The Isle of Wight Festival, one of the most iconic events in the UK’s festival calendar kicked off at Seaclose Park today and the Hard Rock Stage drew festivalgoers in droves as it opened for a fourth consecutive year. The stage delivered stripped back sessions and awesome live acoustic sets from some of music’s most exciting rising stars. Fossey Tango, Rothwell and the Germein Sisters were just a few of the acts getting crowds warmed up for a weekend of rockin’ new music.

Abi Bridgeman kicked off proceedings bringing country vibes as the Hard Rock Stage officially opened for 2017. She was introduced on stage by Hard Rock’s host for the weekend, MTV News and Heat Radio’s James Barr. Next up were the Germein Sisters all the way from Australia. The three-piece brought the glorious sunshine with them and performed an array of indie-pop hits, including a stunning cover of Queen’s ‘Somebody To Love’ to a packed-out crowd.

Rothwell followed next, taking to the stage and delivering one-woman powerhouse vocals, including original tracks and a spellbinding cover of Nina Simone classic, ‘Feeling Good’. Ensuring the crowd was kept thoroughly entertained in the summer sun, New Blood competition winners, Heman Sheman. The six-piece band from Manchester brought a funk-infused set getting revellers on their feet.

Ashton Lane took to the stage as day turned to night. The British husband and wife duo, who have previously performed at Country 2 Country Festival, kept crowds rockin’ ahead of the Friday night headliners – Fossey Tango, who finished the night off with a heady mix of funk and reggae.

Music has always been at the very heart of Hard Rock, an institution which continues to support breakthrough acts, providing the Hard Rock Stage at Isle of Wight Festival as the perfect platform to get new music out there to thousands of festivalgoers. The music continues tomorrow through until Sunday night.