Spread across three days (Fri – Sun) at the end of July and taking place in the city of Sheffield, Tramlines is back this year and it’s looking pretty MEGA. This is the first time it will take place in three of the cities parks rather than at indoor venues which will allow for a bigger capacity and even bigger acts!
Now in it’s eighth year the festival has grown each year and now boasts one of the most exciting line-ups out of all the U.K metropolitan festivals. There’s no camping involved with this one so you’ll either need to have a mate with a sofa or get yourself booked into a hotel – you can find out more about accommodation packages on their website here.
Main stage headliners this year are The Libertines on Friday, All Saints Saturday and Metronomy on Sunday…yes All Saints from the 90s, having caught them on their tour last year and absolutely loving the trip down memory lane I was more than happy to see them appearing on the Tramlines line-up! It’s also great to see The Libertines appearing as headliners at a handful of festivals this summer.
Also rocking up in Sheffield for the weekend are Spring King, The Magic Gang, The Coral, We Are Scientists and Loyle Carner to name just a few of my personal picks!
If all of that isn’t enough to keep you entertained for 3 days there are after-parties taking place every night too, featuring more performances and DJ sets from the likes of Artful Dodger, Faithless, Mike Skinner and Bugzy Malone…Now all we need is the sun to shine on Sheffield in July!
The Liverpool festival is celebrating its 10th Birthday in May and this time it’s moved location from Bramley Moore dock to a bigger space down the road at Clarence dock. When Sound City first started it took place in multiple city centre venues before the organisers decided in 2015 to move it to Bramley Moore dock to accommodate more people and have a proper festival site, so moving again just two years later seems testament to its growth.
This year sees the festival put on an extra two nights too, starting on the Thursday with The Human League headlining and Friday impressively boasts the only European performance of ‘John Cale presents The Velvet Underground & Nico’…what a start to the bank holiday weekend.
Metronomy head up Saturday night with Slaves and The Kills taking to the main stage before them and indie veterans The Kooks will close the festival on Sunday night with their own anniversary celebration – it’s 10 years since the release of their debut album. The Cribs were recently added as special guests on the Sunday too, and judging by their performance on the main stage in 2015 they should be warmly welcomed back!
Sound City has always championed emerging talent and this years showcase is no exception with the likes of Swiimers, Crimsons and Violet Youth all appearing on the bill. Bands that have been breaking through recently like The Amazons, The Sherlocks, The Magic Gang and The Shimmer Band have joined the line-up too.
Tim Burgess returns again this year with Tim Peaks Diner where he will be bringing his usual combination of coffee, conversation, signings and special performances.
Sound City takes place from 25th – 28th May (with the Thursday and Friday nights ticketed separately). Make sure you follow @SoundCity for any announcements and to keep updated before the big weekend!
It’s been a bit of a quiet time for me on the gig front for the past few months, with absolutely none at all in January…a very rare occurrence! So when I was offered the chance to see Drake (on Valentines Day of all days) I was more than ready to end my live music drought…if you know anything about my little (big) obsession with the Toronto man this was quite a big deal.
I’m sure I’ve mentioned it in posts before but the O2 is a bit hit and miss for me when it comes to concerts, the humongous aircraft hanger-like arena doesn’t always seem to work – especially for bands/solo artists without a huge theatrical production with them to fill the space. Despite being mostly alone on stage (his DJ, drummer and keyboardist barely visible in the dry ice) Drake somehow manages to make the 20,000 or so people in the audience feel like they were attending a much more intimate gig, I lost count of how many times he declared his love for London/the UK and made sure everyone knew they’d made the right decision spending Valentines night with him…the man is a charmer. The set was jam-packed with almost 40 songs including Hotline Bling, of course, and there was a ‘hits medley’ in the middle feat. snippets of 6 God and Worst Behavior.
Light spheres/balloons suspended from the ceiling waved up and down, changing colour throughout the set and were mesmerizing, almost like a giant installation piece. Then on the second stage in the middle of the crowd a huge inflatable moon/planet pops up and provides a pretty impressive backdrop for the last few songs, I’d seen a few photos of this from other dates on the tour and was waiting for it all night! Throw in some real flames and a couple of fireworks here and there and there is no question Drake can keep a massive audience enthralled for 90 minutes with minimal gimmicks.
I first discovered the joys of the fabric shops that line the Goldhawk Road when I was a fashion and textiles student, the street has 10 or so shops all selling a variety of fabric from silks, tweed, wool, printed cottons to vibrant African printed material, and the best thing about them? they are incredibly cheap! Chances are if you already know your way around a sewing machine and live anywhere near London you will already know about all that Goldhawk rd has to offer in terms of bargains but if not then here’s a few of the shops I had a good rummage in and picked up some fabric for making cushions!
A relatively new one to the road having only been there for three years I found Goldbrick Fabrics to have the widest choice for what I was looking for. This one looks a little more snazzy on the outside than some of the others but don’t be put off by the ones that perhaps don’t look as exciting from outside as they are mostly all housing some gems if you’re willing to have a good browse through!
It’s also worth noting that if you’re looking for Liberty print fabric Misan West towards the Shepherds Bush end of Goldhawk Road houses a good collection. The best way to get to the shops is from Goldhawk Rd tube station on the Hammersmith and City line (turn right out the station) but you can also walk there from Shepherds Bush/Shepherds Bush Green…happy fabric shopping!
Last week I spent the day in (a very freezing) Cambridge showing a London friend the sights! even though I used to work in the city I never spent much time appreciating how many little back streets there are to wander through. Although we wandered to the river it was way too cold to go punting which is one of the main tourist-y things to be doing in Cambridge, so instead we strolled around the Fitzwilliam Museum, the University buildings and stopped off for lots of tea/coffee/hot chocolate (anything to keep warm basically!).
For lunch we headed to Bread and Meat which is tucked away on Bene’t Street near the Corn Exchange venue. Having not spent much time in Cambridge over the past few years I’ve probably missed a number of ‘trendy’ places like this popping up across the city, but this is the one we stumbled upon…and I’m so glad we did! The name is definitely accurate, the fairly simple menu gives you the choice of a ciabatta sandwich or a bread free bowl which includes your choice of meat, slaw, salad/veg and potato wedges. There are a few sides to choose from too, (check out the menu on their website). We both went for the bowl option with their signature porchetta, the Italian style roasted pork with herbs was delicious with a yummy perfectly crunchy crackling and a salsa verde sauce. Apparently the homemade sausage rolls are v.tasty too and for those with a sweet tooth the handmade brownies looked amazing.
If you live or work in Cambridge then this place is definitely worth checking out, oh and they serve wine and beer too so it could be a great little stop off before heading to the Corn Exchange for a gig!
Shame Cambridge wasn’t looking quite as colourful as the food!….
I recently came across an old sample book of Liberty tana lawn fabric from my old workplace that would’ve ended up in the rubbish bin after a big clear-out. So rather than let it go to waste I’ve been using the gorgeous printed cottons to create some cards; following on from the valentine’s post where I used the fabric for the lovebirds card and for some of the hearts I decided to make some bird cards, it was actually one of the first designs I did on a card when I first started card making and hasn’t changed too much…here’s one of the originals!…
…and here’s some of the variations of prints used for the birds, these are all in my Etsy shop now too!