In the inaugural episode of Steve Lamacq’s Teatime Session on BBC Radio 6 Music, Steve joined forces with Huw Stephens to unveil 6 Music’s elaborate plans for celebrating Independent Venue Week 2024. This annual seven-day celebration in the UK pays homage to the venues and the individuals who own, manage, and work within them.

From Monday, January 29, to Friday, February 2, 6 Music will embark on a tour across the UK, with Steve and Huw hosting their 4-7 pm shows from a different independent venue each day. The duo will treat listeners to performances by artists such as Ash, 86TVs, NewDad, Picture Parlour, English Teacher, and Antony Szmierek.

On Monday, January 29, Steve will be at Belfast’s Oh Yeah Music Centre, ahead of Ash’s Independent Venue Week performance. Huw, on the other hand, will present his show from various locations, including Whistle Binkies in Edinburgh (Tuesday, January 30), The Fulford Arms in York (Wednesday, January 31), Polar Bear Music Club in Hull (Thursday, February 1), and The Rockin’ Chair in Wrexham (Friday, February 2), preceding live sets from featured artists.

Throughout the week, the artists will join Steve and Huw during their 4-7 pm shows for intimate live performances and interviews. As part of 6 Music’s programming, listeners have the opportunity to attend two exclusive intimate live performances – on Monday, January 29, in Belfast with Ash and on Friday, February 2, in Wrexham with Antony Szmierek. Free tickets can be applied for via a ballot until 23:59 on Monday, January 15, through this link: [BBC link].

The nightly gigs will also showcase artists supported by BBC Music Introducing, including Problem Patterns (Oh Yeah Music Centre, Belfast), Grace & The Flat Boys (Whistle Binkies, Edinburgh), Kindelan (The Fulford Arms, York), Jodie Langford (Polar Bear Music Club, Hull), and Picture Parlour (The Rockin’ Chair, Wrexham).

Steve Lamacq says: “Independent Venue Week is always a great opportunity to spotlight the importance of our smaller venues. But this year, with hundreds of grassroots venues facing up to rent increases, rising energy costs and other cost of living pressures, I think it’s even more crucial to celebrate the role they play, not just in nurturing new talent but bringing local musical communities together.

“There’ll be hundreds of gigs all over the country, from some established, or soon to be well known names, as well as a terrific range of newcomers who are well worth a look. I really hope it encourages fans to get out and see a gig and support their local promoters.”

Huw Stephens says: “Independent venues are vital places for music to thrive and exist. Where would we be without our favourite gig venues? I have packed my socks and toothbrush, and am very excited to be coming to Edinburgh, York, Hull and Wrexham, picking up from Steve in Belfast, with some of the best live artists about. It’s a tough time for a lot of venues at the moment, and I hope the week of shows from these venues can remind us all of their importance, and how special they are.”

Samantha Moy, Head of BBC Radio 6 Music, says: “At 6 Music, we’re very proud of our long-standing partnership with Independent Venue Week, as we too care passionately about providing artists with spaces to emerge and grow. I’m looking forward to a fantastic series of programmes from Steve and Huw broadcast from around the UK, full of live music and stories celebrating the important work that these venues do, all year round.”

All programmes will be available to listen to live on BBC Sounds and for 30 days after their broadcast on BBC Radio 6 Music.