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NEWS 27 August 2012

Tribfest 2012 the focus of the 5th FRCA Summer School

For the 2nd year running FRCA used the Tribfest experience as the focus of their 5th Summer School. Having made a huge success of the opportunity provided last year by Ed Faulkner and Tribfest, we were eager to return to continue to develop the now "Freedom Road Under 20's Marquee", by inviting new bands and singers to participate in the festival as well as welcoming back seasoned Tribfesters.

With 17 bands/singers gracing the Freedom Road Stage over the weekend, it meant 47 young people took part and shared in the Tribfest experience. Along with our dedicated staff and volunteers, the Marquee saw a huge average increase in people watching these very talented young people and we regularly heard comments of "Brilliant" and "The best Marquee on site", which was a testiment to everyone involved.

Opening up on the Friday afternoon was the superb "The Undecided", who had travelled from Wakefield to take part. With a great range of songs which included "The Jackson 5" through to "Jesse J", they were the perfect band to open up and send a serious message out that the Freedom Road Marquee had talent!

Following The Undecided was Hull duo "Connor Phelan" and "John Holbrook" who armed with acoustic guitar and cajon showed a real maturity in their performance as they kept the audience entertained.

Friday continued with two local bands who were fresh from their success at the Ferriby's Got Talent competition that was held in May. Fourth Estate and Tourist Information, with obvious influences from the Arctic Monkeys, played sets that ensured the Marquee was packed as passers by were drawn in by the superb musicianship of these two young bands. Tourist Information, as winners of the Ferriby's Got Talent competition had opened Tribfest earlier on in the day as part of their win, however they described the atmosphere in the FR Marquee as something else and the highlight of their day!!

To conclude Friday, The Freedom Road Collective's very own "Jess and Liv" took to the stage and performed a set that is fast becoming an unmissable experience. These two local young women are armed with brilliant harmonies, a cracking acoustic guitar sound and an approach that is very down to earth and endearing. They will go far!!

So that was Friday, not only had the FR Marquee started with some great acts, but the main stage had also provided our young people with the experience of watching some briiliant tribute bands such as Mentallica and the Hot Red Chilli Peppers. Then it was back to the tents for a good nights sleep and to prepare for Saturday.

By Saturday word had spread around the festival that not only was the FR Marquee staging some cracking acts, but we had probably the most talented and interesting MC too, however he refused to give us his name and just asked us to refer to him as "$08"!!

Saturday began as Friday finished with a range of young people performing to a very high standard. First up from Grimsby was "Christina Houndslow" who we had met in November 2011 while taking part in the Busk Idol competition that Viking FM were running. Christina played and sang through a very well rehearsed set that immediately hooked the audience in, and this was perfect start for the day.

14 year old George Bates was next on stage and performing songs such as "Ever Fallen in Love with Someone" and "Suspicious Minds", George was as always a real crowd pleaser. I am reliably informed by George's dad that he is one of the hardest working 14 year old performers around and if you missed him this weekend then look out for the name!

After George, the Freedom Road Collective took over the stage for the next several sets and first up were the incredible Gleeks. The Gleeks who are made up of 9 very different individuals packed the Marquee again and with songs such as "We are Young" and "Your Song", the togetherness of the Gleeks was very evident. These guys are a great example of why we do what we do; creating space and opportunities for young people to develop confidence and increase their aspirations that they will use in every day situations. Under the watchful eye of their "Boss", Lisa Billany and sidekick "Jonny" the Gleeks were brilliant, and following group numbers, Emily, Emmie, Olivia and Luke demonstrated how these young people are beginning to develop in their own right with some solos. Just Ace!!

Next up on our stage was the irrepressable Sammie Watson who over the past few months has formed a duo act with one of her work colleagues Gregg. Sammie and Gregg have been working very hard on their set and this showed as again their harmonies were very good and they had a range of songs that were performed to a real high standard. If these two keep it going and keep rehearsing then who knows?

The talent from The Freedom Road Collective stable kept coming as both Shauna Pearce and Danielle Gray delivered their sets in a way that is now expected from them both. Performing with the Freedom Road House Band on several numbers, classics such as Cold Play's "Fix You" and Nicki Minaj's "Starships" were a delight. Danielle and Shauna were brilliant!

Rose Elliott concluded the Freedom Road Collective's input to the Saturday with a set that she has been working on with Iain for a number of months. Rose is a real gem and her set was just amazing. Performing with support and backing from Iain it was great to see Rose ditch the lyric sheets and engage with the audience. While at Tribfest, Rose recieved her A Level results which were good enough to send her to University. Well done Rose!!

The final act on Saturday was local band "Beneath the Darkness", who had along with Fourth Estate and Tourist Information had come to our attention via the Ferriby's Got Talent competition. With a blend of vocals, a brilliant young drummer and some cracking guitar riffs Beneath the Darkness stamped their authority on the Marquee with their own versions of songs by such artists as Paramore that the audience loved. Catch Beneath the Darkness when you can. A very hard working band with a bright future!

We all woke on Sunday to the smell of eggy bread, bacon sarnies and for Celine; cheese on toast! The local chef was happy to ensure that everyone was happy and took orders that would provide this happiness. You dont get that at Burger King do you Sammie?

Sunday began with Stevie Mould, who the day before had performed in York with folk legend Edwina Hayes, and just listening to Stevie explains why she is invited to support these artists. Stevie has an incredible talent and this talent was applauded and appreciated by another packed audience as Stevie sang a mixture of covers and of her own material.

Dominic Hook followed with his own blend of acoustic numbers that brought in the audience once more. Dom has an amazing vocal range and is again a very hard working artist with a bright future. Following Dom was Tom Kay who, as with Dom, was with us last year. Tom is just putting the finishing touches to his new EP which will be well worth a listen judging by the quality of songs he performed at Tribfest.

Every once in a while there are singers that stop you in your tracks and you just "Have" to listen. Molly Brown is one of those young people. Performing such songs as Snow Patrol's "Chasing Cars", Sia's "Lullaby" and 3 Action's "Don't Have Faith", Molly was simply unmissable! Molly along with all the young people will be performing at the Freedom Festival next, 8th and 9th September, so check her and them out!!

The Marquee was then treat to a rare but excellent performance from Lulu and Steve who had been working with Jess to put a couple of songs together that they could perform. Despite the nerves Lulu and Steve did exactly what they are capable of doing and kept the Marquee buzzing with an excellent performance.

Bringing the Freedom Road Marquee to a close and rounding off a superb weekend was Compass. Compass won the Busk Idol competition last year and their strong vocal talent across the whole group enables them to deliver a range of songs that grab you and keep you hooked. The best one for me and many others was their version of Mumford and Sons' "Little Lion Man", and as Compass begin to write, record and perform their own quality songs we wish them well.

So that was it. Another Tribfest done; another set of memories created and another reason why we can say that Freedom Road Creative Arts is a charity on the up!!