Politics and music are not always the greatest bedfellows, at least according to some. But it can’t be denied that that combination has produced some great songs and performers over the years.
Protest songs have probably been around for as long as the guitar has been invented, after all there’s always something to moan about isn’t there?
Some performers, such as Bob Dylan and Billy Bragg have made a whole career out of it and now we have someone in Hastings trying to do the same.
Gareth Hooker has been playing original music for the past decade in various local bands and as a solo act too. I actually remember being given a CD of his very first band called Overland, which I played tracks from on Hastings Rock radio. How time flies….
Gareth is probably best known though for fronting the sadly departed Youngplan. At one time Youngplan were at the forefront of what was then called ‘Rotherbeat’, along with their mates Mumm-Ra. They were widely regarded as a band going places, but unfortunately they never quite got there and split around five years ago.
Well now Gareth has resurfaced as a folk singer of what he calls “protest songs and rebel sounds” and he says that “this time it’s serious”.
As Gareth told me “I’ve always felt that there’s no point getting up on a stage in front of a load of people unless you have something to say. And there’s no point having something to say unless you act on it“
To that end Gareth is performing at The Fountain in Queens Road in Hastings this Friday, 4th October. The gig is in support of the Hastings and District Trades Council and there will be guest speakers as well.
Many would argue that there’s plenty to be angry about in the world at the moment and it’s good to see people like Gareth getting up and singing about it.
And you don’t even have to wave a flag, or hold a banner to get involved. Just pop down to The Fountain pub on Friday evening, have a beer and listen to some of those “protest songs and rebel sounds”. They might just strike a chord with you.