Image C/O Grassington Festival/Craven Herald

One of the things many people say about Hope and Social is that we’re “good at that fan-engagement stuff”. For example, on Public Transport Day last year, Hope and Social did The Grassington Run, a travelling event with 50 revellers joining H&S for their journey from Leeds (by train, bus, steam-train, walk and open-topped bus) to get to their Town Hall performance at Grassington Festival.

This year, we’re going one step further.

For this years Grassington Festival we were asked to involve the community in a performance. On the 15th of June we are playing at Grassington Town Hall (event details & tickets available here). Our performance that night will involve up to a hundred wonderful inhabitants of Grassington, who’ll be joining us onstage as we headline the Saturday the 15th to play instruments and sing with us. For that night they are part of our band. They will be a key part of our performance. If they fall, we fall.

It’s a bit of an unknown for us to be honest. We have our fingers crossed. For the last month we have been working with the good people of Grassington in pubs, community centres and village halls; gathering participants of all ages and abilities. We’ve been distributing instruments. We’ve been recruiting from every part of Grassington culture, and we’ve had amazing responses such as one of the Grassington Ladies Rounders team, the Divas, exclaiming in the pub… “#*%$ ME! I can’t believe I just played a musical instrument!” As we enter the last month it’s all starting to get very exciting…

Before we go any further, if you are part of a group (or an individual) based in Grassington and are interested in getting involved email us for details or just pop along to one of the sessions listed over here or email katebeard@grassington-festival.org.uk. If you’re in a large group you should deffo email Kate first. Some of the sessions are already busy but we would LOVE for you to be involved so get in contact.

For the Grassington Branch of Hope and Social (plus anyone who wants chords to our songs, or wants to know more about the project), there’s another blog post for you over here with all the music (to listen to, and to read and learn), and instructions you need for the show. For anyone else interested, feel free to have a download, and hey presto, you’ve got the chords and parts so you can play our tunes in your bedroom, with friends or even make your own Hope and Social covers gig.

Download music for A Band Anyone Can Join HERE!

Download music for A Band Anyone Can Join HERE!

Andrew Dubber has written a lovely post about the many and varied kind of things we do over here, but for anyone who is new to Hope and Social in a live setting, it’s often the stuff where we get our crowd playing kazoos, tuned bells, or singing along with us that sticks in their mind. A Band Anyone Can Join comes out of that, and from the joy we all get as band members when we see some of the enjoyment we get from performing with people reflected in the eyes of people taking an active part in a great sounding, awesome looking gig; a proper show. It also comes from our love of helping people to do things they think they can’t do. Play a musical instrument in front of people, sing in public, run on the spot for the 15 minutes etc…

We’re looking forward to it. See you there.

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