Only a week till Boomtown begins and so we’ve been chatting to 8 piece Ska band Bigtopp about their past experiences there and what they’re looking forward to this year….
It started back in 2006 I guess, but it wasn’t called Bigtopp then and we didn’t play Ska. I still think it’s fair to say that was the year though because it was the first time we got on stage, played our instruments to a sub-par level, and thought we were the best rockers out there. Ah the ego of a 16-year-old, what a thing.
You’ve played several places over the UK now with various tours, do you have a faivourite town / venue to play?
That’s a hard one, we’ve played about 500 gigs now all over the country and there’s been some staple venues which have always had our backs and more importantly brought us back for shows. I guess our hometown venue The Wedgewood Rooms or The Joiners in Southampton would have to be given a shout just because of the amount of times we’ve rocked the stage.
On top of doing venue tours you regularly play at some of the UK’s top festivals how does this compare to playing inside venues?
We’re a festival band. I think we all know that and don’t dispute it. We got that wide rhythm section bolstered by some big bass and blaring horn section, it’s a sure recipe for the big outdoors. When you got 8 people giving it large on stage that’s gonna get the crowd going you know?
You’re playing at Boomtown this year, how many times have you played it before?
As artists this will be our second Boomtown and we can’t wait. Chinatown is where it’s at for all the Ska heads out there.
How have your previous Boomtown experiences been?
The festival has always been mental, all the stages are unique and depending on your mood there’s always some stage with music that’s going to uplift you right? And even if you can’t handle any more stimulation on the ears, the sheer scale of the place with all it’s art and decorations can keep you totally occupied for hours.
What are you most looking forward to at Boomtown this year?
Getting on that massive stage and rocking out to an always gracious Boomtown audience. I think the beauty of the festival is that most people don’t have an agenda with the music they’re wanting to see. There will of course be a few bands they’ve got scheduled in, but from my experiences most people come with an open mind and want to find out some new music. Bigtopp is that new music.
What can we expect from your set?
We got a lot of things going on behind the scenes but our last album Next Stage is still going strong so you can expect a lot of the lively numbers from that as well as the big, dark and beefy tracks off the first album Mischief. We’re always trying to bring in new songs, and a few cheeky mash-ups of tracks so for any one reading this, come down and see what we’re up to. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Who are you most looking forward to watching at Boomtown this year?
This year is mental. Genuinely there are too many acts to list, of course Marley, Matisyahu and Soja are going to immense, Gentleman’s Dub Club, Katchafire, Streetlight Manifesto, The Beat, Less Than Jake, man it’s going to incredible.
Any advice for newbies at the festival?
Don’t be one of those overly keen wasters that passes out in the first few hours of the festival – take your time and pace yourself. You’re they’re for the music and art first and foremost.
And lastly, is there anything you would like to say to our readers?
Thanks for reading this!