Rewind Festival 2016 – what a cracker!!

Question: Where can you sing ‘Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do’ with Wurzel Gummidge and friends whilst the cast of ‘An Officer and a Gentlemen’ look on?

Answer: Where else but the 80s Rewind Festival.

Last year I had the pleasure of being booked to play in the cocktail tent at Rewind Festival South in Henley on Thames. When I got the booking I was quietly excited, my experience of playing in pubs and clubs told me that an audience that enjoys the 80s also generally remembers a lot of the old pub tunes and the two sit easily side by side. Going from Madness to ‘Don’t Dilly Dally’ and on to Chas n Dave to my mind is quite seamless, as the music is linked by common ‘music hall’ roots.

Rewind - Bucks FizzCome the gig, I wasn’t disappointed, indeed it was even better than I had thought. The Rewind crowd really get into he spirit of things, with all manner of 80s fancy dress and attention to detail. The atmosphere is fun and friendly throughout and the cocktail tent was like a little rest and recuperation area away from the main stage and bars. I ebbed and flowed between pub piano classics and 80’s hits from the likes of Depeche Mode, Madness and Abba and even got a piano mosh pit going with ‘Night boat to Cairo’.

Rewind Vivian 1We had a fantastic time and I got some great feedback from people and so I’m hoping to be back again this year (plug, plug). If I am, then expect plenty more 80s medleys, some TV theme tunes (think Dad’s Army and Grange Hill) and of course all the old pub favourites.

Away from playing, a personal highlight at the festival was hearing Tony Hadley and his band/ orchestra do their sound check with ‘To Cut a Long Story Short’. That bloke can truly sing, such power and grace – well done that man!

And back in the cocktail tent? Well, whilst not quite on the same level, but still very successful at keeping the audience entertained, there was one tune that never failed to get them dancing. A timeless classic, and one that on this particular occasion below was enjoyed by visiting members of the Police Academy (which was very helpful, because I’d had pretty much lost my voice by then). See you next time hopefully.

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