Tuesday, 24 June 2014


So, things have been a little quiet on the gigging and other fronts recently, but here we are, mid year, the longest day has just come and gone and that got me thinking, well reminiscing really I suppose, thinking back to those long hot summers of my youth and about some of the first festivals I ever went to, Watchfield, several Stonehenge festivals until it all went so wrong, and then, lo and behold, out of the blue, my great friend, Poet, Author, all round brother in spirit Ledger De La Bald ups and sends me an e-mail with a link to a BBC article all about Stonehemge festival and the infamous 'Battle of the Bean field' and the second picture in is our old mates from Berkshire!

If you are interested in such things and if you missed it here is a link to the article:-

A group of musicians provide at entertainment at the Stonehenge Free Festival in 1980

We used to have fun there back then, some of us didn't abuse the land, some of us even cleared up afterwards!

With these days in mind, back in 2009 I wrote this:-

I never hallucinate; I just see things that are not there.

Back then, tomorrow seemed an eternity away
We listened to whatever each other had to say
Those pub filled days and hashish nights
Anything was possible, putting the world to rights

We never set out to do any harm
We were young and foolish and had yet to learn
Nothing we did in reality mattered
Illusions we built in time were shattered

And still turns the world in its infinite variations
Our chants our dreams our mystic incantations
Lay smashed against the wall of time’s reality
But it failed to smother our inherent creativity

Instead of changing the world we changed ourselves
Beliefs hidden away like dusty books on forgotten shelves
We kicked against societies doors
Were we pawns in the game or political whores?

We were ether trying to get in or desperate to get out
Caught within a time trap without a doubt
Sold down the river by a right wing legacy
Thatcherism evolved into ‘New Labour’ heresy

Do we still retain a spark of our anarchic socialism?
Or are we divided now by a much wider schism?
All those nights talking endlessly until sunrise
I remember once being horrified and surprised
At the shit filled detritus, destruction and mess
That the free festival ‘Travellers’ just upped and left

We stayed behind to clear up and lend nature a hand
Stuff the ’Freedom’ ; you don’t do this to the land
And we watched our day jobs slip through our nicotine stained fingers
Even after years had passed, it left a bad taste which lingers

I’m inside the system working my way out of this reality
It’s a sign of aging but then again maybe, of a reasoned maturity
Rekindling a spark of the dream that wrongly or rightly
Was held with a passion and once burned so brightly

It’s more than a dream, it’s a lifetime philosophy
And it’s one I‘m now sure that I’ll be carrying with me
Until I burn out like a candle and have faded from memory.

Grant Meaby


The above poem was set to music by Dutch composer & musician Paul Oomes and narrated by the late, great, Ron Hiles, writer, narrator, broadcaster, critic and all round brilliant chap and was used in support of the charity My Breath, My Music which helps children with cystic fibrosis to help overcome their problems by learning and playing wind instruments etc. Not because I wrote the words but because of what it all stands for and in memory of Ron I think it deserves a wider airing, anyway, enjoy:-

If any of you are interested in the history of the 70's free festivals then the following site is well worth a read, somewhere in there I have a short article about Watchfield:-

It will soon be time to get back to the odd gig review and the festival season will soon be upon us, for many it's already started, have a great summer one and all but for now, so long until the next time.

Grant - June 2014

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