Monday, 14 March 2016

Madferit in Macosquin

Last summer I had a lot of fun doing the PR for and then attending the inaugural Big Marquee Weekend music festival.

It was held in the village of Macosquin where I spent the first 10 years of my life and went to primary school.  The brains behind it were my oldest friend Drew Hutchinson (aka DJ Steady) and his close pals Robert Todd, Elizabeth Todd and Hughie Hamilton from Mary Pat's Bar.

It was a brave venture.  The purpose-built marquee - erected in the car park - cost a few bob to hire.   And so did the acts because they were top quality.

Given the collective efforts that went into putting it together,  the event deserved to be a resounding success. But few people could have predicted just how good it actually was.

There wasn't a low point across all three days.  But, for me, the performance of Ireland's leading Oasis tribute band, Roll With It, stood out above all others.

I was fortunate enough to see the real Oasis play live three times in their heyday, including once in front of 90,000 fans at the old Wembley Stadium.  But, quite honestly, I enjoyed Roll With It every bit as much.

This was a part of their set from that now famous night in Macosquin.  Feel free to be as impressed as I was (and also Vanessa who you might spot dancing around like a loon).

And, if you don't already know, I have some very exciting news to share with you.

Yes, Big Marquee Weekend II is happening and is now only weeks away.  The May Day Bank Holiday weekend to be precise, from Friday 29 April until Sunday 1 May.

As last year, there will be a different theme each day.

Scotland's number one DJ Mallorca Lee will headline a top notch dance night on the Friday, also featuring Craig Dalzell, Tizer and Booshanty.

And singer-songwriter Lee Matthews - with eight Irish download chart toppers to his name - will bring a Sunday afternoon and evening of country music to a toe-tapping crescendo, with support from Ben Currie and JD Country.

But it'll be on the Saturday when my personal excitement inevitably reaches embarrassingly high levels as Macosquin becomes 'Madchester' for the day.

Because alongside local band Cellar Door, Roll With It will be making their triumphant return to the Big Marquee.

And joining them at the top of the bill will be none other than the original Stone Roses tribute band, Resurrection.  Travelling across from Glasgow as part of their UK tour, they have been described by legendary Stone Roses bassist Mani as "the best Roses tribute around." Not a bad endorsement, for those who know about these things.

Tickets for Big Marquee Weekend II go on sale at 9am this Friday from Mary Pat’s Bar, Card Land in Coleraine, Lou’s Boutique in Ballymoney, Jingles of Portrush or by calling Tel: 028 7034 4659.

If you're anywhere near the Causeway Coast in the run-up to the May Day Bank Holiday, get yourself along. 

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