Last weekend Boardmasters was back. After a two-year absence, 50,000 people returned to Newquay for the surf and music festival. And it felt good! I was there again for Cornwall Live, and it felt pretty amazing to be back on the site overlooking Cornwall’s coastline, listening to the music and seeing the joy upon peoples faces.
As I walked through the main entrance on Friday with Kieran from Clunk Magazine, we were like excited kids. Glad to be back, doing what we love and seeing many friends that we’d not seen since Boardmasters 2018.
But, emotions aside. Let’s talk about the music. Friday at Boardmasters 2021 saw Foals finally headlining the main stage and Kano delivering a blistering set in the Land of the Saints tent. Sam Fender drew a huge crowd and one of the stand out sets of the day.
Also on Friday, there was Lianne LaHavas, Georgia, Koyey Radical and Jade Bird.
Saturday brought the sunshine and more amazing performances. As far as locations go, you cannot beat Boardmasters. It’s set overlooking Watergate Bay and Newquay and when that sun is shining, you don’t want to be anywhere else.
Musically, the day kicked off for me with the Snuts, before heading over to Land of the Saints for Chubby & the Gang. A band I’ve loved listening to on 6music and was eager to see. It was punk rock at its best with singer Charlie swigging from a bottle of whiskey. Yo-yoing between stages we were back to the main stage for an impressive performance from Inhaler who proved that rock n roll is in the blood. And then back to LofS for Do Nothing. I really wished I could have seen more of their set, but more legwork to see Ocean Wisdom and local legends the Rezner.
Another band I wished I could have seen more of was Django Django, but it was time for Gorillaz. It’s been 20 years since their debut album, and they’ve been on my live bucket list for a long time. It was the first set of the weekend that I actually saw all of. First from the pit as we shot it and then from the back of the crowd as I took in the stunning visuals that the band had. Singer Damon Albarn managed to slip off the stage, which meant that I’ve now seen him fall off a stage with both blur and Gorillaz!
Highlights of their set was ‘On Melancholy Hill’ and Momentary Bliss, the latter seeing them joined by Slaves and Slowthai.
Sunday for me was the best day, both musically and the atmosphere. Jorja Smith headlined but it was Arlo Park’s set that stole the day (and weekend). It was just magical. The tent was packed and the crowd sang every word. It was also the first time that I’ve seen most of the media team stay to watch a performance after we’ve finished shooting.
Again it was back to back sets with Katy J Pearson, The Mysterines, the Big Moon, Futureheads, Easy Life and Dizzee Rascal. All were just amazing. I loved being there.
Boardmasters 2021 was an emotional ride, but positive emotion. I didn’t tire of seeing the face’s I’ve missed for the last few years and the new friends made. But I want to give thanks and kisses on both cheeks to Lee Trewehela at Cornwall Live for having me along to shoot again. It is always a pleasure.
To Alex Sutton PR and her team. No amount of thanks is enough for the support and hard work from you all.
And finally the media team, I miss you all already! Until next year!