Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Part 4 - Monday August 28th - Derby Square, Pier Head, The Strand and Dale Street
The early morning rain has cleared and its another pleasant day, thank goodness, as the whole downtown area and Pier Head is packed solid with a few hundred thousand people.
Today is the day for Beatles bands and other cover bands with silly names like Definitely Mightbe (Oasis), Banned On The Run (Wings), Robbing Williams and Coldplace complete with a Coldplay singer - Chris Martin lookalike. We watched some of their set on the North stage after first seeing the Clube Big Beatles from Brazil playing in Derby Square in front of a big crowd of sing-along-a-beatles people.
The South stage is again a welcome relief as more new local bands are playing original music. Watched the last few songs from 28 Costumes.
On stage in the Strand, I think it was Kappa Guitar Hero playing Frank Zappa classics.
Further up Dale Street, past the awful, awful fairground 'attractions' (do we really have to have those things at every event??) more cover bands - Squeezed, the Overtures (James Taylor) and Urythmix played until the evening.
Naturally a lot of tourists here from all over the world including these guys from Japan, sampling the excellent local traditional food.
Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Part 3 - Sunday August 27th - Pier Head
Some big names on the North stage today and the sun is shining. Arrived just in time for the start of the Lightning Seeds set. Ian Broudie and the band played all their hits and the atmosphere was great as the whole of the Pier Head area was packed out. Lots of people danced manically to Life of Riley and sand along to Three Lions which is now 10 years old so, sadly, the lyrics have changed from '30 years of hurt' to '40 years of hurt' Ouch.
Next up was Wonder Stuff, looking a bit more mature but still very lively, another good show - The Size of a Cow!
Listened to a few songs from Shack. I hadn't heard of them before but they're pretty popular here and internationally apparently.
Planned to see John Smith Band on the South stage for new local bands but for some reason he'd been replaced by The Pedantics who are also quite good
Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Part 2 - Saturday August 26th 08 Place & Pier Head
Mike McCartney was at the 08 Place this afternoon signing copies of his Live8 Coolpix book. I already got a copy at the original launch a while ago but called in anyway. There was quite a queue waiting, I'm sure they'll sell out soon, its a limited edition of just 1,000 copies and all the proceeds go to the Live Aid Trust.
I only actually saw one band at the Pier Head today but Dr and the Medics is a great act, very funny and entertaining. They finished, of course, with their one and only hit, their cover of Spirit In The Sky. The large crowd loved it..
They were followed by Johnny Silver, the German John Lennon impressionist. hmm.
Would have liked to have seen the Proclaimers earlier but I arrived too late.
Mathew Street Music Festival 2006 - Part 1 - Friday August 25th Pier Head
Its August Bank Holiday Weekend, its the Mathew Street Music Festival opening with an outdoor concert by The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. So, naturally, its cold and raining but we British are prepared for this weather with all our outdoor gear, blankets, umbrellas, folding chairs and flasks of sweet hot tea.
Unfortunately the wind is also blowing in the wrong direction so the delicate members of the orchestra (that's the instruments not the players) have to make a quick exit after only a few minutes.
Things were delayed for a while so that a reduced orchestra could play further back from the elements. We were then treated to short (1 song) sets from Thomas Lang with Jennifer John, Garry Christian, and Pete Wylie performed his 'Heart as Big as Liverpool'. Finishing with the orchestra led by their new conductor Vasily Petrenko from Russia performing some Mussorgsky (appropriately) with a small firework display at the climax.
Despite the conditions it was a very good evening and the crowd were very appreciative of the the performers efforts.
I though Mark Forrest of Classic FM did a good job as compere for the evening too.
After it had finished earlier than scheduled due to the weather, the rain stopped briefly but then really chucked it down as we walked home. Managed to keep my camera dry but everything else was soaked.
Full details of next weekend's Mathew Street Music Festival are now online at liverpool08.com...
Mathew Street Music Festival
Mathew Street Music Festival is now the largest free annual music event in Europe.
In 2006 you can look forward to four days of live music, with over 75 bands performing on five stages across the city, in celebration of the 2006 Capital of Culture year - Liverpool Performs. More than 40 indoor venues will also be hosting free live music throughout the weekend
The RLPO will be joined on stage by top names from the Liverpool music scene; Garry Christian of The Christians will sing his poignant ballad Father; Pete Wylie of The Mighty Wah will perform his epic Heart as Big as Liverpool and Jennifer John and Thomas Lang will duet on the anthemic You'll Never Walk Alone.
Pop legends The Lightning Seeds will be headlining the festival on Sunday 27 August - their first appearance in Liverpool since the millennium. Led by Ian Broudie, the band famous for hits such as 'Life of Riley', 'Pure', 'Lucky You' and 'Three Lions', will perform a special one-hour greatest hits gig.
THE PROCLAIMERS TO WALK TO MATHEW ST
FESTIVAL favourites The Proclaimers are to play at Europe's biggest free city centre music event.
The cult Scottish duo, who penned classics such as Letter from America and the million selling I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles), are to play a one hour set on Saturday, August 26 at the 15th annual Mathew Street Music Festival (August 25-28).
Twins Craig and Charlie Reid, who formed the Proclaimers in 1983, are currently recording their sixth album. They'll take centre stage at the Pier Head at 1.30pm on Mathew Street Saturday, August 26.
Famed for a pulsating live act - as witnessed at Edinburgh Live8 - the duo have successfully blended politics, passion and pop, and even helped their football club by spearheading the 'Hands Off Hibs' campaign.
Hollywood also continues to knock on The Proclaimers' door, with their songs appearing in hits such as Benny and Joon, Dumb and Dumber and Shrek.
The duo love playing in Liverpool and appeared as surprise special guests at The Coral's home town end of year show.
Councillor Warren Bradley, Leader of Liverpool City Council, said: ''The Proclaimers are one of the great Scottish bands and always leave audiences wanting more. They are a great live band and they'll make sure the weekend begins in style. This year's festival line-up is really taking shape and should appeal to people of all tastes and ages.''
For the first time in the festival's history, the music begins on a Friday with The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra's first Mathew Street concert on the Pier Head at 7.30pm on August 25.
This year's festival has a strong Liverpool theme, with the Lightning Seeds headlining on Mathew Street Sunday. Festival organisers - the Liverpool Culture Company - have focused on showcasing home-grown talent, from the famous to the unsigned, to celebrate the 2006 Capital of Culture themed year - Liverpool Performs.
LIGHTNING SEEDS SET FOR MERSEY FINALE
Pop legends The Lightning Seeds are to headline Europe's biggest free city centre music festival.
Led by Ian Broudie, the band famous for hits such as 'Life of Riley', 'Pure', 'Lucky You' and 'Three Lions', will perform at the four-day Mathew Street Music Festival on Sunday, August 27.
The special one-hour greatest hits gig will be their first in Liverpool since the millennium and will be played at the world famous Pier Head in front of an estimated 20,000 people.
Broudie, who has not toured for seven years until this summer to promote the recently released 'Very Best Of' album, is preparing for an emotional homecoming. This is their final gig of the year and ''the last for some time''.
He said: ''I can't wait for this one. Mathew Street is where I got my musical education, borrowing records off the owner of Eric's club, then helping bands unload their gear to eventually DJ-ing there and then joining Big In Japan. For our final gig of the tour to be at this festival means I'll be coming full circle.''
Currently producing The Coral's new album and with plans on making his next album for 2007, Broudie added: ''To play on the shores of the Mersey in front of a home crowd of thousands is special. I'm really excited. We'll be playing a selection of our biggest hits with some covers and hopefully the sun will shine to make it an unforgettable day.''
A self-confessed Beatles-fan who can uniquely claim have been born on Penny Lane and grew up in Menlove Avenue - childhood home of John Lennon, Broudie added he's be hoping to catch some of the Beatles tribute acts over the weekend.
As well as The Lightning Seeds, festival organisers - the Liverpool Culture Company - have focused on showcasing home-grown talent, from the famous to the unsigned, to celebrate the 2006 Capital of Culture themed year - Liverpool Performs.
The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra will open the festival for the first time with an open-air concert on the Pier Head at 7.30pm on Friday, August 25.
And from Saturday to Monday there will be a dedicated new band stage at the Pier Head which will feature 31 new or unsigned Liverpool bands.
The first hour on Saturday and Sunday from 11am-12noon, will be dedicated to the winners of an X-factor style music competition called Streetwaves, held across the city's seven neighbourhoods.
Mathew Street Music Festival First for the Liverpool Phil
The Phil's new principal conductor, 30 year-old Russian, Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra will open Liverpool's world famous Mathew Street Music Festival on Friday 25 August, the beginning of the Bank Holiday weekend, with a free open-air concert on the City's historic waterfront, at Liverpool Pier Head.
The spectacular event will be the Phil's debut at what has become Europe's biggest annual, outdoor city centre music festival, which last year attracted record-breaking crowds of 300,000 to the weekend musical bonanza. 10,000 people are expected to watch the Phil's concert at the Pier Head.
Petrenko will lead the RLPO in a sensational programme of classical music gems including Shostakovich's Festival Overture and March and Football from Russian River; Jupiter from Holst's Planet Suite, Rossini's William Tell Overture, Strauss's Radetsky, and The Great Gate of Kiev from Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition.
The RLPO will also be joined on stage by top names from the Liverpool music scene; Garry Christian of The Christians will sing his poignant ballad Father; Pete Wylie of The Mighty Wah will perform his epic Heart as Big as Liverpool and Jennifer John and Thomas Lang will duet on the anthemic You'll Never Walk Alone.
Vasily Petrenko, who opens his first season as principal conductor at Liverpool Philharmonic Hall on 14 September, said: "I'm thrilled to lead the orchestra in opening the festival and for us to be part of an event that's so full of energy and exuberance, and which and says so much about how important music of all kinds is to Liverpool."
Michael Elliott, Chief Executive of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic said: "We are absolutely delighted to have been invited by Liverpool Culture Company to open this year's festival and what a way to introduce our new Principal Conductor to the City! The Liverpool Phil is an incredibly versatile orchestra, with a very broad repertoire, and Vasily will now play a pivotal role in our ambition to be at the heart of all the City's musical celebrations as we prepare to showcase our Capital of Culture year on a world stage."
Chief Executive of the Liverpool Culture Company, Jason Harborow said: "The number of people coming to Liverpool for the Mathew Street Music Festival is just amazing and keeps growing, year after year. Its popularity is due to the wide range of music that's on offer and the Liverpool Phil are playing a crucial role in that."
He added: "We're so pleased that the Phil is joining us to give the widest possible choice of entertainment for people visiting Liverpool. They will leave with a fantastic view of the city and its culture."
Friday 25 August 7.30pm, FREE
Mathew Street Festival - Liverpool Pier Head Stage
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
Vasily Petrenko, conductor
There will be no seating at the stage at the Pier Head. Members of the audience will however be able to bring their own seating, (e.g. garden chairs) and should aim to be seated by 7.00pm.