Around 22,000 people enjoyed a fantastic atmosphere at Village Green 2014 on Saturday 12 July!
Among the 22,000 were:
1000’s of under 11s enjoying the mechanical, fire breathing dragon- the smallest nightclub in the world, the Miniscule of Sound, the Insect Circus and loads more attractions on site.
1000’s of teenagers gathered at the new Youth Village stage – designed and curated by Southend school pupils it boasted a packed programme that kept our younger festival goers entertained all day until 8pm
600 arts, crafts, vintage and food traders
900 artists performing on 11 stages
100 production crew
With something on site for all ages – families were kept entertained all day – the atmosphere was friendly and fantastic across the day – and even the small downpour of rain during the headliner, Beth Orton didn’t dampen spirits.
A really great day!
The Echo’s review (16 July).
Carya Gish blog post about the Dragnet stage.
The 2014 line up of artists and musicians included Beth Orton, Eddi Reader (Fairground Attraction); Dan le Sac vs Scroobius Pip; New York ska band, The Slackers; from London Man Like Me; Youth Club, Shlomo; Danny and the Champions of the Worlds; Kathryn Williams; Eight Rounds Rapid; and hot tips to go global in the very near future, The Hosts - make sure you see them at Village Green first!
Alongside, we had an exciting exchange with four visual artists from Shanghai; a wide range of comedy, cabaret, live art, literature, film and a whole host of extraordinary outdoor arts, installations, workshops and performances.
Beth Orton is a BRIT Award-winner and two-time Mercury Prize nominee who has collaborated with Bert Jansch, Emmylou Harris, Beck, William Orbit, Terry Callier, Ryan Adams and the Chemical Brothers. Her masterful songwriting and emotionally evocative vocal style – infusing intimate folk reminiscent of Nick Drake and Joni Mitchell with lilting and subtly atmospheric pop flourishes. Beth Orton has continuously evolved, yet always retained an intriguing mix of fragility and transcendence which never fails to move and inspire fans around the World.
DAN LE SAC vs SCROOBIUS PIP
Warning: the above video contains swearing.
Dan le sac vs Scroobius Pip are David Peter Meads (aka Scroobius Pip; vocals/rapper/poet) and Daniel Stephens (aka dan le sac; production, programming, keyboards, guitars and backing vocals). Originally Dan le sac hailed from Corringham and Scroobius Pip from neighbouring Stanford-le-Hope. Their first single was “Thou Shalt Always Kill”, which reached the charts and was recently played on Desert Island Discs by Russell Brand. The duo’s third album entitled Repent Replenish Repeat was released 7 October 2013 and debuted at number 22 in the UK top 40, the duo’s highest album chart position to date.
In the early 1980’s Eddi Reader travelled around Europe with circus and performance artists before moving to London where she quickly became a sought after session vocalist. She famously harmonized with Annie Lennox touring with the Eurythmics, after her time with successful punk outfit Gang of Four, but was propelled into the spotlight with Fairground Attraction. Since then Eddi has successfully forged a solo career. Her new album, Vagabond, was released at the beginning of this month.
‘Eddi Reader is one of my favourite singers of all time.’ Jools Holland
‘The energy she uses in a single performance could probably power a wee village on the outskirts of her native Glasgow.‘ The Scotsman
MAN LIKE ME
Man Like Me are London based duo Johnny Langer and Peter Duffy. Their debut album ‘Man Like Me’ was released in 2009 and spurned the singles ‘Oh My Gosh’ and ‘Carny’. The band are famed for their riotous live shows, which feature (among other things) dance routines, full brass sections, processions through the audience and swinging from chandeliers (really!). Their last Cult smash single ‘Squeeze’, which Sunday Times Culture called “A bonkers and brilliant electro sugar-rush that deserves to be the hit of the summer”, caught the attention of Annie Mac and Nick Grimshaw who gave the band huge support on Radio 1. Annie Mac even went as far as rewinding the track on its debut spin.
Based in New York City, The Slackers began rehearsing on the lower east side around 1991 and played every local bar, squat, or loft that would have them. Working in a dingy rat infested basement on E. 3rd street the band came up with its trademark sound somewhere around 1994.
The Slackers have released 15 CDs. Their first was Better Late Than Never (1996), was declared by The New York Times as ‘The Sound of New York’. Since 2007 they have headlined 17 major US Tours and 12 European tours and have appeared at festivals as diverse the Montreal Jazz Festival and Glastonbury.
Mercury nominated Kathryn Williams is one of Britain’s finest song writers who challenges the distinctions between folk and pop. Currently enjoying the most prolific phase of her career, She has collaborated and appeared on records by John Martyn, Bombay Bicycle Club, Marry Waterson and Neill Macoll, with whom she released the album ‘Two’ in 2008. She has played live with KT Tunstall, Ray Lamontagne and Martha Wainwright, amongst others. Kathryn has worked with producer Neill MacColl, Ed Harcourt and James Yorkston on her most recent album, ‘Crown Electric’ released in September 2013 and the single ‘Heart Shaped Stone’ was previewed on Radio 2.
‘One of my all time favorite female singers‘ Guy Garvey (Elbow & 6Music)
‘A pop updraft worthy of prime Jimmy Webb… so effortlessly instinctive’ (MOJO)
Internationally acclaimed beatboxer and World Loopstation Champion and Guinness World Record holder, Shlomo creates an incredibly energetic live show like nothing you have seen before: jaw dropping, inspirational and totally absorbing. Shlomo has worked with some of the biggest names in music including: Bjork, Damon Albarn, Jarvis Cocker, Martha Wainwright, Imogen Heap, The Specials, DJYoda and even comedians the Mighty Boosh. Shlomo is a firm favourite on the UK Festival scene and returns to Village Green for the second time, back by popular demand!
‘Master of the fine art of beatboxing‘ The Independent
‘The kid’s good. Jaw-droppingly good.’ The Guardian
Five smartly-attired gentlemen from the North, Sheffield’s finest retromantics, The Hosts, have been smouldering away in the musical margins, buffing up the buttons on their waistcoats and waiting for their moment to shine. Latest album ‘Softly, Softly’ has just entered the Independent charts at No 16.
Earlier in 2013 the quintet tickled the underbelly of the mainstream beast with the terrific ‘September Song‘ and ‘Give Your Love To Her‘, two raffish slabs of retro alt.pop which represented the missing link between Roy Orbison and Richard Hawley and which waltzed all over BBC 6 Music and Radio 2 with the likes of Dermot O’Leary, Janice Long, Lauren Laverne, Steve Lamacq and Huey Morgan.
DANNY & THE CHAMPIONS OF THE WORLD
Danny & The Champions Of The World has always been a pretty loose collection of great musicians, songwriters, stowaways and adventurers. They come to Village Green after their triumphant sold out show at London’s Jazz Cafe. Latest release ‘Stay True’ (recorded at Reservoir Studios with Champs bass player Chris Clarke (ex Rockingbirds) and Danny at the helm) is the band’s fourth album and Danny George Wilson’s eleventh album which includes six long players from the much loved Grand Drive plus a solo outing. Danny has been touring the world and making critically acclaimed records for nearly 20 years now.
“A gold standard album for UK Americana” ★★★★ Q
“Wilson and the Champs’ finest set yet” ★★★★ MOJO
The Goldmaster Allstars are a vibrant and dynamic 10-piece band performing laid-back rocksteady; heavy roots reggae and Ska instrumentals. Just recently Vin Gordon likened them and their sound to the legendary Skatalites. For almost 14 yrs now they have been a growing force on the UK & World music scene. Tracks from their ‘Colt 45 Live’ album have been given airtime on Sir David Rodigan’s show on BBC 1xtra. The football team-sized troop is an instrumental band from South England, emerged from studio musicians of the in-house label ‘Goldmaster Records’ and is renowned for backing Jamaican singers like Winston Francis, Alton Ellis, Dennis Alcapone and many more.
Voted ‘Best British Reggae Band’ – British Reggae Industry Awards, 2013
‘Album of the Month‘ – Riddim Magazine June 2013
‘Ska! Whether you are an aficionado of this up-tempo Jamaican music or if you are listening to Ska for the first time, experiencing The Goldmaster Allstars cannot help but put a smile on your face‘. – Flea magazine
Appearing out of nowhere at the end of last year, anonymous busker LONGY self-released a stunning debut EP he recorded in a shed in East London while he was sofa-surfing and sleeping rough. The five track CD was awarded Xfm Demo of the Year, resulting in celebrity fans and a string of packed-out gigs in some of the darkest and sweatiest venues in London and beyond. All of this without putting a single track online. With an EP due in May and wild rumours circling in the British press as to LONGY’s real identity, 2014 is set to be an explosive year.
“Demo Of The Year” 2013 -Eddy Temple-Morris, XFM
After 5 years of touring with NZ pop artist Ladyhawke, Danny Blanco joined his brother Joe Fran and almost brothers Gerarrd Duffield and Rees Broomfield to form Youth Club and set about writing their debut album.
Inspired by summer and all things colourful, the band are not confined by the boundaries of any particular genre but draw influence from many styles – soulful vocals, pop choruses, synths and guitars – the authentic sound of summer.
Youth Club’s debut EP is set to be released on iTunes on 24 April.
EIGHT ROUNDS RAPID
Eight Rounds Rapid’s songs are rooted in traditional blues, but guitar from Simon Johnson and singer David Alexander’s acerbic delivery make the act sound like John Cooper Clarke and Mark E Smith jamming in a Southend bus depot, with their gritty tales of the Essex underworld. ‘We are from this place. We make music of this place’.
The group gained a national audience last year when they supported Wilko Johnson on his UK Farewell Tour, winning over BBC DJs, Artrocker magazine and a clutch of bloggers with their polarising performances at Camden’s Koko. Their debut album Lossleader is released this spring on Cadiz records, with a busy tour planned for the summer, including gigs with The Ruts.
The act known as Tuppenny Bunters started life as half of noughties Southend beat scene regulars The Virgo Intacta. Having gone about as far as they were gonna go, a five year odyssey of guerilla gigs, coach trips, radio sessions and a support tour with The White Stripes, the band finally ran out of steam as the train pulled into The Railway Hotel, a 140-year old folly that Dave had seen fit to purchase because his Top Hat had landed on it.
Once the dust had settled, Dave Dulake and Fi Jacobs got their mojo back, bought a Hohner Planet, got married and out together a couple of hours of tunes, as varied and eclectic an act as a night out at a Victorian Music Hall. For here we have two musicians, wrecking sonic lullabies out of some real life vintage instruments, swapping vocals and from drums to piano at the flick of a tailored cuff; turning on a sixpence from too-fast jazz standards to beat ballads to deftly written originals to musical theatre classics to crowd pleasers to cult gems.
VILLAGE HALL STAGE
SHIP FULL OF BOMBS
Named after the SS Montgomery – a notable landmark of the Thames Delta, we give you SHIP FULL OF BOMBS – Southend’s alternative radio station. Bringing you the very best music across the board – We are not limited to genre, the only rule is that the music is good. NOT play-listed and never will be.
THE POLYVINYL CRAFTSMEN
The Polyvinyl Craftsmen have been broadcasting their internet show weekly since 2011, playing records from their ever-growing collections to a loyal audience both in the UK and abroad. This is their third year at Village Green and they will be playing their usual eclectic mix between the bands they have
selected for this year’s festival.
Nancy Wallace is a singer and musician hailing from Suffolk, but now firmly ensconced in east London. She came to notice singing with the Memory Band, and features on the albums “The Memory Band” and “Apron Strings”. She now sits happily amongst the ranks of The Owl Service which she is enjoying very much indeed. Her solo releases began with the critically acclaimed Young Hearts ep, songs from which have been included on both volumes of Tom Middleton’s Crazy Covers albums, Paris Derniere and the Big Chill compilations. Her debut full length album, Old Stories, was released in 2009 to very favourable reviews, garnering her a cover feature in Froots magazine. Her tunes are enhanced no end by the amazing violin skills of Jennymay Logan of the Elysian Quartet , The Memory Band and the Basquiat Strings. Currents projects include converting her spare room in order to finally record another album!
The Ears Of Xeno Group are an experimental / jazz / rock group from Southend on Sea, Essex, UK. EOX base their concept on creating live sets from improvisations around various themes, abstract loops and repetitive chords progressions.. Ranging from tranquil mantras to roaring walls of sound! Often compared to the likes of: 1970’s era Miles Davis, Gong, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Band of Gypsies and Pink Floyd.
THE DIAMOND FAMILY ARCHIVE
In a rural kitchen, he’s sitting amidst a wildly disorganised collection of cables, playing a stripped unvarnished arch-top guitar with the words ‘Dorset, Creekmoor’ stencilled on the scratch-plate. Opposite him sits a pump organ, stripped to a skeletal frame, the reeds and mechanics clearly visible, the wires from stealthily placed contact pickups meet with a digital effects unit and a dusty old amplifier. At his feet is a pedal board the size of a child’s bed. He continues to play as we speak, conversation punctuated by the hollow whistle of his half briar. This is Laurence Collyer. Or as he is better known, the Diamond Family Archive. Laurence is referred to, almost exclusively as a folk musician, admittedly, descriptions of his work seem forced to rely on other adjectives or prefixes which serve, in a way, to disclaim the work’s separation from the ‘tradition’ or rather the repertory system that defines much of what we consider to be folksong.
After a succession bands The ProTeens, Regentone, The Adjustment, Essex based singer songwriter Lance Baldock setled on the nom-de-rock of Cusack. In 2010 he released the acclaimed debut ‘Mildsensations’ after spending a number of years toiling around Essex and London with excellent backing band The Mildsensations. When Matt Boulter’s time became increasingly eaten up by his own Lucky Strikes and stints with Simone Felice a new live format was needed. After an all-too-brief stint as a three piece with Tumbledryer Baby Andrew Moore on bass, today, Cusack is reborn as a Crazy Horse/Replacements inspired electric 4 piece. Now featuring pal of many years Leighton Jennings on bass, Shangri-la compadre Tom Burgess on guitar and owner of the beat Ben ‘Classic Rock’ Rudge on drums. We are a melodic jangle-sludge beast of the highest order.
The return of Southend favourites The Hillmisters is a treat for Village Green this year. A joyous sound of noisy, melodic, messy guitar pop with healthy doses of feedback and experimentation. It is bands like The Velvet Underground, Spacemen 3, The Clean, The Kinks, The 13th Floor Elevators that are all staple diets for these guys, but influences are certainly far ranging.
Velvet Morning is the project of 19 year old Samuel Jones who expresses what he calls ‘Psyched Sun Gaze’ through huge melodies, languid grooves and guitar work influenced by a variety of shoegaze and psychedelia from the last 50 years. With band mates Chris Richardson, Luke Elgar, Charlie Carmichael & John Kirkwood joining 8 months ago the project became a band and a very focussed live experience for a listener and a viewer. All of this combined with Jones’ surrealist take on words at times even fictional the bands sound becomes even more ethereal, euphoric and groovy. Velvet Morning take on their very own world and invite everyone to come along.
Atomic Suplex are a garage punk rock and roll band from London, England. They have released a string of 7” singles and an album on the legendary Crypt Records (Crypt 100 no less).
Atomic Suplex have toured Europe and the far east sharing the stage with such luminaries as . . .
The Hives, Guitar Wolf, The Gories, The Adolescents, Nobunny, The Kids, Jet Boys, Armitage Shanks, Richard Herring, Eddie Legend, The Spits, The Fat White Family, The Buzzcocks, Theee Bat, and many many more. It’s the sound you get when everything is up too loud and played too fast. They consider jet aeroplanes our peers and contemporaries and cite Nikoli Tesla as their major influence.
‘I am Mark Wynn, a nod to Billy Childish, late night shift worker; ex plongeur, dish hand, cleaner of dormitories and scrubber of walls, wasteral, impressionable lowlife, contrary provocateur, loser of keys, aspiring philander, limited appeal, questionable motives, bad diet, good sex, the bi product of an aspiring semi detached family unit. Blah Blah Blah…’
Lord Numb has been welding guitars and machinery together ever since he built Laboratoire NUmb from scraps of space junk. His new album, ROBOT’S NEED LOVE TOO, is available right now from i-tunes.
A regular on the magnificent DANDELION RADIO, he has recorded 2 sessions for Pete Jackson and 1 for Mark Whitby and has been played by Tom Robinson on 6 Music amongst many others.
‘Numb is the master of the hook and contorted sound’ – Phlow Magazine
BUREAU OF SILLY IDEAS (BOSI)
An established public realm arts company based in Brixton, London. Founded in 2003, BOSi are renowned within the street arts industry for creating radio controlled wheelie bins, traffic cones and Christmas trees and making a song and dance out of road works. BOSi’s shows combine circus, radio controlled machinery and spectacle, and our current work has strong links to urban regeneration. Through all of our work we aim to engage people with their built environment and to inject art, entertainment, humour and surprise in everyday places. In 2012 they became one Arts Council England‘s National Portfolio Organisations.
Boredbrand’s Digital Funfair combines digital technology, dance music, film and stuff we find lying around in the street to create a unique audience led experience. Become a superstar DJ in minutes with the Beat Jigsaw. Play classic video games from the saddle of a bicycle with the PacBike! Send photos from your phone to the live Bluetooth Slideshow! Give Politicians and Celebrities what you know they deserve with the Virtual Coconut Shy.
INSECT CIRCUS MUSEUM
“Ladies & Gentlemen! Boys & Girls! Stroll Up! Stroll up for the Magnificent Insect Circus Museum! Behold the Liberty Beetles& the Cheeky Ladybirds! Be thrilled by the Knife Thrower& the Painted Lady! Gasp as Captain Courage, the intrepid Wasp Tamer, defies Danger! Marvel at the Worm Charmer& Laugh at the Dancing Snails!” Housed in a vintage, mahogany lined, Bedford TK beetlebox lorry, this unique museum displays a stunning array of costumes, props, puppets, toys and ephemera from the extraordinary collection of the Insect Circus Society. Spanning more than three centuries, and covering many continents, this is undeniably the finest museum of its
kind in the world.
MINISCULE OF SOUND
Operating since 1998 out of a very small back yard in East London, Miniscule of Sound, the World’s Smallest Niteclub has gone global – getting lost and found in translation in China, and tackling the outback of Australia! Still the undisputed world record holders for being very small – Guinness World Records says so!
The 8’x4’x8′ interior of the flat-pack instant niteclub features fluffy décor, flashing lights, a traditional Saturday Night Fever dancefloor, and a not very fluffy DJ. And watch out for the raver in the white boiler suit – he smells. Appearing in countless small dark corners across the globe over the last 4 million years, the urban myths surrounding the Miniscule of Sound are now almost as extensive as the club’s never-ending guest list. We’ve played nearly as many gigs as those we haven’t! But hey – it’s still cosy, intimate and very, very funky!
‘Some people describe it as the best clubbing experience of their lives’ – Sunday Times magazine.
PAKA THE UNCREDIBLE
Paka the Uncredible presents: Rusty the horse, a full sized mechanical horse which takes on the attraction of kinetic sculpture to a varied cross section of the public, including those who might not normally be involved with arts activities.
Paka will also be showing his eight metres long, five feet wide Dragon. Throwing flames from both ends, El Grando is an “endearing” robot created by artists Dan Peppiatt and Paka.
TREE PIRATES – Captain Chainsaw’s Piratical Feats
Sailing the high trees for near 200 moons, spawned from Circus Archaos, our hero entertained audiences throughout Europe and the rest of the World, juggling and twirling fire to the beat of the drum. Today AD Treepirate designer builder of numerous impressive timber structures and sculptures, the obvious yet unique outcome from the combined skills of these 2 risky pastimes is the infamously notorious Captain Chainsaw.
From juggler to chainsaw sculpture we arrive at juggling chainsaws whilst carving!! Breath takingly dangerous power tool wielding spectacular, but also the live creation of art before your very eyes. World travels include: Scorpionic fire displays at Fuji Rock Festival, Japan. Design, make and built huge structures in Pennsylvania, as well as entertaining the crowds in Spain, Portugal and Germany etc.
Astonishing, frightening, yet inspiring to any audience, ear defenders supplied but optional.
Bramble FM is a comic traveling roadshow. The can be found in festivals all over Britain such as Glastonbury, Camp Bestival and now Village Green!
Put your ears in the safe hands of top community DJs Les, Terry and Maureen as they broadcast live from the Bramble Roadshow caravan.
Cut the rug as they play all the hits and all the misses from their vast vinyl archive.
Join in with your animal impersonations in the Johnny Morris memorial hour, listen and learn with Chas and Dave’s history of rap, plus phone-ins, dedications and live events on the roadshow podium. At last a community radio station so local you can smell it…!
HOW TO GET INVOLVED
Do you make beautiful things?
Are you a local creative with something to sell and/or show? – Apply for a market stall to showcase your work amongst the finest creative talent in the area. For more information contact email@example.com
Is delicious food your thing?
Are you a local food retailer/restaurateur? – Apply to run a food outlet at this year’s Village Green. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Want a career in the arts / events?
Would you love to find out what goes into creating an event of this scale? Would you like to work back stage, in marketing, stewarding, capturing the event on film, artist liaison, hospitality and or other on-site roles? For more information and details about the various opportunities, please contact email@example.com
Village Green: The Next Generation – the exclusive festival day for Southend school pupils will take place on Friday 11 July. 6000+ children will enjoy their own festival the day before Village Green. Participation is open to all Southend schools. Anyone interested in their school either performing or being in the audience, should contact Metal on 01702 470700.
Metal would like to acknowledge Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and Arts Council England whose on going support allows us to continue Village Green at a subsidised ticket price.
The Introduction of Ticket Sales at Village Green
The introduction of a nominal ticket charge will help to safeguard Village Green following several years of successive budget cuts to the arts – with more to come in the future.
Metal has provided free entry to this fantastic community event for a number of years.
We have given careful thought to the level of ticket prices. Our main aim has been to maintain the diverse family audience who have supported Village Green over the years, whilst ensuring the viability of the ever-growing event. We are delighted that we have managed to ensure that all children of 10 and under will remain FREE and 11–17 year olds will pay just £5. Adult tickets will be £10. Group discounts are available as well as an exclusive offer of 500 free tickets for Category C Southend Advantage Card members allocated on a first come, first served basis.
No profit will be made from Village Green. All the ticket prices represent a contribution to the running costs (rather than covering all costs completely). The event remains heavily subsidised through the fund raising efforts of the team at Metal which is a UK registered arts charity.
Metal has put a number of new measures in place to ensure that audience numbers within the park remain at a comfortable level for festival-goers. Extra areas within the park have been brought into Metal’s licenced areas, so 2014 will see a larger spread of fantastic programme across more of the park.
We believe that introduction of reasonable ticket charges will allow this popular, family-orientated cultural event to continue to be staged at Chalkwell Park and guarantee it is sustainable for years to come.
Rapid Scan Ticket Entry
We have entered into a new partnership with the professional ticket agency, Skiddle, who will work with us to ensure a smooth and speedy entry system to Village Green on the day – leaving audience members to enjoy, uninterrupted, as much of the 10 hours of programmed art, music and culture as possible. This service is covered by a small booking fee at the point of purchasing a ticket.
For Village Green 2013 archive page, click here.