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Utilita Live From The Drive-In

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by David Vincent (subscribe)
Occasional blogger and sometimes freelance writer, hammering away in the West Midlands.
Event: -
Gigs are back
The current pandemic has decimated the summer's gig and festival calendar, with hundreds of shows and events cancelled.

But if you're missing your live music fix, then help is at hand thanks to LiveNation's exciting Utilita Live From The Drive-In series.

Sigala, Dizzie Rascal, The Streets, Beverley Knight, Embrace and Gary Numan, are among the artists who'll be appearing at Birmingham's NEC over August and into September 2020.

beverley knight, soul singer, drive-in gigs
Black Country soul singer Beverley Knight, who recently celebrated 25 years in music.


Full concert production is promised, with West End theatre extravaganzas, DJs, children's TV characters, and much more promised.

Taking place in North Car Park 5, at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC)/ Resorts World complex - just off the M42, in easy reach of Birmingham, Solihull and Coventry - audiences will be able to experience the entertainment from the comfort of their own vehicles, with each suitably spaced.

Sites will be limited to 300 cars and attendees can sit outside of their vehicles, on their own fold-out chairs, or stand, within their own socially distanced space.

With further acts and shows to be added, the Live From The Drive-In line-up includes former Spandau Ballet frontman Tony Hadley (7 Aug), Staffordshire DJ Nathan Dawe (8 Aug), Sigala (12 Aug, 7pm) and The Streets, aka Brum's own Mike Skinner (12 Aug, 9pm).

skindred, rock, drive-in gigs, nec
South Wales alternative rock band Skindred


UK dancehall and reggae stars Reggae Roast and Gentleman's Dub Club Sound System (13 Aug), Wolverhampton soul star Beverley Knight (14 Aug), rock/ ragga combo Skindred (16 Aug) and tenor Russell Watson (18 Aug) also appear.

the snuts, drive-in gigs, nec
The Snuts by Charlie Cummings (c)


Ensuring a varied line-up, science show Brainiac Live (19 Aug), rising indie band The Snuts (19 Aug), legendary ABBA tribute Bjorn Again (20 Aug), and Cream Classical Ibiza (22 Aug) continue the programme.

gary numan, nec, drive-in gigs
Synth pioneer Gary Numan by Joeri Peeters (c)


Concluding August and heading into September, look out too for Britpop survivors Embrace (26 Aug), Mark Ronson-produced jazz funkateers The Brand New Heavies (27 Aug), British rap/ grime hero Dizzie Rascal (29 Aug), Ireland's Ash (30 Aug), synth pioneer Gary Numan (1 Sep) and Liverpool's reformed The Zutons (1 Sep) - who closed Moseley Folk Festival with a storming set last year.

brand new heavies, drive in gigs, nec
The Brand New Heavies, who've recently been working with famed producer Mark Ronson.


Tickets for LiveNation's Utilita Live From The Drive-In performances are on sale from Monday 22 August 2020.

tony hadley, drive-in gigs, car park, nec
Vocalist Tony Hadley


LiveNation's Utilita Live From The Drive-In series is also taking place at other locations around the UK, including venues in London, Liverpood, Bolton, Milton Keynes, Teesdie, Edinburgh, Newmarket, Bristol, Lincoln, Leeds and Cheltenham. Line-ups vary from venue-to-venue, with other acts including Kaiser Chiefs, Lightning Seeds Jack Savoretti, and classical siblings Sheku and Isata Kanneh-Mason.

For full UK-wide listings, see LiveNation: Utilita Live From The Drive-In.

Embrace, drive-in, car park, nec
1990's guitar act Embrace
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Why? Great gigs, in the safety of your own car
When: August and September 2020
Where: Resorts World, NEC, Birmingham
Cost: Varies
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