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The Feeling

Festival Review

The Wychwood Festival 2024

 Tucked between rolling hills and Cheltenham Racecourse, Wychwood Festival has plenty of room for all to breathe and stretch out whether you arrived for a day or were camping for the 3 days. An easy going atmosphere was evident from the get go on Friday right through till the finale on Sunday evening.

 Entertainment was everywhere to see for all ages, my main concern was the music on tap and luckily for most of the weekend there was enough to keep my interest.

Sister Sledge

 Out of the 3 named headliners I have to side with Sister Sledge for highest entertainment value, though there is only Debbie Sledge on stage from the original sisters the new recruits are members of the Sledge family too so the sound continues on. The backing band are exceptional and reproduced the Nile Rodgers & Bernard Edwards groove, feel and sound, "they brought the party" to Cheltenham for sure.

 Texas may have been the bigger draw and Sharleen Spiteri worked the crowd for every minute she was there, they were ideal for the Wychwood crowd and most likely sold the most tickets for the event.

 Sunday saw Ocean Colour Scene on last for the weekend, they have had five top 10 albums and also achieved seventeen chart singles to date. There were a lot of hardcore fans but for me they just fell a little short of the heights I was hoping for.

Ocean Colour Scene

 With only the two stages for the music it was a fairly easy walk between the two for the next artist, times were also staggered which all helped tremendously to make it more leisurely. I will mostly let the photos do the talking, some of the most enjoyable moments were lower  down the bill such as Dub Catalyst, Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard, Deadletter, The Futureheads, Pip Blom and CVC  but then again they all probably fit my personal taste. I thought Dexys were good as was Peter Hook and The Light who had a huge response from the crowd for pretty much every song they played.

 Seasick Steve had the best of the evening sunshine for his slot on the main stage and was a definite crowd pleaser, this was also one of his first festivals for a while though you wouldn't know. He produced various home made intruments that all sprung into life as soon as he struck or slid those strings or on a certain "invention" just the one string!

Seasick Steve
The Futureheads
Peter Hook And The Light
Pip Blom
Dub Catalyst

  The level of authenticity that the Bootleg Beatles go to is astonishing, I am surprised they don't produce some sixties magic to turn their show into Black & White? I met "Ringo" back stage adjusting his nose (spoiler it isn't his real nose) before joining his bandmates heading for the stage. The reproduction of the songs is spot on and there were very few in the crowd not singing along...

 The Coral take us to a sort of sixties world too, with their folky psych rock that is pretty timeless and also excellent.

  Big Country on the Friday  do their very best to honour the irreplaceable Stuart Adamson and as they say they now play the songs, it isn't about recreating Adamson. The songs certainly work, In a Big Country, Chance and Look Away sounding full and wholesome with the three guitars blending together.

The Coral
The Bootleg Beatles
The Bootleg Beatles
Big Country

 Early bird tickets are already available for next year at Wychwood Festival: 30th May to 1st June 2025 – Cheltenham Racecourse

Wychwood festival 2024
Wychwood festival 2024
Abbie Ozard
The Hoosiers
Wychwood festival 2024
Corrine Bailey Rae
Seth Lakeman
The Bootleg Beatles
Wychwood festival 2024
The Stereo MC's

Photographs by Dan Reddick

Review by Dan Reddick

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