A significant chunk of my music history has been spent on whatever constitutes a local scene where I live.
While this blog concerns itself with ticketed shows of a certain level, there’s a whole back story of pubs, clubs and halls where fledgling bands cut their teeth.
In many ways Sound City encourages the next step up from that level by providing the stages on which bands and artists can get on a bill that is being headlined by much, much bigger names.
So on the Saturday of the two-day event it was nice to be able to get two significant elements of what had made my local gig going so special back together.
My friend Tony who moved to America more than 20 years ago introduced himself to me at a regular band night he helped run back in the day by wandering over and saying `I believe you like Mantronix’.
He gets back irregularly and was home on family business for a week. Having seen that Sleaford Mods were playing the festival, he was desperate to see them as he lives in North Carolina and demanding UK outfits chronicling everyday life on East Midlands council estates don’t tend to play there much. Me and the other more regularly mentioned Tony agreed to meet him there.
Now a mutual friend from back in those early days just happens to be Sound City boss Dave Pichilingi who cut his promotional teeth putting on gigs and indie nights in our home town and who was in bands at the same time American Tony ( as we’ll call him) was playing keyboards for some other local hopefuls.
They spotted each other on the Saturday night just after the Mods’ set and despite the obvious distractions of running a festival for thousands of people, Dave was good enough to take him backstage to greet the Mods.
It was a nice moment to end a really enjoyable Saturday where Sugarmen, Georgia and Band of Skulls had stood out.
We could have stayed for Catfish and the Bottlemen but it’s the sort of thing I’ve heard many times before and, while they’re good at it, I don’t need to hear it again.
Sunday, I thought, was even better despite lacking 20-year reunions.
Hanging around the main stage once again was worth it for fine sets by Neon Waltz, Shura – who I think we’ll be hearing a lot more of – and Dandy Warhols who provided the impetus before local heroes Circa Waves and The Coral.
It’s a pity that both their sets were interrupted by a power outage, but in fairness it didn’t detract from a terrific weekend of boss sounds, big crowds and excellent weather.