Big tour dates planned for Burnley band Sahara

Sahara – Matthew Blackburn, Gabe Cassidy, Nick Waite, Ben Hodgson, Liam Hunt

Sahara – Matthew Blackburn, Gabe Cassidy, Nick Waite, Ben Hodgson, Liam Hunt

First published in What's on in Lancashire

THINGS are hotting up for a Burnley-based rock band as they prepare for some of their biggest-ever tour dates in 2013.

Up-and-coming quintet Sahara, fronted by vocalist and guitarist Nick Waite, are also re-releasing their album The Strike of Nature as they hope to make this their breakthrough year.

As well as headline shows at the ACE Centre in Nelson and Pendle Hippodrome Theatre, the band are hopeful of securing support slots with arena-fillers McFly and Stereophonics later in the year.

Nick, 21, said there was even talk of performing in France and Indonesia, where the band have a growing fan base.

The former Alder Grange Community and Technology School pupil, from Burnley, said: “We’re really looking forward to the next year. We are hoping to make it properly big and most of the albums we sell go to Indonesia.

“It would be just a little bit different doing gigs out there than in Burnley. We’re also playing in Inverness and Edinburgh soon and it feels like an exciting time.”

Nick is backed up by guitarist Liam Hunt, 20, from Colne, bassist Matthew Blackburn, 21, from Burnley, drummer Ben Hodgson, 21 from Helmshore and keyboardist Gabe Cassidy, 20, from Clitheroe.

Nick added: “In the past I’ve changed the band members more often than my socks but the current line-up has been in place for a while and sounds really good.”

The band, which Nick formed in 2007, have signed to Colne label Aquarius Acoustics.

Nick lists their classic rock sound as being influenced by Oasis, Bon Jovi, Queen and Elton John.

The band kick off their Strike of Nature tour with a gig at the ACE Centre in Nelson on February 22.

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