JAMES BROWN – HE’S ESSENTIAL!

The Godfather Of Soul to headline the returning Brighton Essential Festival...

James Brown will headline the Essential Festival weekender to be held in Stanmer Park Brighton on July 15 and 16.

The soul legend, who also plays Guildford Festival which takes place July 28-30, is one of two hundred acts – other names confirmed at present include Judge Jules, Grooverider, Tim Westwood, DJ Krush and Horace Andy – who will perform over 6 stages during the two days. A full line-up will be announced in the coming weeks.

Day one, billed as Dance Day, will include the main Essential Stage, Big Beat Boutique Stage, Pussycat Club Stage, Legends Of The Dark Black Stage, World Dance Stage and Experiments In Sound Stage.

On day two – Roots Day – there will be a Touch Stage, Roots Stage, Rockers Stage, Global Spirits Stage and Zulu Warrior Stage.

The Essential Festival is returning after a two-year break from Stanmer Park. The last to be held there was was a three day event in May 1997 and featured the likes of The Chemical Brothers, Shed Seven, Space, Fatboy Slim, Future Sound Of London, Brand New Heavies and Burning Spear.

The year after, the council reduced the site’s capacity limit from 10,000 to 5000 per day, which effectively put the kibosh on Essential being able to hold festivals there. However, this year, the council have relented and upped the limit back up to 10,000 per day once more.

Essential boss Ish Ali told nme.com: “I think the council have realised the town needs the festival back, and this is the best site for it. They’ve given us no objections whatsover this year. We’re hoping it’ll be the best yet.”

Tickets for the Essential are charged at #30 per day and are available from April 15 online at www.essentialfestival.co.uk.

For Guildford tickets, go to the nme.com Ticketshop – click here

Or call the 24-Hour NME Virgin Cola Ticketline on 0870 1 663 663. Calls are charged at national standard rate.