It’s that time of the year again. With the glorious sunshine as a symbol of what’s to come, music lovers from across the globe are planning their summer schedules to enjoy what is certainly one of the most unique cultural experiences in the world; summer music festivals. One of the most exciting festivals that music aficionados in the UK have to look forward to is BoomTown Fair.
A New Chapter
Taking place during the height of summer in the August sunshine, the four-day festival in Winchester promises to be a spectacular experience of music and culture with a wide-ranging and star-studded line – up of artists including UK rappers AJ Tracey, Loyle Carner and Jungle Brown as well as Reggae legends Ziggy Marley and Protoje. Known traditionally for its Drum and Bass roots, Boomtown Fair started from the underground, grew organically and now hosts a wide range of genres from Jungle to Reggae, Soca and Calypso yet still manages to stay true to its Drum and Bass roots. The diversity of the line-up should ensure this experience offers something that everybody can enjoy, hosting over 25 main stages and an additional 80 Street venues, there is certainly no lack of choice for attendees.
Attracting over 60,000 festival goers last year, the festival has gone from strength to strength since its inception back in 2009. Perhaps what is most iconic about the festival is the city storyline theme. Framed each year as the new chapter to an exciting story, year on year the amazing moments are captured by festival goers and they are given the opportunity to try their creative hands by wearing the most inventive costumes which they create themselves. BoomTown Chapter Nine promises to continue this tradition and will be full of weird and wonderful outfits. Speaking to BoomTown’s Head of Music Kaptin Barrett, he told us: ‘Ah man, there are the wildest costumes you are ever going to see…it’s always been a big part of our scene, it makes people drop their inhibitions. It’s kind of like a theatre, there’s a whole storyline while the festival is going on.’
Meet The Captain
Describing himself as a ‘festival veteran’ on Twitter, Kaptin A.K.A ‘AAA Badboy’ is a seasoned lover of music and culture. He started off his career as a DJ in Cardiff and is now based in Bristol and has performed at some of biggest festivals in the UK including BoomTown and Glastonbury. Kaptin compares picking his favourite music genre to picking a favourite child, it is just simply too hard to choose, perhaps because he quite literally does them all. Starting off as record collector and recording mixtapes for his friends he then moved into DJing a whole range of genres such as Hip Hop, Reggae, Disco, Bhangra, Soca and Afrobeats.
He revealed that Reggae was his ‘first love’ and told us about the festival’s long association with the feel-good genre through the popular BoomTown stage ‘The Lion’s Den’. Kaptin described the picturesque setting fans have to look forward to: 'We’ve got a massive reggae stage, the Lion’s Den is potentially the biggest Reggae stage in the world, just the sheer scale of it. There’s a big Aztec temple with waterfalls and flames shooting out of it!’ He commented on the impact of the return of Reggae in our generation: ‘For the times we live in there’s never been a better moment for Reggae to come back.’ We certainly agree, music has the power to heal the world.
Who to look out for?
He also told us about BoomTown’s culture of promoting up and coming artists and suggested a few emerging artists to look out for such as Eva Lazarus and Gardner, both acts will be performing at BoomTown Fair this year: ‘It’s nice to be able to bring people through, we’ve got every generation, originators of many of the sounds and younger people too.’
Kaptin described how Boomtown has a real family vibe and this is exemplified by the festival’s commitment to charity. Every year the festival supports one specific charity with proceeds from raffles and competitions, and the festival works donated to these charities such as Oxfam and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance who provide event stewards. The festival continues this commitment to charity even after the summer is over by producing a fundraising CD at Christmas.
You can catch Kaptin’s AAA Badboy Soca set at Trenchtown this year
Be sure to buy Boomtown Fair Tickets here
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