Friday, June 30, 2006

Grass Roots Festival Day 2

...and so we get to day 2 of The Grass Roots Festival and everything is going very smoothly. Opening proceedings on day 2 were "Sympathy for Mr Vengeance.Meanwhile kicking off in the acoustic tent Kate Wreyford. Actually when I say kicking off I don't mean Kate went on a bender and started a fight or anything, more like kicking off at a football match except she wasn't playing football. any hoo... here's Kate.
Now if there's anyone destined to become a rock star playing big stadiums it's Jimmy Kidnap. He's got the attitude , the poses and the pair of socks down the front of his jeans, allegedly. here he is fronting the fabulous Point Seven Pistol.
Yeah yeah yeah don't worry I haven't forgotten the workers er audience, here are you lovely people enjoying yourselves. BTW that security guard and his dog top left weren't as mean looking as they seem. I had them pose like that. I had to bribe the dog with scooby snacks to stop it wagging it's tail and licking everyone. Meanwhile on the QT Lisa begged me not to tell you she was reading "Nuts" magazine so I'll say nothing. And in the centre you'll see the lovely Clare without and i. It's her birthday Today (Saturday 1st July). So happy birthday Clare.
Is this Radicus?
Oh hello! It's Palava. Those nices dudes from Folk Wit Records. That's Gaff on the right with the hat. He's a kindred spirit to me, I wonder why?
You know if you want your rock intense and fast, look no further than these guys. This is "Sidearm". I love their party piece of changing over drummers without dropping a beat. Except the lead guitarist young Mitchell lost his sound and they had to go into a holding pattern while he fixed it, which sort of spoilt the effect. But I can assure you when it goes right it's brilliant.
If there was a prize for the festivals best facial hair, then it would have gone to our good friend Julian Stone. Here he is ripping it up in the acoustic tent.
We were really impressed by this band. Sever the Wicked. It was the first time we'd ever seen them and I almost didn't make it back to the acoustic tent to continue my photographic odyssey. It was one of the few times so far that I wasn't chasing from stage to stage with my camera. Fantastic.

I got back to the acoustic tent and the running order had all gone to pot. I don't mean "to pot" as in marijuana pot, but I guess it's as good an excuse as any, but certain acts booked failed to show so here's a few artists who filled in. That'll be Richard and Cornelius for starters then. This is what we've been waiting for, Circus featuring the talented Ali on Violin and the Evil one standing in on bass guitar.
Silverspace. The sounds this guy gets out of his guitar is incredible although I put it down to a million pounds worth of electronic wizardry at his finger tips and feet as well as his awesome ability.

Hooray! it's Tallulah Rendall. Anyone who has met her will agree she's fabulous. If you didn't get a chance to meet her then you are ever so lucky because she's coming back to playPixy Skin very soon.

Opaque on stage with The Evil One guesting on bass guitar.
Here's The Evil One again, this time in the acoustic tent, so far he's played on stage four times that I know of at this festival alone. Solo fill in set saturday afternoon, with Circus, with Opaque and now playing his allotted slot. Oh he did a very nice version of Tallulah. Sorry I meant Hallelujah. Anyway James Chadwick ladies and gentlemen. Just don't look into his eyes.
This is Tunguska Butterfly, arguably the weirdest named band at the festival so far, but having an odd name doesn't mean they're not brilliant.

Unity 29th June 2006

So after a hectic weekend with the muddy festival, no one seemed to be up for anything raucus, we just wanted to chill, so it seemed kind of perfect tonight to have Heather McVey play for us. Serendipidy. That's your word for the week. It just panned out very nicely. The usual Unity Jam was very laid back and fluid this week with half of Point Of Origin on stage, including for a brief spell moi meme. But really the night belonged to Heather McVey, such a great vocal talent and equally good on guitar, ably supported by Claire on Bass, and Stacey on congas, playing a very understated but appropriate back line. There were threats to his life if he fucked it up. Allegedly. We were so impressed we have invited Heather back to play for us again at the Muddy Equinox party here at The Bar Lisboa on the 23rd of September. She may have a full band by then. More details on that closer to the event.
Meanwhile here's the papparazzi pics you've all been waiting for.
Oh yes we have Lisa looking sultry, Simon, Ben and Claire, then Andy who is a DJ, hmmm we might be able to use his talent on the 23rd, next row Heather who felt she was amongst friends already, Jodie who plays bass guitar as well as Sax and flute, Lisa being demonic, bottom row, James, what can I say? Has this guy improved over the last six months or what? From being a nervous wreck at his first Unity gig last year to now when he's first up on stage and playing the hell out of a guitar, big respect, finally bottom right, all we are missing is Maharishi Yogi. How laid back have we been tonight?
Ok a little gossip. James tells me "Sympathy For Mr Vengeance" are having a bit of a line up change. They are bringing in the drummer from "Columbian Necktie" who is brilliant, their lead vocalist is moving to be the new Bass guitarist, the original bass guitarist is going to concentrate on the computer effects and keyboards and they are bringing in a new female vocalist. (TBA) So I for one can't wait to hear the new line up.
Anyone with green fingers want to help with the new garden at Bar Lisboa? Louis and Monica are improving the court yard today (Friday) from 12.00am onwards. "Clare without and i" has already volounteered her services.
More photos from the Grass Roots festival very soon.
We're getting closer to the 10,000th hit pay close attention. We want to know who you are. Watch that hit counter. Make yourself known.

Rock on mes enfants Posted by Picasa

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Unity Tonight

In the absence of our usual mailout of what's on. Can I remind you, if you all haven't already OD'ed on music over the weekend, we have the fantastic Heather McVey playing at Unity tonight. So we'd like to see you all there. If you haven't already had a listen to her stuff check her out on her myspace site here
That's it Rock on mes Enfants

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

The Grass Roots Fest Day 1

Here's some more pictures from The Grass Roots Festival. Day 1 Friday evening. Having the honour of kicking off the Festival were John Doe.Meanwhile down in the acoustic tent Sam Kirk kicks off the quiet part of the festivities.
Followed swiftly by the incredible Andy Whittle.
Looking mean and moody, Godfather commanded the stage.
Then sprinting back down to the acoustic tent where my good friend Irene Rae took the stage.
Oh my God! It's those Los Guys again on the main stage.
Wow! Mohair! Good or what?
Finally some more of you lovely lovely people. So many times during the weekend people said to me that everyone was so friendly. Well that's because you're all such nice people. We all have a common cause. That is to have a good time and celebrate the music. Are you in the montage below? If not you could well be in the montages to come. 1500 photos and 500 present. You've got to be in there somewhere.

Keep checking in more photos will be posted every day (with luck)

We are rapidly heading towards the 10,000th hit on this site. Would the person who notices they are the 10,00th visitor make themselves known in the shout box. There's no prize just glory. I would guess it's going to be sometime Friday or Saturday at this rate. Over 150 hits a day.

meanwhile keep on rocking mes enfants Mike Da Hat

Monday, June 26, 2006

Muddy Festival

Three days in a field and I loved every minute. over 1,000 photos taken, so there's a lot of work to be done. In the meantime just to wet your appetites here's a few random pics from Day 1 Friday evening.  
But before we get into the nitty gritty of the individual bands and artists who performed for us, I've got to say a big thank you for the lovely things that were said about me in the programme.
Bastards! You had me filling up. It's not as if I do all the work. I just take pictures. There are so many who have done much more than me who I love and admire, without whom this event wouldn't have taken place. I have just documented it.
You know who the top of the list is...

More pics when I've recovered.

Rock on mes enfants. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, June 25, 2006

The Muddy Festival

We're having a great time. Please be patient it may be a while before I sort out the photos. I took 500 photos on Saturday alone. 
Sunday maybe the same. But in the meantime enjoy this one image which seems to me to sum everything up.

Rock on dudes. Posted by Picasa

Friday, June 23, 2006

Short Break

I'm sorry but there's no photos today of last nights Unity. There are photos of course but I can't do it right now. When three good friends die in one week, it's hard to maintain enthusiasm, and the necessary energy to do the work involved. Normal service will resume after the Muddy Fest. Life goes on I know but for now I'm going to give myself a little time. Forgive me.

Mike Da Hat

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Sad News

It's my very sad duty to inform you of the recent loss of three of our fellow musicians turning this into a very sad week for me despite the Festy coming right up.
First earlier this week my good friend Mick Davies succumbed to cancer three months after being diagnosed. Some of you may remember Mick as an accomplished blues musician regularly playing in and around Peterborough.
Then this morning I was informed that Tony and Terry Dixon both died in a freak accident whilst fishing. It seems a large wave swept them off the rock they were on and they drowned. They were both brothers to our good friend Rick who manages Live music on Lincoln Road. Tony Dixon was the drummer for bands like The Jake Salu band and Pooks Hill, and one time groundsman for POSH football club and Terry Dixon, a brilliant guitarist, also in The Jake Salu Band and had been know to play for Status Quo in his time amongst many other accomplishments.
It's hard when a good friend dies but when you lose three in as many days, it makes you think.
Our sincerest condolences and deepest sympathy go to Rick and his family. The world would have been a much richer place but for their loss.

May your God be with you.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Muddy Festival News

Greetings Festival people!

Preparations are in earnest for the first Grassroots Festival!!

Some important bits of info first though:

If you have purchased your tickets but have not been given the actual ticket or membership card yet, they are at the Glass Onion, 2 Burghley Road, awaiting your collection. If they are not picked up by Thursday they will be taken to site where you will be able to pick them up at the entrance to the festy, though this could make the entrance process a little more lengthy so please pick them up if you can.

If you have not got your ticket yet the time is now, the last minute panic buy has already set in and they are selling like hot cakes! There may be some left on the door but there won't be many and they will cost you £10 more. You can buy them via Paypal from or from the Glass Onion. The last day for advance ticket sales will be Thursday.

If you are a ticket holder you can come to site any time from tonight onwards - though if you are arriving before Friday please be prepared to lend a hand with getting the site all ready for the big party.

See you there bredrens!

Peace love unity and respect!

You wanted it...

Oh lord! Oh me oh my. I forgot the DJ at the Band of the Year Competition.So here he is the very wonderful DJ Urb. World record holder and all round good egg. Dom. Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Bestival opportunity

Any unsigned bands out there want to play The Bestival?
Well those lovely chappies at Rizla have teamed up with The Bestival and they're sponsoring one unsigned band to play on the purple stage and all you have to do is send in a demo by 7th July.
Someone by the unlikely moniker Rob Da Bank will choose a shortlist of bands who then go on to a public vote.

So you've been told, I've given you the message and I can relax now. You're all going to click on the link have a read and send off your demos.
Go get'em Floyd.

Todays myspace of the day is the remarkably insane John Otway. He used to drink bottles of Quink for a bet. Check out "beware of the flowers" the song is probably older than you are, because I was listening to it over thirty years ago, I've even played it on stage a few times, but that doesn't mean it's not worth a listen. Mental or what?

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Band Of The Year Final

We finally get to the end of the Band of the Year competition and we're gutted. yes friends we're gutted. Kulak who were hotly tipped (in some circles) to win, pulled out at the last minute due to their lead singer moving to Northampton on the very day of the finals. But fear not a great final was held. First up on stage my very good friend Irene Rae. OK she isn't a band but a solo artist. But didn't she just proved she deserved a place in the final by her performance? And where did that last high note come from? The vocal talents of this girl are amazing. Not to mention her song writing talent and her ability to hold a crowd spellbound. I can only say that if she had a band behind her she could hit the mainstream and be very successful.
Next on stage were Buckle St (That's Buckle Street, it's a place in Peterborough) If points could have been awarded for being such great guys then they would have had 10's all the way. I myself feel priveliged that I am doing a photoshoot for them, sometime soon. It's going to be great fun. Because this is what these guys are.. great fun. Great music, great attitude. Two brilliant front men and an equally brilliant drummer.
Unfortunately Buckle St were up against these guys. "Point Of Origin". Their unique blend of Funk, Reggae and Rap continues to captivate audiences. Can't you just see the enthusiasm each member has for what they are doing? It's special. So the winners were Point Of Origin. Special thanks to Ian of the Fidds for organising the event. To Ian Carey who provided the sound and the lights throughout the competition. To all of the bands who turned up and competed. I saw every one. Some where unlucky to have been billed against top opposition and could have got further. They might not have won but they could easily have got to the finals. Thanks to all the sponsors The Evening Telegraph, Tamarik drums, the live music centre. and many more.
Not least thanks to me. I try very hard to hide my modesty.

But in retrospect who were memorable? First Aid Boy, Rigollo, Switch Theory. Maybe if I thought about it more I'd remember all the other great acts. But these were the three that stick in my mind as contenders.

Rockon dudes

Friday, June 16, 2006

Thursday 14th June 1665

And so dear friends here we are at another Unity special. This time we had just the one band one after the sofa jam. The Gangsters, winners of The Solstice Battle of the bands. This gig was to celebrate Sterret halls birthday and didn't we celebrate in style.  The place was rocking everyone up and dancing, happy Birthday was sung. Three encores at least were played. Brilliant.

Happy Birthday Sterret. You were brilliant. Please come on down again whenever you want. We have the stage, we have the audience.
Thank you from all the Unity team for a great night. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Richards Solstice night

I know it's summer and I know the world cup is on, but you guys are missing some seriously laid back sounds on a Sunday. Richards Acoustic night at the Solstice. What made it for me was Chopper (AKA Gav) playing stuff I'd never heard before, then Vince playing acoustically selections from his Circus set, and finally Moony playing Opaque solo. It was like an intimate concert just for us. I felt priveliged. Even Shaggy blew us away with a single Jazz piece which had me so enthralled I forgot to take pictures. In fact it was so laid back Vince had to take some of the photos on this montage. OK he didn't HAVE to but he wanted to. So yay to Vince.

I humbly note "The Evil One" has finally admitted to his devilishness. Don't take my word for it, check out the shout box. His own words. Just don't look him in the eye. He'll suck any talent right out of you, making it his own, and leave you an empty husk. I know this from personal experience. Since meeting "The Evil One" I have given up playing professionally. I can't do it anymore. Don't let this fate happen to you. Avert your eyes. Luckily we're past Walpurgis Nacht. But there's all hallows eve to come. If you take the letters of his name convert them to Runic, take away every other letter and add the first number you thought off, convert it back to ancient Hebrew, and put it through an Enigma machine you will get the message "You will die". Conclusive proof I think. So don't let his boyish good looks and charm fool you. Ever wondered why his hair is so long? That's right. To hide the 666 birthmark in his scalp.

Monday, June 12, 2006

What's on this week

Greetings mammals and feathered friends!

Another weekend of strong sunshine - looking forward on the two-weekly forecast it looks as though we are going to have nice sunny days to jump around in the fields of the Grassroots Festival. There are still tickets available and they can be bought from the Glass Onion on Burghley Road between 10am and 10pm 7 days a week, or from the Muddy stand at Unity on Thursday in Lisboa.

So what's on this week?


Tuesday night is open mic/jam night at the Comet, Garton End Road, Dogsthorpe. A diverse range of musicians are gathering every Tuesday to play together and see the new week in in style. Entrance is free.


Pixie Folke Club is at Lisboa (24 Lincoln Road, up the stairs next to Curry Masters) on Wednesday night. Brought to you by the team behind Pixie Skin this is a free folk jam session till 11pm with open mc starting afterwards.

Alternatively, or in addition to, Music Jam (hosted by James "Evil" Chadwick) is at Xoo Bar (downstairs from City and County Club) on Wednesday from 8pm. It's an open mic session so bring your instruments and tunes. Entrance is free.


Unity at Lisboa is holding a ska and reggae special this week, with the Gangsters playing live and hosting a jam session for you all to get up and join in on. Sterret (from Gangsters) is celebrating his birthday with us this week too so come along and wish him a happy one. DJ Urb will be kicking out the ska beats to keep skanking into the early hours. Entrance is free.


Radius (formerly known as Tara Suite) is the exciting new venue just opened above the Solstice. This Friday they are bringing London based band Big Eye Am to Peterborough - the band plays an eclectic and energetic set with elements of rock, punk, soul and funk fused into a bright and fun sound. Local support comes from Groove Cartel and Point of Origin . Entrance is £4 on the door and doors open at around 8pm.


It's time for the long-awaited final of the Fidds Band of the Year competition - which has relocated to larger venue the Verve (just round the corner on Cathedral Square). Point of Origin, Kulak, Irene Rae and Buckle Street will all be playng their hearts out on the night attempting to take the trophy and prizes. Entrance is £5, and it's likely to get very full so get there early to avoid disappointment - and don't forget that your votes count! DJ Urb will be on the decks during the event.

If you are after something a little beatier Hanky Panky are playing underground Techno in Bogarts Beer Garden from 3 till 11pm, entrance is free so why not?

Just round the corner in Lisboa Dizzy Funk are celebrating their 5th birthday, serving up deep house wonders for your listening and dancing pleasure - entrance is only £3 before 12pm and £5 after so get there early!


Deep Roots are keeping things mellow with their regular Sunday sessions in Lisboa. Doors open at 6pm and entrance is free so get down and get groovy.

Later on sunday, Rich from Unity is still hosting Acoustic Sundays at Solstice, with a good line-up of three acoustic performers on offer each week. Music runs from 9pm till around 11:30 and the night is a lovely and relaxed way to finish your weekend. Entrance is free.

....and Finally

Get your Grassroots tickets people! This is going to the event of the year in this area and is not to be missed. It will only cost you £25 including a year's worth of membership to Muddy Promotions, unless you leave it too long and buy your tickets at the door, where you will end up paying £10 more. Get on board the party bus!

Peace love unity and respect.


Pixie Skin

Blazing hot. Hot enough to poach eggs, which brings a few vivid images to mind. Fresh from his appearence at the recent Jim Moray lookalike competition here's Trevor Lloyd. aha not only does he keep coming back for more but he has the audacity to get better each time we see him, his guitar playing is improving all the time. Here's one of Unitys favourites Tom O'Brien
Yes we do believe he was really a monk. No one can make up such a stupid story so it's got to be true... here he is his serene monkness The Singing Monk
What can I say? Circus. Interesting in that Nick decided to do an Elvis and leave the building. Thus prompting an emergency call from Vince to the Evil one to take over bass guitar duties. Amidst chants of "The Evil One", James Chadwick rose and bending space and time before him cut through the crowd of unworthy acolytes toward the stage. A withering look putting paid to anyone who dared stand in his way. It's like the medusa anyone who has actually witnessed the evil stare has died instantly and doesn't live to tell the tale. So the Evil one played note perfect, you wouldn't expect anything less, you wouldn't dare expect anything less.
So here's the papparazzi pics of all you lovely people, featuring top left your very own hostesse for the night Melody.
Here we are with Point of Origin and their star keyboard player, Piper, who has just won a major role in a new advertising campaign for "Mr Muscle". Don't mess with this guy he has a black belt in Origami. Point of Origin have a few gigs coming up not least is their appearence next Saturday at the Band of the Year final at the new location of "The Verve" the night before at the new upstairs venue of the Solstice "Radius". Be there or be somewhere else.
Oh My! 100th Monkey. Folk rock and stuff from Glastonbury. Hmmm not sure about that. They may have played Glastonbury but Mick the mandolin player is definitely from Peterborough. I've known him years and he's never mentioned that he came from Glastonbury.
OK that's it. Don't stay naked in the sun too long. You'll burn your bits
Rock on dudes