NATIONAL and local musicians are banding together in the Staffordshire Moorlands to help keep the winter blues at bay.
Leek Blues and Americana Festival Committee, which organised the successful same-named debut event in the town last October, are hosting a mini festival entitled 'Winter Warmer' next month.
A spokesman for the committee said: "Leek has a lovely historic town centre, great pubs and a thriving local music scene.
"The Leek Blues and Americana Festival is all about showcasing these assets. Starting in October 2013, we have added a winter warmer for all of you blues fans in February.
"For our first year we had over 25 acts playing at nine venues all within easy walking distance of each other, some international acts at affordable prices and, thanks to the support of Leek's pubs and small business, a packed weekend of completely free music.
"We'll be back in October with more of the same. But for now, we hope everyone enjoys the February Winter Warmer."
Kicking off the mini festival, will be Dig Where You Stand at The Roebuck in Derby Street on Wednesday, February 5 at 8pm.
On the Friday (February 7), the local band The Midnight Magic Blues will be delivering an Albert Collins tribute evening at The Cock, also in Derby Street, from 9pm.
The following evening (Saturday, February 8) will see The Gregory S Davies Band performing at The Foxlowe Arts Centre in Leek's Market Place at 8.30pm; while the M.S.G. Blues With No Additives will be providing the live tunes at The Cock from 9pm.
On the Sunday (February 9), Gordie MacKeeman and His Rhythm Boys will be at The Foxlowe Arts Centre at 8pm.
The Roebuck and Cock events are free admission, while the two Foxlowe gigs are admission by ticket (£5 for Gregory S Davies Band, and £12 for Gordie MacKeeman). Tickets are available from The Foxlowe Arts Centre.
The Gregory S Davies Band is a five-piece Americana-style band which hails from Shrewsbury. Fronted by the singer-songwriter whose name it adopts, the band has a cohesive but exploratory sound encompassing gypsy folk, latin, blues, boogie-woogie and americana.
The group's song 'Rat-Trap' was chosen by BBC Radio Shropshire as its Song of the Month for March 2013 after the band played a live session for the station's Introducing Show last February.
Since then the group has received airplay for its ballad 'Power-Cut' from BBC Radio 2's Dermot O'Leary Show, released new single 'Last December', and played a host of live shows - including a headline slot at Sheffield's Tramlines Festival.
For more information about the Winter Warmer in February, and to keep an eye out for the line-up for this year's Leek Blues and Americana Festival in October, visit www.leekblues.co.uk