Parklife 87

The line-up at Parklife is diverse; it crosses genres and over four decades of music history. Older artists aren’t in the mix solely for nostalgia, they represent the music that is part of our music culture here today in 2017. We mentioned in the preview that we’re coming up to a decade of Parklife/Mad Ferret (one year shy) and how festival culture here in the UK has evolved from raves, warehouse parties and soundsystems and merged to form the current festival culture, particularly in the UK. We also looked at that maiden line-up from 2008. This year the musical mezze of acts spans electronic music, hip hop, R&B, drum and bass, UK garage, dub and reggae and the artists that represent those evergreen steelos (yea I’m hip) have histories of recording or performing music stretching back as far as 1978. So this is where it gets a bit Rick and Morty, or more accurately, Doc Brown and Marty McFly: imagine if you could jump in a 1983 DeLorean and go back in time to start your own festival, using only acts from this year’s Parklife line-up, Parklife prequels if you like? Well guess what? You don’t have to because we’re gonna do it for you, each week, until Parklife, starting with Parklife ’87. (Tell me any one of these would not be #LitAF!)


Parklife 87

Chaka Khan – Congo Natty – David Rodigan – Norman Jay – Pete Tong 

The headline on the main stage would undoubtedly be Chaka Khan. Already a Grammy Award winning artist with ‘70s groups Rufus, over a decade after ‘You Got the Love’, Chaka was an established solo artist and cameo in a major Hollywood motion picture by 1987. That’s not to mention having a list of collaborations from Stevie Wonder to Quincy Jones and being the first R&B singer to make a crossover hit featuring a rapper under her belt. A 1987 version of me (there was actually a one year old version of me in 1987 but we’ll ‘llow that) would be gassed at the prospect of catching the by then five-time Grammy Award winner at Heaton Park.

Away from the main stage, up the hill and down the other side, what would start as a low rumble would open out to another, altogether different stage. A stage with speakers stacked almost as high as the summer sky, spilling sub-low frequencies and the echoing toasts from the deejays. Before the digital age, in the golden era of soundclash culture, the man dem got their kicks, and their bass, by way of dub. From Brixton to Bristol, Chapletown to Moss Side, kids from the inner city to the suburbs were bunning absolute dog shit weed and drinking cheap lager at parties, clashes and radio shows brought to them by man like Congo Natty, Norman Jay MBE and David Rodigan MBE. And yep, we still are. By 1987 Rodigan had grown from selling roots records in Putney to shows on the likes of Capital FM, keeping the nation warm n easy. Born in Notting Hill, Norman Jay had built up a credible international reputation starting in the late ‘70s at block parties in New York at a time when the city was beginning to churn out the music we live by today. When disco was red hot, when hip hop and house were being born and the Big Apple’s large West Indian communities were getting down to new, exciting waves of sounds of the islands. Associated with the emerging careers of Trevor Nelson, Giles Peterson, Jazzie B from Soul II Soul, Judge Jules and Danny Rampling, by the time of the (hypothetical but jeez you should have got this by now) Parklife 87 came around he was Mr rare groove himself and synonymous with the London incarnation of the then-pirate KISS FM.

But this was the ‘80s. Technology had provided musicians with new tools to their armoury, new, electronic tools, and so we go, over to the house tent. This was just slightly before acid really took off, a year (or two) before the second summer(s) of love, and four years before the Essential Selection first aired on Radio 1, but nevertheless, Pete Tong was a well-established ‘dance’ DJ and radio presenter, particularly in the capital.

I’d go to that festival today, never mind back then. Also, there’s another name worth a mention. They hadn’t released their debut album yet, or even had someone listen to their demo, but A Tribe Called Quest might have had a cheeky feature on an up-and-coming slot, having been formed in 1985, but their time will come when we visit Parklife 97 next week.


Anyway, back to reality… 

Parklife 17 updates: New act announced!!

I was surprised when they weren’t included in the initial line-up but the announcement coming just as tickets were pretty much sold out seems more like a thank you than a stub-shifter, okay I’m stalling, I’ll get on with it… The latest announcement is… a bashy, energetic, anthemic collaboration between Brooklyn rapper El-P and ATL’s Killer Mike. Yep it’s Run the Jewels. Hyped.


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Countdown to Parkilfe Weekender 2017

Parklife 17

Heaton Park

10-11 June 2017

Some ticket availability

It’s nearly ten years ago now that Mad Ferret made an audacious attempt to throw a party in the heart of Fallowfield with the idea of lighting a fuse that had been priming since the 90s. They hoped to combine the two sides of Manchester – the native music and rave heritage of the Ten Townships and a student population desperate and deserving of another dimension to their experience of the city – for a big party in the park to sign off the end of their uni year and kick start the summer, or just for a laugh at the weekend. The Resident Advisor page for the original event still exists on the results page of a Google search and it says a lot about how that experiment has succeded and indeed a lot about how the UK festival landscape has transformed in less than a decade.

5000 people, 50+ DJs, 20+ bands.

Stanton Warriors. Friction. Aim. D.I.M. Iration Steppas. Nicky Blackmarket. Youngsta. Ntype. Prophecy. Chase n Status. Riot Jazz Band.

Straight away a whole heap of things stand out. For starters, none of these acts made the lineup nine years on. Perhaps the only one of those acts you might consider a current household name would be Chase n Status, but I wouldn’t mention that to any of the living memes you find in Antwerp on a Tuesday night, but still they found themselves on the fifth line of the original poster. Remember when Chase n Status were big lol. That was a time I bet we all could delete from our Facebook photos.

The press release showed this year’s full lineup in a chaotic scramble of names, spread over two pages, a lineup so big I wonder if half of them would have even managed to cop tickets for the first one in 08. What’s more interesting is how much more diverse and international it is now, like exponentially. It’s incomparable. And the set up at Heaton Park is another world from the days of Platt Fields. I’d say it’s the most coveted non-camping festival in the UK. From Frank Ocean to Carl Cox, it really doesn’t get any bigger. From Moodymann to A Tribe Called Quest it doesn’t get any more credible. From the 1975 to EZ it doesn’t get more diverse. Diverse but that’s not to say populist, or pandering desperately for anyone who will love them or fork out for a wristband. No one stands out as alone in style or support – it’s a broad array of music but still with only a few degrees of separation. You can imagine someone who’d like Frank Ocean might like Anderson .Paak and might also have listened to Drake’s (not featured) album and heard Giggs or BBK’s Skepta, who in turn will probably get wheelups from EZ as his Nike cap bobs into view over the DJ booth. And I know it’s possible that people that are into all of that will probably be digging holes in the turf to Ibiza favourites like Jamie Jones and Joseph Capriati, Patrick Topping, Martinez Brothers, Elrow and Joris Voorn. It won’t just be Mancunians at North Base, Levelz or Solardo. And of course there are even crossovers to that first ever lineup. I’ve had tape packs in my youth featuring both Nicky Blackmarket and Andy C. I’ve seen Congo Natty at Iration Steppas’ Subdub and I’m sure David Rodigan will have a Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry tune for us (I’ve not even checked if Rodigan’s on the lineup because that’d be like no Attenborough on Planet Earth). Chaka Khan Chaka Khan Chaka Chaka Chaka Khan.

We’ll be going a bit more in depth in our weekly updates, focus on a couple of artists each time to build the hype before the big day. Browse the lineup at your leisure, if there’s anyone in particular you’d like us to look at, drop a comment below (inbox me). Weekend and Sunday tickets are still on sale, all the earlybirds have obviously flocked the nest, and from what I can gather Saturday tickets have sold out. Saturday 10 to Sunday 11 of June. Shit that’s soon!


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Secret Garden Party limited early bird tickets on sale now!

Early bird tickets avaliable now for Secret Garden Party! 

Inline image 1

Following a sold out weekend the Secret Garden Party puts a limited number of Early Bird tickets on sale, from Monday 28th July, for next year’s event, which takes place 23rd-26th July 2015.

They will be available from

With its theme of ‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’ revellers enjoyed a hot and sunny weekend with a range of music including Public Enemy, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Little Dragon, Foxes and Martha Reeves and the Vandellas and secret dj sets from the likes of Chase & Status and Nero.

The Saturday Spectacular, which included water holograms, a huge firework display and flames of fire, also featured new technology never before used in the UK. The ‘Falling Stars’ section had 5,000 papers helicopters, each carrying flashing red and blue flashing LED, dropped from c.350ft by a single paramotor pilot spinning gently to the ground, some had free tickts for Secret Garden Party 2015. Other spectaculars included the ‘Make A Rainbow’ paint gathering, a Spitfire flypast and this specially grown sunflower field accessed via an ‘out of order’ portaloo.

Sunscape Festival announces Cocoon & Watergate Showcases

Set in amongst the beautiful surroundings of the isle of Gozo-Malta, Sunscape today unveil over 20 new acts who represent some of the most infamous names in electronic music. As one of the most revered and iconic clubs of all time, Watergate will make its way to the shores of Gozo for a rare opportunity to see the likes of Marco Resmann, La Fleur and Lee Jones outside of their Berlin home. Having recently been inaugurated into the illustrious Resident Advisor podcast series, Dana Ruh plays alongside Ilario Alicante and already announced Pig & Dan under the Cocoon Records banner. While Mobilee Showcase includes Lee Van Dowksi and Dean Demanuele, and Valentino Kanzyani of Cadenza will perform at the week-long celebrations. The festival opens its doors to an intimate crowd of 3000 like-minded revellers from 3-10 September and have announced yet more exciting adventures taking including Why Not? Dome's eclectic and empowering workshop programme featuring drum lessons, fire dancing, astrology, permaculture and conscious living, whilst also playing host to an Electroswing Day Festival, Full Moon Party and fire dancing tournament making it an incredible finale to the summer.

As one of Europe's most famous clubs, Berlin's Watergate has welcomed through it's doors some of the biggest names in house and techno and is appropriately recognised as the home of modern house music with an unchallengeable reputation. Featuring a mix of residents past and present, the showcase will firstly welcome Berlin native Marco Resmann, a regular fixture of the city's club scene for over 20 years. As head honcho of Power Plant Records, La Fleur blurs the line between soulful house, techno and electronica, and will take to the decks under the Watergate banner alongside Aus Music's Lee Jones

When it comes to electronic music there are few names bigger than Cocoon. Since it's creation by the legendary Sven Vath at the turn of the millennium, Cocoon has grown to become a haven for electronic music the world over. Taking their residency on the Mediterranean isle, Sunscape welcome three of the biggest acts ever to adopt the Cocoon name. Joining the previously announced electro-duo Pig & Dan, Ilario Alicante will perform having achieved great success with his first track 'Vacaciones En Chile' and gaining the attentions of Richie Hawtin and Ricardo Villalobos, he has grown to become one of the most in-demand producers and label figureheads in electronic music. Dana Ruh, who has seen releases on Ostgut Ton as well as her own Brouqade imprint, will also take to the stage for what will be one of the most memorable events of the summer. 

While Sunscape delivers one of the most exciting line-ups of the summer, the festival will also host yet more activities taking place over the week-long celebration. Catering for every kind of adventurer the Why Not? Dome programme presents a number of eclectic and empowering workshops, talks and meditations throughout the festival. Fresh, invigorating and transformative, the programme is designed to inform and host a wealth of ideas that aims to change the way people think. Topics include astrology, sound & energy healing, conscious living, working with energy, permaculture, scuba Diving in the Med and much more.

In addition Sunscape unveils an Electroswing Day Festival, a dedicated Fire dancing tournament, Fire jamming and an infamous Full Moon Party celebration for revellers to enjoy. More than just a music festival, the programme ambitions are to provide a truly one-off and unique experience that captures the mystical island of Gozo in all its glory.

Adding to line-up will be Defected Records regular Noir, who will be performing alongside Sankeys resident The Element, Loco Dice heralded Camiel Daamen and Mobilee Music's Dean Demanuele. As founder of Zombie Soundsystem, Shane Watcha brings his unique style to the Mediterranean while Cesare vs Disorder showcases his new side-project 'Azimute' at the festival, which is becoming a hot ticket  for music fans across the globe. 

Kendal Calling Festival sells out in record time

Kendal Calling festival has sold out a remarkable 11 weeks in advance of this year’s festival. Kendal Calling has sold out in each of its previous 8 years but this year’s sell out is the quickest yet, leaving the From The Fields team to thank those festival goers who have snapped up tickets to the winner of the UK Festival Awards Best Medium Sized Festival in 2013.
This year’s festival features act such as Suede, Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls, Example, De La Soul, 2manydjs, Frightened Rabbit, Clean Bandit, Happy Mondays, Miles Kane, Jimi Goodwin, Gorgon City, Ella Eyre and hundreds of others over 3 days in the stunning Lake District, indisputably one of the most beautiful festival sites in the world.
Kendal Calling is one of the highlights of the festival calendar featuring the Kendal Calling Goes Beyond The Stars fancy dress theme, Tim Peaks Diner, a real ale festivalgourmet food, a dedicated children’s Ladybird Arena, a diverse array or markets, the Garden Of Eden healing area,Q and A’stalks and much more.
Having broken the world record for the most people dressed as Superman in one place in 2014, this year Kendal Calling revelers will attempt to break the world record for the most people moonwalking at the same time.
Kendal Calling promoter Andy Smith comments – "We've sold out in record time…I'm in a transport of delight!"
Suede / Frank Turner and The Sleeping Souls / Example
Happy Mondays /  De La Soul /  Miles Kane / 2ManyDjs (dj set) /  Tom Odell / Razorlight / Augustines / Jimi Goodwin / Frightened Rabbit / Simon and Oscar from Ocean Colour Scene (acoustic) Clean Bandit  / Newton Faulkner /  Athlete / Ella Eyre / Mr Scruff / Lewis Watson / Admiral Fallow / Reel Big Fish / The Heavy / Catfish & the Bottlemen / Rae Morris / Saint Raymond / Dub Pistols / Jess Glynne / Women's Hour /  Findlay / Breton / Josh Record / Black Rivers / Team Me / Norma Jean Martine / Mirror Signal / The Tea Street Band / Champs / Dario G (DJ set) / Lauren Aquilina / Lyger/ Big Sixes /  Etches /  Molly Warburton / Gypsy Hill / Smerins Anti-Social Club / Kimberly Anne / Amber Run / Gallery Circus / Lanterns on the Lake /  The Lucid Dream / Johnny Borrell & Zazou / The Lancashire Hotpots / Aquilo  / DJ Food, DJ Cheeba, DJ Moneyshot – Caught In the Middle of a 3 way mix /  Zion Train – Perch & Dubdadda / Reeps One / The Melodic / By The Rivers / Typesun / Will Varley / We Were Evergreen / Tantz / John Langon Band / Talisman / Will Tramp!  / Drop the Mustard DJs / Zutekh DJs /  English Disco Lovers / Herbal Sessions / Dub Central / Showhawk Duo / Urban Sabotage presents: Davos LIVE / Lisbon / The Membranes / Skutch Manos / Metisa / Colt 45 / MDNGHT / Berlin / Berlin / You / $ista $ista / WALK / Honeyfeet / Harlequin Marching Band / Skittles & Live Band / Cut Capers / Lauren Housley / RenĂ© / Gypsies of Bohemia / Scatters the Funky Disco Pig / The Grand Old Ukes of Yorkshire / Treedrum / Riot Jazz Brass Band / The Dakota Jim Band / Taylor Jackson / Charlie Cooper / Thingumbob & The Thingumajogs / From A Window / Buffalo Brothers / The Big Easy & Swing Dance / Flamingus / Flavia / The Bear around Your Neck / Whiskey Moon Face / Felix Hagan & The Family / Too Much Love / Saluation Dub Collective / The EME / Dave Rybka / Xander Smith / Urban Folk Quartet / Mint Royale / Baggy Mondays / Dave Haslam / Black Cat DJs / Father Funk /  Gareth Brooks (XFM)  / King Eider / The Hummingbirds / Phoneys & the Freaks / Howling Rhythm DJs / Aaron Wright & Jacqui Abbott  / Kommix Kut / The Raged / Our Fold / Dub Sex / Mark Abbott / Fallback Productions / Sam P / Karl Yates / Northern Soul Dance Classes
Glow Dance Tent:
2manydj’s (dj set) / Andy C / Zane Lowe / James Zabiela / Gorgon City / Goldie / Dub Phizix & MC Strategy / Shadow Child / Friend Within / GQ / Lapsley / Ash Howell / My Neu Leng
Bondax b2b MJ Cole, Karma Kid b2b Monki, Star Slinger b2b TCTS, Kartel b2b French Kiwi Juice
BIRD / Seattle Yacht Club / Love For Zero / Jakarta Club /  Evil Blizzard / The Templebys / The Pinstripe Pigeon Band / Fiona Clayton / The Lottery Winners / Jake & The Jellyfish / Ivan Campo / The Orchid Hunters / Nancy Kent / The Lumberjack Cowboy Heartbreak Trucking Co. / Arran George / Joe McCorriston / Alex Hulme / Mylittlebrother /Baksheesh / Ben Dyson / Gritty Britain
Craig Charles Funk and Soul takeover