Godfather of Merseysound to play major new North Wales outdoor festival


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The Lightning Seeds’ Ian Broudie, the godfather of the Liverpool music scene, will bring his own vibrant Mersey sound to make waves at Wales’s newest major sport and music festival this summer.

Broudie is best known as the man behind Three Lions, the football anthem that so nearly swept England to European Championship glory 21 years ago but his career in music has been so much more than that.

And he will be showcasing that back catalogue in August at the Snowdonia Outdoor Festival at Bala, against a twilight backdrop of the shimmering waters of Llyn Tegid and the majestic Berwyn Mountains.

The Festival which runs from Friday, August 11, to Sunday, August 13 blends top class pop – as well as the Lightning Seeds there are multi-million sellers Scouting for Girls along with Toploader and Cast – with the great outdoors.

It will feature a packed programme including trail-running, hiking, canoeing, paddle boarding, swimming, climbing, mountain biking and more with camping for over three thousand on the site at Gwernhefin Farm, alongside the lake, and 10,000 expected over the weekend.

The music will be one of the main draws and the 58-year-old Broudie is looking forward to it: “It will be great to be in Wales,” he said: “I used to spend summer holidays in Abersoch with my mum and dad and later I did a lot of work at a music studio in Wrexham.

“There are a lot of reasons it’s special. There are plenty of connections between Liverpool and Wales and it will be good to get on the stage right down by the water and play. It looks great there and should be a fabulous festival.

“It’s in the open air and I love these events. Everyone is up for having a good time so they’re brilliant.”

Broudie sprang to prominence at the tail of the 1970s with the band Big In Japan which included Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s Holly Johnson on bass and he has produced albums for a galaxy of Merseysound big names from Echo and the Bunnymen to The Coral and The Zutons.

He began to write as The Lightning Seeds in the late 1980s and by 1994 had to create a band to tour the increasing repertoire he had created in the studio. After a break in the early 2000s he has bounced back again and has stepped up his touring since 2009 with a new band which features son Riley on guitar.

Broudie is regularly back in Liverpool – he’s an Anfield season ticket-holder and a passionate Red and loves what another passionate man, Jurgen Klopp, has brought to the club.

“He’s been great. When you look at our net spend over the last two years it’s something like £7 million and where we are is marvellous. We’re really punching above our weight.

“Klopp is doing an amazing job. For us to be back in the Champions League is fantastic and next year we should be a real force.

“The ground has changed with the new stand and when it’s rocking there it really enhances the atmosphere.”

Broudie himself is still a real force too and so is the music city of Liverpool and he said: “I’m working on a new album at the moment and it should be released next year but I’ll mainly stick to the old material at the festival which is what I think people want to hear.

“It’s a long time since I was starting out in bands but Liverpool is still a musical town and there are always bands coming up.

“Many cities have lost a bit of their character and uniqueness because they’ve all got the same shops and bars but Liverpool will always have its own identity.

“I listen to a lot of music and with downloading you’ve got access to everything all the time – it’s a great time to be into music.

“OK it was fun going to record shops years ago but now you can get everything at the touch of a button and listen to so much whether it’s a radio station in Los Angeles or music from around the world.

“I think that has a big impact on how young bands sound and from what I’ve seen around Liverpool in particular there’s a lot of diversity and a lot happening.”

Event Director Nicola Meadley said: “We’re thrilled to have Ian Broudie and the Lightning Seeds booked for our first Snowdonia Outdoor Festival and I’m sure the setting and the atmosphere by the lake will be absolutely magical.

“It’s great that Ian has really picked up on that and with Scouting for Girls, Toploader and Cast already confirmed and more announcements to be made soon the festival vibe should be great.

“The fact that so many people will be camping right on the lake side just adds to the atmosphere. We’re looking forward to a real party in August.”

As well as the main area where the stage will be set up at lakeside and many activities and demonstrations held, there will be catering available and spacious camping and parking areas with the organisers expecting 5,000 people each day.

The majority will be camping for the weekend with a programme of outdoor sport competitions, speakers and taster sessions and live music from the afternoon until 10.30pm each evening.

There will be something for everyone with the list of activities and sporting events already drawn up and they include real testers such as a 30 kilometre trail run and a 1500 metre open water swim on Llyn Tegid which plunges to a depth of 138 feet.

There will also be a mountain bike challenge and an iconic sportive while the outdoor activities are very much designed for families and will include hiking, canoeing, stand-up paddle boarding, gorge walking, sailing, windsurfing, rafting, swimming, climbing, walking and mountain biking with climbing walls and airbags set up and bushcraft talks and other hands-on activities available.

To buy a ticket and find out more information, readers should visit www.snowdonia-outdoorfestival.co.uk

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