Based in Leicester, UK for over twenty five years, Dawson Smith is originally from Abertillery, South Wales and has a well earned reputation for fronting great bands and rocking venues all over the UK and beyond. Dawson first made his name as the frontman / songwriter of blues rockers The Healers (’90s). Following The Healers split, Dawson recorded two successful solo albums. Valley Boy (2002) and The River Road (2005). Loads of gigging followed, playing with a flexible band line up. In 2005 Dawson put together THE DISSENTERS with the intention of forming his dream ‘road band’ able to deliver the type of driving swamp blues and rootsy Americana bar room rock & roll that has always been the backdrop to Dawson’s distinctive songs.


2018 was a big year for Dawson & The Dissenters.

New drummer, Dave Rowe joined in February and hit the road at full throttle with the band playing loads of gigs up and down the UK culminating with 2 high profile festivals, August the band played at The UK National Blues Festival at Colne in Lancs. 2 storming shows, 2 sell outs and they went down a storm! This was followed up by a high profile appearance at Sheffield's O2 Academy on the HRH Crows Americana Festival. Another storming show which attracted the crowd of the day and was followed by great press reviews. (see link on PRESS PAGE)


Next up for The Dissenters is a new EP in 2019 with writing well underway for new album in 2020.

Loads of gigs and some profile festivals including

Abertillery Blues Festival in May

Upton Blues in July

Rory Gallagher Fest (Nantwich) in August



Headlining BLUES MATTERS Stage

National Rock & Blues Festival



Dawson Smith & The Dissenters have built an enviable reputation as a smokin’ live band and always a great night out, with a large mailing list and loyal following and an extensive gig circuit around the UK.


There is such depth to Dawson Smith & The Dissenters that it is not easy to describe how they sound. Comparisons with Los Lobos, Creedence, Steve Earle, ZZ Top, Feelgoods, Blackberry Smoke (and more) are usual and welcomed.


Dawson Smith - Lead Vocals / Rhythm Guitars

Martin Burch - Lead  / Slide Guitars

Steve Burton - Bass Guitar / vocals

Dave Rowe - Drums / vocals



Dawson & The Dissenters take you on a whirlwind trip through the best in rockin’ blues and roots and bring you back Breathless!’ 

Americana UK


‘Two successful tours with Nashville rocker Tommy Womack (backing and supporting) and gigs with Dan Baird And Homemade Sin (Georgia Satellites), Stacie Collins Band,

now the yanks are taking Dawson Smith & The Dissenters seriously!’

Bob Patterson BPM Radio