RISING star Elles Bailey is delighted with the line-up at this year’s Great British Rhythm and Blues Festival in Colne - and not just because she’s part of it!

“I’m really excited to be coming to Colne,” said Elles, who plays the main festival stage at the Muni on the Sunday afternoon,

“What I really like about it is the blues world is quite a male dominated one. It is often dominated by men who play guitars really well.

“Colne is featuring a lot of great female artists and a lot of them aren’t guitar players, so they are bringing something different to the blues that isn’t just about amazing solos.

“Don’t get me wrong, I love guitar solos. I wish I could play one well,” she laughed. “But I think female blues artists offer a different kind of songwriting. I’m very happy that Colne is really shining a light on some of the great female blues artists out there.”

Now in its 28th year, the festival line-up over the August Bank Holiday includes Grammy-nominated Janiva Magness from America, Joanne Shaw Taylor, Jo Harman and Lisa Mills.

The festival marks the start of a special week for Elles as she will be officially releasing her debut album Wildfire on September 1.

“The album’s been a real interesting journey of discovery,” she said. “I started talking about this album back in early 2016 and I was going to record it in the UK but then suddenly the opportunity to record it in America came up.”

That opportunity was thanks to her dad who had planned a family holiday around the Southern states of America - and indirectly, the family pet.

“My mum said she couldn’t go because there would be no-one to look after the dog,” said Elles. “So my dad asked me and my husband. Then, unbeknown to me, he then started ringing around producers in Nashville, not to do a record but just to see if something could happen,”

These calls led to Elles getting the chance to record at one of Nashville’s top studios - Blackbird, used by the likes of Taylor Swift and Sheryl Crow - accompanied by leading session musicians.

“My family holiday around the south ended up being three weeks in Nashville and I got an album,” she said.

“It was an amazing experience. I got the opportunity to work with Bobby Wood who has worked with everyone from Elvis to Willie Nelson and I got to write a song with Roger Cook, the only Brit in the Songwriters Hall of Fame.”

That song - Same Flame- has become Elles' new single.

“I didn’t realise how fast the process would be,” said Elles. “I did two days in the studio and we tracked 11 songs. It was remarkable.”

The Nashville sessions were in September and Elles returned to the UK where she added vocals and additional guitars from her touring guitarist Joe Wilkins before mixing the album over Christmas.

“A lot of my stuff has been very raw and I know people love that,” said Elles, “but recording in Nashville has smoothed some of that out. That’s why I wanted to add Joe’s guitar in there to give it a bit of grunginess.”

“This album is better than anything I have done before,” she said, “and I’m and really pleased with the songwriting and how it’s come out.

“Now I just want to be able to share the album with everyone - it’s taken a while!”

Elles Bailey plays Colne Muni on Sunday, August 27. The Great British Rhythm and Blues Festival runs from Friday, August 25 to Sunday, August 27. Details from www.bluesfestival.co.uk or 01282 861888