FEATURE: David Saunders (The Black Sheep Frederick Dickens) – A Look Back At 2018 | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Over the last twelve months, we’ve had our pages filled with some super-talented creative souls, we asked a few of them to be kind enough to share some words on the last twelve months. Next up, it’s one half of duo The Black Sheep Frederick Dickens, David Saunders.

So, how was your 2018?
Long, full, tiring… I’ve done so much in terms of putting on stuff whether it be the weekly and diverse Soapbox Sessions, the third Music Box festival, the first ever Last Train Home festival, Noisy Daughters and Get Informed music industry events with Tracks, to putting on a stage at Stockton Calling or the inaugural Day In Day Out electronic music festival at The Georgian Theatre/Green Room with Tees Music Alliance and various other odds and sods.
On top of that The Black Sheep Frederick Dickens have had a good year with launching our single ‘Privilege’ in April, doing a theatre show at Theatre Hullabaloo as part of the Darlington Hippodrome’s ‘Dickens In Darlington Season’, fantastic performances at festivals such as Stockton Calling, Richmond Live and Twisterella, as well as shows that saw us performing outside the North East for the time…
…Oh and I did a ghost walk around my hometown of Darlington.

What was your best moment?
Any time spent with my daughter.

And your worst moment?
Mental and physical burnout towards the end of the year.

Your favourite band of the year?
National – Idles. They’re a band that contain a dentist and nightclub owners and so at first I was slightly wary of their average men versus the world image that the media portrayed (I’ve been hurt by Ed Sheeran’s, The 1975’s and various other artists’ deceptive hardship stories that cover resource filled existences and therefore struggle to believe PR stories these days). That said, their energetic live shows and raw, politically charged social commentary is a breath of fresh air and their second album Joy As An Act Of Resistance was so good that I spent some of my birthday money to purchase it.
Bang Bang Romeo are the biz and will no doubt be massive in 2019 and I’ve recently listened to the Just Mustard album Wednesday and it became an instant fave with its post-punk/stoner rock deliciousness.
Local – Avalanche Party, Twist Helix, Ceiling Demons, Mouses, Llovers, Legitimate Anarchy, Komparrison, Bubamara, Dylan Cartlidge, Lhymes, Eye Bleach, Swine Tax, Sticky Pearls, Be Quiet. Shout Loud! Me Lost Me, SWEARS, Jonny Godwin, The Shakin’ Nightmares, Ronin Clan, Kv$hnoodle, The Yada Yada Yadas, Salsola, Emile’s Telegraphic Transmission Device… There’s loads of good stuff going on in the region. Long may it continue.

Your favourite song of the year?
KV$HNOODLE – WTW Feat. RoninClan (prod. PULSE) – It might be cos I’m getting older but I wish there were more angry, explosive performers in the music scene so that it was an artform more reflective of its time. Performers like Aycliffe’s answer to Death Grips aka KV$HNOODLE and the equally explosive RoninClan, who teamed up to produce this earfucker of a track. Turn it up loud whilst burning government buildings and millionaire’s mansions.

Endem & Leum – Dear Lord – Raw, confessional brilliance from The North’s finest spitter/producer combo. I feature in the video as a member of the congregation as I desperately try to cling on to my youth.

Favourite TV of the year?
Love Island – Little G has been keeping Josh on his toes and he loves it… Oh no he’s left her despite all that loyalty she has shown. She’s won the nations hearts with her strength though… Oh no she’s lost the plot and Twitter has exploded. Luckily Wes and Megan have found each other… Oh no she’s left him… But wait, YAY they’re back together!!! That Adam is a player he’s never going to find love and Jack and Dani are soul mates forever… Oh dear…
Basically I watched it so I felt in a better position to slag it off, however I found myself hooked. Yeah, it’s a tacky, mindless distraction from the actual world, but that’s actually just what I needed this year.

Your favourite film?
Cargo (Netflix) – I love zombie films and since I’ve become a dad I’ve become a sentimental bag of mush. Therefore this heartfelt and thought provoking zombie flick about a dad racing against the clock to provide a better future for his daughter ticked all the boxes for me. Dead good.  

Favourite venue of the year?
Biased answer but defo The Georgian Theatre. I work there and watch artists who play on its stage with envious eyes. It’s a great venue, with a great sound and great staff and the people of Stockton are lucky to have it.

What was your favourite gig of the year?
Stewart Lee at Darlington Hippodrome. I was sat at the front and he called me a “Games Workshop cunt” and the whole theatre laughed. I laughed along, but inside it hurt.

And finally, what has 2019 got in store for you?
I really don’t know. I’d love to get our next The Black Sheep Frederick Dickens EP out. We have the songs written and partly recorded but myself and musical partner/Tracks buddy Rob have been ultra busy this year so nowt’s happened with ‘em.
I have ideas for events to put on but don’t know if I have the energy or money to do them. I’ve also been dabbling in comedy and writing for a good few years but without any real time to hone my craft. I keep saying I’ll focus on that but nothing comes of it. Maybe this will be the year… I dunno… I remember the last time I did one of these forecasts I was in Goy Boy McIlroy and I was really positive about what could happen but everything just imploded. I’ll just see what the future holds. It might be something amazing or I might just continue getting fatter, older and more irrelevant.

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