- Published on Tuesday, 08 September 2009 12:40
- Written by Kev Adams
It's been a bug bear of mine for some time. I'm sorry folks, I realise I've been going on about this for a long time now but why is there NO ELECTRONIC MUSIC of any kind ever performed in Bridgnorth!?! And I don't mean DJ's and whichever variant of House music is currently allowed at the Crown. Of course I could have just been missing a hidden scene somewhere, bleeping away just off the radar?
We live in a town with a fair few good venues these days but they're mostly frequented by folk, soft rock and blues bands, as good as many of these are too (and don't get me started on covers ;-). It's 2009 though, let's hear something a little different please. Don't get me wrong my taste is pretty diverse, I'm often blown away by the performers I see in the town but I'd love to find a venue willing to take a chance on something new once in a while. Then I get chatting to Clive Booth, ex-Bridgnorthian and the man behind the excellent Ribside http://www.myspace.com/ribsidecoadunate
Clive was keen to get involved with the Bridgnorth Music Festival but I was having trouble finding a suitable venue. He mentioned that he'd love to play at the Bell for old times sake as he'd played down there in the mid-80's over 20 years ago. Of course we're lucky to have Guy running a great music pub down there these days and although I knew he'd booked his main acts for the weekends of the festival, it was fairly easy to persuade him to take a chance on something different on a Thursday - for a band that would be happy to play for a few beers.
- Published on Monday, 07 September 2009 16:11
- Written by Kev Adams
Superb afternoons entertainment down on the Quayside. Live acoustic/unplugged acts from 12 noon - 6pm. All of the performers played a blinder and we had a great crowd too. Thank you to everyone who came down. At the Quayside we try to create a platform for song writers and original music, something that too often seems lacking in the town. We have some excellent music venues these days and plenty of outstanding performers. There aren't that many which encourage original music though so hopefully we play a small part in trying to redress the balance.
The Quayside forms a perfect mini-amphitheatre with performers playing against the back drop of the River Severn. A perfect venue with stunning views, although shamefully it's hardly ever used.
- Published on Monday, 07 September 2009 14:29
- Written by David Overton
I had the chance to see SheBangg open up the Bridgnorth Music Festival on Friday. This was the fourth time I’ve seen them now and each time they have played in a different format (duo, acoustic band etc.). Tonight appeared to be the full-on electric set, which I must admit I wasn’t quite sure about to begin with, given the size of the venue (the Bell and Talbot surely has to be one of the more compact and bijou live music venues in the West Midlands!). However, they proved me wrong and tonight was an awesome set, delivered with talent and conviction to a completely packed room.
- Published on Sunday, 26 September 2010 15:13
- Written by Simon Golding
The bank holiday Monday welcomed Acoustic Music on the Quayside and the laidback mood fitted the artists. It was very relaxed and people gathered around the beautiful natural amphitheatre of Bridgnorth’s quayside in Low Town. The marquee was modest compared to the high street, which was a perfect setting for the acoustic talent that paraded in front of a very appreciative audience. The vista was stunning as the artists sung, plucked, blew and strummed there way though many of their own songs, the beautiful river Severn backdrop murmuring away in perfect harmony.
It was a special treat for me as a few weeks before I had been contacted by the beautiful Hollywood starlet actress/writer/producer Hazel D’Jan, whose parents lived quite near to the area, offered to meet me at Parlors Hall just before the Quayside event started up.
Any nerves I had about meeting this new up-and-coming star, who had several blockbuster movies in-production – including her latest, a $40 Million epic, alongside Val Kilmer, and another with Wesley Snipes, were quickly dispelled by a charming smile and calming manner.
Hazel oozed charisma, exquisiteness and intelligence like all great actors do. After the actress very kindly handed over a couple of stunning signed photos from her soon-to-be-released movies, to help raise money for our charities, we set off towards the distant music.
The sun was on its best behaviour and slipped from behind a cloud as Hazel and I strolled over the bridge, chatting about everything and nothing, towards the quayside playing area.
The band Flat Stanley were in full flow, their haunting sounds drifting over the river towards us. Hazel had agreed to do an interview for The Valley Radio, Bridgnorth, and as if on-cue Tony Russell had taken centre stage, performing a brilliant solo Flamenco guitar set – providing a fitting background score. Mark Williams, MC for the whole festival and as many amazing hats as days in the week, usual easy manner made for a charming and informative over-view of the actress. A short photo shoot followed by festival photographer, Chris Rollason, who had no problem at all capturing the awe and beauty of this talented actress. Afterwards Hazel happily chatted to audience, artists and crew before being swept away for an important meeting in London.
Hazel D’Jan, who I’m sure will become a household name in the very near future, is very supportive of our festival and we are looking forward to her involvement in 2011.
- Published on Thursday, 23 September 2010 19:28
- Written by Simon Golding
Bridgnorth Majestic Cinema – Screen 2 on 28th August 2010
Photographer Chris Rollason (L to R – James Frizzell, Matt Daniels & Simon Golding)
One of the many festival highlights was the special premier screening of Finding Their Feet, together with an introduction and Q & A session by Matt Daniels. It was the latest movie by the wonderful director Matt Daniels who had offered his time, for free, to help us raise money for our chosen charities. This was to be an extraordinary festival event and could not have happened without the generosity of Reel Cinemas. Our venue was the unique Majestic Cinema in Bridgnorth, and the 18 chain cinema company had offered us exclusive use of their 80-seater screen 2 room.
James Frizzell, the manager, was tireless in his energy and support for this event and his enthusiasm guaranteed that bums would be on seats. The cinema looked immaculate and even a buffet had been supplied for the guests.
Following a short introduction the movie had begun and we were all transfixed by Matt Daniels fantastic vision as we went on a rollercoaster of emotions. It was a magical moment and a thrill to see such a powerful production. All too soon it was over and the lights popped on and we were all back to reality.
The questions were thrown at Matt like frisbees, all were intelligent and thoughtful and the answers were eloquent and entertaining. The audience reluctantly filtered out of the cinema foyer and disappeared into the night, all raving about the images and words they had just witnessed.
- Published on Friday, 17 September 2010 19:04
- Written by Linda Tilley
Since its first appearance at the festival in 2008, the Caste Grounds event has gone from strength to strength. The addition this year of such family attractions as children’s face painting, a caricaturist and the Museum On The Move helped to ensure the largest numbers of people coming through the gates for this event, with many staying for most or even all of the afternoon. The weather was favourable once again which meant a great number of people took the opportunity to picnic in the wonderful surroundings of Bridgnorth Castle Grounds Park, while enjoying the attractions and live music on offer throughout the day.
The Bandstand was once again the venue for an afternoon of quality live acts - fourteen in total - playing a diverse and varied range of musical styles to extremely appreciative audiences, who dug deep and helped to swell the charity collection in aid of Bridgnorth Hospital League of Friends.
Once again it was a delight to see the park used for a community event and the Bandstand being used for what it was built for - live music performances. A great success a round!
- Published on Saturday, 11 September 2010 09:58
- Written by Simon Golding
The unique event at the Falcon Hotel, that saw Oscar nominated actress Elizabeth McGovern perform with her band, was a great success. The line-up was impressive with the great local singer/song writer, Nikki Rous kicking off the evening, followed by the talented Nelson Brothers.
Head-lining the evening was Elizabeth’s band Sadie And The Hotheads who mesmerised the audience with their unusual style and seductive melodies.
'We really did have a great time, thanks so much for letting us play at your festival,' commented McGovern, adding, 'it was wonderful to meet you all and get a taste of Bridgnorth.'
During the evening there was a Celebrity Charity Auction, conducted by TV expert Philip Serrell, who kindly offered his services for a donation to his favourite charity. Philip deftly whipped up the crowd and helped us raise much needed funds for Bridgnorth Hospital League of Friends and MacMillan Cancer Support.
The whole evening was kept on track by festival compère the eloquent Mark Williams and ran very smoothly. Yet another diverse and very entertaining event for this year’s festival.