Steel wedding anniversary and @AstralCoast festival

So July 19th 2003 and my last day of freedom as I walked down the aisle with Claire Jayne Runacus at United Reformed church on Mather Avenue. No other church would have me having not been christened !! So fast forward 11 years and it’s our steel wedding anniversary. It was Friday night and I had written Mrs Fay’s card and I was thinking were can I leave it so that she would see it in the morning and there right next to me on the kitchen table was the ideal place presenting itself in all it’s glory a gift from the gods. It was of course the basket of dry washing (See pic below) Thankfully the card was located pretty quickly by Mrs Fay and I avoided a frying pan to the head when I got up and after a quick family swim at Garston all three kids were lashed to their grandparents and me and the missus were heading off to The Astral Coast music festival in New Brighton.

11th wedding anniversary card


So we headed into town about 3.30 and decided on some pre festival drinks in Liverpool including The White Star, Railway and Lion Tavern. In one of these boozers a girl came around selling badges for charity. Always wonder if these are the real deal or not. My twisted mind instantly created doubt but I suppose I better give the benefit of the doubt to the badge sellers of the world though you aint getting an “Alan Whicker” from me. A quick stop off for a beer in Williamson Square where there was temporary pub put up and a stage which was to do with the Brazilica Festival so technically I would have been to two festivals in a day. Next up the train to New Brighton and the empty train was heading into New Brighton the sky was turning grey and the light fading early for summer. It was gonna piss down, and was just a question of when.  Now many of you will know (and some won’t) that I am dodgy weatherman @Liverpoolweath on Twitter and previously described by Radio City as Liverpool weather expert. Well this Liverpool weather expert had come out in shorts and a t-shirt and as it looked as we got down to the coast the heavens opened and it was a quick dash to Morrisons for shelter were I must have looked like a smack head on the rob pacing up and down the aisle’s of Morrisons looking for a brolly to buy. I took this chance to treat Mrs Fay to an all expenses paid anniversary meal which was a three course delight of sausage roll for starters, a wrap for main course and a pack of Seabrooks prawn cocktail crisps for desserts. As you can see below the venue for the meal was under door shelter in Morrisons New Brighton and the look of joy on her face will stay with me for ever and I am sure with finding her card in the washing and such a lavish meal she still thinks on a daily basis how lucky she is to be married to me !!

Claire Fay steel anniversary meal


So onto the main event and the Astral Coast music festival 2014. The festival had kicked off at 2pm and was over two stages but with the excellent twist that the two stages ran side by side time wise so there were no clashes and minimal waiting in between acts. A great idea. The festival was held in The Floral Pavilion in New Brighton and when sitting off having a beer we could see some Peppa Pig stuff. A night with no kids and there is still no escaping that bastard Pig. So the first act we got to see were The Sundowners who were fronted by two female vocalists and this nicked from their Facebook bio “Two girls from a seaside town on the Wirral bonding over a mutual love of psychedelics and west coast harmonies. A friendship that sees them nurturing each other’s musical talents, with Niamh Rowe teaching Fiona Skelly how to play guitar, and Fiona teaching Niamh to sing. It’s the start of Sundowners’ story.”  A decent band and as they finished it was next door to see the next band on called By The Sea. I seem to recall seeing these before possibly supporting The Tea Street band. After the first track it was evident I had seen them before. The music deffo seemed to have a hint of 80’s about it. I think it’s the synths together with the dreamy vocals and dare I say it a hint of Stone Roses about them at times. An excellent performance and well worth catching live. Next up were The Lucid Dream (We sadly missed Bird as I had to leg it the bank to get more dollar) and something not so local as they were from Carlisle a place I have only ever been to once to watch Liverpool play there in the F.A.Cup in about 1989.  They had a write up in the programme notes saying they were ‘Psychedelia” and I have been getting into a bit of this recently so was looking forward to see what they had on offer. Their last track (Which I must find) was a rip roaring musical journey that went of for ages but had me fully engrossed from start to finish and the band seemed fully engrossed in what they were delivering. Such was the effect of the final track me and the missus ended up talking with the friendly security guards about the track after their set had finished.

We decided to have a few more drinks and as well as two stages their was a DJ playing choons by the bar. Now I think when the DJ got his gig for 11pm he would be thinking play a few choons to a few people by the bar but what developed was a full on mini rave with some belter choons and quite a few people dancing away to the music. Now you can’t beat a bit of good house music with a girlie vocal on and some great tracks were being dropped. So onto the final act of the night and save the best until last and Liverpool’s finest The Tea Street Band. Originally we thought they would be playing around 9:30 so bought the tickets to the festival only to find out they were on at 12am which is well past my modern day bedtime never mind being over in New Brighton. This is the fourth time I have seen The Tea Street band over the last 12 months and I have never done that with any band so I feel like a bit of a stalker/groupie !! There debut album is boss REVIEW HERE and after buying it on iTunes I treated myself to the vinyl as well and it’s still high up on the Faymondo playlist. So to the gig and as ever they did not disappoint. The crowd were well up for it and the band put in another great performance and their mixture of synths, guitars and a large hint of dance gets mixed up in a musical pot that can only be described as one of the best albums I have heard for years. They even managed to throw a new track in which I don’t recall hearing and can only blame that on a 3:30 start on the ale ! Mrs Fay who can’t avoid listening to the album in ours and the car was very impressed by the performance as well.

So The Astral Coast music festival was a great day out, well organised and a very friendly vibe about it. As mentioned a great method in the timing of bands and two lovely intimate venues for the bands to play and highly recommended to go to next year and the ticket was just £11 which is an absolute steal. By The Sea won the best performance for an act I didn’t know and now we were faced with just one more question how the hell do you get home pissed from New Brighton at 1am in the morning ? Thankfully there was a night bus that turned up as we reached the bus stop. Now night busses can be a strange beast but there was only one other couple on the bus so it was a pleasant ride back over the water, well under really. Mrs Fay who has recently lost her diamond from the engagement ring I bought her all those years ago was offered a replacement diamond if she deleted her Facebook account (I am now on there with no friends, it’s the future believe me) but she said no. Back in Liverpool and we swerved any more late bevies to head for a scran and a cab home.

Sunday morning and no kids we headed to The Otters Cafe for breakfast outdoors as the Penny Lane Striders 10k ran past. To think I was a marathon athlete just a few weeks back and now it’s back on the ale big time going to gigs and festivals again. Good job I did not throw away all my “fat” pants eh !! A post breakfast walk and a token beer in the beer garden of The Victoria Pub (Aiggy Arms) and it was back to reality as the three daughters landed and the one day fun filled oasis of music and booze that was our wedding anniversary was over and we head into our 12th year as strong as ever (Christ that was a bit heavy for me)


Fay x x x x x x

EDIT also caught some of Bill Ryder Jones but only two tracks so not enough to review really. What I heard was sound.


First day at school (New job) & Kazimier funk and soul.

So a nice week off after Glastonbury which was an enforced as my contract working for Wakefield council had come to an end. I must admit this cured me of any post Glastonbury blues and life on the dole was good, although I did not claim any dole. My overdraft however did not feel the same way so it was a case of sorting a new contract out before Faymondo Benefits Limited went bankrupt ! Luckily I managed to sort something out and a start on Monday working for Southend-On-Sea council via Meritec. So Monday morning came around and a trip to my new office in Warrington. Decided to chill and get the train there from Mossley Hill. Always a bit nervous starting a new job, meeting new people and getting used to new working practices despite it being the same job. These nerves soon went away as I landed in Warrington with plenty of time to spare and whilst walking around the town centre I walked past the Warrington bomb memorial dedicated to Johnathan Ball (Age 3) and Tim Parry (Age 12) Such a tragic waste of life and made me think my new job start was jack shit compared to what had happened on the spot I was walking past. So the first week in work went well and it is a three month contract so should keep me in booze and luxury sausage rolls until October at least.

Thursday night and a night out on a school night to The Kazimier. The Kazimier is one of my fave music venues in Liverpool. A lovely intimate place, well designed for viewing the stage and what seems to be a typical concert beer for some reason Red Stripe was stocked and very chilled, the only way you can neck a can of Red Stripe. It was the first of The Kazimier’s funk and soul club. So with some great tracks being dropped by the DJ it was time for the first band Motofocus. I had met the guitar player on a few occasions and knew he was in a band and had been trying to get around to seeing Motofocus but for whatever reason had not managed to see them. I was expecting a run of the mill guitar band doing a few covers if I am honest. When I seen it was a funk and soul night I thought hmmmmm they are not going to as I expected and indeed they weren’t. Motofocus are a five piece band playing funk and soul of their own creating. The female lead singer has a cracking voice and is interspersed with rapping from the eccentric keyboard player who we had a chat to afterwards and was a top bloke. The band are in the process of recoding a few tracks and their sound cloud page is HERE It was an excellent set kicking the night off in style and I would deffo be catching them again in the future. Sadly for some reason we ended up outside when the second band played as we were chatting to Sean the guitarist from Motofocus and boring him with our tales from Glastonbury so never did get to see The Soulrays.

Next up the headline act Myron & E. Determined not to miss another band I dragged the lads in from outside to see what was going to be served up and I was not disappointed. Myron & E are a vocal duo backed by a great band and a brass section always impresses me and the two fellas on trumpet did the business. Promoting their debut LP “Broadway” The Kazimier was dancing away to the choons of Myron & E. Now I am partial to a bit of funk and soul and Myron & E put on a top notch performance and thanks to the joys of Spotify I listened to “Broadway” on Spotify the next day in work. Stand out track for me was “Do It Do It Disco” (Video below) Giving themselves a slight rest on stage they played some great slower soulful tracks. Always great to stumble across new music you like and Myron & E will be on the Faymondo playlist and might even be tempted to treat myself to the vinyl. So the first Kazimier funk and soul night was a great night and I will be keeping an eye out for anymore and it’s a good excuse to go out on a school night.

Myron & E live at The Kazimier Liverpool


So Friday and I yes into town for a second night on the run to meet some old workmates from Liverpool City Council for a bevy this is turning into the mid 90’s when I was in my prime, The Buzz Thursday, 051 Friday & Saturday. In bed Sunday to Tuesday surfacing Wednesday ready to do it all over again. One of my old team members Gill from when I turned to the dark side for six months and went into management was there and we remember old times about the team I had. Sadly unable to tell any stories as they all still work for the council and I would not want to reveal we spent time playing Blankety Blank ! In the end we ended up heading back out of town and a bit more local, Rose Lane/Allerton Road. In one of the bars (The Other Place Bistro) there was some kind of charity night but they let is in and two of the lads ended up buying a selection of cheese and red wine, the pair of beauts although I did have off one of their plain crackers. All the old work stories were coming out and I was catching up on members of staff I had not seen for what is nearly five years now. Whilst at the back of the Rose Of Mossley pub we were talking about one member of staff who shall we say was a bit plump and laughing at the time his/her (no more clues) office chair broke and he was doing a dying fly impression on the floor. Sadly I was off this day but to be honest if I had seen that I might of died having a heart attack laughing. At the precise time we were talking about it was as if a bolt was shot down from the god of pie arses the bench one of the lads was sitting on broke. The comedy timing could not have been better but he managed to save himself just in time and did not replicate the dying fly impression in the packed beer garden of The Rose which would have beaten the original incident but it was fucking funny all the same. So a decent pub crawl ended in the Penny Lane wine bar and it was time to call it a night and it was great catching up with old mates.

So a busy week and week two of the new job approaches as the weekend goes past far too quick. A world cup BBQ to attend tomorrow and more booze. I have decided I want the Argies to win and I slightly hate them less than The Germans !!!!


Fay x x x x x x (six kisses now for the 6th year of the blog)

Glastonbury round up, happy birthday blog.

Well yesterday was the 5th birthday of this here ickle blog and the new traditional blog redesign is in place. Five years of this shite I hear you say. 3rd July 2009 and I was moaning about banks, well nothing changes there. What a five years life wise. Only a small period but so much has happened. Had it all really with deaths, births, family fall outs, new jobs, house move, friends coming and friends drifting away. Reaching forty, running a marathon, four Glastonbury’s, numerous trips abroad on the ale and the Tories back in power all be it slightly reigned in by lap dog Clegg. Amazing what life throws at you. I dread to look forward five years and think were I will be in twenty n-n-n-n-nineteen. So many thanks to all who have taken time out to read my ramblings and for the nice comments I receive re the blog. The aim is generally to raise a chuckle and I might go off on one now and again. I really should make more time to blog as it has slipped over the last year. Maybe now I have cured my Facebook addiction I can spend more time on here. Anyway here is to another 5 years and I promise this will be the last mention of Glastonbury until the great ticket hunt for 2015.

Seems Glastonbury was a bit more hazy than first thought as I reviewed Toy as being on Saturday night when in fact it was Connan Mockasin performing in The Crows Nest. The review still stands and it indeed could cover Toy. Still haven’t managed to work out when I watched Toy in The Crows Nest. It was Wed/Thur/Fri. I think Friday. I am sure somebody will fill in that gap. So the gold head has been getting a bit of coverage. With at one point a friend of ours was trying to locate me by asking “You haven’t seen a six foot tall plus scouser with a gold head have you” not many of them knocking about and the evidence is below along with more proof that my hair might not be here after another five years of blogging.

Scouse C3PO


Little gaps I have missed is seeing a band called The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing. Stand out track here was “Jesus Was A Cockney” and the outstanding lyric “Jesus was a fucking cockney oh though he didn’t exist” Wednesday night I now have recollections of sitting in a Shisha bar smoking. Fancy being a non smoker and deciding to smoke that when other herbs are on the market !! Wednesday also provided me with the most congested DJ Booth I had ever seen and the random shout from the DJ “Don’t forget your Yeo Valley yoghurts” which was met with a chant back of “Yeoohh Yeohhh” So much more I have forgot that now slips into the void that is the post Glastonbury blues. Remembering artists I wanted to see that I had forgotten also not visiting the cabaret  tent and also believe it or not spending any time in the dance village. I am also fond of a Purple Aki flag as seen below. So the three highlights in no particular order.

Thursday night in Block 9 and not getting in to see David Morales pay tribute to Frankie Knuckles though as you can see from the panorama pic below outside was just as fun (Click on the panorama pic below)

Any time spent in The Crows Nest which is easily my fave part of Glastonbury and being in another zone when Connan Mockasin played.

Musically Massive Attack, Metronomy and Public Service Broadcasting are the three to remember.

So thats it no more Glastonbury. Great memories, some lost memories and Glastonbury 2014 was brought to you in association with Magners Cider, The Butty bar by “The Blues”, Biscuit Boost, The Tyskie Flag , The rain, The Mud and everyone on site. Until 2015 goodbye Glastonbury. (Click on any images below for a larger image)

Block 9 Glastonbury panorama

Mr and Mrs Fay Glastonbury 2014

Purple Aki flag Glastonbury

Tyskie flag Glastonbury

Glastonbury evil babies

Glastonbury mural

Glastonbury panorama



Could not let the viral video of the day go without a mention and the girl who lets just say wanted a free drink. I am glad there was no social media in 1994 when in Falaraki I put 24 hot dogs into my mouth and not even for a bevvy. No instant upload of images and film for the whole world to see then. I have watched the video and the only thing that shocked me is that she had a proper go on one or two of them ?? All joking aside one (24/25) moments of madness and this poor girls life is forever tainted if not ruined and it will be something that will haunt her for the rest of her life. Whilst this gets pushed into the news agenda (Did we really need to know and I am sure there are 50 year old swingers beating that this weekend but not making the news) we celebrate spunking £6.2 billion on a fucking boat yet how dare anybody have a spare bedroom and another celeb perv gets caught as the net closes in on the true level of abuse that has and still goes on.


Fay x x x x x x

Glastonbury 2014 Day 5

So with the rain gone and the temperature on the rise it was time to be sweated out of the tent early despite a late night. The usual sausage barm for fuel from our fave shop and then I bid the staff there farewell and told them see you in 2015. Next up was a walk to go and swap the mobile phone energy bar we had as Mrs Fay needed to be in contact with the outside world. Myself I was happy to not be a slave to the phone. I have cured my Facebook addiction by having no friends and only interests but I have now added Mrs Fay ha ha. I was blogging from my phone each morning but had to do so much on Sunday morning I didn’t have chance. A long walk to the car and back (Over an hour) to take half the stuff back as we had decided we were gonna get up at 5am and get up and out early thus avoiding any queues.  With all the bad stuff out of the way it was time to head out for one final push.

First up at Shangri Heaven was the New York Brass Band who are in fact from Yorkshire. They just rolled up on a small empty stage and started belting out some choons including some New Orleans tracks and chart hits “Happy”  and “Don’t You Want Me” played with just their various brass instruments and some vocals. It was here that Alan who was with me showed an alarming knowledge of the tartan S&M pants he reckoned the band were wearing ???

New York Brass Band


Next up and down to The West Holts Stage to see Public Service Broadcasting who were without doubt gadget freaks. Just the three of them a drummer, guitarist/banjo player/general sample wizard and finally the fella on visuals. All very smartly dressed including a dickie bow on the lead man. I can’t say vocalist because any voice is a sample including any vocal interaction with the crowd in between songs. Their mesmerising set had me hooked it was  a combination of the hypnotic beats and samples and the stunning visuals that went along with the tracks. Below is the self titled track “Public Service Broadcasting” from the set and see if you can spot me on the right of the screen at around 1:34 fully engrossed in the set.

Next up and a wander to Arcadia to see Jazzie B from Soul II Soul do a DJ set as the Soul II Soul sound system. By now the feet were starting to ache and rather than taking position under the main Arcadia DJ booth which is high up above you in a spider like construction that belts out flames we sat on the perimeter terrace occasionally getting up to dance with a belter remix of a Soul to Soul track including a Chic track, David Bowie “Let’s Dance” that always gets me up and I also can’t resist a bit of Ray Charles. An eclectic DJ set by Jazzie B and I invented a method of sit down dancing. As Jazzie B finished he climbed down from the giant metal construction and if we had gone their for a boogie I could have collared him and thanked him for the choons he had produced over the years (Is it really 25 years since Club Classics Volume I) and the set he had just played. Though I might have looked like a sad Soul II Soul stalker as I had one of my many Soul II Soul t-shirts on !

Soul II Soul sound system Glastonbury 2014

Next up and the hike back down to West Holts again to see The Wailers. Not sure how many of the original Wailers are in the band but a chance to listen to some Bob Marley tracks in the sun at Glastonbury was too good a chance to pass up. As expected there was a certain smoke odour around West Holts for that particular performance. So one last final push down to the other stage and I got there for the second to last set so I could maneuverer myself into a good speck for the headliner. This meant I had to endure a full set by Ellie Goulding. I can honestly say I didn’t know what she was going to look like and also didn’t know one song she sang. Is this the confirmation that I am no longer “Down with da yoof” or a certificate so say that your musical tastes are of top notch level that you don’t have to endure such noise on the ears. I waved the flag  to the odd track if I am to be honest. Just saying that in case the camera’s picked me up fully on getting down to Ms Goulding.

Other Stage Glastonbury sunset 2014

So the sun was setting on another Glastonbury, my final cider had been had (Drive home at 6am) and the headline act on the Other Stage were on and Massive Attack were to finish my festival this year. What a way to finish and what a back catalogue they have. Stand out tracks for me were “Safe From Harm” and “Teardrop” The massive track  “Unfinished Sympathy” never fails to thrill. Complete with moody visuals and subliminal messages being flashed up one of which was “Louis Suarez bites 8 people” there was sadly to be no encore and no coverage from BBC. Sadly “Hymn Of The Big Wheel” was not played and thankfully no version of “Live With Me” which had vocals from the late Terry Callier which is the song that sadly always reminds me of when my mum died and I think I might have melted into tears in the field if that had came on. Though maybe I might have just closed my eyes and had a special Glastonbury moment. Guess we will never know.

Massive Attack Glastonbury 2014

So that was that. One last walk back to the tent via a food stop for my traditional one and only burger and chips of the festival working on the principle that a liquid diet for five days is best as what goes in must come out and liquid is much more pleasant to pass. Another great festival, so many memories and moments. Still some to be recalled which I will do in a final round up blog. Great company as well with Mrs Fay, Alan and his daughter Amy (Making her Glastonbury debut) Helen, Ali (Another Glastonbury debut) and Patrick and also the numerous elder teenage kids that were on camp with us. Too many to mention and frankly they did not want to hang around with the old bastards which is cool as that lets the old bastards do what the teenagers are doing ha ha.


Fay x x x x x

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