Steve Lamacq and Huw Stephens to celebrate Independent Venue Week 2024

From Monday 29 January - Friday 2 February, 6 Music once again takes the tour bus around the UK

Steve Lamacq and Huw Stephens take their new BBC Radio 6 Music shows on the road to celebrate Independent Venue Week 2024

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BBC Radio 6 Music

Today, on the first episode of Steve Lamacq’s Teatime Session (Mondays, 4-7pm, on BBC Radio 6 Music), Steve was joined by Huw Stephens (Tuesdays - Fridays, 4-7pm) to announce 6 Music’s plans to celebrate Independent Venue Week 2024 - the UK’s annual, seven-day celebration of venues and the people that own, run and work in them.

From Monday 29 January - Friday 2 February, 6 Music once again takes the tour bus around the UK, with Steve and Huw broadcasting their 4-7pm shows from a different independent venue each day, bringing listeners performances from those sites by artists including Ash, 86TVs, NewDad, Picture Parlour, English Teacher and Antony Szmierek.

Steve will be at Oh Yeah Music Centre in Belfast on Monday 29 January, ahead of an Independent Venue Week performance from Ash.

Huw will be presenting his show from: Whistle Binkies in Edinburgh (Tuesday 30 January) where 86TVs will perform later that night; The Fulford Arms in York (Wednesday 31 January) ahead of a gig from NewDad; Polar Bear Music Club in Hull (Thursday 1 February) where English Teacher will be playing; The Rockin’ Chair in Wrexham (Friday 2 February) before a live set from Antony Szmierek.

The artists will join Steve and Huw during their 4-7pm shows for intimate live performances and interviews across the week.

As a part of 6 Music’s programming, listeners can attend two exclusive intimate live performances on Monday 29 January in Belfast with Ash and on Friday 2 February in Wrexham with Antony Szmierek. Listeners can apply for free tickets via a ballot here. Applications close at 23:59 on Monday 15 January. Successful applicants will be selected at random once the registration period has closed.

Also appearing at the gigs each night will be artists supported by BBC Music Introducing: Problem Patterns (Oh Yeah Music Centre, Belfast), Grace & The Flat Boys (Whistle Binkies, Edinburgh), Kindelan (The Fulford Arms, York), Jodie Langford (Polar Bear Music Club, Hull) and Picture Parlour (The Rockin’ Chair, Wrexham).

Steve Lamacq says: “Independent Venue Week is always a great opportunity to spotlight the importance of our smaller venues. But this year, with hundreds of grassroots venues facing up to rent increases, rising energy costs and other cost of living pressures, I think it’s even more crucial to celebrate the role they play, not just in nurturing new talent but bringing local musical communities together.

“There'll be hundreds of gigs all over the country, from some established, or soon to be well known names, as well as a terrific range of newcomers who are well worth a look. I really hope it encourages fans to get out and see a gig and support their local promoters.”

Huw Stephens says: “Independent venues are vital places for music to thrive and exist. Where would we be without our favourite gig venues? I have packed my socks and toothbrush, and am very excited to be coming to Edinburgh, York, Hull and Wrexham, picking up from Steve in Belfast, with some of the best live artists about. It's a tough time for a lot of venues at the moment, and I hope the week of shows from these venues can remind us all of their importance, and how special they are.”

Samantha Moy, Head of BBC Radio 6 Music, says: “At 6 Music, we’re very proud of our long-standing partnership with Independent Venue Week, as we too care passionately about providing artists with spaces to emerge and grow. I’m looking forward to a fantastic series of programmes from Steve and Huw broadcast from around the UK, full of live music and stories celebrating the important work that these venues do, all year round.”

All programmes will be available to listen to live on BBC Sounds and for 30 days after their broadcast on BBC Radio 6 Music.

About the artists

Northern Irish rock band Ash was formed in County Down in 1992 by vocalist and guitarist Tim Wheeler, bassist Mark Hamilton and drummer Rick McMurray. They released their first mini-album Trailer in 1994, followed by their first full-length album 1977 (1996) which was named by NME as one of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

86TVS comprises former members of The Maccabees (Felix, Will and Hugo White) and Jamie Morrison (who is known for drumming with The Noisettes and Stereophonics). Their singles include Worn Out Buildings (2023) and Higher Love (2023).

NewDad are a rock band from Galway, Ireland. Since forming in 2018, the group have appeared at the Green Man Festival in Wales, and the Pitchfork Music Festival in Paris. Their debut EP, Waves, was released in March 2021, followed by the EP Banshee (2022) and their debut album MADRA (2023).

English Teacher are an indie/post-punk band from Leeds featuring Lily Fontaine (vocals, guitar, synth), Nick Eden (bass), Douglas Frost (drums, vocals) and Lewis Whiting (lead guitar). Their releases include 2023 single, The World’s Biggest Paving Slab, and 2021 single, R&B.

Antony Szmierek had his first ever radio play on Craig Charles’ 6 Music show (weekdays 1pm-4pm) and he has since had tracks including How Did You Get Here?, The Words To Auld Lang Syne and Twist Forever (with Jacana People) appear on the 6 Music Playlist. The spoken word and indie hip-hop artist performed at Band on the Wall in Manchester for the opening night of this year’s 6 Music Festival 2023. He made his UK TV debut on BBC Two’s Later…with Jools Holland in October 2023.

Steve Lamacq’s Teatime Session will see Steve bring listeners his favourite new and classic tracks, as well as live sessions from established bands and emerging artists.

Huw’s show will see him share the music he loves - past, current, live and recorded - with listeners. He will focus on new discoveries and current music obsessions whilst celebrating the alternative music 6 Music listeners love.

Huw’s programme will be broadcast from BBC Central Square, Cardiff as part of the BBC’s Across the UK plans, allowing the BBC to better reflect, represent and serve all audiences. He will continue to present a weekly show on BBC Radio Wales every Monday (7-10pm) and his Welsh language show on BBC Radio Cymru every Thursday (7-9pm).

About BBC Radio 6 Music

With a reach of 2.8 million listeners (Rajar Q3, 2023), 6 Music brings a broad range of music and culture beyond the mainstream to music lovers with a curious spirit, combining the cutting-edge music of today with the iconic, ground-breaking sounds of the past 50 years. Presenters include: AFRODEUTSCHE, Amy Lamé, Cerys Matthews, Chris Hawkins, Craig Charles, Deb Grant, Don Letts, Gideon Coe, Gilles Peterson, Guy Garvey, Huw Stephens, Huey Morgan, Iggy Pop, Jamz Supernova, Lauren Laverne, Marc Riley, Mark Radcliffe, Mary Anne Hobbs, Nathan Shepherd, SHERELLE, Steve Lamacq, Stuart Maconie, Tom Ravenscroft and Tom Robinson.

BBC Radio 6 Music as the official broadcast partner for Independent Venue Week (IVW), an annual seven-day nationwide celebration of independent music and arts venues featuring a series of special live events across the UK to highlight the work these venues do year-round and the vital role they play for artists, the industry, and the local community. IVW is championed by a different Ambassador every year – with English Teacher as Artist Ambassadors for 2024 – and which have previously included Colin Greenwood (Radiohead), Arlo Parks, Anna Calvi, Adrian Utley (Portishead), Nadine Shah, Wolf Alice and Wet Leg. More details at www.independentvenueweek.com/uk/.

January 9, 2024 4:00am ET by BBC Radio 6 Music  

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