Black Deer Festival 2023


“A line-up that supports a diverse future and celebrates those who came before” – The Line of Best Fit  

“Black Deer gathers together some of the finest songwriters, the greatest singers, the best musicians, all in one beautiful setting. There’s no other music festival like it in the UK” – The Independent

  • Over 10,000 fans flocked to Eridge Park, immersing themselves in the music, food and storytelling of a culture like no other
  • Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats deliver a historic headline show on Friday, The Pretenders enthral Eridge Park on Saturday, plus Richard Hawley closes the weekend with an incredible headline performance
  • Super Early Bird tickets for Black Deer 2024 are on sale now
  • Black Deer will take place from 14-16 June 2024

This weekend’s Black Deer Festival was a true celebration of the cultural heritage of America. From showcasing the biggest and brightest musicians in Americana and its sub-genres to the flavours, foods, and cooking styles of America’s deep south, even the rain that came late on couldn’t dampen the spirits of the Black Deer community.

Friday’s headliner Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats delivered a blistering performance that will go down in Black Deer history – in particular, the wondrous ‘S.O.B’ that had the crowd singing back every word of the group’s iconic anthem. Both Damian Lewis and Far From Saints celebrated their debut album releases by performing at the deer park, with the likes of Midlake, Kurt Vile and the Violators, Jamie Wyatt, Grace Petrie and Bonnie Light Horseman also performing.

On Saturday, the music started early on the Caffé Nero stage, with early birds soaking up the morning atmosphere of the deer park. Opening the main stage was the haunting vocals of Katherine Priddy, who paved the way for a very enthusiastic, powerful set from Cardiff’s Cardinal Black. Performing her only UK festival show was the timeless Bonnie Raitt, who peppered her set with her own classic tunes and some surprise covers, including INXS’s ‘Need You Tonight’. Closing the main stage was the iconic rock band The Pretenders, who packed their set with hits from the past five decades, including ‘Don’t Get Me Wrong’ and ‘I’ll Stand By You’. The other stages were packed throughout the day with performances from the likes of Amythyst Kiah, Allison Russell, Dylan Earl, Ian Prowse & Amsterdam, Angeline Morrison and more.

The final day of Black Deer kicked off with the breathtaking Gospel Brunch that provided great food and righteous music. Elsewhere, Lukas Nelson & POTR stunned the crowd as he paid homage to his dad, Willie Nelson, by performing his 1980 track ‘Angel Flying Too Close To The Ground’. Bear’s Den headlined The Ridge stage with a delicate and anthemic set, while on the main stage, Richard Hawley closed off an incredible weekend of music with an eclectic, genre-spanning performance.

Of course, Black Deer showcases all aspects of the cultural heritage and communal spirit of America. The Live Fire Stage was bustling all weekend with BBQ cooking demonstrations and the now legendary Chilli Eating competition. The Songwriting Sessions featuring Jamie Wyatt, Brennen Leigh, Melissa Carper, Stephen Wilson and Willi Carlisle inspired and entertained, and the Young Folk area provided fun for the young and curious throughout the festival.

Co-founders Deb Shilling and Gill Tee say, “We can’t thank our wonderful audience enough for making the fourth edition of Black Deer Festival the best yet. Our dedicated team of staff, crew, suppliers and volunteers give this festival the unique aura we are proud to possess, and we can’t thank them all enough for the commitment and courage they bring to the festival. And huge thanks to the artists who have graced our stages over these three fabulous days and nights… we may have felt a little rain late on, but your dedication to the craft we all love so much is what motivates Black Deer to keep building. What a weekend! See you all in the deer park next summer…”

Black Deer 2024 will take place from Friday, 14 June – Sunday, 16 June, with a limited number of Super Early Bird tickets on sale now. Tickets for the Black Deer Festival 2024 are now available to purchase