The Unusual Suspects

Let’s ignore the title for a moment and talk about those other suspects, the usual ones, who, according to the dictionary are: those people or things you would expect to be present somewhere or doing a particular thing.

When I think of the usual suspects, the first thing that springs to mind is a raging gun battle on a boat, a motley crew and a sly little man with a limp and a penchant for staring at walls. Curious as it sounds, this strange mix of components left me speechless, not an easy task. And yes, I did guess who Keyser Söze was, well a good oooh 10 minutes from the end. This film was and still is a type of usual that you must see.

Right now, we are in world stranger than fiction; another sly little man has taken us by surprise, this one with a yellow comb-over and an orange tan. Except, this time, just like that, pfff, he isn’t gone, no, no no, he is here to encumber our lives for four long years, or more. And now the surprise is over; he's in the white house door, we know what we can expect from him. He'll be misogynistic, egotistical, racist, nationalistic; he’ll give us walls, warped policies and all round chaos of the worst form. He’s a usual suspect of the unfavourable kind. He's the type I don’t want to see but can’t help but watch, in utter disbelief.

And while we’re discussing unpalatable entertainment, there’s another usual suspect that the Byline team are boycotting, the tired music acts that come out of hibernation every summer to overcharge and go through the motions. Thoughts anyone? Something to say about what’s unravelling, Bueller, Bueller?! Or is it just thanks for the memories and the big bucks?!

You see it’s the unusual suspects that were interested in, (sorry Keyser). We are on a voyage of discovery here at BF HQ. We’re seeking out the new, those who question our political climate, buck the trends, take a good look past the emperor’s new clothes and say, I have something to contribute to our mission to challenge the fake truth, the hypocrisy, the apathy. We are lucky enough to have some of these talented wordsmiths and musicians performing for us this summer at Pippingford Park.

First up is JAMES CHELLIAH, James is a rapper, poet and writer. He has performed around the UK for the likes of Sofar Sounds, The Bedroom Bar, Folked Up and many others. When he isn't trying to write a thousand poems a year, he’s busy leading trip-hop band, Pink Flush, or gigging with spoken-word-folk hybrid, Breaking Kayfabe.

Find him on

Instagram: Instagram.com/james.chelliah

Facebook: Facebook.com/JamesChelliahMusic

Bandcamp: Pinkflush.bandcamp.com

Website: Thousandpoemyear.com

Our second unusual but oh so talented suspects are ARGONAUT, a fiery female fronted post-1991 punk rock band from London. The band was spawned as the unruly lovechild of Lorna on vocals and Nathan on guitar. Abby plays synth, guitar and sings, Joules plays the bass, and Omz bangs the drums.

Argonaut released their eponymous debut album back in 2012 and followed this up with the critically acclaimed second album ‘Try’. Argonaut live shows are an explosion of energy with front-woman Lorna channelling rock's rich tapestry into her own whirlwind force of nature.

For more info, please have a look at www.facebook.com/argonautband

And lastly but not at all least KERENSA. ‘Music is the breath of life that enters in when you hear Kerensa Open her voice and heart on stage. The imagination of a young girl, allowing her version of reality to capture audiences at each & every performance.

Kerensa is gifted with the ability to be incredibly expressive through every inch of her being, put that together with her musicality & storytelling, and she will have you mesmerised.  Her impressive vocal range, will at times bring chills to you when you hear her higher register fill the room. Her quirky choice of chords makes for melodies that, when mixed with her penchant for sinister song topics and lyrics, will leave you in a beautiful mysterious realm. She is enchanting; such beautiful presence is not to be missed.’

I for one can’t wait to see these adroit artists perform; I have a feeling yet again; I will be left speechless. So, I say thank you for the music, for stepping off of the beaten path and staying committed to art and the truth, this is a refreshing move in the right direction. Right now, you are unusual, but we sort of want you to be the norm, in a good way!

And one final musing. Just when you thought Mr President could not get any better at fake truths, there’s one master of twisted facts that could give him some valuable advice. The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he did not exist, and like that, pfff, he was gone.– are you listening Mr Trump?
 

The Fest Bitch's favour

Hello, welcome to the Byline Festival blog, a place where you'll hear more about the people, workshops, talks, bands, the general irreverence, the movement that you could have the pleasure of being a part of this summer at Pippingford Park.

I know, I know, the festival scene is saturated already, so why do you need another one? But trust us, we're here to do you a favour. Because we think you shouldn't waste your money on the corporate, mainstream, bankrupt-inducing, yawn-fest that is today's music festival. 

We're doing this because we’re sick of live media giantsforcing out the independents of yesteryear and because we think superficiality has ousted shared ideology. We've seen enough of festivals where uninspired recalcitrant consumers and snapchatting celebrities are replacing a sense of purpose. And we ask ourselves, is that all there is, is that all there issssss??! *hums Peggy Lee song* Answer: No, it isn't, not where we're going!

Take our advice, don't waste a fortune, while being served up a plethora of tiresome excuses for entertainment. All this, topped with a portion of £20 fries and stale line-ups comprising of greedy, out-of-touch musicians, churning out mundane ballads. Don't surround yourself with champagne Charlies or an apathetic mud-covered zombie-crowd, all squashed in a field with no space to think.

If you to, want more than a hole in your wallet and a hangover, and you are watching in horror as the Trump tornado rips through democracy and equality. Or you're fed up with fake news, lack of truth and erosion of the free press, then take us up on that tip and come to a festival where you can listen to good music, share ideas, collaborate and FIGHT BACK! 

But don't think it's all going to be a whinge-in-a-wood. This will be a place where you can see and hear real talent in all of its forms, from poetry, DJs, comedians, artists and a line-up of both seasoned and up and coming bands, who, like us are striving for a change! There'll also be mischief, a lot of it, there'll be dating, a lot of it, and a bit, no, an abundance of dancing till dawn!

You’ll also be pleased to know that we don’t have any corporate entertaining tickets or packages at Byline Festival. We're only interested in real people. Gleaming Hunter bootswon’t blind you, there won’t be a sea of spotless Barbour jackets, and Chelsea tractors won't surround your camper in the carpark. What you will find are individuals who think past the Bolly, who give a damn. You'll find like-minded people, new friends and collaborators, who are ready to dance, drink, discuss and make a difference.

Interested? Then join us! Ok so we're not into Trump fans, if you are, read no more, that’s your cue, ta ta! And as for the corporates, get back to your lunch on expenses at the brasserie. And finally, any of the apathetic kind still here? Well done for ditching Jeremy Kyle. Why not get a job, get an opinion, join us and choose life! Everyone else still reading you are invited to join us for an unforgettable-fest and for that favour, you’re welcome!

Trust the Fest Bitch; you won't be sorry!