Saturday, James Bay gets to play the festival he's been obsessing over since he was 13

Emily Hope

Emily HopeImagine if you found out about Coachella when you were a teenager, and then 15 years later, you actually got to perform at Coachella?  That's what James Bay is experiencing this weekend...except it's not Coachella, it's a festival staged by his one of his idols.

This weekend, James will be one of the many famous guitar players who'll be taking part in the Crossroads Guitar Festival in Dallas, TX.  The festival is the brainchild of legendary guitar god Eric Clapton, who started it in 1999 to raise money for the Crossroads Centre, a rehab facility in Antigua that he helped to found.

"The first [Crossroads Guitar Festival] that they recorded and released was 2004, and I was 13 and I bought that DVD and obsessed over it, and then I bought the one that I think came out in 2007," James tells ABC Radio. "I followed it ever since I was 13 and found out about it 'cause it is this kind of wild, like, Mecca of guitar players."

"It's a big, like, pinch-myself moment to be invited, to be recognized by one of my absolute heroes," gushes James. "Eric Clapton playing 'Layla' -- that inspired me to pick up a guitar, which I've talked about million times. But there's a slight full circle, a little bit, to all of this that gives me kind of chills. So I'm very very excited to go and do that...what an honor!" 

The two-night festival will feature famous guitar players like John Mayer, Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crow, The Eagles' Joe Walsh, ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons, blues icon Buddy Guy and more. James and John Mayer are performing on Saturday, and both nights will be available to watch via pay-per-view for $40 per night.

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