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SPECIAL FEATURE: Beyond Radio at Lancaster Music Festival

Noam Bar performing at The Stonewell Tap at Lancaster Music Festival on Saturday

Beyond Radio took in the sights and sounds of Lancaster Music Festival and here are interviews, photos and videos from a fabulous event.

Lancaster Music Festival began with a launch night on Wednesday and continued every day until Sunday with performances at more than 60 venues all over the city.

I spent the whole of Saturday at the festival and tried to visit as many venues as possible to get a full flavour of what the event had to offer.

On Saturday, my day started at the Gregson Centre on Moor Lane, where the day's programme of events began at 10am with a Galician dance workshop.

Teachers Paul Sherwood and Marnie Davis taught their class traditional dancing from Galicia, Spain, ahead of a performance by The Cumbria Gaita Band in Market Square later that afternoon (picture below).

LISTEN to our interview with Paul and Marnie

Next stop was the Lancaster Priory for a beautiful performance by the Chveni Khmebi choir.

Chveni Khmebi means 'Our Voices' and is a group of singers who perform Georgian songs. Here is a video of the choir in the atmospheric setting of the Priory church.

The choir was followed by world folk musicians Katus Young (pictured below) and The Gift Horses.

Next I ventured to Dallas Road Primary School, scene of a secret gig by Lancaster punk duo The Lovely Eggs on Friday evening.

The school was hosting a mini-festival with outdoor stage located in the playground. First on Saturday's bill was Rioghnach Connolly, BBC Folk Singer of the Year. Rioghnach was accompanied by Aida Abbas, a member of The Sanctuary Choir, a group of refugees who have been rehearsing with Rioghnach on Thursdays at Lancaster Baptist Church. The choir performs a selection of songs from the countries represented in the group. Aida and Riognach are pictured below. 

Venturing from Dallas Road into the city centre at around noon, venues were already beginning to fill up with people. The John O'Gaunt on Market Street was busy for a performance by Calum Campbell Circle (pictured below).

Lewis Brindle was the first performer of the day on the Market Square stage, which was presided over by The Town Crier (David Ford) and Mrs Malaprop (Sue Seddon).

Down a side street off Market Street is the new Jimmy's Tap House Bar where I had a chat with proprietor Gruff Morris (pictured below with manager Tom Shanley) about the new bar and its involvement in Lancaster Music Festival.

LISTEN to the interview with Gruff Morris from Jimmy's Tap House Bar

Lancaster Castle was an idyllic location for a spot of Saturday afternoon salsa dancing, with support from the ever popular Melodrome stage.

One of the most talked-about bands at the festival was Noam Bar (pictured below) from Hanover, Germany. I caught up with the five-piece during a break from their packed gig at the Stonewell Tap on Church Street (see video below).

LISTEN to the interview with Noam Bar

Atticus Bookshop on King Street was not only one of the most quirky festival venues, but was also the smallest.

LISTEN to the interview with Tom Flemons from Atticus Bookshop (pictured below).

The Printroom Cafe at the Storey Centre was an ideal place to recharge batteries and relax with a cuppa, as well as enjoy some live music from The Native Cult. 90-year-old Roger Obertelli, a mainstay of many local events and festivals, was on hand to tap along to the beat. See video below.

Late afternoon into early evening, and most of the city venues were packed to the rafters. Kanteena was teeming with people for a performance by Morecambe ska legends The Reggie Mental Band. See video below.

Down by Lancaster Canal outside the White Cross, a canal boat was one of the more unusual festival settings. Pete Moser brought his 'Sergeant Pepper's Lonely One Man Band' to the waterway, flanked by members of Lancaster Area Search and Rescue in case of mishaps!

The Sugarhouse was one of the prime festival venues of the weekend, for ticketed performances by acts including The Lottery Winners and Massive Wagons. I caught up with Morecambe singing sensation Lois (pictured below) just after her gig there on Saturday night.

LISTEN to the interview with Lois

Music carried on well into the evening all over the city. One of the most anticipated performances was from Lancaster soul singer Paul Akister at the Wagon and Horses on St George's Quay.

Here are some more photos from Saturday at Lancaster Music Festival, featuring Amy Rae at the Stonewell Tap, Charlotte Ryan at the Printroom, Indifferent Monkey at Kanteena, Matt Jones at The Tap House, and festival-goers having a great time rain or shine!

 

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