WORDS AND IMAGES BY BILLY SEAGRAVE
As the crowds fill the Last night of this years Lytham festival, Nia Wyn, The Lottery Winners, The Charlatans, warm up the crowd for Tonight’s headline act Paul Weller for an evening of songs taken from a 45 year Back Catalogue, now “That’s Entertainment”
Nia Wyn’s engrossing vocals and powerful storytelling are wrapped up in a sound influenced by blues and soul. One of the most exciting young female artists coming out of North Wales right now.
Inspired by a range of artists from soul and jazz legends Billie Holiday and Marvin Gaye to RnB giants Nasand Ms. Lauryn Hill, Nia is a truly dynamic artist. Growing up in North Wales, Nia’s music navigates identity, isolation, and mental health. Finding solace in the music derived from the shelves of local junk shops as a teenager, in adulthood she has risen to become one of the most poignant contemporary voices on the Welsh scene. Nia is one to watch.
Coming on stage in bright sunshine, with a massive pink backdrop announcing The Lottery Winners is a great omen for the band’s performance today, if you are not aware of the Lottery Winners, were have you been hiding? This was sheer fun – fabulous pop, touching songs and a non-stop stream of banter and self-deprecating jokes from Thomas Rylance, the front man. It was practically a comedy gig as Rylance took the Piss out of the band, the audience and, mostly, himself. An unassuming figure, blessed with a less than rock-star looks, he won the crowd over by force of personality and a stream of quality laughs. Hailing from down the road in Leigh, and for the last few years they have been on the march, with headline shows of their own with a growing army of fans, as well as supporting some of the biggest artists doing the rounds.
The Charlatans are one of the UK’s best-loved bands who have stood the test of time. Stalwarts of the Indie Pop era, they have shown they are one of the most enduring live bands, currently into their third Decade.
Beginning with the up-tempo tempo “Weirdo” and “Can’t Get Out of Bed”, much to the delight of the crowd. Many of whom have come to bask in the sun and watch a band known for their live performances. As they performed, the stage backdrop was a montage of videos and pictures which through a light on The Charlatans’ turbulent but successful time as a band.
The set flowed well, and changed throughout, from the great “One To Another”, as well as the unmistakeable guitar riffs and keyboards of “You’re so pretty, we’re so pretty”, Going back to the 1997 album “Melting pot”, one of the sounds of the 90’s , that had all the crowd dancing along, as the distinctive intro of “The only one I know “, brought a real uplift to the crowd, “North country boy”, and “High”, really showcase how tight the band are.
Having covered the band on several occasions, this is the best I have seen, not that I have seen them put in a poor performance, Burgess looks so at home, covering the stage filming the crowd and taking pictures arms aloft, beckoning the crowd for more.
Next up was, the rocky “Blackened Blue eyes”, as the band let loose, “Sproston Green”, is the final offering, and the band delivered an awesome set, as Burgess left the stage the outro from the band perfectly set the tone for tonight’s headline’
2/ Can’t get out of bed
4/ Just when you’re thinking things over
5/ One to another
6/ You’re so pretty – we’re so pretty
7/ North country boy
8/ How high
9/ Blackened blue eyes
11/ Sproston Green
As the was going down, our host for this evening and the final act for the ten-night run of Lytham Festival was Music legend Paul Weller who showed why he’s been at the top for so long on his visit to the Northwest coast.
Opening with the powerful “White Sky”, sees the twin drummers set the pace, with great power. Few artists can boast being the front man in number influential bands as well as a respected and accomplished solo artist, who has been at the top for 45 years. First of the bands was The Style council, and it was “My ever-changing mood” along with “Head start for happiness”. The near sell out crowd are clearly here to worship a true musician an icon of our musical identity, and it showed as every line was savoured, each lyric was sung by a crowd, in awe of their idol.
Steve Cradock, Long time Side Kick to is as much the ultimate guitarist and backing vocalist as ever. The sublime middle section of “Woo Sé Mama”, Along with The Style Council’s It’s a Very Deep Sea and an acoustically strummed Rockets. “Shout to the top”, led into the first Jam track of the night “Start”, that’s how to elevate a crowd. “Peacock suit”, closed the set.
As the band returned to the stage for what would be a six-song encore, the opening song was “Broken stones”, a flawless delivery a beautiful sing along by a crowd in their element. Another Jam song that summed the evening was “That’s entertainment”. What a song to have in the locker. The classics keep on rolling out, “Wild wood”, and “You do something to me”, are sublime. Another classic “Changing man has everyone in full voice, we return to the Jam for the finale, and what a way to sign off, “Town called Malice”, completes a masterclass, from a master performer, who still draws in the crowds.
1/ White sky
2/ Long time
3/ Cosmic fingers
4/ From the floorboards up
5/ My ever-changing mood
6/ Head start to happiness
8/ Stanley road
9/ Saturn’s pattern
10/ Hung up
11/ Fat pop
13/ Woo Se Mamma
14/ It’s a very deep sea
16/ Above the clouds
17/ Into tomorrow
18/ Shout to the top
20/ Peacock suit
21/ Broken stones
22/ That’s entertainment
23/ Wild wood
24/ You do something to me
25/ The changing man
26/ Town called Malice.
FOLLOW PAUL WELLER
FOLLOW THE CHARLATANS
FOLLOW THE LOTTERY WINNERS
FOLLOW NIA WYN