Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Artrocker Awards 2011

Artrocker Awards 2011

Award ceremonies are a strange thing. I’ve never been in any situation professionally where being invited to such a thing would even be a possibility let alone a yearly event in the calendar. This year though I had managed to get my name inked on the press list and along with a band interview with the excellent Jim Jones Revue I would manage to see what went on when the cameras stopped rolling.

First of all like most things, the anticipation of the event and the eventual reality are very different. People segregate into small groups and pretend to talk to each other while scanning the room for more important people to talk to, while those looking dishevelled and tired tend to be either the latest rock and roll casualty or simply one of the roadies who’ve spent the last 20 minutes lugging equipment up the back stairs for ungrateful guitarists and drummers alike.

Look and demeanour seems to be something of great importance at these events and as I have recently started wearing glasses due to my 30 year old body recently starting to fail on me at an alarming rate and my needle point precision eye sight now being demoted into cartoon mole-like aimlessness, for tonights celebrations suitable corrective vision is needed. Obviously when matched with red jeans, low dropping neck line and a shirt hanging for dear life over my mid life paunch it seems a wonder that a few people with cameras must have assumed I was someone worth photographing (I’m really not)at least film has generally been replaced with memory sticks so nothing wasted there.

A few familiar faces were seen milling around the free bar although up close and personal a good 90% of these ‘stars’ were as cringe worthy as a Ricky Gervais comedy and as bland as a mash potato filled jacket potato, although it is still fun to spot people you recognise only from magazines and from on TV. I will say hand on my heart I thought award ceremonies were about showing appreciation to the bands and artists and their work throughout the year, celebrating ‘best albums’, ‘best breakthrough artists’ etc. Where as the reality seems to be just blatant networking, manly bear-hugs filled with fake sincerity and then to top off the evening a whole tee-pee’s worth of smoke that will be then blown up the new teen idols relevant backsides at any occasion possible to help the gangs of sycophants to keep their jobs for another 24 hours.

The drinks were free, there were free clothes on offer, no food of course as eating is cheating and the clothes only come in Small and Medium (this is the reason why I was probably handed a scarf rather than a slim fitting shirt…) back to bar I go. Many good books have been written in jail and even more sitting upon a barstool and although back slapping and congratulating is fun and can be worthwhile to boost a persons confidence surely if the biggest enjoyment I get personally is writing the pieces or reviews for you the good reader to enjoy I would assume that for these bands and artists the enjoyment and creative buzz from the ‘making’ far outweighs the award ceremonial ‘come down’ 5 months later in a darkened venue.

Highlights: IC1s heckling everyone within ear shot, free bar, The Jim Jones Revue, Gruff Rhys, Tim Burgess 'so deadpan and uncomfortable' thank you speech, trendy boys wearing free trilbies and acting like they didn’t notice the 10 other people wearing them as well.

Lowlights: Tom Vek NOT winning, Plan B’s awkward ‘speech’, everyone being so serious all the time, strangely trimmed facial hair, an alarming amount of people drinking soft drinks…whatever happened to my rock and roll?

My interview with The Jim Jones Revue will follow up next week...

many thanks to Ric Rawlins, Georgia Camp and Ronnie Joice

1 comment:

  1. Hey there! Sorry if commenting here is not the appropriate way to get in touch with you, but I'd like you to invite to check out Songs For The Sleepwalkers.

    We are a indie-folk / alternative band from Sweden, and wehave a debut album coming next january.

    We just released a couple of songs as a preview of the record, along with our first ever videoclip!

    See the video, listen to the song and find more info here:


    It would be great if you d like to feature the band and help us get the word out about what we do in any way you like :-)

    Thanks, and greetings from Sweden!