FESTIVAL SEASON 2016 – “MY FIRST FESTIVAL…”



With Glastonbury done and dusted, we’re truly into the swing of Festival Season 2016! Get yourself in the mood, in spite of the questionable weather, and see what some of our friends and promoters in the music biz remember to be their first festival experiences. What were yours?

Elliot, Rock Feedback 

What was the first festival you went to?

The first festival I ever went to was Reading 2005 which was headlined by Pixies, Foo Fighters and Iron Maiden. I went with 7 friends from school and one of their Dad’s.

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

The band I was most excited about seeing were Bad Religion. I LOVED them so much but none of my mates did so I think I ended up going to watch them by myself and just having the best time ever. I remember spending almost all of the weekend in the Lock Up stage and occasionally venturing over to the main stage for bands like Funeral for a Friend, All American Rejects and Dropkick Murphy’s. I also loved Elbow, The Wedding Present, Incubus, British Sea Power and Hot Hot Heat. It was such an incredible weekend. I’d still love to go to a festival with this line-up now!

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

We were seven 15 and 16 year olds at our first festival so it was all pretty overwhelming for us. The first band we decided to watch were Dropkick Murphy’s in the early afternoon on the Friday. We somehow managed to push our way to the front of the crowd, the band came on and a massive circle pit opened up around us. My friends all scattered and a very attractive punk girl grabbed my hands, pulled me into the pit and we started spinning round and round. After the first song ended, she kissed me and then disappeared into the crowd. I just remember thinking, ‘Festivals are AMAZING!’ and running off to find my mates again and enjoy the rest of the set.

Danni, The Sugarmill

What was the first festival you went to?

Leeds Festival 2005. I was 18.

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

I was really excited to see Pixies, Biffy Clyro, Kings of Leon, Iggy and The Stooges and Marilyn Manson.

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

Main memory from the festival was discovering Death From Above 1979  – they blew me away. I also nearly got suffocated by a large mans sweaty breast while watching Incubus. The crowd surged and I got crushed into him. It was also the year my friend fell into a barbecue and burnt an intimate part of her body. That’s why you shouldn’t take barbecues folks!

Kiren, See Tickets

What was the first festival you went to?

My first festival was V99, the Staffordshire one.

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

I’d gone to see the Manics, Suede and Stereophonics.

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

As well as being my first festival, V99 was also my first time camping and I didn’t really know what I needed to pack. So, I turned up without a sleeping bag having only packed a blanket (a really bright colourful one at that) to sleep in at night. It was absolutely freezing. Looking back on it, I was 17 and just very excited about being at a festival and seeing bands that I loved so I didn’t give the logistics a great deal of thought. I’ve since learned the importance of sleeping bags at festivals, I’d say they’re pretty essential.

Ash, MJR Group

What was the first festival you went to?

The first festival I ever went to was Download 2007.

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

I mainly bought my ticket to see Linkin Park, Machine Head, Lamb of God and Killswitch Engage. They rarely toured the UK back then and growing up in Cornwall meant I I’d have to travel to Plymouth or Exeter if they did.

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

I think my fondest memory was crowd surfing to Korn. Wasn’t a huge fan of Korn at the time but I went to check them out and was just lifted up randomly. People kept me up for ages and it was great just seeing the sheer amount of people there – finally realising how big metal was and how it brought people together. And it made me want to push myself to play in a band and to crowds of those sizes…one day.

Andy, Victorious Festival

What was the first festival you went to?

Reading 1994

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

Red Hot Chili Peppers/Radiohead/Soundgarden

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

Friend losing his shoe in the 80,000 crowd, made everyone create a huge circle while he searched and found it!

Chelsea, SJM Concerts

What was the first festival you went to?

Leeds Festival 2006

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

Arctic Monkeys

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

I was a super awkward 15-year-old, trying to fit in and ‘be cool’ in the guest area with my Dad (yep). This came to a sudden stop when I accidentally bumped into someone (with quite a bit of force). Turned around to apologise and low & behold it was only Alex Turner. Queue blushing cheeks and nonsensical mumbling.

Mark, SJM Concerts

What was the first festival you went to?

Kendal Calling 2006

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

Pendulum

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

I actually started working for Kendal Calling 4 years later and we were looking through the highlights video from 2006 when we suddenly realised the intern who had just been taken on in the office was actually in the video, looking very young with his shirt off screaming into the camera! Clearly having a big night! That was pretty funny.

Ade, TROF

What was the first festival you went to?

Phoenix Festival 1996

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

David Bowie, Sex Pistols, Cypress Hill, Foo Fighters, Neil Young, Prodigy, Bjork, Terrorvision, Placebo, Alanis Morissette and even Coolio!

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

With it being my first festival experience and just turning 14 I was thrilled to learn that throughout the night and morning people shouted ‘bollocks’ non stop. Also I really enjoyed seeing a celebrity football match featuring John Peel, Blur and other (then) legendary 90s acts!

Steve, SSD Concerts

What was the first festival you went to?

Leeds Festival 2000

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

I remember just buzzing about music at the time and the line up had everyone, I was Excited for Oasis obviously but for an event to have Stereophonics, Placebo, Beck, Pulp, Oasis, Primal Scream, The Foo Fighters, Muse, Ian Brown etc for a 18 year old music fan was pretty much heaven.

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

I think the stand out memory was the sheer amount of hands in the air moments, it seemed like every acts songs had choruses and the whole weekend was just one huge sing a long, It was also terrible weather which made the whole thing more chaotic. To this day I don’t think I’ve a seen a line up as strong as that one on any event.

Jim, Village Underground

What was the first festival you went to?

ATP festival curated by Autechre – 2003 (age 16)

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

Aphex Twin, public enemy, Sunn o))), The Fall

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

Going on to work for/with ATP for over a decade.

Melanie, One Inch Badge

What was the first festival you went to?

ArcTangent Festival 2013

Who were you most excited about seeing there?

65daysofstatic

What are the stand-out memories from that festival for you?

A whole crew of about 12 of us went and painted our faces – we were known as the Skellington Crew and we had a code word for if we lost each other or got too drunk, we’d put our hands in the air and shout ‘Bublé’ (as in Michael Bublé – no idea why) so we could find each other…we got a lot of funny looks.