Ian Brown steps down as festival headliner over Covid vaccine dispute
‘I will NEVER sing to a crowd who must be vaccinated as a condition of attendance’
Ian Brown has confirmed he’s stepping down from headlining a festival later this year, saying he ‘refuses to accept vaccination proof as condition of entry’.
The Stone Roses frontman was meant to be headlining this year’s Neighbourhood Weekender festival, a three day event over in Warrington.
The festival announced yesterday, Wednesday March 3rd, that it had been rescheduled, and is now taking place at Victoria Park on the weekend of September 3rd-5th.
It said: “Following the recent government announcement we are moving Neighbourhood Weekender to Friday 3, Saturday 4 & Sunday 5 September 2021.”
Brown was originally meant to be headlining on Saturday, but has now been replaced by James, with the singer sharing the news on his Twitter.
He wrote: “My Saturday night headline show at NHBD Weekender Festival will now not happen! I refuse to accept vaccination proof as condition of entry. Refunds are available!”
Just last week, on February 26th, Brown took to Twitter to say that he would ‘never sing to a crowd who must be vaccinated as a condition of attendance.’
NBHD Weekender also confirmed that Brown would no longer be performing, before telling fans that a decision regarding vaccination passports had not been made yet.
The event added that it would comply with any safety restrictions that are announced by the government.
It said: “We want to assure ticket holders and those about to buy tickets for NBHD Weekender, like all festivals this summer, we will comply with the conditions outlined by the Government through the Local Authority.
“No decisions will be taken by Government until June 21 at the earliest. We are working with other festival organisers and look forward to a safe return to open-air events this summer.”
Busted announce comeback with massive UK arena tour
JUST IN: Busted are back!
Iconic noughties band Busted have today announced a massive comeback UK arena tour.
The three-piece lad band had hits during the 2000’s with earworm bangers including Year 3000, Air Hostess and What I Go To School For. It’s been a couple of decades since the group – comprising vocalists Charlie Simpson, James Bourne and Matt Willis, all 39 – burst onto the scene, and they have something very special ahead to celebrate.
Fans had a sneaking suspicion after the band had changed all of their social media banners to include the date of March 23rd — cryptically teasing that they are set to announce a comeback on that day.
Busted fans were exactly right as Busted made the announcement today, (Thursday March 23rd), revealing a massive 15-date UK arena tour kicking off in September, with tickets going on sale next week.
The tour will see James, Charlie and Matt perform their biggest hits along with fan favourites with support from Mmmbop stars Hanson and New Hope Club. The good news doesn’t stop there — with the group preparing to release no fewer than 15 songs.
Rather than brand new tracks, Busted have created reworks of some of their most iconic songs and will perform them alongside some other major names from the scene. The first release is a new version of Loser Kid, from Busted’s debut album. The track will hit airwaves on April 14th and will feature pop-rock stars Simple Plan.
Other upcoming singles will have special guests McFly, All Time Low and more, with names to be released at a later date. Tickets for the tour will go on general sale at 9am on March 31, however fans who sign up to Busted’s mailing list will receive access to a pre-sale from 9am on March 29th.
As reported in The Metro, Rumours of a comeback for the group have circulated since Fightstar musician Charlie hinted to Lorraine Kelly, ‘there may be some plans’ for a reunion. ‘It is the 20 year anniversary for Busted this year,’ he added.
‘Sworn to secrecy again… but there may be some stuff in the pipeline.’
Busted formed in 2000 and released their first, self-titled album in 2002 before their 2003 album A Present For Everyone threw them into even wider fame. They split in 2005 and devastated fans, with many remembering genuine tears in the playground the day the news was announced; all three went on to form solo careers or front new bands.
S Club 7 set to perform in Manchester in 25 year comeback tour
Their 25th anniversary tour is sure to ‘bring it all back to you’
S Club 7 have announced they will reunite to mark 25 years in their UK comeback tour, and are set to perform in Manchester later this year.
The Brit pop group had hits throughout the late nineties and early noughties such as ‘Reach’, ‘Bring It All Back’ and ‘Don’t Stop Movin’’, which were popular with many youngsters at the time.
All seven original members: Tina Barrett, Paul Cattermole, Jon Lee, Bradley McIntosh, Jo O’Meara, Hannah Spearritt and now solo singer Rachel Stevens, will come together once more to mark the quarter of a century milestone.
Fans can prepare to be transported back to their youth, and re-enact old dance routines, as the group will perform on stage together again at Manchester’s AO Arena on Saturday, October 21st.
In a statement released by the band, they said; “After eight years it feels amazing to announce that we’re reuniting and performing together again. We’re so excited to bring the S Club party back to our fans across the country to celebrate 25 years of S Club 7.
“We can’t even believe it’s been so long. Music and friendship have always been at the core of everything that we’ve ever done. We hope everyone can join us for one big party.”
The seven-piece group were originally created by former Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller in 1998 and first came to public attention in 1999, when they starred in their own television series, ‘Miami 7’.
After they called it a day, the members went on to explore other pursuits, with Stevens pursuing a solo music career and competing on Strictly Come Dancing, as well as Dancing On Ice.
Spearritt became a TV actress and had roles in ITV’s Primeval, while Lee performed in West End shows including Les Miserables and Jersey Boys. McIntosh, O’Meara and Cattermole later became members of the spin-off group S Club Allstars, previously S Club 3, with Barrett joining them in 2014.
O’Meara, who also released solo music and appeared on Celebrity Big Brother in 2007, where, alongside Jade Goody and Danielle Lloyd she found herself embroiled in a racism row involving fellow competitor Shilpa Shetty. She has also gone through a number of back operations but says she now feels ‘ready’ to get back on stage.
Tickets for S Club 7’s comeback tour go on sale on Friday and can be purchased via the Ticketmaster website.
Johnny Marr helps Salford 12-year-old achieve his dream
‘It’s a pleasure and privilege to give some assistance to a young musician.’
Music legend Johnny Marr has helped a 12-year-old boy from Salford to achieve his dream of following in his footsteps after he won The Salford Foundation Trust Johnny Marr award.
John Denton, 12, began his music career busking on the rainy streets of Manchester city centre and became quite a sensation on social media through videos of him performing on Market Street.
The ambitious lad has already held a gig at the iconic Salford Lads Club — where The Smiths posed outside for an album cover photo in 1985.
With a little help from the guitar hero, John is hoping to make it in music as the next Marr. He he told the Manchester Evening News: “I’d love to be the next Johnny Marr and just keep going to see where music can take me.
“It all started when my dad took me to a birthday party for one of his friends, and there was a karaoke machine. People were singing Highway to Hell by AC/DC.”
“I went home and just listened to them over and over and it all came from there. I started singing, took guitar lessons and then did my first gig at a coffee shop in Eccles when I was nine, where I also sang two of my own songs,” he added.
Now the former member of The Smiths is helping young John to kick start his career. John was selected for funding by the charity The Salford Foundation Trust, which operates the Johnny Marr Award to support talented youngsters in the city. He has been awarded £1,000 funding to pay for extra singing and guitar lessons to help him perfect his performances.
John and Johnny have already met once before – when John chatted to him at a record signing event at Manchester’s Piccadilly Records for the release of Johnny’s new album ‘Fever Dreams Pts 1-4’, where he asked him for advice about forming a band.
John has since gone on to form his own group called ‘The Height’ – named after Irlams o’ th’ Height, an area in Salford near where he lives – and the group released their first single just before Christmas.
He was selected for the award by a panel at the Salford Foundation Trust, a local charity which supports talented young people in the city. The Johnny Marr Award will run for three years, selecting another young musician from Salford each year for financial assistance.
His dad Phil said: “John’s ambition is to have a career in music. He will be using the funding to have music lessons to help both his guitar playing and his singing. In these tough times it’s a massive help and means that he can progress in his passion.”
“Music is not a hobby for John but just who he is and a creative outlet he hopes to enjoy for the rest of his life. He is incredibly grateful to Johnny and the Salford Foundation Trust who have provided this opportunity. It is a real privilege to get this award and he is determined to make the very most of the opportunity he has been given,” he added.
Johnny said: “It’s a pleasure and privilege to give some assistance to a young musician especially when they’re as dedicated as John. Well done brother.”
Peter Collins CBE, from The Salford Foundation Trust, said: “There couldn’t be a more worthy recipient of the Johnny Marr Award. Even though John is only 12 he’s already proven he’s committed to making a future in music and we’re delighted the Trust can give him a helping hand on this journey.”