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Click here to go back to the Contents page.Tamworth Rock Festival : 1988 - Programme

Friday 15th July 1988 - Tamworth Arts Centre
Saturday 16th July 1988 - Tamworth Castle Grounds
Sunday 17th July 1988 - Tamworth Castle Grounds

Friday 15th July 1988
Tamworth Arts Centre

The Jim Crows Blues Company
The Magnets
Stench
The Green Swings and special guests.

Saturday 16th July 1988
Castle Grounds
Admission free 11am-7pm
Sunday 17th July 1988
Castle Grounds
Admission fee 11am-7pm

Torn in Two
Shellshock
The Searching
DHSS
Wolfsbane
The Conspiracy
Never Say Die
Kubla Khan

Cuddly Spiders
Rape in Yellow
Future Field
Fetch Eddie
Catch 23
Kraze
Scream Dream
Breaking Point
A5

DJ: Buttercup

Tamworth Herald  - 01/07/88
Musicbox – Oh Boy. What a terrific tape!
Tamworth Festival Album Verdict

Caption: Buttercup – his face adorns the cover of the tape to make it even more worth having!

THE TAMWORTH Rock Festival Album is released this weekend. The special 18-track tape features all the area’s best bands and is designed as the perfect accompaniment to the festival itself, which is now just a couple of weeks away. Here MUSICBOX writers Sam Holliday and Martin Warrilow give their verdict on the songs on offer. If you want a tape they cost £2.50 and will be available at the festival or by writing to Tamworth Festival Tape…

TAMAID – Youth Is Our Future
SH: A great opener, but then again I’m biased about this one. A corking tune (bring back Terroah!) and some very strange varied vocals. Yep, like this one.
MW: Sam Holliday’s finest hour, what more is there to say? The charts should be full of stuff like this.

WOLFSBANE – loco
SH: Terrific fun which seems almost as fast as the live version. Positively rattles along and sounds more like glorious punk than heavy metal to me.
MW: High speed thrash metal of the very highest quality from the masters, not just locally but nationally. Great churning riffs and a shout-along chorus; marvellous.

RAPE IN YELLOW – Jivin’ Jane
SH: One of the most underated bands around basically because they find it hard to translate their sound ‘live’ This shows their real quality and sounds like Beatles circa ’68.
MW: “Quirky” is the word I’m looking for. Better on tape than live and most enjoyable.

BREAKING POINT – Brotherhood
SH: One of the band’s acknowledged classics which works even better now its length has been trimmed. Excellent stuff even if Kevin Briggs does sound about 14-years-old vocal wise.
MW: The first Tamworth band I ever saw, which makes me biased, I think. Raw stripped down power and another great chorus. Daydo’s bass could be a bit higher in the mix though.

TORN IN TWO – Don’t Jump
SH: This will prove quite a surprise for most people I think. Anything that involves Mike Fleming is normally rock-based but this is a very chirpy pop song. A pleasant surprise.
MW: Surprising is definitely the word. Intelligent pop with a nice strong lead vocal which reminds me of somebody, but I can’t think who. Good stuff.

SHELLSHOCK – Short, Sharp, Shock
SH: Frantic slice of metal mayhem which sounds very mush like Wolfsbane to me. Anyone would think Shellshock’s drummer was related to Wolfsbane’s guitarist listening to this…
MW: Indeed, Wolfsbane’s crazed offspring in more ways than one. Another one that sounds better on tape. Frantic, fast and fun.

THE PARADE – A Little Joy
SH: My admiration for The Parade is well-known and this tune should show why. The verse, chorus and melody are skilful and original. Tasty, tasty, very, very tasty.
MW: Try as they might, The Parade still end up sounding like Secret Affair. That doesn’t mean this is anything less than a damn good commercial pop song though. Nice one, Brian.

THE FAMOUS FIVE – The Famous Five
SH: We are trying to keep the identities of this band secret but it should be pretty obvious when you hear it. Let’s just say its very sexy indeed.
MW: A female lead vocal baths this fine tune with class. Top-grade pop, and you wouldn’t expect anything less from the folks involved.

SPIRAL EYE – Scarecrow’s Party
SH: The one we all started off saying ‘what the hell’ and all ended up whistling. A hypnotic oddity which proves Barry Fox is a total psychopath. Bizarre.
MW: Very, very, very, very odd. I actually quite like Spiral Eye at times, but this isn’t one of them. Strange, experimental, echo-ridden and totally lunatic.

CATCH 23 – Twisted Mind
SH: We all love this one. It shows Ray Clenshaw at his grittiest songwriting wise, and is a track that proves Catch 23 are a pogo band first and a dance band second. Wonderful.
MW: Quintessential Catch 23. Young Steven Webster is on top form, the organ sound is quite wonderful and the whole thing is quality.

KRAZE – Too Cute To Scream
SH: Classy band this destined to go a very long way. A well constructed track which is cleverly sung and infectious. In danger of making heavy metal likeable.
MW: Asking me to comment on this is like asking Sam for a Stranglers review. Explosive metal from a  band destined to go far. Why didn’t they do ‘Dance Till Dawn’ though?

THE SEARCHING – Picture
SH: A lot of people will sit up and take notice of The Searching when they hear this. It is pure Roxy Music from that pre-cocktail sleaze period and it’s very good indeed.
MW: Makes you understand why they are big in Birmingham. A gorgeous sax sound and a nice swirling vocal. The sort of song that should make you want to see them live.

KUBLA KHAN – Coz I Love You
SH: Votes in the studio when we put the tape together as the surprise ‘hit’ of the tape. Very catchy tune, very smart song and a very useful contribution. I like the word ‘very’.
W: I keep finding myself singing this. Kubla Khan do their reputations no harm at all with this intelligent metal-pop. Another dashed good tune.

THE CONSPIRACY – Passions Burning
SH: I liked this the very first time I heard it and my opinion hasn’t altered. T’s got real fire and quality and is one of the best dance tracks on the tape.
MW: Should make the world realise how god this band can be. Driving power pop with a lovely lead guitar line. Lisa’s good too!

A5 – Exposure
SH: Totally wicked guitar playing on view here and a typically original piece from the band. One of the area’s most prolific and consistent acts.
MW: A riff that walked straight off the last U2 album leads into a surprisingly good tune. Liked the backing vocals too.

NEVER SAY DIE – All Night Long
SH: As reviewed in this very page last week, a languid, stylish piece with a Whitesnake sound to me. So you agree with me Martin?
MW: No difference that a massive LA production job wouldn’t solve. Whitesnake/Rainbow styled metal from the veteran rockers.

THE MAGNETS – Broken With A Smile
SH: Paul Spear thinks this one’s brilliant because it provides a real contrast. It is the Magnets at their most peaceful and melodic and it brings back memories.
MW: Now this is what I’d call languid. Moody, peaceful and just sets you in the right frame of mind for the next track(?)

DHSS – Bitch, Slut, Slag, Whore
SH: Don’t let your granny anywhere near this one. Splendid track with a 3,000mph speed and a hugely loveable tune. I hate to say it but it’s brilliant.
MW: Totally, magnificently awe-inspiringly tasteless from some of the nicest people in the business. More stuff like this and I may be forced to admit that Rikk Quay is a star. Gives the tape the most shocking ending since “Fatal Attraction”.

THE OVERALL VERDICT…
SH: There is genuinely not a bad track on it. We can all be very proud of this tape and we should all have a copy. Crucial
MW: I never cease to be amazed at the sheer volume of musical talent in the Tamworth/Atherstone area. Like the man says, there isn’t one duff gtrack on this. At a mere £2.50 for 18 bands, it’s cheap at twice the price, buy it and be proud to be part of a scene that most other Town’s would die for.

N.B. All the bands in the festival were given the opportunity to be on the tape – those missing chose to be that way.

Tamworth Rock Festival – July 15/16/17 2008

Tamworth Herald  - 08/07/88
Musicbox – Festival Fever Strikes
Excitement for next week’s Tamworth Rock Festival has now reached fever pitch.

The event brought forward from its traditional August Bank Holiday time, takes place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday next week and looks set to be the best festival yet.

Tasty

Twenty two bands will be on view over the weekend from the legendary (Wolfsbane) to the little-known (The Green Swings) all united in one aim – to give Tamworth youngsters their best weekend of the year.

In case you’ve been on the moon and need refreshing here is a taster of what to expect from a very tasty weekend.

Friday, July 15 (a week tonight)
The Festival has its traditional Arts Centre party night featuring four very contrasting bands – The Jim Crows Blues Company, The Magnets, The Green Swings and The Parade – plus possibly on or two surprises. Entry here is just £1 and you will have your first opportunity to get your hands on festival programmes, T-shirts, badges and even musicians who will be out in force! Tamworth Rock Festival Albums will also be on sale.

Saturday July 16
The Castle Grounds will awake to the sound of pure R.O.C.K. for no less than eight hours. In the usual site (in front of the tennis courts) the music will begin at around 11am and continue unabated until the early hours of the evening. As well as great bands (Wolfsbane, DHSS, Conspiracy for example) there will be one or two surprises, loads of thumping disco sounds, videos, side-shows, food, programmes, T-shirts, albums etc, etc, etc. to leave you on a permanent high. It will be some occasion and what’s even better is that it is just a few hours until…

Sunday, July 17
Yes, there’s more! Sunday throws up ten more cracking bands including the likes of Catch 23, Fetch Eddie, Kraze and Breaking Point for another eight hours of rock and roll fun. As with the previous day the main event will be up on stage but don’t be surprised to see strange people wandering around making videos, selling paraphernalia or generally doing odd things. It will be a fun day and the climax of a fun weekend.

Meeting

Before all this takes place ALL the bands and committee people are called to a full, final meeting at the Tavern in the Town on Sunday night. It will start at 7.30pm to give everyone a chance to go on to the Arts Centre, and it will be your last chance to sort out with other groups about shared equipment etc. it will also be a chance to pick up festival albums and t-shirts and as a warning, they are going FAST.

Tamworth Herald Midweek Extra – 13/07/88
Rock kings all set to dazzle…
Tamworth’s most famous rock band, Wolfsbane, are the centre-piece attraction of this weekend’s eagerly awaited Castle Grounds Rock Festival.

The event promises to be a triumph for all the groups involved – but especially heavy metal men Wolfsbane who are expected to draw hundreds of fans from all over the country.

Twenty-two bands will take part in the Tamworth rock festival, regarded as the biggest of its kind in the Midlands this year.

Warm-up

The Festival kicks-off at the warm-up night at Tamworth Arts Centre on Friday, July 15.

Saturday, July 16 takes the event to the Castle Grounds and features the main attraction in the form of the highly-acclaimed Wolfsbane.

The concert will be one of their last British shows, as they have just secured an eight-album deal with a major American Record Label, and they will fly off to LA shortly to record their first LP.

Sunday’s highlights include Catch 23 who recently came third in the national final of the TSN Rockschool contest and Young People’s Arts Festival  winners Scream Dream.

All the bands will play free of charge in the Tamworth Castle grounds during the weekend.

Festival chairman Sam Holliday says: “This year’s festival promises to be the best ever and people from all over the Midlands will be able to see just how strong the Tamworth music scene has become.”

Limited

A special 18-track tape has been released featuring a hot of the bands in the festival. It will be a limited edition making it a collectors item.

The full line-up is:

Friday July 15 - Tamworth Arts Centre – The Jim Crows Blues Company, The Magnets, Stench, The Green Swings and special guests.

Saturday July 16 – Tamworth Castle Grounds admission free 11am-7pm – Torn in Two, Shellshock, The Searching, DHSS, Wolfsbane, The Conspiracy, Never Say Die, Kubla Khan.

Sunday July 17 – Tamworth Castle Grounds admission fee 11am-7pm – Cuddly Spiders, Rape in Yellow, Future Field, Fetch Eddie, Catch 23, Kraze, Scream Dream, Breaking Point and A5.

Tamworth Herald  - 15/07/88
Musicbox – THE WEEKEND OF THE YEAR
Caption: Wolfsbane – one of the biggest draws of Festival ‘88
THOUSANDS of rock fans from all over the area are expected to swarm into Tamworth Castle grounds this weekend for the years premier musical event.

The Tamworth Rock Festival 1988 will once again give local pop fans a chance to savour all the very best bands in the Tamworth and Atherstone area, during three days of rock and roll delight.

It kicks off tonight (Friday) at the Arts Centre and then switches to the Castle Grounds all day Saturday and all day Sunday.

Caption: DHSS – making their Festival debut and set for a dazzling set.The line-up this year is as formidable as ever. The best of the areas older bands – Wolfsbane, Catch 23, Breaking Point and A5 – will line up with the best of the newer heroes such as Kraze, Scream Dream, DHSS and Spiral Eye in a three day package with something for everyone. If you like metal you will love Wolfsbane, Shellshock and Kraze, if you prefer more alternative sounds then DHSS, A5, The Conspiracy, The Green Swings, Scream Dream and Spiral Eye will fill your yearning. If pop’s your bag then cop a load of Fetch Eddie, Torn in Tow, catch 23, Rape in Yellow, The Searching or the Magnets, and if you like more traditionally based rock or r ‘n’ b then your palate will be satisfied by the likes of Never Say Die, Kubla Khan, Jim Crows, Cuddly Spiders, Future Field and Breaking Point. It’s some combination and when all put together it adds up to one of the best ever local festivals – one which looks set to attract the biggest crowds yet.

Caption: Tamworth Festival 1988 – you will see all of these (and more) this weekend.

What’s happening when? Read on o’ rock and roll fan…

FRIDAY JULY 15 (That’s tonight folks!)
Get your butts down to Tamworth Arts Centre for the traditional festival party night. As well as being able to get your hands on festival tapes, t-shirts, badges and programmes you will be able to sample four very enjoyable bands all for a mere £1. The groups on offer tonight are The Jim Crows Blues Company, The Magnets, The Green Swings and new additions Stench. The later have been called in to replace The Parade who have had to pull out because lead singer Brian Lacey has broken his (guitar playing) finger. Stench however, should more than make up for the disappointment because they play very original modern rockabilly and according to no less a person than Rikk Quay ‘they’re ace!”

SATURDAY JULY 16
Yes, tomorrow afternoon the sun will be shining, the world will be smiling and a host of great bands will be playing. The festival moves to its traditional base in the Castle Grounds and on offer will be nine bands. Obviously the main draw will be Wolfsbane, the town’s HM giants. They have played and dazzled all the Tamworth Rock Festivals, but none will have more significance than this one. As you will no doubt know by now, they have secured a major eight album  deal with Def Jam and it has resulted in masses of publicity, a huge fan club and adulation from just about everyone. The Wolfies will be very keen to go out in a blaze of glory, so if you want to see what all the fuss is about, can you afford to miss this one?

Joining them will be other great acts of variety and style. Arch tabloid-baiters DHSS will server up electronic punk outrage/anarchy, and will certainly be one of the most watchable acts of the weekend. If you prefer more sedate pleasures the stylish cultivated rock of Never Say Die should bring a smile to your face as should the light-hearted but definitely not light-weight pop of Mike Fleming’s Torn in Two, a two piece outfit. Saturday also throws up the majestic meaty metal of Shellshock and the rip-roaring post-77 rock of the much-loved Conspiracy. In addition you will be able to see what turned The Searching into finalists of the ‘Best band In Brum’ contest as they bring their undeniably unique pop sound to the Castle Grounds and also get set to see Kubla Khan, a rock  group with a pop senseability who have quality, energy and clever songwriting. STOP PRESS: WIN have been added to Saturday’s line-up.

The music starts at 11am. The bands start with Torn in Two at 12.45 and are due to finish at 6pm. The running order is: WIN/Torn in Two/Shellshock/The Searching/DHSS/Wolfsbane/The Conspiracy/Never Say Die/Kubla Khan.

SUNDAY, JULY 17
Just when you have got over the musical and physical hangover of the glorious day before, Sunday arrives with ten more wonderful bands. Once again its all in the Castle Grounds but on Sunday it starts a little earlier, 12.30 to be precise. The acts on show are all of a very good quality  and should satisfy people of all musical taste. Undoubtedly one of the biggest draws will be pop kings Catch 23. The Atherstone youngsters, firm festival favourites, will dish up an exciting mixture of old and new material as will much-admired cultured pop-quartet Fetch Eddie. The latter won over nearly everyone last year and they should further convince us all of their quality on Sunday. Fans of metal music will also have the extreme pleasure of seeing the excellent Kraze on stage on the day, and those who like their rock powerful and bursting with melody will be able to catch old festival faves Breaking Point.

Battle of the Bands winners Scream Dream will also take to the stage on Sunday and should impress the masses with their sparkling stylish post-gothic sounds, while fellow stablemates Spiral Eye look set to suit a festival atmosphere with their mixture of the bizarre and the brash as will the classy Future Field – while original new wave/pop music can be found at both ends of the running order courtesy of Rape in Yellow and A5. Completing the festivities on the day will be The Cuddly Spiders who, as everyone knows, can do just about anything. And can usually do it very well.

The music starts at 11am. The bands starts at 12.30pm and the running order will be Cuddly Spiders/Rape in Yellow/Future Field/Fetch Eddie/Catch 23/Kraze/Scream Dream/Breaking Point/A5 and Spiral Eye.

That’s is then. The Tamworth Rock Festival 1988. Another great line-up, three great days and for all the hundreds of pop fans, the best weekend of the year. If you miss this you will forever regret it. Support your local talent because it is already becoming less ‘local’ and when Tamworth and Atherstone become nationally recognised for their musical abilities, you want to be a part of it don’t you? Have a nice three days.

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald  - 22/07/88
Musicbox – Festival reigns as all the clouds break
Tamworth Rock Festival Musicbox Special Report
Tamworth Rock Festival Musicbox Special ReportTAMWORTH’S eagerly awaited Rock Festival turned into a monster-size success at the weekend despite the determined efforts of the rain.

The clouds decided to spend the entire weekend perched ominously above the Castle Grounds arena and occasionally signalled their approval of the event by opening up and spreading their good ness over the massed ensemble of rock fans.

But, as often happens the presence of the rain merely helped to increase the amazing atmosphere of this somewhat amazing event.

When the rain was at it’s worst -  sometime late on Saturday evening – the crowds stayed put and adopted a ‘to hell with it’ policy which insured that once again the best efforts of the nastier weather failed to dent the enthusiasm and spirit of an exciting weekend. It was, by common consent, one of the best Tamworth Rock Festivals yet, a triumph of style, quality and sheer musical perseverance. In short, it was a brilliant festival. It all began at the only place where the rain couldn’t interfere – the Tamworth Arts Centre on Friday night…

FRIDAY

A packed Arts Centre provided the ideal starting place for the weekend ahead.

On offer were four bands, all of whom strangely failed to appear until late in the evening and all of whom strangely failed to play sets above 20 minutes a piece! To be honest, being stuck on the door trying to con people to buy festival goodies isn’t the best way to give a crystal clear, critical review of those on show but from what my ears told me everything seemed to be going along fine in the sweat-bound Arts Centre theatre. The Magnets won over a slightly indifferent crowd and seemed to get stronger as they played, the Green Swings made themselves a slot in my heart for an uplifting version of ‘Is Vic There?’ and The Jim Crows Blues Company went down a storm with their well-crafted finely tuned ramble rock. Concluding the night were outrage – rockabilly men Stench belied their happy onstage personas with a wild and wicked set which caused near revolt in the Arts Centre.

Tamworth Rock Festival Musicbox Special ReportThe only hard bit in the Christmas cake was that someone with the brain the size of an amoeba decided it would be wonderful fun to uproot the toilet in the gents. Clearly an intellectual of some note.

SATURDAY

And so to Saturday – the first day of the Castle Grounds bonanza. Talk early in the morning centred on two things – would it rain and would the excellent stage provided by Haki Scaffolding, manage to hold the legendary figure of Buttercup? As it happens the answer to both questions was a clear yes.

Despite  the possibility of rain, the bands got off to timetable and continued unabated until the rain finally won the day at around 5.30pm.

In terms of music, few people can deny that Wolfsbane stole the day – and to my mind the festival. Every year the boys produce a killer set in the Castle Grounds and this years ranks according to the band themselves as their best ever in front of a massive partisan crowd they turned in a magnificent set, full of energy, power and startling charisma. Bayley as usual hogged the limelight but Messrs. Danger, Hateley and Edwards were so clearly enjoying the festivities that they looked as though they could have played all day. Wolfsbane I take my hat off to you – everytime I think you’ve reached an unsurpassable peak you climb above it. What a band.

Tamworth Rock Festival Musicbox Special ReportElsewhere on the day, DHSS produced the goods in a dramatic and exciting way with a set that was full of originality and power and proved that John Reeman is a closet would-be axe hero. Another band that impressed me a lot were The Searching, who despite lacking their classy sax player, produced a set which showed their real skill to a receptive crowd. A band who will go from strength to strength methinks.

Also weighing in with a well-executed and crowd pleasing set were The Conspiracy, whose epic themes seemed to suit the wide arena and whose guitarist, Mr. Roger Moore, seems to be getting better and better.

Opening the day were Torn in Two’s replacements Nightshade a distinctly mid-Seventies outfit who seemed ideal for a festival atmosphere and did remarkably well considering their early start. Following them were Shellshock who used the occasion to announce the sad news that this would be their last-ever concert with this line-up. Drummer Bruno has his eyes set on a motor racing  future and Shellshock as was, will be no more. They went out in style however, with the spellbinding version of ‘Duty Calls’ being the undoubted highlight of a tasty set.

But in terms of the heroes of the day, well even Wolfsbane will have to bow down to Never Say Die in this department. For the band, with the most apt name of the Festival, played in the sort of monsoon weather that risked life, limb and our no-claims insurance bonus. As it teemed down Trevor and his crew somehow managed to keep smiling and keep playing and Trevor himself was so unimpressed by the efforts of the rain, wind and general nastiness that he only wore his t-shirt throughout the set. Such examples are what makes this festival so unique and special. Incidentally the most unluckiest man of the day was definitely Uncle Denis Byfield. After waiting months for the festival, he had an accident on stage on Saturday night which left him with a broken ankle and a lot of pain. Never mind Denis, and I hope the painkillers-in-a-can are working!

SUNDAY

SUNDAY held the promise of yet more rain – but incredibly the monsoons stayed away. It meant that the day was able to feature no less than 11 groups covering just about every musical form known to man or beast.

Who was the best? Well I will leave you to decide but its clear that the three bands who most people expected to shine – Catch 23, Kraze and Fetch Eddie certainly came up with the goods. Catch 23, to who I am totally and unashamedly biased – were quite superb, playing one of their tightest and cleanest ever sets. Outstanding highlights here were two classic newies ‘Hanging On’ and ‘Don’t Tell Me Cos I now’ which were both tremendous.

Equally uplifting were Fetch Eddie who, like last year, impressed nearly everyone, with their cultured quality pop music which reached a peak with the magnificent ‘I Think I Still Love You’ which has the sort of tune that makes it a number one possibility. On a different level, Kraze also slayed the audience. They played with real enthusiasm and charisma and looked as though they were enjoying every second. They certainly enjoyed one of the warmest reactions of the day and by the end of the set – after their ritual humiliation of Messrs. Holliday and Warrilow – few people were left disappointed. Mark these words – Kraze are destined to follow Wolfsbane right into contractsville city.

Elsewhere Spiral Eye played one of THE sets of the festival and produced perhaps THE song of the event – the astonishingly good ‘Sentinel’. They were tremendous fun and had quite a superb sound. Also enjoying somewhat of a triumph were Breaking Point who were clearly delighted with their return to the road with a set where the guitar was king. The peak of their well-balanced set was a dazzling finale where Kevin Briggs took on the persona of a psycho to send out a powerful climactic clarion call.

Rather more sedate were the pleasing noises produced by both Kubla Khan and The Cuddly Spiders. The Kublas, also sadly announcing it would be their last set, produced a leisurely set dominated by some brilliant guitar work by Phil Smith, a man who played with real joy considering he is due to get married this weekend! The Cuddly chappies (and chappess) had a similar laid back feel and proved very popular with the crowd. Norman’s guitar work caught the eye as did the dress that Piglet was nearly wearing.

For those who liked modern alternative-based pop there was much to enjoy. Scream Dream gave a stylish show which stuck in the mind to me because of an absolutely riveting number ‘Obsession’ which admirably closed an admirable set. A5 also seemed to be enjoying themselves (in fact all the bands did this year) and their well-honed guitar based pop seemed like the Conspiracy the day before, to suit the event perfectly. Rape in Yellow, (Tamworth’s answer to Bros methinks) also had their moments, the best of which was a relative newie entitled ‘Day out in Dosthill’ – a frightening thought but a lovely song.

Completing the 11 band picture were Future Field, a group bursting with songwriting quality who seemed to get stronger and faster with every track. Result – a resounding success again lads.

And that, he says with a sign, was that. It all ended with a splendid party at the Tavern where the floor nearly caved in under the sheer weight of hundreds of people sharing the mutual feeling that they had achieved something good over the past weekend.

The thing to remember – and sometimes we do get rather blasé about it – is that the Tamworth Rock festival is totally unique. It is entirely organised, orchestrated and put together by musicians and music fans and the only people who make a profit from it are the audience. Other towns have tried to copy the Tamworth formula and have failed because their motivation has not been the same as the one behind this event. The motivation for the Tamworth Rock Festival is to give bands a major platform to play and crowds a chance to sample the whole local music scene in one  hectic funpacked weekend.

For the fourth consecutive year, I can say unequivocally that the Festival has achieved its’ aims once again. Everyone involved should feel a greats sense of pride.

Next year’s event simply can’t come quick enough.

Tamworth Herald  - 29/07/88
Musicbox  Festival out-takes…
Everyone will have a chance to re-live the Tamworth Rock Festival in a couple of weeks when a special video-party is held at the Tavern in the Town. Videos of the event were made by John Webster, Steve Ellis and Gaz Byfield and it is hoped that these will all be edited together to make one definitive Tamworth Rock festival video. When this is completed, everyone will then be invited to a special party in the upstairs room of the Tavern where the final video will be shown on a big screen and people will be able to sample once again the best of the music and the best of the off-stage moments. Incidentally would all those that made videos please contact Rikk Quay at the Tavern in the Town for details of the final mix. It is hoped that if it is good enough copies will then be sold to help future festival funds.

Tamworth Herald  - 29/07/88
Musicbox  Festival out-takes…
MUSICBOX has received a very nice letter from a festival-watcher, R.Price from Claremont Road, Tamworth, the letter reads: ‘Dear Sam, I would like to thank-you and everybody involved in the Rock Festival for those simply magical hours of the finest music in the area. The effort that you all put in is a credit to both yourselves and Tamworth.’ Thanks alot for the sentiments R. Price and for once I can say that the Price Is right.

Tamworth Herald  - 29/07/88
Musicbox  Festival out-takes…
Among the far-flung travellers to Festival ’88 included those Manchester-based Catch 23 fanatics, Wolfsbane fans from London, Manchester and all over the Midlands and a drink Nightshade fan from Tipton who kept shouting about West Bromwich Albion. Keenest fan of the week must be the Wolfsbane looney who broke his leg slam-dancing to the band at their recent Marquee show but discharged himself from hospital to get to the festival.

Tamworth Herald  - 29/07/88
Musicbox  Festival out-takes…
The merchandise selling over the weekend turned out to b every popular. Nearly all the Tamworth Festival tapes were sold (and to be fair to collectors we will not make anymore) and as well as the hundreds of festival programmes, badges and t-shirts going, goodies on sale from the likes of Fetch Eddie, Catch 23, Wolfsbane, Scream Dream, Kraze et al were snapped up eagerly. A few souvenir programmes are left, and these will be distributed as freebies in the near future.

Tamworth Herald  - 29/07/88
Musicbox  Festival out-takes…
Among the most popular people over the Festival weekend was Bob Catley, the lead singer of metal giants Magnum. Bob, a Tamworth man himself, made an appearance at the Arts Centre on Friday and then popped along in all the rain on the Saturday to watch Wolfsbane, a group he has been keeping a very close eye on. Not surprisingly Bib was surrounded by autograph hunters who he obliged happily proving what a jolly nice chap he really is.

Tamworth Herald  - 29/07/88
Musicbox  Festival out-takes…
Just a final, public thank-you to all those that made Festibal ’88 run so smoothly this time round. Thanks to Ed and Eve, Rikk, Bayley for his superb backroom work, the FOD helpers from Lichfield, Den ‘Hopalong’ Byfield  and Gary, George, Trevor, Mike, Martin, Dick Hudson, Snap Box Ricardos and the poster man, WNE, Wine Press, Thistle Print, Haki Scaffolding, Steve Hayes, Brian Edwards, Donna, Alan Webster, Richard Clenshaw, the Tavern, Tamworth Arts Centre, B and Q for releasing their superstar (hi Steve), Phil Beasley, Dave Fortune, Carla and Shirley for their saleswomanship and most of all everybody who was wonderful/stupid enough to sit in all that rain and make all the planning worthwhile. Big thank-yous to all of you.


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