Bare Faced Blues

It’s typical isn’t it? You wait for one new music festival to launch in Hastings and then three come along in the space of a few months. Mind you, we’re not complaining.

First we had a brand new Folk Fest in May, then the Sea Shanty Festival in July and now in September we’ll see the launch of Bare Faced Blues.

The Bare Faced Blues festival plays out over two Sunday’s in September, the 7th and 14th and will take place at the Gecko Bar, on the seafront in St Leonards. It’s all in a good cause too, as all profits will be going to St Michael’s Hospice.

As the name suggests, this new addition to the local music calendar will be Blues based. Showing, if we didn’t know it already, the huge variety of music being played in the Hastings area.

Bare Faced Blues is the brainchild of local promoter Barry Taylor, who once booked the Sex Pistols to play on Hastings Pier. He told me, “Blues music has always been a passion for me and St Michael’s Hospice has family connections”.

Barry has certainly gathered together a great line up of local Blues artists to appear. Sunday, 7th September see’s Buick 6, Jem Turpin Duo, Highway and Goo Goo’s playing.

Sunday, 14th September has Tea Chest Blues, Joe Rytlewski Band, King Size Slim, Pete O’Donnells Blues Band and Mick Bolton scheduled to appear. I’m sure you’d agree that that’s an impressive group of acts.

Both gigs run from 1.30pm to 9pm and entry will be free. There will a collection for St Michael’s Hospice during both gigs.

To coincide with the festival, a CD called “Blues for St Michael’s” is being released, featuring all the acts appearing over the two dates. Priced at just £5, you’ll be able to buy the CD on the day and afterwards at Gecko Bar and also online. All profits from the CD will go to St Michael’s Hospice.

So far, the reception to Barry’s Blues festival idea has been very positive. As he told me, “The first person I spoke to was Pete Prescott, because of his experience of fund raising through music, he was very enthusiastic. All the artists I approached have been very co-operative and I feel the line ups reflect the great variety within the local Blues genre”.

A dedicated Bare Faced Blues website will be coming very shortly, which will feature more info about the acts, the festival itself and also interviews with the performers.

So why not go along, see some great Blues music and help support a very worthy local charity as well. And who knows, maybe Bare Faced Blues will become an annual event?

Let’s hope so.

PS: The website is now live at: www.barefacedblues.co.uk

Con£ribute

We were told about a brand new idea recently, an idea that may well help bands get paid for gigs, instead of them having to play for nothing, or even ‘Pay to Play’.

The idea is called ‘Con£ribute’ and is the brainchild of local promoter John Knowles. John explains his ideas below and we at Pierless Music would like to know what you think about them. We think this has the potential to be a great idea, but what do you think?

Incidentally, the first local Con£ribute gig is being held at The Roomz, St Leonards on Sunday, 27th April and features ‘Dead Belgian’, playing the songs of Jacques Brel.

CON£RIBUTE:

Imagine the scene, the gig has been great, everyone loved the band and encores have been played, the bar looks at the takings and gives up the 10% it promised to the band and low and behold it’s a staggering £30… which as the band has come down from Liverpool via a gig in London, is something of a slap in the face. So doing my promoter bit, I go round and shake the bucket and watch as people drop in silver coins, no notes and then a handful of copper coins… Really! That’s it? Copper coins for a band you’ve just made do an encore, whilst you hug your pint of ‘nadgers old peculiar’.

It won’t be the first or last time that despite having paid for the posters and offering bed and board and food to the band, that I’ll also be chipping in with my own cash to make the offering a little less embarrassing and it won’t be the last time that I take out the copper coins so at least the band doesn’t see the shameful offering, but it shouldn’t be like this, should it.

Why is it when we go to a gig, in this, one of the most musical towns in the UK, do we expect to pay the band nothing, or as good as, why are the musicians who have entertained you for the night worth less than the price of a pint. Why don’t we / you Con£ribute.

Many venues do of course pay the bands and whilst those of us on both sides would like the fee’s to be better, we respect that it’s a tough environment for publicans and compromise is the middle man. But for many venues, paying a decent amount for a band, an amount we know would be fair, is just not a working possibility. For many bands and promoters we’d rather be out there playing than doing what we love than not. But there has to be a better way, a fairer way, a way in which the band gets more than a pint and a derisory hand full of coins.

Con£ribute is an idea, a simple way to signal that the gig you are at needs your support. It says this venue loves live music and supports bands, but can’t give them more than 10% from the till, it says, if you like the music you heard then Con£ribute.

Con£ribute is not a get out for venues to pay nothing, it’s a support for hard working bands and musicians and a help to venues and promoters who are genuinely trying to do their best by the musicians. So when you see the sign in the window CON£RIBUTE, it means when the bucket comes round put in the price of a pint £2.50 / £3.00, it doesn’t mean pull out a handful of copper coins.

CON£RIBUTE is an idea and we welcome your views; is it workable, do you think it’s fair, as a punter would you honestly put in a fair amount or would you be tempted to just shrug your shoulders, lets start a small revolution, pay the piper the price of a pint?

Con£tribute is an idea from Fetch, a local company specialising in live events:
Contact them via: theneverplayed@gmail.com
http://theneverplayed.wix.com/fetch-productions

So, what do you think? Please let us know.

Buick 6 – Live Video

Our last post mentioned the ‘Bare-Faced Blues’ Festival, which is taking place over two weekends in September 2014, at Gecko Bar in St Leonards.

Read more about it here: http://pierlessmusic.co.uk/bare-faced-blues-festival/

One of the acts booked to play at ‘Bare-Faced Blues’ are Buick 6. Because of that, we thought we’d share this recent video with you. It comes from Harvey Summers’ video series ‘The Live Room’, recorded at his own Broadoak Studios.

If you don’t know of Buick 6, or have not seen them play live before, you really ought to watch this live session. It’s classy stuff.

Enjoy.

Bare-Faced Blues Festival

Hot on the heels of the news that Hastings is to have its own Folk Festival in May 2014, comes the launch of a new Blues Festival in St Leonards.

To be called ‘Bare-Faced Blues’, the festival is being organised and promoted by local man Barry Taylor. For the uninitiated, Barry is the man who booked the Sex Pistols to play on Hastings Pier back in July 1976.

‘Bare-Faced Blues’ will take place at Gecko Bar, on St Leonards seafront, on Sunday’s, 7th and 14th of September 2014. The whole event is being organised to raise funds for St Michael’s Hospice, a very worthy cause I’m sure you’d agree.

Local acts already lined up include Buick 6, King Size Slim, Goo Goos and T Chest Blues, with more to be announced.

Barry would like to hear from any local Blues based acts who are interested in playing this charity event. You can contact him via email at: barry.taylor145@gmail.com

If ‘Bare-Faced Blues’ is a success, Barry hopes to make it into an annual event to add to the Hastings musical calendar.

We wish him well.

Love Fingers Interview

Stuart Huggett has recently inteviewed those quirky females from St Leonards, ‘Love Fingers’.

Here’s how he describes them: “Love Fingers are probably the oddest group to come out of St Leonards this year. Formed by four young local artists, going by the names of Vixon, Rogue, Bad M and Phat Al, Love Fingers combine loosely recorded songs with simply shot, imaginative videos, sharing them on YouTube. They’ve yet to play live, but have amassed a passionate online following.”

It that has whetted your appetite, read on here:

http://pierlessmusic.co.uk/interviews/love-fingers-interview/

We’ve even embedded some of their videos into the interview as well. So, you can see for yourself what all the fuss is about.