Last weekend saw over 100 artists, 80,000 people, and our good selves descent upon Strathallan Castle for Scotland's biggest music festival; T in the Park! Once again we recruited some of the finest talent playing across the T Break stage over the weekend to keep a T in the Park Diary for Scottish Fiction.
Sporting perhaps the most unique name of the weekend, not to mention the closest name to Thundercats character, Schnarff Schnarff topped the bill on the T Break stage on Friday night. Myles Bonner from the Inverness quintet kept track of the weekend for Scottish Fiction.
Thursday 9th July
Tin the Park started a little early for Schnarff Schnarff when Thunder, Turtle and I had to head out to the campsite on the Thursday evening. We waited in two hours of traffic, picked up our passes at West Gate and headed onto the shuttle bus which took us round twice and dropped us off at the West Gate. We proceeded to walk for 30 minutes until we eventually found a free spot to set up camp for the band and all our pals. We weren't going to staff camp when so many of our folk had bought tickets so we trekked until we found the sublime BLUE 1 section which ended up being class. It was close enough to the atmosphere without having a paralytic person flatten your tent… like many sections. We set up and then made our way back to Glasgow (half panicking that someone would nick our seven tents and gazebo!)
Friday 10th July
Full of excitement and some serious fear, I started the van as we set up on a convoy to Strathallan… Not before getting a team picture obviously.
We arrived after facing a few hours traffic but we were so buzzing that we couldn't care less. Upon arrival at the staff car park at West Gate we found our crew member, Jamie Fleming, pissed-as-a-newt, sprawled out on a fold out chair and half a crate of ciders (he had arrived a few hours earlier than we planned).
With everyone meeting up and getting their performer wristbands, we made our way across the mud to the heights of Blue 1 where everyone soon realised how important it was that we had set up camp the night before… It was rammed!
We sat down in the gazebo and watched our family and friends get cracked into the festival drink supplies while we watched as tee-totallers in anticipation for our biggest gig to date. We don't drink before gigs usually so we weren't going to start now, even though I will admit, it was a very trying atmosphere to stay sober! Class weather, everyone together, we counted down the minutes until we would headline the famous T Break stage!
We went to see Hozier, among other bands, while we counted down the time to stage time and then eventually separated from the TeamSchnarff to the band wagon so we could get our amps, guitars and drum breakables to T Break.
This wasn't an ideal situation as we moved the equipment from the van, trekked across the mud and then clambered onto a shuttle bus which proceeded to take us round the campsite to T Break stage which was, we found out, 200 yards from where we got on in the first place!
We sat our gear down in the tent, met with John-Paul Mason and Craig Johnston from DF Concerts while downing free Highland Spring to calm the nerves. The time flew backstage as we had interviews with Clyde 1 and Tenement TV. We filled out our PRS forms, told the filters what tracks we wanted recorded and then were summoned to set up out stage after a great set from the lads from Dead Man Fall.
The stage was incredible was everything I wanted. Great equipment, lights and it was big enough to roam about - something I do because I enjoy it and it helps me engage the crowd more. I like to pick out the whites of people's eyes so I know they are listening! In a flash, we were on-stage and it was time.
We opened the set with our set Desk and the crowd who had decided to choose us over David Guetta, Mark Ronson and Kasabian got into it straight away. The tent was not rammed by any means but it was busier than we can possibly have expected considering being relatively unheard of but competing with the Friday big headliners!
It was incredible, we did ourselves proud. Only had a few niggles in our 30 minute set but we all left feeling like we earned some new fans who, less face it, were probably there just because of our random name! We hugged each other, got a photo with a few new faces who loved the set and then were ushered out of the tent with our gear, still high as kites from playing the amazing T in the Park!
That high that we had worked so hard for was quickly extinguished when some crossed wires led us to a bus stop which was no longer active because the roads are closed each night at 11pm (WE FINISHED OUR SET AT 10.50pm!)
We weren't allowed to store our amps so stood in the pissing rain with £4,000 worth of equipment. With no help anywhere, we were blessed to bump into our good pals Hector Bizerk who, along with the legends who work backstage at the BBC Introducing, quickly ran over to help us save our stuff. Audrey from the Hector Bizerk emptied the back seats of her van and quickly filled her Fiat until everything was protected. We begged for access to the staff roads and eventually managed to get to our Renault Traffic with our beloved equipment intact! Audrey, you are a legend!
The feeling of being a T in the Park headliner had quickly dissolved when we were left in the rain BUT the excitement soon grew again once we had loaded our amps and gear, and sat, enjoying a cold beer as a quintet! It finally sank in; we played FUCKING T IN THE PARK!
We met with the rest of the group, phoned our parents and loved ones and got clean on it into the early hours of Saturday morning.
Saturday 11th July - Monday 13th July
We camped, we drank, we sung, we shouted and we saw the most incredible bands smash T in the Park's first year at Strathallan. Everyone was so up for it that the weekend was mashed into one big blur of bands, hilarity and fun! It was just class.
With the stress of setting up camp, playing such an important gig and then saving our equipment, we could now relax and have a complete blow out. Wolf Alice, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Everything Everything and Annie Mac were stand-outs for me. Here a picture of our bassist Thunder, our crew member Jamie, and myself enjoying the rest of our muddy, camping, incredible weekend. It was that good that I am still coughing!