WITH September upon us and festival season drawing to a close, I can’t lie as I reflect on busy times I’m a little sad.

It’s been a month since the first our Community Thru Music festival at The Point in Bracknell.  Sure, there’s been lots happening at the community arts centre but there’s 11 months until the next one.

Though to be fair, that does mean 11 months to get together with the amazing teams at the Odeon cinema and Hollywood Bowl.

Saturday, July 23 was more than just outstanding performances by some stunning acts like Spriggan Mist, Billy Boguard of Camden, school bands Undecided and The Freyed.  It was an opportunity for like-midid people to join in unity to recognise a deep need within Bracknell, Wokingham and the Thames Valley.

Acknowledging the needs among the youth and the senior citizens, who appear to be forgotten in recent times as regeneration bandages up a town with social problems is not an answer, it’s more like putting a plaster on a wound that hasn’t been cleaned.

You’ve got issues of a different kind in its way.

That’s why over the next 11 months we are going to prepare a bigger and better Community Thru Music.

It won’t stop there, oh no!  Odeon cinema and Hollywood Bowl are joining forces with an already strong community conscious team of people including Vodafone, Royal British Legion and Age Concern Bracknell to make a concerted and convicted effort to make a difference, to start helping our #communitythrumusic.

With a marketing team now on board, some dates booked in, and a coffee machine and pool table finally arrived at our Bracknell town centre venue, we are opening any day now – though if you find yourself near 11 Market Street don’t be a stranger, as we are happy to start pouring coffee as we put together the finishing touches.

What will you expect in the months and years to come?

Well, I will be telling you so much more of the coming weeks but I can divulge a few secrets.

To make the most of the mammoth sized 5,200sqft space we are already building a second recording studio that has a backlog of artists waiting for its launch.

Our tech shop is underway too and already booked up for the next fortnight and it is to be managed by local legend and bass player Steve Sculpher.

We have rehearsal space and room hire already in constant use by bands including local band Gun Hill Riff (who have just booked in for a live rehearsal and video/photography session).

We have our first karaoke night on Sunday, September 11 and Jam on the Couch open mic on Wednesday, September 14.  Both events coming up will also be community minded.

We are inviting you to bring your family, friends, food and drink.

We will pass a hat round throughout each evening to help fund a fabulous and alternative approach to nights out.

Yup, that’s right.  On top of value for money on our licensed bar, we will be launching – on nights that fall  in the middle of the month – affordable family events.  We know how hard it is to be social mid-month (and in general), especially ahead of pay day.

So why else would we make one of our biggest bands booking a free entry event?  Yes, you can see Hands Off Gretel free on Friday, September 23, although we’ll welcome donations.

But to make this work, we will need your support.

For us to maintain intentions and feed the community some much needed entertainment including indoor markets and pop up shops and a music shop we need you gorgeous people to get behind all our events and adventures.

We are set up under a multi-storey carpark and minutes away from taxis, the bus station and train station.  So you can catch the Lion, park your car or hop on a train to come and join us.

The means in no time at all you can be on our doorstep supporting a great project aiming to support a great community thru music and the arts.  Also get in touch now if you want to be part of our Christmas month, or one of our market days or festivals planned next year:

  • 4play festival
  • Ska/reggae/punk festival
  • Acoustic
  • And I can’t wait to announce news about the “not Jools Holland” show.  Oooh!