Scottish Sea Farms and Oban Live team up in nationwide talent hunt

Argyll’s biggest outdoor live music concert Oban Live has teamed up with leading salmon grower Scottish Sea Farms to give talented musicians the opportunity to win a stage slot at the rural stadium gig this June. 

The winners will join a whole stream of international Celtic, rock and folk acts confirmed for the 2019 event, attended by thousands on June 7 & 8, including Skerryvore, We Banjo 3, Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Lucy Spraggan and more. 

The new Scottish Sea Farms Unsigned Oban Live campaign launched on social media on Tuesday night and is now open for entries. Two slots at Oban Live 2019 are up for grabs, with one winning act being from the local area of Oban and one from the rest of Scotland. A panel of judges will select a shortlist from each category and then it will be up to the public to vote for the winners.  

The competition sees big changes this year with opportunities widened up to the whole of Scotland and the introduction of a new title sponsor Scottish Sea Farms.  

Georgie Mackenzie, Coordinator for Scottish Sea Farms’ Heart of the Community initiative said: “Encouraging and supporting emerging talent is something we put a lot into at Scottish Sea Farms, both in terms of our own teams and the local communities in which we live and work. So to be approached about partnering Unsigned Oban Live seemed like a really good fit; one that will give even more local and Scottish talent the chance to shine.” 

Daniel Gillespie, Managing Director for Oban Live and co-founder of Skerryvore who started the event in 2016, said: “We are incredibly grateful for the support from Scottish Sea Farms. Their Heart of the Community initiative is well suited to our talent competition and the event itself as bringing people and musicians together for the good of the community is at the core of everything we do here at Oban Live.” 

He added: “Not only is Oban Live the perfect stage for musicians to showcase their talents in front of thousands, but it is also an excellent opportunity to get hands-on experience of performing in a stadium-sized arena. Good luck to all who enter and we look forward to receiving entries and seeing who the public chooses in the coming months.”

The prize package also includes a performance slot at the Official Oban Live 2019 After Party at The View, Oban, a major part of the Oban Live Fringe Programme, and access to the concert both days so they can enjoy the party too. Winners and shortlisted artistes will be able to enjoy some well-earned attention in campaign promotions on Oban Live and Scottish Sea Farms social platforms and beyond. 

Those shortlisted in the local category will also battle it out at a special shortlist night in April at The View, Oban, as part of their campaign for votes. 

Musicians interested in entering will be asked to submit examples of work including live performance footage and links to music. To enter and for full terms and conditions visit 

Tickets are on sale now for Oban Live which takes place on June 7 & 8, 2019, at Mossfield Stadium in Oban. Visit


Festival partner BID4Oban joins search for Oban Live Fringe Partners

BID4Oban and Oban Live are inviting Oban businesses to get involved in the music concert’s Fringe Programme this year, running from Thursday June 6 to Sunday June 9.

The Fringe Partners project comes as business improvement district group BID4Oban has confirmed it will back Oban Live for a fourth year running, providing key financial and administration support for the cultural event.

At last year’s Oban Live Fringe, a number of Oban’s bars, cafes, shops and activity providers put on a range of events and special offers over Oban Live weekend. Oban Live ticket holders took advantage of added entertainment, including live music, in many pubs and cafes as well as special discounts in the town’s shops.

Marketing of the 2019 Fringe Programme will be handled by Oban Live and BID4Oban and will include a dedicated Fringe web page on, social media push, email marketing and offline promotion in the town. Participating businesses will also be given an Oban Live Fringe Partner window sticker to display at their establishment during the weekend.

Oban will host the Queen Victoria Cruise Ship on Friday June 7, the first day of the event, so Oban Live and the Oban Live Fringe will be an opportunity to give the overseas visitors an even more exciting experience of Oban. BID4Oban staff will be handing out Oban Live Fringe programmes as passengers disembark at North Pier Pontoons on June 7 as well as other information about Oban.

Feedback from Oban Live 2018 suggested that there were not many places open for breakfast on the Sunday morning. Relevant local businesses have been invited to run “Oban Live Breakfast Specials” that the event can promote to ticket holders this year.

It is free for businesses to submit an event or offer and become an Oban Live Fringe Partner and outlets can upload their Fringe details at  Fringe events must take place before and after Oban Live which runs 4pm until 11.30pm on Friday June 7 and Saturday June 8 to ensure that no-one misses out on the main event.

Chief Executive for BID4Oban, Andrew Spence, said: “The Fringe is a fantastic opportunity to further encourage visitor spend in local businesses whilst complimenting the main event itself. The economic impact for Oban, as a result of visitors coming to the town for Oban Live, was £1.4 million last year and this is growing year-on-year.”

He added: “The event’s year-round marketing activity helps put Oban on the map as a top cultural destination. With an increase in ticket sales and the award of Best Cultural Event at the 2018 Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards, Oban Live has proven itself to be an all round social, cultural and economic benefit for Oban and we are delighted to support it again in 2019.”

Naomi Hoolahan, Event Director for Oban Live, said: “We are thrilled to be working in partnership with BID4Oban and Oban’s business community and thank them once again for the financial grant and resource support, which, in our early days growing the event, is critical. Collaborative working is key when delivering a first class event and cultural experience for thousands of people, especially in a small area such as Oban.

She added: “Thanks to all the businesses who took part last year and we look forward to receiving events and special offer ideas that we can add to our 2019 Fringe, which is improving every year. 60% of Oban Live’s audience come from outside of Argyll and Bute and so the Fringe is a great opportunity to show off everything Oban has to offer.”

More information can be found at

Tickets are on sale now for Oban Live which takes place June 7 & 8 at Mossfield Stadium in Oban. It is the biggest outdoor live music concert in Argyll and enters its fourth year running in 2019. Last year’s attendance figures reached 8,027 and injected £1.4million into the local economy. Visit

Oban Live announces Scottish exclusive in 2019 line-up reveal

Argyll’s biggest outdoor live music event Oban Live will be the only place in Scotland in 2019 to see multi-award winning Irish quartet We Banjo 3. Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Lucy Spraggan, Elephant Sessions, Talisk and JigJam are also amongst the first confirmed acts to join headliners Skerryvore at their signature event next year.

Tickets are on sale now for the award-winning Oban concert, taking place on Friday June 7 and Saturday June 8 at the town’s Mossfield Stadium.

As well as performing their own energetic set of Irish, bluegrass and old-time sounds on the Friday, We Banjo 3, described as one of the best live acts to come out of Ireland in recent years, will also reunite with international trad-fusion Scots band Skerryvore for a special collaboration on the Saturday. The two bands caused a comedy storm on social media during their joint American tour earlier this year as they fought for votes in their widely popular Bagpipes versus Banjo campaign.

We Banjo 3 said: “We had an amazing time with our good friends Skerryvore on our North America Celtic Brotherhood tour this year so to bring our battle of Bagpipes versus Banjos back to the Celtic homeland will be something truly special. We last played at Oban Live in 2017 and it was incredible. The audience were out of this world so we can’t wait to see you all again for some banjo madness!”

The band are amongst some impressive company too.

Red Hot Chilli Pipers play their first Oban Live on Friday June 7. The multi-award winning band’s achievements have reached incredible heights with their groundbreaking fusion of traditional Scottish music and rock-pop anthems which they proudly call ‘Bagrock’.

Hitting the stage on Saturday, Lucy Spraggan will perform her trademark sound of rap dropped into sing-along folk style numbers. Lucy appeared on the X Factor in 2012 and her audition video has been viewed more than 40 million times. She netted her fourth top 40 album in January last year and her fifth album is due for release in early 2019.

Elephant Sessions, winners of Live Act of the Year at the 2018 MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards, hail from the Highlands of Scotland and have exploded onto the indie folk scene with unparalleled effect. They are currently finalising their third album due for release in March 2019 and Oban Live, on Friday June 7, will be part of their UK album tour.

In their five years, Scottish firebrands Talisk have stacked up several major awards for their explosively energetic yet artfully woven sound, including 2017’s Folk Band of the Year and a £25,000 Belhaven Bursary for Innovation in Music 2018, both at the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards.  They play Oban Live on Saturday June 8.

JigJam are a multi-award winning quartet from the heart of the midlands in Ireland. Blending the best of traditional Irish music with Bluegrass and Americana in a new genre which has been branded as ‘I Grass’ (Irish influenced Bluegrass), the Oban Live audience can expect to be captivated by their onstage energy along with their virtuosic musical ability on Friday June 7.

Described as one of Scotland’s finest musical exports with their spectacular trademark fusion of folk, trad, rock and Americana, Skerryvore, Saturday’s headliners, are a multi award-winning eight piece male line-up and firm favourites on the festival scene. The band created Oban Live in 2016 after 6,000 people came to their 10th anniversary Oban concert Decade the previous year.

Tickets are on sale now and more acts for Oban Live 2019 are expected to be announced in the coming months.

Oban Live awarded Best Cultural Event

Argyll’s biggest outdoor live music event, Oban Live, scooped Best Cultural Event or Festival at the 2018 Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards in Inverness last Friday. The win comes just days before Early Bird tickets for the 2019 event go on sale on Saturday, November 10.


Daniel Gillespie, Managing Director for Oban Live and Skerryvore Co-Founder said: “Oban Live is absolutely delighted to win this award. We remember very clearly debating what we should do to celebrate Skerryvore’s 10th Anniversary in 2015 and whether we would be able to convince a couple of thousand people to come to an outdoor event in a shinty field in Oban. Now almost 5 years later we are so proud that this single concert has gone on to become Argyll’s largest live music event that brings in significant economic, social and cultural benefits to the town. A huge thanks to the local community and all of the amazing artists, bands, staff, volunteers and attendees who have joined us on this incredible journey. Here’s to OBAN LIVE 2019 being the biggest and best yet.”


He added: “Special congratulations to all the Argyll winners and finalists of which there were many.”


The event has gone from strength to strength in a short space of time since its official inception in 2016 following Skerryvore’s successful Decade concert in 2015. In June 2018, Oban Live celebrated an attendance figure of just over 8,000 and an economic boost of £1.4million to the local rural town. The concert, which transforms Mossfield into a stadium sized arena for two days, welcomes visitors from all over the world who come to see an eclectic all star line-up of traditional, folk, rock and pop artists in a unique west coast setting.


To celebrate tickets going on sale this week, the event team is throwing a short Ticket Launch Party on Thursday November 8 at The View in Oban, 7.45pm to 8.45pm.  The free one-hour event will include prize giveaways including VIP tickets, an exclusive preview screening of a new Oban Live film, live music from Ceol an Aire, a speech from Oban Live and the chance to meet the Oban Live team. Free tickets for the launch are limited and available via Eventbrite until tickets sell out.


Ticket release date confirmed for Argyll’s biggest party

Early bird tickets for Oban Live 2019, Argyll’s biggest outdoor music concert, are to go on sale on Saturday November 10, the event team has announced today (Thursday).


The event, started in 2016 by one of Scotland’s finest musical exports Skerryvore, takes place on June 7 and 8 next year at Mossfield Stadium in Oban, Argyll, on the west coast of Scotland.


The highly anticipated news from the event follows another successful year for Oban Live, celebrating an attendance figure of just over 8,000 and an economic boost of £1.4million to the local rural town. The event welcomes visitors from all over the world who come to see an eclectic all star line-up of traditional, folk, rock and pop artists in a unique west coast stadium setting.


Discounted ‘Early Bird’ tickets will go on sale via the Oban Live website on Saturday November 10 at 12pm until tickets last.  Full price tickets will go on sale thereafter.


Back for a fourth consecutive year, the award winning cultural party in the traditional and truly spectacular Scottish town of Oban takes place on June 7 & 8, 2019, at Mossfield Stadium. Previous stars have included KT Tunstall (2016), Toploader, Hue And Cry (2017) as well as international traditional music favourites Skerryvore, Sharon Shannon and We Banjo 3. The Oban Live Fringe extends the party across the whole weekend with live music & special offers across the towns’ bars, cafes, restaurants, shops and more.


The event was created following Skerryvore’s open-air concert ‘DECADE’ in 2015, the tenth anniversary celebration of the trad-fusion band that attracted 6,000 people from all over the world to Oban. Such was the reaction and impact of the event, 98% of attendees requested that it became an annual event. From this, Oban Live was formed in 2016 with the aim of showcasing the very best Scottish and international artists as part of both the open-air concert and Oban Live Fringe events.


Oban Live 2018 brought £1.4million boost for local economy  

Oban Live, Argyll’s biggest outdoor live music event, injected over £1.4million to the local economy this year, according to a recent economic impact survey. The positive figure shows a 3% rise in impact from last year, bringing significant investment for the town over a non-holiday weekend.


The 2018 event, in its third year running, was hailed a success, entertaining just over 8,000 attendees with a 7% increase in ticket sales compared to last year.  Thousands flocked to Oban’s Mossfield Stadium, which is transformed into a stadium-sized concert arena for the event, to catch a mixture of highly acclaimed trad, pop and rock stars including Skerryvore, Skipinnish, Tide Lines, Hermitage Green and Peatbog Faeries. The event has been shortlisted for Best Cultural Event at this year’s Highland and Islands Tourism Awards in November. Winners from each category at the awards ceremony will automatically be put forward as a regional finalist in the National Scottish Thistle Awards scheme.


A rise in visitors from elsewhere in Scotland shows that visitors are increasingly travelling to Oban for Oban Live from further afield. 63% were visiting the event from outwith the local area. 99% of survey respondents said they were in the area as a direct result of the event. 8% were visiting Oban for the first time. More than 18% stayed for four or more nights. Visitors each spent on average £333 on accommodation, food and drink whilst in Oban, with spend in the town at its highest in bars, restaurants and cafes.


A Fringe Partner programme was introduced for the Oban Live 2018 event which encouraged local businesses to hold an event or special offer over the weekend. The 2018 Fringe Programme, in association with BID4Oban and The Oban Times, was packed with live music events across the town before and after Oban Live and special offers included money off tourist activities, meals and shop items.


Andrew Spence, Chief Executive for BID4Oban Ltd, a key partner for Oban Live, said: “BID4Oban is delighted with the latest economic impact figures that have recently been released. They are testament to how our organisation can work closely with the organisers of Oban Live. A huge amount of work goes on in the background with both organisations to ensure an excellent experience for both festival goers and the business community. We want to see this event go from strength to strength and in particular grow the fringe opportunities throughout the event. BID4Oban are looking forward to supporting Oban Live during 2019.”


Naomi Hoolahan, Event Director for Oban Live said: “Since day one of Oban Live, our main aim has always been to bring positive economic benefits to the town, so the news of a rise in visitor spend is very encouraging. Hosting thousands of visitors and building Oban Live to the highest standard is a costly and time consuming job that can’t be done without the continued support from our partners, sponsors, local businesses and the local community. A massive thank you to all those involved and we look forward to working with you on Oban Live 2019.”


Plans for the 2019 event, which takes place at Mossfield Stadium on June 7 & 8, have begun and ticket announcements are expected to be made in the coming weeks.


Oban Live music concert takes over rural coastal town for third year


Argyll’s biggest outdoor music concert Oban Live came to a close last night, Saturday June 9, tallying up an attendance figure of just under 8,000 attendees over the two-days. Thousands of revellers made their way to Mossfield Stadium in the rural coastal town of Oban in the west coast of Scotland for the incredible spectacle, which transforms a shinty sports field into a major concert arena.


For a third year running, the massive cultural west coast party entertained visitors from all over the world, from as far as Australia and the USA, with an eclectic mix of Scots ‘Trad”, folk, pop and rock music, taking over the town which has a population of 8,000. Friday enjoyed a whole day of glorious sunshine and, despite mixed forecasts, the event luckily escaped the rain on Saturday as the sun shone in time for gates opening, staying dry for the rest of the evening.


Friday’s line-up included a stream of incredible acts including Blazin’ Fiddles, Hermitage Green from Ireland, Tide Lines and headliners Skipinnish. 19 year old solo/singer writer Kathleen Robertson, winner of the local Oban Unsigned competition, opened the show with a stunning set.


An impressive all-star line-up of 24 top names in the Scottish traditional music industry also came together on Friday, exclusively for Oban Live, in an emotional collaboration named ‘Sons of Argyll’. The project paid homage to late inspirational figures from the region that played a key role in the lives and music of the performers involved.  Musicians from Tide Lines, Skipinnish, Skerryvore, Blazin’ Fiddles, Trail West and Gunna Sound, as well as this year’s Mòd Gold Medallists, Rachel Walker and Alasdair Currie, members of Oban Gaelic Choir and world class pipers, and many more well known names in the industry, were included in the project line-up.


The party continued on an even busier day on Saturday, welcoming on stage Rhuvaal, local band Chunks, Heron Valley, Sharon Shannon with Michael McGoldrick and Susan O’Neill, Peatbog Faeries and ending with a spectacular finale from headliners and festival founders, Skerryvore. The multi award-winning eight piece male line-up, firm favourites on the festival scene, launched their sixth studio album Evo at Oban Live, just days before its official June 11 release on the Tyree Records label.


A highlight for the weekend was the mind-blowing moment when Oban High School Pipe Band joined Skerryvore on stage for a performance of Soraidh Slan and The Rise, new tracks from Skerryvore’s Evo album, complete with light-up drumsticks. People also tuned in from all over the world as the moment was live streamed across social media channels.


Daniel Gillespie, Managing Director for Oban Live, said: “A massive thank you to everyone who joined us at Oban Live 2018 for yet another fantastic year. Bringing a concert of this scale to Oban would not be possible without the support of our attendees, the local Oban community, our partners and sponsors, our team and crew and our amazing volunteers. Thank you to everyone involved and we’ll be discussing plans for 2019 very soon.”


Three days to go until OBANLIVE2018!

There are only three days to go until thousands head to Oban Live, the biggest open-air live music concert in Argyll. The two-day event kicks off at Mossfield Stadium on June 8 and 9 in Oban. The site build officially commences today, starting with one of the biggest jobs which sees contractors from Glasgow installing high-end, concert-stadium pitch cover that will protect the famous shinty ground.


Entertaining thousands with a mix of Scots ‘Trad”, pop and rock music, the complete 2018 line-up was confirmed last night and includes a stream of incredible acts including Skerryvore, Skipinnish, Tide Lines, Peatbog Faeries, Hermitage Green and many more.


Popular Irish folk duo Hudson Taylor have pulled out of this year’s Oban Live, Argyll’s biggest live music event, due to family circumstances. The event team confirmed on social media last night that Argyll folk based band Rhuvaal will take their place and will open the show on Saturday June 9 at 4.30pm.


Hailing from Argyll, Rhuvaal are a traditional band consisting of five members. Having built up a solid following in Kintyre & Lorn, the band are now enjoying performing in many different venues and exploring their sound and music throughout Scotland. Playing modern traditional music with a variety of instruments and songs, Rhuvaal has been described as a band to look out for in the future.


Daniel Gillespie, Managing Director for Oban Live, said: “We are delighted to release the final schedule for Oban Live 2018 and look forward to welcoming attendees, artists and guests from all over the world to Oban this weekend for the biggest live music event in Argyll. Whilst sad to lose Hudson Taylor from the 2018 line-up at last minute, we are really pleased that with Rhuvaal we can now provide another major opportunity for young local talent to shine at Oban Live, especially as 2018 marks the Year of Young People in Scotland.”


Tickets are still available at Limited VIP tickets are left and Oban Live camping tickets, in association with West Coast Motors and Oban Caravan and Camping Park, are selling out fast.


Films look to strike a chord with UK visitors

VisitScotland support Oban concert’s latest campaign

Argyll’s biggest open-air live music event has launched a brand new marketing campaign to raise the profile of itself and Oban with the support of VisitScotland.

OBANLIVE, taking place on 8th and 9th June this year, has launched two new films targeting people out with Argyll, as well as maritime visitors, following an award of £11,250 from EventScotland, part of the national tourism organisation’s Events Directorate.

The videos have been distributed via social media, targeting high populated Scottish cities and UK sailing and marine tourism markets respectively. It is hoped the campaign will see the event enjoy a record attendance this year, and promote Oban as an accessible, attractive and marine tourism destination for visitors across Britain.

The first film, entitled “The last train to Oban” is a beautiful short film about a grandfather who shares his affection for Oban and Oban Live music concert with his granddaughter Emma. Images of the event and the town’s scenery and culture are shown whilst the grandfather recites his poem “Lovely Oban”. Viewers can also enjoy stunning shots of the train journey to Oban.

The second video, “Sail to Oban Live” follows three very different yachts making their way to the event – sailing in and around Oban Marina, the new North Pier Pontoons and Dunstaffnage Marina. The video is supported by a webpage on with information on local facilities for marine visitors.

OBANLIVE, now in its third year, features a mix of traditional Scottish artists and international superstars and entertains around 8,000 music lovers at the famous Mossfield Stadium. It was created following the success of Skerryvore’s tenth anniversary concert DECADE and is still run by two of the band members and brothers, Daniel and Martin Gillespie.

This year’s line-up includes Skipinnish, Irish rock band Hermitage Green and festival favourites Skerryvore. The event experience is also enhanced with Fringe events in the town, VIP packages, well-stocked bars, amazing food vendors and unique merchandise.

This is the concert’s third year of funding through EventScotland’s National Programme Fund and is one of 12 events from across ten local authorities in Scotland which have benefited from nearly £100,000 of funding in the programme’s 37th round. The National Programme Fund plays an integral role in developing domestic tourism across Scotland by helping grow the country’s diverse events portfolio.

Daniel Gillespie, Director of Oban Live, said: “When visitors come to Oban Live, not only do they get to experience an impressive, authentic Scottish music concert, but they also get to experience all that is on offer in the unique and cultural location of Oban. This funding from EventScotland has allowed us to create high quality, engaging content that combines and showcases both the event and the town as one package, which in turn will bring a significant boost to the local economy. A massive thank you to EventScotland for the support.”  

David Adams McGilp, VisitScotland Regional Director, said: “I am delighted to see that OBANLIVE was one of the 12 events across the country to be supported by EventScotland. These two short films showcase Oban’s wonderful tourism offering and I hope the concert will enjoy a record year as a result.

“The visitors this event attracts represent a massive benefit for the local economy. Tourism is more than a holiday experience – it is integral to sustaining communities across Scotland by generating income, creating jobs and stimulating social change.”

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, said: EventScotland is delighted to be supporting OBANLIVE through our National Programme, for the third consecutive year. Over the last few years the popular festival has gone from strength-to-strength, demonstrating why Scotland is the perfect stage for music events.” 

“Our funding support of the two digital films will enable OBANLIVE to further grow; attracting new audiences from outwith the area, and in turn delivering economic benefits for Oban and the region.” 

Enabling existing events to expand what they offer visitors, extend their marketing reach and enhance the on-site experience of attendees are just some of the ways that National Funding Programme support is used to help regional events continue to flourish and grow further. This in turn strengthens Scotland’s overall events portfolio – a major contributor to our national economy.

To view “The last train to Oban” go to

To view “Sail to Oban” go to

For more information about OBANLIVE go to

For more information about VisitScotland’s Event’s Directorate go to

The full list of events receiving support from Round 37 of EventScotland’s National Programme Fund are:

Event Date Funding Local Authority Website
Bonfest 4 – 6 May £9,332 Angus Council
Highlands and Islands Music and Dance Festival 4 – 6 May £6,680 Argyll and Bute Council
Etape Caledonia 19- 20 May £8,500 Perth and Kinross Council
Oban Live 8 – 9 June £11,250 Argyll and Bute Council
BEMBA British Enduro Mountain Bike Championships 9 – 10 June £10,000 Scottish Borders
St Kilda Challenge & Festival 14 – 16 June £5,750 Comhairle nan Eilean Siar
Cream O’ the Croft 15 – 17 June £5,000 Perth and Kinross Council
North Atlantic Fiddle Convention 11 – 15 July £10,500 Aberdeen City Council and Aberdeenshire Council
Run the Blades 20 – 21 July £4,000 East Renfrewshire Council
Dundee Summer Streets Festival 21 – 22 July £7,400 Dundee City Council
Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival 31 August – 2 September £5,000 Fife Council
Findhorn Bay Festival 26 September – 1 October £15,760 Moray Council