Pop and rock icons Sir Tom Jones, Lionel Richie, Simple Minds and Travis have been lined up for a series of major outdoor concerts in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle during this year’s Fringe.
Promoters have also signed up Brit Award winners McFly and The 1975, and singer-songwriter Michael Kiwanuka for the latest instalment of the “Summer Sessions” gigs in West Princes Street Gardens.
More than 47,000 fans flocked to shows by the likes of Lewis Capaldi, Primal Scream, Chvrches and Madness last year, with 36 per cent of tickets snapped up by local residents.
The new gigs, which have a capacity of up to 6000, were announced as a city council report estimated the shows to be worth £5.5 million to the economy.
DF Concerts, which revived the staging of large-scale concerts in the gardens in 2018, said this year’s season would be “a truly unique landmark event in the UK’s music calendar.” Further concerts are expected to be announced in the next few months.
Sir Tom Jones will be making his second appearance at the Summer Sessions after opening the inaugural festival, while Simple Minds will be performing in the gardens for the first time since their Hogmanay show in 2012.
Simple Minds singer Jim Kerr said: “No one enjoys playing in Scotland more than we do, and we are sure that fans from far and wide will want to join us for what is set to be a memorable concert in our capital city. We look forward to it immensely.”
Travis will be staging their first major outdoor show in Edinburgh as part of the Summer Sessions, while The 1975 will be playing a year after a headline slot at DF Concerts’ Summer Sessions season in Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park.
Travis frontman Fran Healy said: “We are very excited to announce this show – the venue is pretty breathtaking.”
Richie, who will be appearing in the city for the first time since an Edinburgh Castle concert in 2015, said: “I’m really looking forward to heading back to Scotland next summer.
"The crowds are some of the best in the world and I can’t wait to get back over there.”
Brit Award-winning pop-rock band McFly, who are embarking on a UK-wide tour in 2020 after a four-year hiatus, said: “It’s going to be an amazing show in front of Edinburgh Castle.”
A spokeswoman for DF Concerts said: “Taking place in the heart of Scotland’s capital city, the Edinburgh Summer Sessions will pop up against the backdrop of Edinburgh Castle during the world-renowned Edinburgh Festival, as six of the seven artists make their debut at the event.
"With some of the hottest artists in the world joining bona-fide music legends, the Edinburgh Summer Sessions is the festival to get excited about this summer.”
The new council report, which outlines the city’s support for events and festivals, states: “Evidence from other cities shows that outdoor concerts continue to grow in importance, helping to share and shape the summer city for a diverse demographic of residents and visitors.
“The presentation of high-quality popular music ensures that there is a widespread offer during the summer festival period and complements other activities taking place, in the Fringe and International Festival in particular.”