Running for its sixth year, 2019’s Strawberries & Creem festival proved it’s only planning to get bigger and better. Historically, the student-run festival in Cambridge has welcomed some legendary headline acts, including T-Pain, Skepta and Wiley, and this year was no different.
The stacked line-up for this year peaked with some big hitters with the likes of Stefflon Don. As the festival based in Haggis Farm loves to inject a sense of nostalgia into their setup, she was in good company with Ms Dynamite and Sean Kingston.
The weather created some muddy settings which caused havoc, but it didn’t stop the good vibes at Strawberries & Creem. This year’s top tent gave the main stage some healthy competition which stayed packed out throughout most of the day and night, thanks to acts such as WSTRN, DJ Kenny Allstar and Young T and Bugsey.
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The main stage was unapologetically full of variety as a platform for key artists who’ve paved the way in their genres and also new talent. Mahalia showed her star quality with her silky vocals who was followed by a healthy dose of old school garage with Artful Dodger and Sweet Female Attitude.
Off the back of the release of his new single, ‘Gucci Demon’ B Young provided an effortless performance. He attracted quite a crowd with his hits, ‘Jumanji’, ‘079ME’ and his recent feature on Collie Budz’s track ‘Bank’.
Although lacking high temperatures The Heatwave - who are no strangers to performing at Strawberries & Creem - gave festival-goers a taste of carnival with their energetic, dancehall set.
Strawberries & Creem has always prided itself on exhibiting a strong variety of artists and this certainly wasn’t lacking this year. Its segment for special guests was impressive with the likes of Ms Banks, Deno Driz coming on stage as well as a surprise appearance from Dappy.
Stefflon Don brought the glamour and some prestige to the festival. Donning bright green hair, on and off stage she proved just how much of a big deal she is with a strong entourage. She performed her bag of hits with her flawless dancers including ‘Hurtin’ Me’, and her feature on ‘Boasty’.
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Topping off the festival was Ms Dynamite, the main headline act of the night and despite being the final performer, she raised the levels of excitement in the crowd giving her set a full tank of energy. Although she hasn’t released music in a while, Ms Dynamite showed impressive stage presence, performing her back-to-back hits with the audience enjoying a DNB version of ‘Dy-Na-Mi-Tee’ and her numerous features.
Strawberries & Creem endeavours to outdo itself each year. It has slowly become a summer staple for the country’s festival listings. While providing a platform for the UK’s newest talent, its Cambridge organisers have been intent on giving their stage to some of garage, dancehall and hip-hop’s biggest chart shakers from their heyday.
And with this unique selling point, Strawberries & Creem continues to maintain its originality.
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Words: Nikita Rathod
Photography: Meara Kallista Morse
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