THE MUMBLE TEAM
Are taking their annual Festive Break
SEE YOU ALL IN THE SPRING !!
Are taking their annual Festive Break
SEE YOU ALL IN THE SPRING !!
Hello Ste, so where are you from & where are you at, geographically speaking?
Ste: North Wales, Audio Farm Crew originate from North Wales
Where, when & how did the idea for Audio Farm originate?
Ste: Manchester in 2008. The 6 founding members who are all still directors moved to Manchester with 15 others from N Wales in the Summer of 2008. We met the rest of our crew and started talking about putting on a club event that different to the rest. A fun, non corporate event with good ethics and lots or decor and fun. Audio Farm was born and first event was Jan 2009.
How, when & why did you get involved?
Ste: For the love of music.
Who are the beneficiaries of the charity funds you guys generate?
Green Paw Project.
Ste: Audio Farm Festival 2018 is a Non Profit, non-corporate, fundraising roots festival in which all profits go towards UK registered charity, Green Paw Project (UK Charity Registration Number 1166316). 100% of the shares of One Tribe Festival Ltd are owned by Green Paw Project, therefore the directors and organisers receive no profits. As we are a non-profit fundraising charity event, all ticket money income has no Vat implications, meaning 100% of ticket money goes towards the running of the event with all remaining profits going to Green Paw Project. For more information on Green Paw Project and how the money raised for this this festival and all past and future events and festival visit www.greenpawproject.org.
How different is the vibe at Audio Farm on all levels, compared to that of a corporate festival?
Ste: Very different. We have wonderful varied crowd of all ages. From babies to the old ravers. Our event is about putting on a top show, with quality world music, high end production, vegan food, lots of healing and workshops. The objective is to plant seeds of positive change. Whilst also making money for charity. We are stand against the rising corporation of festivals that is ruining the industry by buying festivals out, making them soulless, herding people in like sheep and making the top cats rich. Exactly the opposite of what festivals should. We are a roots festival with its original ethics.
How is the festival’s working relationship with Worcestershire County Council?
Ste: Shropshire County Council. Yes all good there. No issue at all.
Is Audio Farm child friendly / dog-friendly / disabl’d-friendly, etc?
Ste: Yes it is. Audio Farm is a reminder that we’re one big family on this planet, so it’s important that there’s exciting, interesting and fun things to do and see for all members of any family. The Kids Area is open from 7am until 7pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The area is a special little enclave for our junior festival goers with a bumper selection of fun workshops, circus classes, games, activities, shows, face painting, environmentally friendly glitter painting, slacklines, actors, clowns and even children’s yoga and children’s trance dances. Everything especially tailored for the young and enquiring mind.Yes its very accessible for disabled also.
Ste: What does Ste Chesters like to do when he’s not organising kick-ass festivals?
Ste: I would like to include us as collective here, as Audio Farm is about a core crew and 7 directors. Not just myself. We spend our time (obviuosly) going to festivals, building other festivals, putting on wellbeing events and also work hard towards the goal of Green Paw Projects Mission Malawi. (For more info https://www.onetribefestival.org/greenpawproject/). We are also big travellers too. We are all very lucky to have each other as a collective of friends. Audio Farm is all about the collective. “You are are only as good as the team around you”.
How has the festival evolved over the past decade or so?
Ste: Our ethics and ideas have always been the same since the first festival in 2013. We have just grown from 300 to 1500 people with bigger production, bigger artists, more family friendly, more emphasis on positive change and healing, and we are now a fully vegan festival which we were originally vegetarian festival.
How do you decide upon the acts?
Ste: Between us a collective. We aim to mix the legends with the new across many generas of music. Also we book some of the best energetic festival bands around, and aim to showcase bands from Europe like Olive Tree Dance.
What have you guys got for us this year?
Ste: A new concept with the focus being on the celebration of of the sun in a beautiful new site. Magic will happen!
To someone who has never been to Audio Farm, what have they got to expect?
Ste: Audio Farm Festival reopens the gates in 2018 under the original alias, keeping to its evolving nomadic roots at a new site, whilst One Tribe Festival takes a fallow year. 2017 saw One Tribe Festival blossom like a magical flower from its Audio Farm tree, from a seed that was planted at the first festival in 2013. So from the crew that brought you One Tribe, expect more of the same magic, music, people, energy, love, laughter and beauty, but in a more intimate space at Audio Farm Festival 2018. The journey continues in a new and exciting venue at Shropshire’s Hopton Court. Nestled in the heart of breathtaking borderland countryside, the watercolour beauty of this Georgian country estate has uniquely stunning parklands, walled gardens, ponds and a beautiful out buildings, where Audio Farm will transform the site into a microcosm of light, sights, sounds and new experiences, etched together into a mesmeric harmony lasting over 4 days. Audio Farm Festivals innovative stages play host to a wealth of hand-picked bands, artists and DJ’s, playing a glittering array of music from all corners of our known universe. From sun kissed House beats on the Sundance Stage and clinical Techno pulses in Home of the Drum, to sporadic breaks and rattling subs in the Depths of Bass, and the psychedelic beats of The Trip. The Mandala Stage and The Nest is a galaxy of eclectic bands, world musicians, vocal acrobats and solo sirens that will take you to places both familiar and new, all interwoven with a rich tapestry of drumming collectives, circus performers and fire dancers, colouring the day and illuminating the night. The Festival is a wealth of experiences, stimulating all the human senses and opening the portals to a world of possibilities in an explosion of imagination. A safe space to expand skill sets with progressive workshops and talks, where talented and knowledgeable healers offer alternative treatments to rejuvenate the mind, body, and soul through holistic disciplines, massage, guided meditation, gong baths, yoga and shamanic journeys. Independent throughout, Audio Farm Festival is proudly a non-profit, non-corporate organism that funds the work of The Green Paw Project with its profits. A charity that resolutely works to save and improve the lives of helpless and vulnerable animals in third world countries. So join the tribe again at Audio Farm Festival this summer and create indelible memories where footprints fade.
So this will be the last Audio Farm for a while, what’s the back story ?
Ste: We are undecided where our future lies within the festival industry and will be putting our minds together to work out our direction and where to best place our collective energies. So this could potentially be the last ever Festival that Audio Farm curates. It would therefore be amazing to see all of the Audio Farm family who have been part of the festivals since 2013 to be a part of this one, you have made it what it is today and we’re so grateful for each and every one of you.
August 11th 2018
For the past couple of years, one of the Mumble’s reviewers – Raymondo Speedie – has been raving about Party in the Palace at Linlithgow. This year, however, he couldnae make it – he was in Uganda or summat – so I leapt at the opportunity to check it out for myself, just for the Saturday night, but I was guessing that would be enough to get a feel for the place.
Me & the wife arrived to the sounds of Cast singing their classic rocker, Sandstorm, which just so happens to be my favourite tune of theirs. ‘A wonderful omen,’ I thought as I hit the site dancing. And what a gorgeous & curious spot; by serene loch waters, under the famous old castle, & barely a stone’s throw from Linlithgow itself. It was also busy, but not in a hectic kinda way, but in a ‘we love coming here every year‘ kinda way, as attested by the swarming islands of portable chairs.
Party At The Palace has one main stage, a fair size, & always full of revelry & song. The vibe was amazing, really, unpretentious, unlouty, undrugg -, its the perfect day out really & me & the wife were soon enjoying more than the one crispy pint of lager. We also enjoyed Cast, who were now grizzling & greying & chubbing out a bit, but still delivering pitch-perfect renditions from their fantastic catalogue, especially Walk Away which had the crowd in raptures.
Then Gabrielle arrived with the best hair-mop I’ve ever seen, complemented by a tight-ass band. After a few numbers we thought we’d check out the rest of the site, & to our delight found more stages & a great bar at the back playing slick tunes, half of which were motown. None of us knew Aretha would be dead within days. It was there that we also met our new best mat Neil, a doctor from North Berwick very kindly volunteering as litter-pickers with others of his grace for the West Lothian Scout group.
We had no idea how the event would be received – obviously in year 1 there was huge excitement locally with the prospect of some amazing bands coming to the town – we soon outgrew the venue and had to move across the loch so its fab to see that the demand for tickets is so high and people are now buying tickets before we event announce the line-up. We feel we are a go to event knowing that the weekend is fun regardless of the line-up. We are very family driven too which ticks many boxes for our customers. Read the full interview with organiser, Peter Ferguson
It was now time for James, one of Manchesters’s, & indeed the world’s best live bands. Anticipation was high; there were many familiar & iconic James t-shirts fluttering about the site, all of whom congregated in front of the main stage for sunset like butterflies in a cabbage field. It was an interesting gig, a rollercoaster really. The band had released their new album, Living In Extraordinary Times, only a week before, & were playing many songs from it. They sounded great, but of course they were hardly known, so the gig ebbed & flowed between euphoria for the classics & mild indifference for the new ones. Me & the wife were completely pissed & blissed out anyway, so we simply got on with it & fell in love with each once again at the the romance-inspiring setting of Party in the Palace.
Black Waterproof Jacket – George (Asda)
Black Quenchua poncho
Black / white dots umbrella
Turquoise bag with picnic rug inside
Black card purse with bank cards
A selection of glasses and sundglasses
ASOS denim jacket – size 12
XL grey Jacket
Black ted Baker shoulder bag
Green primark rain coat
Blue zip hoody with white stripe up the arms
Black Masai short sleeve cardigan
Leopard point umbrella
Bunch of keys (3)
22 bank cards! (All have been destroyed.)
Silver / White gold ring
Hello Peter, so where are you from & where are you at, geographically speaking?
I am from Glasgow originally and now living in Edinburgh
When did you first get into events?
My background is hotel management and this come with a huge amount of events work to a certain scale. I have always had a passion to organise large scale events and took the plunge 10 years ago to leave my hotel job to start my own company which was to organise events for clients and events I produce myself. I throve on it and really enjoy what I do.
Who inspires you musically?
You should be asking John (Richardson) this question – our tastes differ hugely! But from a Party at the Palace point of view – bands who know how to work a crowd, get them going and have them singing and dancing along! Bands like The Proclaimers and Paul Heaton and Jackie Abbot are huge favourites of mine!
What does Peter Ferguson like to do when he’s not organising kick-ass parties?
He is a huge lover of theatre and spending time with my family and friends. I love travelling and seeing what’s out there but more often or not I’ll be enjoying some lovely wine, great food with my best pals!
Where, when & how did the idea for Party in the Palace originate?
Back in late 2013, John called me up telling me he and some of the other local dads in Linlithgow had been chatting about how they could all make their fortune and were sharing ideas and John decided that putting on a music festival was the best idea! When he called, me I was having none of it to start with as I know how risky putting on an event of this size is – financially and logistically – but I saw the light and agreed it was a great idea! We are now in to year 5 and have not looked back – ok we have learned LOTS over the last five years but we are extremely proud of what we have achieved and the awards we have won too!
Can you describe your relationship with your co-organiser, John Richardson, in a single sentence?
John is a great guy – one of my best pals and we know how to work each other to put on great events!
How is your working relationship with West Lothian council?
West Lothian council have been a great support to PATP, I think they were keen to see how year 1 went and if it would be a success and we are delighted to prove that it was and it’s a huge benefit to the WLC area both economically and putting the area on the map as a great go to destination. We are supported fully by the council in all departments which is great!.
The Party goes from strength. Did you ever foresee such popularity?
We had no idea how the event would be received – obviously in year 1 there was huge excitement locally with the prospect of some amazing bands coming to the town – we soon outgrew the venue and had to move across the loch so its fab to see that the demand for tickets is so high and people are now buying tickets before we event announce the line-up. We feel we are a go to event knowing that the weekend is fun regardless of the line-up. We are very family driven too which ticks many boxes for our customers.
We keep the bands very much on brand with the festival – those who will attract a family friendly crowd without being too retro. We want the audience to come for a good weekend and feel safe knowing the bands will bring like-minded people to come and enjoy.
How do you decide upon the acts?
We start looking at acts about a month after each event has finished – we are at the mercy of the bands touring schedules, availability & budgets. We keep the bands very much on brand with the festival – those who will attract a family friendly crowd without being too retro. We want the audience to come for a good weekend and feel safe knowing the bands will bring like-minded people to come and enjoy. Our bands have a good following and are popular with those we aim to attract.
Who have been your favourites in the past
I loved CHIC feat Nile Rodgers – what a party they put on and I think they surprised the audience in 2015 with how fantastic they are and all the hits they have! Bjorn Again we up there as a favourite – who doesn’t like ABBA?! Another favourite would be Simple Minds – what a production they put on!
What allowance do you make for local acts gracing the stage?
Three years ago, we introduced our Breakout Stage (second stage) to showcase local and upcoming bands – this stage has been really well received and draws a large crowd. We are always keen to promote local and upcoming bands as much as we can. As the festival grows its great opportunity to give these bands a nice platform to perform.
To someone who has never been to the Party, what have they got to expect?
They can expect a great family friendly and safe day out. Great music – excellent facilities for kids and a huge variety of food choices and drinks. With 3 stage, fun fair rides, kids activities, market stalls, VIP area, garden areas and much more – it is a great weekend!
Will there be a 2019 Party?
Of course! For now it looks like 10th and 11th August 2019.
Has headed to warmer climes with the Migrating Swallows, but we…
WILL BE BACK WITH THE BIRDS IN THE SPRING
Dalkeith Country Park & Drumlanrigg Castle
September 2nd 2017
Finally, after an immensely soggy summer in which practically every festival became a mudfest, the first weekend in September was a bright & sunny wonder. The ardent northern festival goer was also spoiled for choice, somewhat; for there were do’s at Lindisfarne, the Edinburgh Mela, Midstock in Dalkeith & Electric Fields beside splendid Drumlanrigg Castle. ‘What to do? Where to go?‘ I asked myself. ‘I know, I’ll do a double-header’ I replied in my head.
So off I went with the wife kids to Midstock, a fine fun fairground of a festy in the naturally pretty caches of greenery which make up Dalkeith Country Park. Midstock has been entertaining folk in this part of the world for quite a while now, a well-run family day out, full of great music, that has now spilled into the Friday as well.
I missed the Friday, of course, & was told it was a slam-dunk of quality dance, headlined by The Time Frequency, & supported by Judge Jules & Darren Styles. A proper good do by all accounts, testament to the vision & professionalism of Midstock’s organisers, Scott & Wullie, with the latter telling the Mumble in a recent interview; since jumping in at the deep end at the first Midstock;
We have had to develop so many new skills over this time that there are to many to mention but the journey has been pretty tough although when the big day comes and all the festival goers are loving it and having a ball it all seems so worth it.
I only had time for two bands; Showaddywaddy got everyone bopping with their retro throwback bounceiness, delivered in extremely smart colourful suits. These were followed by the young, folktastic talent that is Stevie McCrorie. For these two hours or so, the sun was shining at all times & I noticed there was a visible increase on the numbers from last year. As for next year, Wullie Slight told the Mumble;
We are on 2018 already with the main aim to develop more ways to make us a more recognised and established festival and add other dimensions to the experience such as camping onsite and maybe another stage or two! Although we do always say, let’s get through this year first!! Ha! We think we have a fun, eclectic, beautiful little gem of of a festival within the Lothians!
So leaving with the wife & kids just as THE SKIDS were playing, we headed to the bypass where I broke away from the fam (we had separate cars) & picked up my pal, Al, for the second leg of my cross-caledonian festival frolic. We were soon chugging through Biggar, hurtling down the M74 & sweeping across the Dalveen Pass, before landing, just as the sun was setting, at Electric Fields.
For me, arriving here on the Saturday night, with the carnival atmosphere kicking in & kids being wheeled about in barrows by their giddy-faced parents, & everyone smiling & buzzing & the music banging & everything was the perfect way to conclude the festival season of 2017. There was something in the air, it had clearly been a great time for all & & me & Al were happy to tap into the vibe for just a few hours.
It all felt a bit like an early Wicker Man, a big family mash-up where music came at you from every angle. On the mainstage we saw the basic, industrial rock of the sable-coated Jesus & Mary Chain, followed by the headlinin’ jumping grime-duo that is Dizzee Rascal. We also got to see – in the Tenement TV Discover Stage – the foppishly brilliant American band, Foxygen, led by a camp Jarvis Cocker, an insatiably addictive watch with grooves to match.
There was also Sneaky Petes, an Edinburgh club with its own wee tented slice of Leccy Fields, where motown, disco & soul were being pumped out. It was here that I last saw Al for the night. We were sitting down chatting to some pals & he’s like ‘I Love this Dizzee Rascal tune,‘ & ran off hopping like a guy being attacked by wasps into the massed ranks of the mainstagers. At this point I went into the dance tent for a reyt good rave, then found myself in a much smaller tent in the campsite nattering away for hours. Then, just as dawn was breaking, I found our car – with Al asleep in it – then snuggled under a blanket for a few hours kip before the shortish drive home. By the way, next year I’m gonna do all 4 in a weekend — The Mela, Lindisfarne, Leccy Fields Midstock…
Reviewer : Damo
26 August 2017
What is instantly noticeable about the Scottish Borders town of Stow, based seven miles north of Galashiels, is the distinct lack of signposting. Not one single piece of cardboard gaffer-taped to a lamppost. However, once one leaves the city bypass via Midlothian and comes out of Bonnyrigg, there is a paradisal country road one drives, winding its way into the belly of the Borders. Travelling behind an alluring 1960’s Jaguar gift-wrapped in wedding bows while listening to Kate Bush’s “A Woman’s Work” on the radio was as reposeful as one could hope to arrive in the village.
Situated only a couple of hundred yards from the rail station, approximately twelve volunteers helped create the fifth annual Stowed Out festival, home to less than a few hundred revellers. Situated in a small field which could be lapped, at a sprint, in around 35 seconds, the sun boasted where the wild wind and rain in the west couldn’t manage. Two main tents were in situ at opposite ends of the field, one for music and one for spoken word. With between 8 and 10 acts appearing in both tents, the festival organisers intelligently ensured that neither over-played the other tent resulting in healthy numbers gracing both stages and no interference from generous speakers or instruments.
Between both stages, a host of stalls, workshops, catering, merchandise, drinks stalls, and bales of hay to sit on were used by families with both prams and pets welcome. The audience changed towards sunset as a surge of teenagers descended, but all in highly friendly spirits and not in any imposition on the high spirits already in place.
Flitting between the two stages, jinking in and out of stilt walkers, it was a queer sight, seeing one’s name printed on festival t-shirts. The Spoken Word stage, entitled the ‘Roar’ stage, was curated by Selkirk FC’s Poet-in-Residence Thomas Clark, running over the course of the afternoon between 1.30 and 6.15pm. The afore-mentioned organisation of the festival meant that the daddy longlegs, pinned to the sides of the tent, were not alone for long as crowds drifted with the burger smoke in to listen to the former BBC Scotland Poet-in-Residence, Rachel McCrum who delivered an exalted performance in spoken word. Reading poems from her first full collection ‘The First Blast To Awaken Women Degenerate’, Rachel’s vast experience of reading live shone through with delicious lines wrapped with good-natured banter. This set the standard as established Borders poets Brian Hotton, Robert Leach, Sara Clark, and Jules Horne delivered wonderful sets including homages to Indian Gods and Chinese translations. Alongside Thomas (Clark) and St Johnstone FC’s Poet in Residence Jim Mackintosh, I competed the three football poets in residence appearing on stage for the first time to read poems from the Football Memories project ‘Mind The Time’ book, and other favourites prior to the spoken word segment being wrapped up by Star Trek-humour in the shape of Tom Murray and one of my own poetry highlights, Anita Jones before I closed the tent with a 15-minute set.
On the music side, everything from Dance Ihayami to rock outfit Slim Mistress kept the young families entertained with young children bopping near the front of the stage, waving happy-face balloons and wearing ear-protector headphones: a highly entertaining sight during the melancholic sounds of The Boy With The Lion’s Head, singing about “blood in the lungs”. A fine set was followed by The Youth and The Young, the quite enchanting Emme Woods whose bluesy songs really do set the young songstress apart from other performers in Scotland right now, The Little Kicks, and the soaring ascendency of the Thompson sisters, more commonly known as The Van T’s.
All this apart, Thomas, Jim and I were also invited by anti-sectarian charity Nil By Mouth to participate in a Poetry and Penalties competition held on the football pitches opposite the festival. In goals was NBM organiser Dave Scott, and I was glad to take the trophy home to Dumbarton after a nail-biting sudden death shoot-out with St Johnstone’s Poet-in-Residence who saw his final kick unfortunately hit the stanchion of the post and crossbar.
Departing the festival, listening to Gil Scot-Heron and gazing into a sunset-kissed Pentlands, it’s fair to say that Stowed Out and its organisers deserve a large pat on the back. Any organisation trying to cater for its community, encourage the young to pick up an instrument or find their voice, is a hero in times when the country appears crestfallen, unsure how to bring the feel-good factor back into its bones.
Reviewer : Stephen Watt