music fans were enjoying Jasi Sidhu and headliners Juju on the main stage and the extraordinary performance by The Damned on the Nettlebed stage.

What a change on Sunday! The sun shone all day and the mud finally started to dry out. Families, teenagers and devotees of world music streamed through the gates and enjoyed the music and the food.

Closing the main stage came Speech Debelle and her fabulous band, followed by replacement act Little Roy. A reggae star of immense coolness with one of the hottest horn sections on stage anywhere, he was a fitting replacement for Junior Murvin, who sadly broke his leg last month and had to cancel all UK appearances.

The sun was just setting as Little Roy closed Rhythms and it gave Performance Director Steve Smither the last word, thanking the 800 volunteers and thousands of audience members who had made this 21st year of Rhythms such a great one.

About the Author

Hilary R

Member since: 31st May 2012

Writer and sax player. Brought up in Hitchin and - apart from uni and some ensuing madness of life in London - I've always lived here.

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