This year the festival hub was at The Albion pub on the Seafront in Hastings Old Town. It provided a great meeting place where there were also impromptu gigs and performances. Tickets were available for the few ticketed events such as the world famous James Taylor Quartet playing on Thursday 4th February at The Albion with guest DJ Simon Ham.
As with previous years, most events were free entry. The 2016 Hastings Fat Tuesday Music Festival Launch Party kicked off at The Albion on Friday the 5th, with a set by the irrepressible folk punk band Matilda’s Scoundrels. Friday saw the return of the UnConvention music seminar to be held at The Printworks as a one day event between 10.30am and 6pm. Loads of great guests with 4 panels covering various local, national and international issues facing the music industry today. Saturday saw a return of the Unplugged Tour – Musicians of all types take over the streets to perform 15 minute acts in pubsand restaurants throughout the Old Town. With everything from acoustic metal to folk to a string quartet, you’ll never know who’s going to turn up next. Saturday evening saw Venues on George Street host the popular Grande Mardi Gras Ball. Wild costumes and rocking R&B mandatory. The Sonic Sunday “Avant Garde” event of music and performance started at the Observer Building on Cambridge Road and carried on though into the evening at The Print Works on Claremont. Monday night at the Albion had our old friend King Size Slim playing his usual pre-Mardi Gras set at “Slim Monday”. Sunday meant the spectacular Umbrella parade – starting at the chess square at 12 noon and following the band to the Observer Building in Hastings Town Centre for an afternoon of music and fun. Then it’s Fat Tuesday itself! All the pubs were bursting, great music playing throughout the evening and the energy had to be experienced to be believed! Bands as usual chosen for their sheer entertainment value whatever genre of music they play and everyone had a great time even if they all feel a bit naughty as it’s a school night! With the legendary after party running into the small hours at The Brass Monkey and Grande Electra Clubs, those that made it to the end knew they had experienced a true Hastings experience!