Photo Credit - Ian Morrall
Line-up Change - Sam Coe replaced Melanie Greggain
We arrived at The Islington, Tollpuddle St, London at 12:30. It's an intimate venue with a nice bar area serving trendy craft beers and flavoured gins and a separate room with a nicely set stage. It is quite a popular venue with our country artists, and over the years we have been to album launches there as well as artists adding it to their tour schedules. It doesn't serve food but there is a Sainsbury's just down the road.
We had been looking forward to this event since we first saw the published line-up a few months ago. A very talented bunch of musicians covering a cross section of country styles and most of the names you will have come across before. Not all artists were considered country, but they fitted into the event really well and were really impressive vocalists and songwriters. This is what I like about events like this. You can catch up with artists that you know and love to follow and you can find new artists to get to know.
This event was put on to raise funds for Meningitis Now. Organiser James Vince had meningitis when he was 18. He died and was resuscitated thank goodness, but he wanted to raise awareness so he had leaflets and symptom information cards for people to take away with them.
James knew most of the artists through his Live in the Living Room Sessions that he started in 2011. He set them up to promote unsigned talent and over 730 acts have played. Artists now ask James if they can play in his living room and the session is recorded and filmed for YouTube. Here is the link:- https://www.youtube.com/user/LFTLR - You can also find more information on his website:- https://www.liveinthelivingroom.co.uk .
The whole event was acoustic. I love that stripped back sound. The format was very different than how other events have been set up and it worked really well. 6 songwriters rounds throughout the afternoon, starting at 1pm, with each artist singing 3 songs each and 3 full band sets in the evening lasting about 45 minutes each. It finished at 10pm which was plenty of time for people to catch their trains.
20 solo or duo artists,
9 hours of top notch music
And all this for the ticket price of £10.
I call that value for money. It was truly an amazing day from start to finish. Spending time with our artist friends, meeting new people, making new friends and listening to great music in a nice pub with a fabulous atmosphere. What's not to like.