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Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival scoops De La Soul, Ginger Baker and Wilko Johnson

BY CLAIRE WILLIAMSON

Legendary hip hop stars De La Soul will be joined by Booker Prize-winning author DBC Pierre and comedian Rob Newman for the 15th Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival (CQAF).

American trio De La Soul are celebrating 25 years since the release of their world-conquering debut album, 3 Feet High And Rising.

Also on the festival bill this May are two-tone greats The Selecter, Vernon God Little author DBC Pierre, and 60s drumming legend and Cream founding member Ginger Baker with his stunning Jazz Confusion outfit.

Festival favourite, political comic Rob Newman will bring the laughs with his new New Theory of Evolution stand-up show.

Whirlwind guitarist Wilko Johnson will be performing, in spite of his ongoing battle against cancer, as well critically acclaimed comedy rap satirists Rubberbandits.

Also adding their names to the line up are dance pop stars F*** Buttons, who were hand-picked by director Danny Boyle to play at the Olympics Opening Ceremony.

Indie darlings Wild Beasts, Mark Mulcahy, Madison Violet, The Webb Sisters, The Handsome Family, World music superstars Tinariwen and cult Japanese pop act Shonen Knife will all grace the festival stage.

In addition, Jimi Goodwin of rock giants The Doves will make his first solo outing to Northern Ireland, while one man punk storm Hammell on Trial intends to blaze a trail through the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, which the Belfast Telegraph is a media partner for.

Colin Reid's musical adaptation of The Third Policeman makes a welcome return to the festival fold.

Festival director Sean Kelly said: "We're still working at the programming, but frankly we were so excited about the line-up so far, we just had to share."

"It's fitting that on our 15th anniversary, it's shaping up to be a festival to remember. We hope people are as excited about our early birds as we are."

CQAF FACTFILE

e The Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival (CQAF) is an annual festival of music, comedy, theatre, art and literature in Belfast.

e CQAF traditionally takes place in the first weeks of May in Belfast's Cathedral Quarter.

e The CQAF started in May 2000, attracting an audience of just over 5,000 and now regularly attracts over 60,000 people to over 100 events throughout Belfast's city centre.

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