We spoke this week to Ivor Porkbelly from Hereford Live about the groups plans to give the music scene in Hereford a kick up the arse.
Hereford Heckler- Can you give us the background to how the idea of Hereford Live evolved?
Ivor Porkbelly- I moved back to Hereford this year, 35 years after leaving the old Teacher Training College in 1978 when it finally closed down. Much as I love Hereford I’ve quickly noticed the lack of live music in the town apart from maybe covers bands playing in pubs. When I was here back in the 70’s there was a thriving music scene, not only at the college but in places like the Flamingo Ballroom in Redhill. There was also the legendary Buzz Music in Widemarsh Street which was a magnet for punters and musicians alike.
Shortly after moving back I was chatting with Chris Adcocks, who runs the ‘Old Hereford Pics’ facebook page, and we were bemoaning the lack of musical variety and reasonable sized venues in the city. I went away and set up a facebook page called ‘A New Venue for Hereford’ to see if there was any support for the idea. This did attract a large following in a short time. We quickly turned words into actions and by holding meetings and discussing how we could change things we came up with the idea of Hereford Live.
HH- So who are targeting with this idea?
IP- Hereford Live plans to encompass all musical styles and genres for all ages under its umbrella. We hope to get loads of venues involved and some have already agreed to do so. The launch night on Wednesday 25th September at the Jailhouse is on from 7 till 12 and is free. There’s five bands playing plus some acoustic acts outside. We hope the launch will create strong interest for future gigs.
HH- What level of interest are you getting?
IP- The Art College are being really supportive, and we’re inviting a variety of people to come to the launch in the hope of increasing interest and support, not only from punters but also venues not already involved.
HH- So how will this work? What will bands and venues get out of Hereford Live?
IP- Future gigs in participating venues will be advertised under the Hereford Live banner. Adverts will be posted on the website and the facebook page. We will also have flyers and posters to publicise gigs. We will try to ensure that dates for gigs don’t clash so as to maximise audience numbers.
As I mentioned, the Art College are behind our plans and, ironically, are soon to move to RNC campus which was once the College of Education. We hope that the main hall that holds up to 600 people will be available for gigs in the future, if so, this will be a 360º moment for myself and others who enjoyed music there in the past.
HH- Exciting times for the music scene in Hereford then?
IP- It’s a bold project and one that deserves the support not only of the wider community but the council as well, who may be open to grant funding.
So watch this space. Look out for flyers and posters, join our facebook page, come to the launch night and come to our meetings and get involved. There’s no reason to stay at home moaning “There’s nothing on the Hereford” You can now make a difference.