Sunderland bands to raise the roof at North East festival

A host of North East talent is set to take to the stage for a home-grown music festival next month.

Thursday, 18th August 2016, 3:13 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 6:52 pm
Hartlepool band The Jar Family ahead of Jacksons Landing music festival. From left Richie Docherty and Lee Dali

Sunderland’s Hyde & Beast, Social Room, Slug and Lilliput are on the bill for the We Are Family festival, alongside acts including Little Comets, Plaza, Seafret, Cattle and Cane, Samantha Durnan, Avalanche Party and Kingsley Chapman & The Murder.

Now in its second year, the day-long festival will take place at Jacksons Landing at Hartlepool Marina on Saturday, September 10.

Hyde & Beast

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The event is the brainchild of Hartlepool ‘industrial folk’ act The Jar Family who’ll also be performing on the day.

The band’s Richie Docherty and Lee Dali, who each play guitar as well as providing vocals and percussion, said they’re excited about the line-up they’ve got in store for music fans this year.

Lee said: “It’s great to be running for a second year. I think with the first year being such a success and that many people enjoying it, we just had to do it again.

“It’s all local North East bands, the same as last year. We’ve got no big names apart from the big local bands from Newcastle to Sunderland, like Cattle & Cane and Little Comets and the Mouses.”

Hyde & Beast

Next month will also see the release of The Jar Family’s new self-produced EP, Daydreamin’.

Recorded at Sounds Studios in Kent, it is the first time the band have recorded, mixed and arranged everything themselves, alongside long-time Jar Family collaborator Kevin Harris.

Richie said: “We’re really excited for it. We went in about four or five weeks ago to a studio down in Kent. Normally we get producers and a team in to produce all the music, but we thought this time around that we’d do it ourselves, make it more organic and the outcome is great, it feels like we’ve really achieved something.

“We’re excited for people to hear it. If it was up to me it would be out there now.”

Lee added: “There are a few people we’ve passed it onto to give them a listen and some of them can’t believe it, it’s like a totally different sound to what we’re used to.

“In the past, we wrote the songs, record them, and then gigged them. Where the new formula is we’ve written them, put them in the set list so we’ve gigged them, and after 30 gigs when they’ve evolved to their full potential, that’s it.

“That’s the sound we want rather than making an album and going 30 or 40 gigs up the road and then you listen back to the album and think ‘what’s that?’. And it’s because it hasn’t evolved.”

The band is already looking forward to hosting the festival again in 2017, but as there are plans to demolish Jacksons Landing after the festival, they’ll have to find an alternative venue.

Richie said: “We are going to do another festival but obviously we’ll have to find another location.

“It’s a shame this place is going to be knocked down because there’s a lot of potential in it. It could be anything.”

Lee added: “It’ll be a relocation. I think what we’ll look for, if it is another success this year and there’s people wanting it next year, I think we’ll look for somewhere where you can camp, where we can have it like a proper festival.

“Somewhere you go on the Friday and watch all the bands then camp and you chill on the night, then get up on the morning and go to the smelly toilets –the full festival atmosphere.”

This year’s festival, which is sponsored by Camerons Brewery, will also feature a host of street food and North East beer stalls.

l Tickets for We Are Family, Jacksons Landing, Hartlepool Marina, on Saturday, September 10, cost £10 in advance or £15 on the door. To book, go to