FEATURE: Shindig XXIII | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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The ever-reliable Shindig return to Newcastle’s Spillers Wharf on the first May bank holiday weekend. After over 22 years in the industry and with hundreds of hugely successful events under their belts, organisers are adamant that it’s important the festival stays relevant and exciting whilst remaining loyal to their roots and fans. Shindig founder Scott Bradford knows that an open mind when it comes to music is one of the key ways to keep his events interesting. “Ever since the very beginning of Shindig we have had an open mind musically, and we have always tried to get a balance between booking tried and tested DJs whilst trying to showcase new talent.”

For the first time this year’s festival takes place over two days and sees an impressive line-up throughout, boasting top names in electronic music including M_nus & ENTER legend Richie Hawtin, BBC Radio’s Annie Mac, bass house firebrand Hannah Wants, revered DJ and broadcaster Pete Tong, VIVa Warrior Steve Lawler and hot DJ duo Gorgon City flying the flag for the By Day events across the weekend. The By Night line-ups get steamier, with top talent including Drumcode king Adam Beyer, award-winning duo Dense & Pika, Innervasions boss Dixon and Life And Death label boss DJ Tennis to a pumped up night-time crowd.

As well as championing big name talent, Scott’s always interested in what’s happening at a grass roots level too. “There’s the obvious ones who are flying the flag for Newcastle such as Cristoph, Patrick Topping, Echomen, Ian Blevins and Richy Ahmed. Denney from Middlesbrough is doing great things and more recently Jacky from LOOP and our own Mark Lowry and Pete Bartram.”

“Ever since the very beginning of Shindig we have had an open mind musically, and we have always tried to get a balance between booking tried and tested DJs whilst trying to showcase new talent”

Shindig have been around for long enough to witness music styles come around more than once, and Scott admits there are faces he knows from the very beginning. “I remember playing a record last time I DJ’d and people were asking what it was; they didn’t believe me when I told them it was older than them.” He jokes, saying that partner Neil Bainbridge helps bring a younger approach to the team, helping them compete with their competitors. “Bringing Neil in around six years ago has been and will be a key factor in Shindig continuing to evolve. A younger, fresher view on things has been a great influence on me.”

With the recent surge in the popularity of commercial house music he’s noticed that the crowds at their events are growing more diverse. Although some more loyal fans of house music are worried that this increase in popularity will see more kids in clubs, Scott remains positive: “This doesn’t bother me, if just a fraction of these new faces stick around then that can only be a good thing, right?”

Well aware of the diversity of their audience, Shindig have always taken pride in bringing together like-minded music lovers; and long may that continue.

Shindig XXIII By Day By Night takes place at Newcastle’s Spillers Wharf on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd May.

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