Saturday 28th June 2014.
Festival On The Pitch.
Saffron Dynamo Football Club.
by Keith Jobey
with Casino Empire, The Moderators.
Photos by Keith Jobey
Another Saturday, another field. With the events of the previous Saturday in Victoria Park still being discussed, this Saturday saw the Stone Roses, Oasis, Robbie Williams, Katy Perry, Amy Winehouse and Bob Marley on the bill at a festival in Whetstone. You’ve guessed it, they were tribute acts, but since it was walking distance from my house, and I’d heard favourable reports about it last year I thought I’d check it out.
Upon arrival I had a wander about the site, and it’s a big site. The home of Saffron Dynamo football club on Cambridge Road between Whetstone and Cosby, there’s plenty room to play host to a number of attractions. Besides the music on a stage at one edge, there were fairground rides, beer tents (yes plural), food stalls, a Pimms stall, village fete stalls and ample room for children to run about and play. There was even a gazebo village taking shape as people set up camp for the day. It was all about raising money for the football club and charity, and with over 1000 tickets pre-sold it looked like being a success.
I didn’t arrive in time for Leicestershire cover band Krisis, when I did Katy Perry, Olly Murs and Robbie Williams were taking turns singing their hits, occasionally dueting. They finished with all three singing what else but Robbie’s hit single Angels as the crowd held their waving arms aloft.
Next, it was Amy Winehouse (aka Nicola Marie). With a voice that got her on the X-Factor she sung several of Amy’s songs, and a few others that suited Amy’s style. She did a good job of encouraging the crowd forward and getting more of them dancing. The sun even came out for a spell.
Casino Empire from neighbouring Blaby look set to follow in the footsteps of Kasabian and The Displacements. With faultless guitar work, a good spread of musical styles and a confidence and presence equal to many a big name. The line ‘get out of my way’ ringing out during their opening song is not so much a warning to others but an order.
Bob Marley (aka Tanni Browne) followed next but I had to head back home for a while. This also meant I missed Funkified, the Adored (Stone Roses tribute although they reappeared later as Oasis) and the Fu Fu Sailors. The latter being a local Leicester band playing covers from a broad range of musical genres. They’re meant to be good and impressed at GlastonBudget.
I arrived back on site to the sounds of What’s the Story, (Morning Glory) as Oasis tribute band Definitely Mightbe entertained the crowd. And what a crowd it was now, easily a few hundred dancing and singing along in front of the stage while many others were camped around the edge of the music area. Closing with Cigarettes and Alcohol the crowd got moshier and a few beer showers fell. A bit like the previous week!
Then it was time for The Moderators to take the stage, featuring organiser Jim as frontman. The name hints at their style along with the string of Two-Tone characters and the target on their banner. Playing songs by the likes of Madness, the Specials, the Jam and the Kinks amongst others, there was hardly a tune that the crowd didn’t know. And the crowd loved it. It was a nice touch too, passing out band t-shirts to younger members of the crowd.
The evening finished with a firework display that brought to a close what must have been a successful event for the club. I’m certain the attendees enjoyed it.