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Postby qrd » Mon Sep 22, 2008 8:28 pm

Paid hard cash in good faith to attend the 12th annual Creetown Country Festival FOR THE FIRST TIME.

Big Tepee were forced to listen to a line dance instructor with a voice that could break a mirror… “5, 6, 7, 8, step left, step back, kick, step right” … hell fire

However, the final nail in the western coffin was driven home on Sunday lunchtime, as the Big Tepee began to fill with the tribute followers ,instead of beautifully dressed re-enactors, country music lovers and gunfighters, the tend filled with hordes of Wacko Jacko look-alikes, wannabe Shania Twains, ABBA and Queen lovers.

In the evening, the mood changed, teenagers who had been drinking all day began to argue with each other with the inevitable consequences.

Even the Saturday night was spoilt when a vistor staying at the caravan park came along to enjoy a night out, and was attacked and beaten up on the way home.

The saddest thing of all was the open arguments between members of the committee, fighting amongst themselves and also with visitors who complained about the lack of country music on the Saturday afternoon and all day Sunday.
Can say though that a female impersonating Michael Jackson was enough to clear the last two tables of country music fans back to their caravans, vowing never to return if this is the way the festival continues.

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Postby pamguiness » Tue Sep 23, 2008 9:24 am

As a local, I feel I have to add just a little.

Firstly, I have nothing to do with the festival, I'm just one of the few locals who enjoy country music and look forward to the annual festival in our village.

I agree with what you say on the whole tribute acts day on the Sunday. When I saw the programme for the first time, I was horrified to see the entertainment arranged for the Sunday, we have little enough country music in our area without losing out on a whole day of the music that we love. I'm sure the committee had there reasons for adding different music to the festival, but it was advertised as a country music festival and I feel that's what it should have been kept as.

Can I just say that the country bands that were performing on the other days were excellent and they deserve a mention. Some bands and artistes were making a return visit to the festival, some were making their debut and all did a fantastic job.

As for the events that were advertised outwith the music, e.g. parade, shoot out and trilogy, there was a distinct lack of organisation (i.e. none), so thanks have to be said to the few cowboys who rallied round at the last minute and got these events going albeit later than advertised with no help from the committee.

Maybe the committee will see sense for us loyal country fans who have been there every year, but I doubt it, as Sunday seemed to be a success in their eyes, and pulled the non country crowds in to finish off the festival with a very full and bouncing tepee!!

In my opinion Keep It Country.


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Postby Twang Man » Tue Sep 23, 2008 10:21 am

I have played this festival with the band about 4 years ago and we were frowned upon - turns out we are a little bit too Country for them.

However, another band went on and played some 60's rock n roll and and bit of elvis and normality was restored. For a minute then we nearly ruined the whole festival by playing Waylon, Merle and Cash songs.

sad, but I wont return.
Turn up the TWANG!
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Postby ward99 » Tue Sep 23, 2008 1:49 pm

I would like to thank the folk who have posted comments, because without constructive feed back its not easy to improve and rectify problems. However its very easy to right off the efforts of the organisors and its sad that some people only see fit to comment about the negative points of which I accept there are some, however there are many positive things coming out of this years festival too.

As one of the organisors I would like to put over our side of the story.

Three years ago Creetown Festival began to loose money. Creetown as you may or may not know is a non- profit volunteer run festival. It is run by volunteers who put in hundreds of hours of their time throughout the year, in order to put the event on. Breaking even is the first aim, and if any profit is made it goes back into the festival the following year.

Since we began 12 years ago our focus has always been Country Music. However over the past few years the audience numbers have been dropping and the events future is/was in doubt. As you all know a number of festivals have fallen by the wayside this year and Im aware as Im sure you all are there will be some more casualities in 2009.

Our audience is made up of the following

10% hardened country music fans
10% line dancers
30% people who like country music but who couldnt be described as devotees
50% local people, by local I mean within a hundred mile radius, who come along for the live music experience, be it country or not.

Over the last three years the 50% local have dwindled in numbers and the reasons given are, bored with country music, want to see country music but not wall to wall, want to see a wider range of live music.

So in order to underpin and protect the Country Music side of things we went for Creetown Country Music Plus, which was three days Country Music, plus a day of something a bit different. The something a bit different was the tribute day, sunday, which traditionally has been the biggest attendance day for locals.

It worked, the locals turned out in the hundreds and financially Sunday was the most succesful (and whether you like it or not, you have to make money to put on these events, the bands and marquees etc dont pay for themselves). The feed back has been tremendous, people had a great time, they enjoyed the change. That success in turn will support next years Country Music and it is this point I want people to get their heads around. We need audiences to keep the thing going, sole country music audiences are dwindling, so we have to change, compromise, do things diferrently or die.

What I would like to see is people getting involved, help us to improve things, talk to us, help us keep country music alive, but at the same time dont be blinkered into thinking that festivals such as Creetown can survive by sticking to the same old format year after year after year, we have to compromise and try different things, if we are to keep it going.

Next year like this we will have three solid days of country music ( and Twang Man you are not too country for us, dont know where you got that from, let me guess?). Help us get those three days right, let us know who you want to see playing there. Westerners let us know what you want us to do to make the festival work for you, line dancers the same and so on. We wont get it all right, but we'll try our damn best to. Make the effort folks to support 3 days country music, let us know what you want, but accept that day 4 will be non country, because thats the day that pays the bills and props up the 3 days of country music.

Finally next years festival will not take place in the same venue, we are currently negotiating with a land owner to stage the festival in a place where we can have on site camping, showers, toilets, water etc, a bigger enclosed self contained site where we can operate more efficiantly. A place where we can keep out the numpties ( the trouble on Saturday night, which I have investigated with the police, was minor, though totally unacceptable, there again we can not be held responsible for the antics of the odd moron, these types are sadly in every town and village across the land).

So come on folks, get behind us, let us know your thoughts and ideas and lets keep the festival going, because in the main over the last twelve years weve seen and heard some great country music, weve made some great friends and had a lot of fun. Lets not lose it

If anyone wants to chat to me my email is drop me a line, we want this to be a success, as I know you all do.



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Postby Twang Man » Tue Sep 23, 2008 1:55 pm

fair point well made.

all the best for 2009
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Postby qrd » Tue Sep 23, 2008 2:00 pm

I agree Twangman and yes good luck for 2009

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