There’s a small festival in the heart of rural Derbyshire, England that is growing into something truly special. Y Not is said festival, a weekender that celebrates its 10th birthday this year and promises to be deliver diverse, exhilarating performances.
The line-up has always been fairly eclectic in Matlock, with past headliners including British grime sensation Dizzee Rascal and indie hero Frank Turner, but this year the stakes have just been made all that higher. Straight from California, Snoop Dogg will be playing, SNOOP DOGG! It’s a sign of the incredible growth that has been going on with the festival jumping from humble beginnings, playing to a few hundred in a disused quarry at its inception, to the sprawling site now which is growing in number every year.
Known as Snoop “Doggy” Dogg, Snoop Lion or plain old Snoop Dogg, the West coast rapper is a hip-hop legend and his hits such as ‘Gin and Juice’ and ‘Drop It Like it’s Hot’ are regarded as classics. Here’s hoping he brings the Californian sunshine with him for his Friday night set. Air guitars at the ready for cult 80’s band Primal Scream who will be performing hits such as ‘Moving on Up Now’ and ‘Country Girl’ to fans and crowds alike. Finally to top the bill of the Derbyshire bash are Basement Jaxx, a duo who have rocketed from their beginnings in the Brixton club scene to top charts internationally plus bag an acclaimed BRIT Award for Best Dance Act No doubt dancing shoes will be essential for this set.
Some indie, rock and pop legends in the form of ex-Smiths man Johnny Marr and Ocean Colour Scene are part of the support for the festival, which takes place on July 31st-August 2nd this year.
Marr comes to the festival fresh from receiving an NME award for ‘Godlike Genius’, and while he made his name with ‘The Smiths’ and to younger audiences as guitarist with ‘The Cribs’, his solo catalogue is bursting full of punchy tunes. Ocean Colour Scene themselves have been celebrating their 25th anniversairy, and will finish their summer at the festival. Such iconic acts as these would have been headlining a few years ago, but it’s a sign that the Y Not bandwagon is growing that they make up the supporting cast for the main stars.
But, as strange as it is to say, Y Not is not all about the musical talent on offer. No, the site delivers a true fun-filled theme with fairground rides and plenty of options for families with young kids, not to mention the beautiful part of the countryside it’s situated in. Then comes the award-winning food and beers, with local produce the aim and at cheaper prices than would usually be paid. And the toilets too are critically-acclaimed, so for those used to utter filthy festival toilets, have no fear, Y Not will have you covered!
There’s American representation between Florida’s ska-punk faves Less Than Jake, and New York act, indie trio We Are Scientists. Y Not favourites, Reverend & the Makers return after a few years away, while hard rock bands like Don Broco, Augustines and Young Guns add another element to the line-up.
Local Nottingham’s Indiana adds a tinge of electro-pop, with The Lancashire Hotpots bringing comedy folk to the stage. Japanese psychedelic act Bo Ningen, alt-R&B and ‘Game of Thrones’ actor Raleigh Ritchie, with Hacktivist adding their own brand of rap and metal to proceedings. Mancunian grunge band Nine Black Alps and Sheffield stars Rolo Tomassi keep things alive and kicking, while The Bohicas, rockers LTNT and Solemn Sun add more rock to the line-up. Blues singer Kim Churchill and the soulful Jake Isaacs add a softer touch to proceeders, while Zoax round off the latest line-up announcement with their brand of hardcore metal.
This is one of my favourite things about the festival, the diversity of it all, look at that range of genre and fresh and old talent. The quality of the Allotment and other stages is astounding and means there’s never any complaints that there’s ‘nothing good on’. Acoustic stars Saint Raymond and Nick Mulvey, rockers We Are the Ocean and Pulled Apart By Horses and BBC Sound of 2015 shortlisters, Slaves are also on the bill. That list alone would drag me to the festival but then Bombay Bicycle Club alumni Rae Morris, female duo Honeyblood, indie boys Gengahr, hard rockers Allusondrugs and King Pleasure & The Biscuit Boys round off that list to create a stunning line-up with more promised before the end of July.
So there you have it. For festival newbies or experienced veterans, for family fun or a laugh with mates, Y Not has everyone covered and will continue to provide a unique, unrivalled small festival feel- that is until it outgrows itself! One wishes for that day to never come, for the festival to maintain its vibes, but you cannot deny that is where this Derbyshire celebration of music, food and beer is going.