Discovering Music at a Festival

The wonderful thing about festivals is that you usually find yourself with a mixture of bands you love, and bands you’ve never heard of/listened to, and just by chance you watch, fall in love and listen to them repeatedly once you arrive home and have showered.

These guys did just that to me:

Paolo Nutini

I had listened to him in the past, but had neglected his music for a while. I saw him perform at the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury 2011, and finally appreciated his beautifully written and performed songs. He has a very distinctive singing voice, if you’ve never listened to him before, and I adore his style of blues that is both emotional and easy listening.

Frank Turner

Now one of my favourite artists, myself and one of my closest friends sheltered from Leeds festival rain under a stage tent he was just about to play on. And Christ he is one of the best live performers I have ever seen (about 5 times now). He’s also very genuine: encourages dancing rather than crushing others in the crowd (mosh pits/walls of death aren’t fun), and knows how to balance playing new material with the old favourites to keep the audience smiling.

Molotov Jukebox

I saw these by chance at Glastonbury because I knew a friend was keen on them. What fixated me was their unlimited energy live on stage. When I saw them the singer (Natalia Tena, who is also the actress who played Tonks in the Harry Potter films) was wearing a plastic lobster on her head, so you know they’re a band in the business to have fun.

Wilful Missing

Possibly the lesser known on the list, I saw them Limetree in North Yorkshire (which sadly I think has closed), a small festival organised by a couple which is family, hippy, and local (farm-life) friendly. A band from Bradford, not too far from my own home city, Wilful Missing are great to listen to if you fancy some gentle, folk-inspired music.

So if you want a long weekend of little sleep, questionable hygiene standards, and some of the best gigs you’ll ever see- snap up a ticket to a festival with an irresistible line up (or to one that’s cheap), dig out some wellies, and possibly drink so much you’ll only remember half of it.

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