Two iconic bands have agreed to play in Norwich in October as a fundraiser for the new John Peel Centre for Creative Arts in Stowmarket. Two of Peel’s favourite bands The Fall and The Undertones will appear at the Fundraiser on Oct 10th. Norwich Arts Centre is producing the event as the launch event for the new John Peel Festival of New Music. They have been working with Peel’s wife Sheila Ravenscroft to help establish both the new venue and the festival as a permanent legacy to the much missed DJ.
The fundraiser will feature bands whom John had a great connection with and will also include Norwich Peel favourites Bearsuit and a band currently making waves, Dingus Khan. The following three days of the festival will feature over 50 new acts across 10 venues in Norwich.
Peel’s wife Sheila commented: “We’ve been developing the new venue for some time in Stowmarket and it’s great that this is happening to give us some much need funds. I’m so pleased that The Fall and The Undertones have agreed to play as everybody knows that they were two bands very close to John’s heart and we should raise some money for the new venue. It’ll also be a great gig! ”Â
Undertones bass player Michael Bradley said: “It’s fairly obvious we owe a lot to John and it’s an honour to be asked to support the centre. Also looking forward to seeing The Fall play live and getting Mark E Smith to sign my Fall CD.”
Norwich Arts Centre Director Stuart Hobday added: “We realise we may be accused of nostalgia in producing this event when it’s obviously not what Peel was about. However this fundraiser seemed like an appropriate way to capture the affection that is still out there for John and to not forget his direct contribution to British musical life in helping bands such as The Fall, The Undertones and Bearsuit. It’s tribute in itself that all of the bands have agreed to waive their fees for the gig and so hopefully we will raise a good amount of money for the new venue in Stowmarket.
The following three nights of music are all emerging exciting acts backed up by a three day music development conference aimed at bringing musicians and industry figures together. It’s a financially tough time for venues and emerging bands in Britain with very little record company development money available. This is the sort of initiative that is vital in keeping alive the great tradition of restless new British music which is what John Peel was always at the heart of.”