Really excited to be bringing you a new Edinburgh artists’ collective, Far Yella, and our first event at Leith Dockers Club, 17 Academy Street, at 7pm on Sunday 24 April. It’s going to be an amazing evening, it’s just £5 for an array for incredible words and music, and I hope to see you there.
An evening of entertaiments presented by ‘Far Yella’ (a new collective featuring Faith Eliott, Hailey Beavis, Mario Cruzado, Reuben Taylor, Ryan Van Winkle, Sam Siggs & Supermoon).
There will be:
Music + Poetry + Bingo + Bread + Jumble Sale + DJs + Shit Magic (among other wonders)
Where: Leith Dockers Club — 17 Academy St, Edinburgh EH6 7EE When: 24 April, 7pm How Much: 5 quids
On Tuesday 17 March I’ll be performing a collaborative piece with Neil Pennycook as part of Franz Nicolay’s European tour launch, in Edinburgh’s own Banshee Labyrinth. It’ll be an awesome party, we’ll be joining the amazing Hailey Beavis and Broken Stories, it’s seven bucks, I do hope to see you there.
Massive Nights Collective & Make-That-A-Take Records proudly present…
FRANZ NICOLAY (USA, EU 7″ LAUNCH TOUR)
We are absolutely delighted to welcome Franz Nicolay back to Edinburgh and to be celebrating the release of his brand new European Tour exclusive Double A-Side 7″ single through MTAT Records.
Franz, formerly of The Hold Steady, World/Inferno Friendship Society, and many more, brings his dark full-throated vaudevillian multi-instrumental beat-poetry inspired punk rock storytelling back to the road in support of his new full-length “To Us, The Beautiful”. Out now through Xtra Mile Recordings and Silver Sprocket Bicycle Club, the record is another Nicolay tour de force and features performances from members of punk luminaries Against Me!, Leftover Crack and The Slackers.
We are thrilled to be hosting Franz in Edinburgh and couldn’t be more excited to be releasing his brand new 7″ record to accompany his tour.
Back in October we hit the road in the Gorilla Perfumes tour bus and made beautiful music and words happen all over the UK’s favourite cities. We furthermore cannot be held accountable for the brief and slight olfactory improvements made in those cities. It was an incredible ride, and for those of you who missed us we present a brief video journey across the island. All the films were done by Luke Flemming on our Golden Hour ‘Infused & Bemused Tour’.
Golden Hour – Manchester – Billy Liar
Golden Hour – London – Robin Grey and Collisions Dance
Golden Hour – Edinburgh – Inspace
Golden Hour – Leeds – Robin Grey and Collisions Dance
Golden Hour – Oxford – Garance Lewis
Golden Hour – Sheffield – Hailey Beavis
Golden Hour – Brighton – Hannah Moulette / Ruth Skipper
Golden Hour – Stirling – Andy McKay
Golden Hour – Newcastle – Billy Liar and Ryan Van Winkle
There are many reasons why Mark Vitelli and I came to Edinburgh in September 1999. There are two reasons I came back in 2000 — one was a job, the other knows her own name. But there is only one reason why I still live here today. That reason is, quite simply, The Forest. For those of you who don’t know — The Forest is a volunteer-run, collectively owned, free arts and events space masquerading as a vegetarian cafe which was founded in August 2000 and (as if you can’t do your sums) just celebrated its tenth birthday.
The Forest is many things to many people. An art gallery, a space to share skills and have free workshops, a resource, a place to eat good food, a rehearsal space and more. There has been a pretty comprehensive listing of what The Forest does on The Forest’s website and on the Guardian Blog and if you are interested you can download the press pack but I want to talk about why somebody who doesn’t know or care about The Forest might want to consider donating to help the cause. Here’s a short video to bring you up to speed:
For a decade The Forest has run a vegetarian kitchen. You could call this a business-model: Volunteers work for free in the kitchen, money made from the kitchen goes into supporting The Arts and keeping the place open. This means — paying rent, buying equipment, paint and more. The Forest also supports an independent press, a fringe-theatre, a record label, a community choir, free workshops, a radical library and much much more almost solely through volunteer power alone. We are not sponsored by the government, city council or the arts council and we don’t exist for profit. Mostly, the Forest exists in order to exist.
Now, if you’ve been reading the news you might think — “Well, these young idealists got scuppered by a bad economy and brutal arts cutbacks.” This is not the case. We’ve been running a successful alternative business for years. The problem is — our building is up for sale. This means either a costly, time-consuming and difficult relocation, closure OR — we BUY the building.
Why Buy a Building?
Well, it won’t be easy. But — it can be done. We only need 5,000 donations of £100 and if we don’t know 5,000 people willing to help out — I don’t know who does?
My feeling for why a city centre building is important for the Arts community is a semi-story: I was in Paris at Shakespeare and Co. talking to a guy who was living in the bookshop. Now, Shakespeare and Co are right across from the Notre Dame – an incredibly historic, tourist centre, a place where rent is astronomical. I remember standing there and this guy saying, “I love this place because – surrounded by all this – it is an Anomaly.” And I thought – yeah, it is.
And, the beautiful thing about Forest (to me) is the fact that it too is an anomaly. In an increasingly commercial, logo, corporate, bland, safe, disney-fied world The Forest is an anomaly and a beacon. A flag-ship social enterprise. A place that exists outside of commercial pressures which allows artists and organizers of all types to co-exist, perform, and produce without fear of failing, without fear of economic ruin. This is why young bands from all over the world play The Forest. This is why the Forest Fringe is one of the most unique parts of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The Forest allows people to try. Sometimes this happens on stage with a GameBoy (like the chip music festival) and sometimes this happens with hammers and saws as people work together to build kitchens and toilets and hang curtains and paint etc.
From the looks of the world being built around us – there is no earthly reason why Forest should be in a beautiful building in the heart of Edinburgh, doing what it is we do. Providing a space, doing nearly anything folk want and doing it outside the regular way of things. It is even more important now, because, if nothing else we show what giant things can be done when people get together.
Even if you have never been to The Forest — you have to understand the profound and lasting effects this one place has. It is a beacon to other community and artistic-minded people. The Forest has spawned no less than four similar projects (that I know of) — one as far away as South Korea. People who have been involved in The Forest go on to do great and good things — bands like Aberfeldy and Withered Hand and White Heath and St. Jude’s Infirmary and Foxgang and Billy Liar all have had early gigs there. Jed Milroy and Hailey Beavis play together because they met through The Forest. People who help organize events and workshops and festivals at The Forest go on to do similar things in their hometowns, or Berlin or London or elsewhere. Sometimes they make careers out of it. Sometimes they do it for free. Young people with no work experience or people who have not been able to find work in a long time — get skills and confidence and companionship working in the kitchen. In short — ideas are made. Connections. Community. And these things don’t just stay in our building or even our city. They fly to New York and Damascus. They go to Bosnia and Washington D.C. Sometimes they even make it over to Glasgow. Forest mingles and works with other festivals, organizations, and institutions and the people who do things in The Forest spread out and create networks and continue to share and exchange art and information. Ideas and art spread and there is a good chance if you are reading this — then The Forest has touched you too. Maybe not in our building — maybe in a field during Knockengorroch, maybe at a Golden Hour gig at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, maybe through your TenTracks subscription, your visits to The Bowery, Balkanarama, The Roxy or Octopus Diamond? Maybe through Reel Festivals maybe through one of the many ‘zines the Forest Free Press has fostered, maybe via the many touring fingers of Robert Sarazin Blake? I certainly would not be doing what I am doing at the Scottish Poetry Library without it. I would not have had the confidence — I would not have tried and failed and learned and tried again. If you like me, you like The Forest and as friends, I hope you’ll consider lending your financial support.
I recently was watching this video about “Where Good Ideas Come From”. Good ideas need people and places. Places where artists and organizers and interested people and uninterested people can meet and share and play together. I don’t know about you but I want places like this to exist forever. I don’t want people to turn this building into flats or a Costa Coffee or a Sports Pub. There are millions of those. But there are very few genuine alternatives — The Forest is one of them. If The Forest can, through community donations from good-minded spirited people, keep a building then we can be a beacon to others. We can, together, say This is What We Can Do. We can change the world in small ways but those small ways have a lasting affect on people’s lives, their happiness and that is good for everyone.
Jed Milroy & Hailey Beavis – New and traditional songs from
two of our best friends. Like Christmas morning all over again.
The Stormy Seas – place their brand of ‘aggressive folk’
under the GH tree. Featuring all the stuff you want — guitar, bass drums,
banjo, melodica, squeezebox, fiddle and Sea Shanties with a Punk
Now available for a bargainous £2 is the ninth in a series of chapbooks printed by Forest Publications: a collection of short stories entitled, Dreams of the City by Kirsti Wishart.
Here’s an excerpt:
“The final straw was lying in wait for them on the doormat when they came back after a fortnight’s holiday. Both of them had taken turns trying to barge the door open until James brought out the thin wooden spatula Chris had laughed at him for taking. ‘See. Told you this would come in handy.’ After a good two minutes of shoving, the wad of paper jammed in the gap between door and floor, gave and…” Read more!
Hailey Beavis – when Hailey sings, something inside you listens. Billy Liar – acoustic punk with a little blood on it. Withered Hand – the wit-full, wistfull, sweet son-of-a-bitch. Who has a brand new album of his own y’all should buy.
We’ve got two exciting poetic adventures for you to experience:
From 2pm on Saturday we’ve got a Poetry Postcard & Poster Making workshop.
* We’ll provide the words (a la magnetic poetry) and help you screen print your own original poetry poster or post card. Our Screen Printing Expert will be on hand to help you make everything look beautiful.
If you don’t feel like making your own poem some friends and I will be hanging out with copies of our favourite poems to pass on along with other free goodies. The people (and poems) will change so come early and come often.
Details of bands and DJs
Noon – The Tuberians – a mystical journey of sound exploration from the undiscovered land of Tuberia.