Still time to buy early bird tick­ets

Yorkshire Post - Culture & The Guide - - MU -

THERE’S still a few days left to snap up early bird tick­ets for an award-win­ning mu­sic fes­ti­val.

Whitby’s Mu­sic­port Fes­ti­val won In­door Fes­ti­val of the Year in last year’s Fatea Awards and acts con­firmed for this year in­clude Lo’Jo and Scot­land’s Idlewild (singer Roddy Woomble pic­tured). Also in­cluded in the line-up will be Tamikrest, one of Mali’s young stars of Sa­ha­ran mu­sic, and BBC Ra­dio 2 Folk Award win­ner Lucy Ward.

Dis­counted tick­ets for the fes­ti­val at Whitby Pavil­ion Com­plex from Oc­to­ber 17 to 19 are avail­able un­til the end of June. To book call 01947 603475. CHRIS Stein has some­thing of a sur­prise ad­mis­sion to make.

The gui­tarist and co-founder of one of Amer­ica’s most pop­u­lar and en­dur­ing rock groups of the last 40 years is, it turns out, a big ad­mirer of Drenge, the young grunge duo from the Peak District.

While Drenge only have one CD to their name, this year Blondie are back with their 10th stu­dio al­bum – and their fourth since tri­umphant ref­or­ma­tion in 1998 af­ter a decade-and-a-half apart.

It’s a dou­ble disc, called Blondie 4(0) Ever, com­pris­ing new ma­te­rial on one, called Ghosts of Down­load, and re-record­ings of 11 of their great­est hits in­clud­ing Heart of Glass, Sun­day Girl and Atomic.

“The re-record­ings were par­tially for fi­nan­cial rea­sons,” ex­plains 64-year-old Stein, mat­ter-of-factly. “It meant we could synch them in films and com­mer­cials and we would have full own­er­ship of those tracks. It was also an ex­er­cise. We worked much harder on the new al­bum.”

Ap­proach­ing such fa­mil­iar songs from a dis­tance of 30 years – or more was an in­ter­est­ing “sonic ex­er­cise” for Stein, whose di­ag­no­sis with the life-threat­en­ing ill­ness pem­phi­gus, was once of the rea­sons for Blondie’s pre­ma­ture re­tire­ment in 1997.

“To recre­ate stuff and make it sound sim­i­lar was just a chal­lenge. That said, it was a lot eas­ier to do than cre­ate it all the first time around.”

Clem Burke, the band’s drum­mer who’s worked with Stein and singer Deb­bie Harry since 1975, has de­scribed Ghosts of Down­load as a “very col­lab­o­ra­tive disc”. Among the guests on the al­bum are girl group Stush, hip-hop out­fit Los Rakas and Columbian elec­tronic artist Sys­tema So­lar. The best known, how­ever is Beth Ditto, of the Wash­ing­ton dance rock group The Gos­sip.

Ditto’s in­volve­ment, on the stand­out song A Rose By Any Name was ap­par­ently key­boardist and pro­ducer Matt Katz-Bo­hen’s idea. The rest of the col­lab­o­ra­tions were sim­ply “how things evolved”.

“There was not re­ally any mas­ter over­view of the whole thing. We worked on it track by track.”

Con­sis­tent with the var­ied na­ture of Blondie’s out­put over the last 40 years – ev­ery­thing from punk to reg­gae, disco and rap – Ghosts of Down­load is some­thing of a mu­si­cal melt­ing pot and in­cludes an un­likely cover ver­sion of the hit Frankie Goes to Hol­ly­wood song Re­lax.

It continues a band tra­di­tion of cover ver­sions that in­cludes The Tide is High and De­nis. “Hang­ing On The Tele­phone was a cover too. Most people don’t know that; only the hard­core fans get that,” says Stein. “Re­lax is a cool song, it’s one of my favourite songs. I had never heard any­body cover it be­fore.”

Among those con­tribut­ing song ideas was Jeff Saltz­man, who the band worked with on their 2011 al­bum Panic of Girls, and an in­tern of his, Natalie Hawkins “who de­vel­oped some melodies”.

“It was a lot of people col­lab­o­rat­ing from dif­fer­ent di­rec­tions,” says Stein.

Keep­ing things fresh is

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.