Annan’s Easterfest 2019 announces impressive line-up
Annan’s Easterfest makes a much-anticipated return on the 19th – 21st of April and will feature some of the hottest local and national acts around.
Easterfest 2019 will be organised for the first time by George Mcfarlane (13 Crowes) and Gordon McCall (The Shameful Bronze).
George and Gordon will take over the reins from Robert Soutar, who has organised 7 years of extremely successful 1 day and 3-day music events at the Station House Hotel. Line-ups have featured the best local musical talent, as well as acts from further afield. Slots always fill up rapidly whenever new events are announced.
In the same vein as recent years, Easterfest 2019 will be a 3-day event over Easter weekend, from Good Friday through to Easter Sunday. And each day will be absolutely FREE to attend!
We’ve been to a couple of all-dayers in the past and they have always been absolutely superb. The acts are always of a consistently high quality and sound fantastic. As a venue, the Station House Hotel could definitely be described as ‘intimate’. It is essentially a pub with a side area for live music. The space is pretty small, and the crowd is always enthusiastic and friendly.
To make things super convenient, we’ve put together a full run down of the acts that will be performing each day along with stage times. You can read this below but before you get to that, we thought you’d like to know what co-organiser Gordon McCall had to say about this year’s event…
Small Town Sounds: How excited are you for Easterfest 2019?
Gordon McCall: Can’t wait! This will be the 7th year of Easterfest and it’s always a great weekend. It’s a lot of work to put it on, but it’s always worth it when the place is packed and everyone’s having a good time.
What can people expect from this event?
A weekend of live music from bands and acoustic acts both local and from further afield. A great atmosphere with lots of drink flowing (Elvis juice on tap is always a winner). Just good times all round, Easterfest is definitely one of the highlights of the local musical calendar. Plus there aren’t a lot of events where all of this comes with entry completely free!
How many times have people asked you exactly when Easter is?
Quite a few actually, but I’ve always got the dates to hand as Easterfest is one of the first things that goes on the planner every year.
What’s your process for selecting the bands that are included in the line-up?
It has been a bit different from previous years as it’s usually Rob Soutar that handles all of the booking side of things, but he’s taking a step back this year so George and I have been organising it between us. Because we both play in bands ourselves we know a lot of other bands and musicians, so we started by getting in touch with some of them. Then it was just a case of putting out the word on social media (with help from people like Small Town Sounds) that we were looking for acts. We then made the final choices from the list that applied.
Are each of the days themed in some way? Would they separately appeal to fans of different music genres, or is it a mix of sounds that could appeal to everyone?
Friday and Saturday are normally a total mix of genres. We try and throw a bit of everything into the line-up. In the past, we’ve had everything from ska to hip hop and metal to spoken word. It works a lot better when you don’t stick to a single genre, that way you are appealing to a much bigger audience and allowing people the chance to listen to musical styles they wouldn’t normally listen to. The Sunday is pretty much all acoustic acts. It’s a nice relaxed way to end the weekend as by this point there are a lot of people nursing hangovers from the previous two days. That being said, with people like Luke Matear on the bill, there will still be plenty of opportunities to get up and have a dance.
Do you plan to continue to organise other music events at the Station after this one has taken place?
Yeah definitely. We try and run these events at the Station three times a year. Easter is the big one, but we also plan to put one on in the summer (date TBC) and on Saturday 2nd November for Halloween.
Here’s a rundown of the acts appearing over the 3 days, complete with stage times:
Friday 19th April
Stoney Broke (8pm – 8.45pm) Solo, multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter Stoney Broke is a regular performer at venues and festivals across the UK with performances packed full of loop, slide, stomp, and swagger. Dumfries-born and Gretna-based, he is an extremely popular performer on the UK blues circuit.
Frozen Shores (9pm – 9.45pm) – Frozen Shores is an independent songwriter and producer hailing from Dumfries and Galloway. His live shows are unique in their collaborative quality as he works closely with a host of other local professional musicians to achieve the best performance possible. Frozen Shores’ releases are somewhat reminiscent of artists such as Bon Iver and Jeff Buckley, with his vocal delivery being described as “gently drifting in and out of luscious falsetto”.
Barstow Bats (10pm – 10.45pm) – The band describe their music as ‘Scot-Psych’ and have influences from across the last 50 years. They have an undeniable and brilliantly stirring Barstow sound that ranges from the irresistibly catchy to the enchantingly dark and distant. Make sure you catch them for this rare live appearance – their live performances have been few and far between lately.
Slim ‘N’ That (11pm until close) – Slim ‘N’ That are an Annan supergroup made up of members of The Shameful Bronze, Aspire, Seasons and completed by Owen ‘Slim’ Nicholson on vocals. They will be closing the Friday night with a covers set and some top class drunken banter.
Saturday 20th April
The Cherry Pinks (3pm – 3.45pm) – The Cherry Pinks are a new-ish 4 piece band that originate from Dumfries. Their music is an eclectic mixture of original songs written by Julie Ward that encompass a colourful variety of genres and influences from reggae, 70s rock, folk and blues.
The Sexy Offenders (5pm – 5.45pm) – We couldn’t describe them any better than how they have described themselves: “5 fully grown men on a mission to drink Buckfast, fight like fuck and be generally offensive. Formed in Annan in summer 2012, The Sexy Offenders are a bunch of total pricks.” So there you have it. They neglect to mention that they’re also absolutely immense live.
False Flags (6pm – 6.45pm) – False Flags are a new band from Carlisle, formed in summer 2018. Expect rock / blues / grunge / dub / indie and everything else.
The Shameful Bronze (7pm – 7.45pm) – Forged in Annan in 2012, The Shameful Bronze draw influence from the post-rock/alt-rock genres, combing intricate guitar parts and heavy riffs with melodic vocals. They’re yet another great band that make up Annan’s micro-music scene.
Aspire (8pm – 8.45pm) – We’re delighted to see tech metal band Aspire on the line-up, after interviewing them for Small Town Sounds recently (read it here). They’re known for their high energy (and very sweaty!) shows.
Wolfpeake (9pm – 9.45pm) – Ambitious emo-driven indie four-piece Wolfpeake are emerging from the shadows of North West working class towns and taking centre stage with biting guitars and thunderous anthems amongst the new wave of alternative music hitting the airwaves. Their sound is akin to Catfish and the Bottlemen combined with Lower Than Atlantis.
13 Crowes (10pm -11pm) – Describing their sound as “honest, heart on your sleeve rock ‘n’ roll”, 13 Crowes have gathered a massive following since they formed in 2016. Signed to German label Homebound Records, the band has toured all over the UK and Europe numerous times. Their heavy influences of Springsteen and Gaslight Anthem shine through in all that they do.
COLT 45 (11.15pm – close) – Punk band COLT 45 have appeared at The Station events a number of times before, and their forthcoming live performance at Easterfest 2019 will no doubt be just as warmly received by the crowd. With influences such as Alkaline Trio, Manic Street Preachers, Brand New and At The Drive In, this Cumbrian 3-piece will be the perfect end to a packed day of music.
Sunday 21st April (Acoustic Sessions)
Callum Morrison (3pm – 3.30pm) – Sexy Offenders drummer Callum Morrison will be swapping his sticks for an acoustic guitar as he opens the Sunday with a set of rock covers.
Beanman (3.45pm – 4.15pm) – Ah Beanman. He was the guy who kept everyone entertained with his antics as part of local ska carnage band More From Jim. If there was ever any craziness happening, it’s likely that Beanman would have caused it or at least be some part of it. He’ll be appearing on his own for this slot, though. He’s a superb musician, and able to pick up pretty much any instrument and play it with ease.
Connor Fyfe (4.30pm – 5.10pm) – Connor Fyfe is a young unsigned guitarist/singer who also plays harmonica and Cajon. He’s only 11 years old but has been making a name for himself on the Glasgow gig scene since August 2017. Although young, he has already earned the opportunity to play at many iconic music venues such as King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, The Classic Grand, The Clutha and Broadcast. Go Connor!
Mikey Rae and Sarah Malpas (5.15pm – 5.55pm) – Mikey Rae, vocalist and guitarist for The Shameful Bronze, will perform a solo set of his favourite emo anthems, before once again joining the incredibly talented Sarah Malpas to play an eclectic selection of cover songs.
Mhazz McVeigh (6pm – 6.45pm) – Back in the day, Mhazz used to be the lead singer of local rock band Upon The Moor. Since the band broke up, she has been appearing at the Station events as a solo artist. Her voice is one of the most powerful we‘ve ever heard and you should absolutely go and watch her.
Ra (7pm – 7.45pm) – Ra is a singer, lyricist/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Her influences include The Smiths, Talking Heads, St Vincent, Arctic Monkeys. She has years of experience performing in intimate venues as well as larger festivals (including Eden, Electric Fields, Ukulele Festival of Scotland).
Bob Hollis (8pm – 8.45pm) – Bob Hollis is well known for fronting More From Jim for many years, but since they took a hiatus he has focused on developing his own solo career. Playing a wide range of venues all over Dumfries & Galloway, Annan-based Bob is also a bit partial to the beaches of Spain, performing at various Spanish venues in between sunbathing sessions.
Mick Hargan (9pm – 9.45pm) – With his raspy voice and soulful lyrics, Glaswegian singer-songwriter, Mick Hargan will have you mesmerized during his live performance. Drawing on inspiration from artists and bands like The Gaslight Anthem, Pearl Jam, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and The Frames, Hargan’s charismatic lure really takes a hold of his audience during his live shows.
Andy McBride (10pm – 10.45pm) – Andy McBride is a songwriter originally from Glasgow, Scotland. He is often on the road touring across the UK and Europe, either alone or with his partner in crime, Mick Hargan. His festival appearances have included TRNSMT and Country 2 Country. He’s big pals with Annan band 13 Crowes too, with the two acts (and occasionally Mick Hargan) sharing the stage a number of times.
Luke Matear (11pm – close) – Luke Matear is an acoustic entertainer and vocalist from Workington, Cumbria. He performs old and modern pop covers and has a strong love for his loop pedal. He also likes crowd participation. So prepare yourself for that and don’t say we didn’t warn you.
Train tickets from Dumfries – Annan cost £5.10 (return) and services run pretty much hourly. Check out the train times at National Rail here.