one promoter’s perspective – Katch Holmes |






Dwell Music Alternate Weblog

This week’s weblog put up sees Katch Holmes – organiser of the Knockengorroch Pageant – replicate on the method of taking it on-line within the face of the Covid-19 lockdown.

‘I‘m not into on-line occasions’, I stated. When the lockdown began and we had been pressured to postpone our Knockengorroch music competition I professed each to myself, and anybody who would hear, that digital occasions didn’t curiosity me. I racked my brains as to methods I may carry individuals collectively in actual time while observing bodily distancing. Movies projected onto tenement partitions, avenue performances, drive-ins, all and extra whizzed by my thoughts.

But, because the scheduled dates for Knockengorroch competition drew nearer I felt strongly it was vital to mark the occasion by some means. And so, with out an excessive amount of thought into the hows, I considered a reputation, recruited some competition crew to assist and approached artists to participate in a web based occasion. All had been very keen, although unclear as to how it might work.

Most dwell streams I had seen had been done ‘presentationally’, with artists taking part in to an viewers they will neither see nor hear. From the start, I knew that wasn’t how a digital Knockengorroch may exist. Knockengorroch competition is massively about participation. The people who come are each bit as vital to its success because the artists. I knew that any competition we created needed to be concerning the individuals as a lot because the music.

Knockengorroch’s looming dates minimised time to analysis the complete scale of prospects, however after fast analysis, I realised that the platform to ship the occasion precisely how I wished didn’t but exist, or was prohibitively costly. I had taken half in Zoom events that includes DJs in addition to Mairi Campbell’s worldwide ceilidh with acoustic performances and so, with little time to go, I settled on Zoom because the closest platform able to internet hosting the imaginative and prescient. Ditching the unique concept of multi venues and ‘break-out’ free shifting areas on anybody night time, I programmed three separate days of dwell music and DJs, mirroring the precise competition, that includes artists from the unique line-up. A dwell viewers may enter the Zoom ‘gig’ with tons of extra capable of watch by a simultaneous dwell stream on fb, youtube and twitch. Audiences had been inspired to donate to a Justgiving fundraiser to lift funds to reimburse the artists that took half.

Over the 22 years it has existed, Knockengorroch has nurtured a loyal viewers. We try to take care of our inherently participatory nature – a ‘people’ ethos signifies that it has lengthy included alternatives for festival-goers to become involved in jamming, people classes and open-mic slots, and billed musicians will usually take part with these. Nearly Knockengorroch sustained this – competition friends had been invited to decorate up alongside this 12 months’s theme of ‘celestial beings’, workshops wanted energetic attendees, friends may create their very own campsite breakout rooms in the event that they wished to speak between and after music units, dancing was 100% inspired. As in any dwell music occasion, viewers engagement and participation, contributed to the environment, vibe and collective sense of enjoyable. Knockengorroch’s viewers enthusiastically responded with tents pitched in gardens, campfires, dramatic costumes, elaborate front room decorations and even the odd look of a midge internet and wellies. Folks attended from everywhere in the world and those that haven’t been to Knockengorroch for years had been capable of test in. We had been additionally happy to have attracted new audiences who might not have been ‘tenting sorts’, however had been glad to test in from the protection of their kitchens.

Crew spoke of going to mattress with the identical weary, but blissed out, feeling that the true competition engenders. Everybody felt that that they had related and that by some means there was one thing ‘actual’ concerning the expertise.   Members stated they had been shocked at how one thing digital may mimic the sentiments of a competition so properly.

Enthusiastic viewers members remarked, with some shock, on the extent to which it mimicked the expertise of attending in individual:

“It was far more magical than I assumed Zoom may ever be!”

 “Properly done! Sensible. Would have thought it unimaginable to seize Knockengorroch’s magic just about, however you probably did it!”

Regardless of the occasion solely hitting two facets (sight and sound) of the multi-sensory expertise that the true competition does, our human want for contact allowed us to fill within the blanks as we stared into our screens, and supplied us all some connection and luxury.

The collaborating artists additionally rose to those new challenges, some performing on-line for the primary time. Legendary Scottish ‘acid croft’ band Shooglenifty debuted a model new video created in lockdown for Nearly Knockengorroch for his or her monitor ‘Black Canine’. James Waterproof coat stated:

We had been delighted to have the ability to be part of the Nearly Knockengorroch Pageant….Katch gave me a welcome crash course on getting one of the best sound out of Zoom and watching just a few performances on the Friday impressed me to take a little bit little bit of time to get one of the best framing of the shot, and one of the best audio to share too … Congratulations to Katch and the Knockengorroch crew on lifting the spirits of so many in lockdown.

Kaela & James (Shooglenifty)

Kaela and James from Sooglenifty play by way of Zoom

Afro Celt Sound System additionally stepped up to speed. They wrote ‘The Lock Down Gorroch Reel’ particularly for Knockengorroch and have since created a video, containing footage of and in homage to the occasion. Simon Emmerson stated:

It was an incredible expertise. We had band founder N’Faly Kouyate locked down in his village in Siguiri, Guinea Conakry taking part in his grandfather’s ancestral balafon and singing dwell and direct illuminated by his automotive headlights as his village has no street-lights. His tribute to his not too long ago departed mentor Mory Kante was extremely shifting. After all, there have been technical glitches, at occasions it was superb chaos, at others there have been moments of actual intimacy… The entire thing had the intimacy and interactive high quality completely missing in greater company festivals. If that is a part of the way forward for dwell leisure in a put up Covid 19 world depend us in.


N’Faly Kouyate

N’Faly Kouyate taking part in by way of Zoom

Digital or not, the competition was additionally in some methods transformative for artists concerned – one poignant remark was that it was great to listen to a dwell spherical of applause. Some artists approached had been initially sceptical however got here away invigorated by the appreciation they skilled – an integral a part of any artist’s efficiency. Others spoke concerning the artistic impetus it supplied, bringing bands collectively to give you a technique to carry their music to the occasion. I consider it has nudged performers and individuals ahead into discovering new methods to current music and promoted the educational of latest expertise which will probably be so important this season.

The occasion was, by all accounts, a terrific success. We raised sufficient by donations to reimburse all artists. Many attendees, together with different competition organisers, have now seen the potential in a web based, participatory competition like this, many are actually self-confessed converts to ‘Zoom’ and I’ve been approached by different festivals for recommendation. That is the start of a journey. By the top of the summer time different issues may have been tried; new and higher platforms could be accessible, digital occasions will undoubtedly be smoother.

I’m delighted it went properly, that we supplied artists work, that folks related. I’ll go to a different occasion like this. I’ll even organise one other one… however I can’t assist questioning the place this on-line journey goes. After this weekend’s success I absolutely consider that this medium might properly change into ‘regular’, sought out even, by some. Nevertheless for me, this manner of festivalling will all the time solely ever be an add on – the (non-obligatory) icing on the cake to the complete expertise. The complete poetry of human contact will all the time be my precedence, bringing individuals and music collectively in situ – respiration a shared place that binds us collectively by the land’s geography, historical past and reminiscences.

Katch Holmes, June 2020

Katch Holmes is a co-producer of Knockengorroch competition. She grew up at Knockengorroch small holding.

Nearly Knockengorroch passed off from 21 to 24 Could 2020 rather than the ‘actual’ postponed Knockengorroch competition.

The Afro Celt Sound System video ‘The Lockdown Gorroch Reel’ could be discovered right here

The complete Nearly Knockengorroch line-up: Afro Celt Sound System, Mungos Hello Fi Sound System and Vixen Sound, Shooglenifty, Greg and Pete (Moishe’s Bagel), John Fairhurst, Macmaster/Hay, DJ Dolphin Boy, Twelfth Day, Zoe Bestel, Ceitidh Mac, Awry, Samson Sounds, Tom Spirals, Samedia Shebeen, Cera Impala, Cenote Sounds, Straightforward Skankin’ Crew, Theo Bard, Ceitidh Mac, Sam Gillespie and Siannie Moodie, Toby Mottershead, Luisa Brown and John Anderson, Morag Brown and Lewis Powell, Daniel Allison, Freya Rae, Martin Fell, Chandra Mather, Cammy Sinclair

All classes can be found to observe on the Knockengorroch web site

The hyperlink to donate is right here:

Knockengorroch 2018 - Recompose-416

Knockengorroch 2018


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