6th UK Blues Challenge 2019



Ash Wilson

Drawn to the Blues music his parents introduced him to, (artists such as Muddy Waters, Son House, Eric Clapton and Albert King), It became obvious his ambition as a 14 year old was to become a great Artist like his heroes.

Early in his career he co-founded East Midlands based Blues band The Melt aged 16. Ash in his early 20’s decided to join “DJUNE, featuring his Brother Phil Wilson. After further crafting a rare and distinctive songwriting, guitar and singing skills he wrote and recorded tracks featured in films by “Wavelength” Europe’s biggest surfing magazine. These opportunities led to Djune performing with Ocean Colour Scene, The Kooks and Pigeon Detectives.

After a break, Ash returned to being a live performer with alternative rock band Infamous Vampires. Co-founded with his brother Phil Wilson. In 2014 he became a full time member of the Sean Webster Band. In 2016 Ash was asked to join, Jesse Davey’s Big Blues Band, co-writing and singing the song “The Revalator” from the “Big Blues Album” Which came 3rd in the 2016 “best Album Category.


It was unfortunate that Ash was unable to form a band for the day of the Challenge so was ineligable to compete. He performed a solo set as an introduction to the Challenge instead.

The Achievers

The Achievers are one of the most talked about and critically acclaimed new bands on the UK Blues and Roots Music scene. With a reputation for innovation and originality they prove that soul, groove and song-craft still matter in the blues.

Their own brand of modern, secular ‘Dancefloor Gospel-blues’ has catapulted them from near-complete obscurity to rave reviews and big-stage appearances across Europe. Thier new album ‘The Lost Arc’ was recorded mostly ‘live in the studio’ and is as much of an event as it is an album – it marks the arrival of The Achievers as a new force in British Blues & Roots songwriting.

The band draw on their obsession with American vintage dancing music and the songwriting pioneers of early Rhythm & Blues, Americana and Southern Soul. With their infectious rhythms, joyful melodies and four-part harmonies The Achievers stand proudly as British Blues & Roots outliers.


Crossfire Blues Band

Crossfire Blues Band are led by the highly talented teenage sensation Marcus Preastgaard on guitar and fronted by vocalist Alice Armstrong who is one of those artists who truly owns the stage, Not only can she belt it out with the best of them, but has the emotional depth for the slower numbers. They are supported by the rhytm section of a couple of seasoned professionals with Graham Walker on drums (Gary Moore, B.B King, Albert Collins, Mick Jagger, George Harrison} and Eddie Masters on bass (Lonnie Donegan, Rod Argent, Bad Influence, Nigel Bagge). Their music spans old style blues, soul, funk and a bit of jazz.


Connor Selby

Connor Selby is a rising British star in the traditions of Eric Clapton and Peter Green, who has already performed with his band at Wembley Stadium, at the age of 22, at the behest of The Who. The young bandleader-guitarist-vocalist draws on influences as diverse as B.B. King, Ray Charles, Free and Nick Drake, creating a soulful blend of hard-hitting blues and emotional, introspective song writing, which, at times, evokes a modern take on the best of the British blues boom of the 1960’s.


Little Triggers

A young, four piece band from Liverpool selected as the fifth participants of the Blues challenge by the Jessica Foxley Music Project on the Jesssica Foxley Stage at the Colne Great British R&B Festival.





The Achievers

Click here for press release by The UKBlues Federation from Blues Matters! Magazine

Winners’ Opportunities

The band was invited to represent the UK at the…

36th International Blues Challenge organised by the Blues Foundation between January 28 – February 1, 2020 in Memphis, USA and 

10th European Blues Challenge organised by the European Blues Union on 17 and 18 April 2020 in Zaandam, near Amsterdam.

Click here for details of The Achievers Crowdfunding Campaign.

Photo Galleries

Click here for the Earlyblues.com 6th UK Blues Challenge photo gallery.

Reviews & Interviews

Click here for an interview with The Achievers by Bluesdoodles

Click here for an interview with Ash Wilson by Bluesdoodles

Click here for an interview with Connor Selby by Bluesdoodles

Click here for an interview with Crossfire by Bluesdoodles

Click here for an interview with Little Triggers by Bluesdoodles

Comments and Feedback

Steve Ferbrache (The Achievers): ‘Being selected to take part in the UK Blues Challenge is first and foremost an honour, we were humbled to be asked. If you happen to win as we did it becomes a delicious opportunity to reach a wider audience and it gave us even more cause to feel really positive about the music we make – all the while backed by the very supportive UKBlues Federation. Get stuck in, it’s totally worth it’


If any reader has memorabilia of the event please email alan@earlyblues.com