ANYONE can stick a few speakers, a stage and some coffee outlets in a field – but it is the glimpses of magic that make for a truly memorable weekend.
And Love Supreme has managed to capture quite a lot of it.
Yesterday was a complete dream – the sun shone on Glynde Place as a gentle breeze caressed the brightly coloured flags dotted around the site. The feeling among my fellow campers was jubilant – laughter and chat filled the air from morning until night.
On a side note – the campsite at this style of event is where future stories are made, the atmosphere unlike anywhere else in the world. A hallowed ground, almost. So, I would argue that unless you are a family with young children, the Premium Camping option, with around 20 tents dotted throughout a huge field, is pointless – and soulless.
Otherwise – this weekend has been a hugely successful return after a two-year hiatus.
I spent the day wandering the site, discovering new bands and listening to some cracking tunes – jazz, funk, soul, and a bit of swing in there from Joe Stilgoe and The Entertainers. Joe opened up the main stage, and did so with impeccable style. Not many people can pull off a sequin jacket, but our Joe can. And his band are equally cool.
Jon Cleary at the South Downs stage was a great way to spend a Saturday, too.
Moving to New Orleans from the UK at just 17, he has come to embody everything that is cool about the city. His style of rhythm and blues is unparalleled, his command of the tone is unlike anything I have seen. And his ability to make an entire tent throw some horrendous dance moves just after midday is a talent to be praised.
But it is not just about the music. There is some fantastic food here, too. Falafel salad, iced coffee – you name it. For me, the winner was a gorgeous chicken, chorizo and chickpea wrap – in fact I am off for another once this review is written.
The day went by rather too quickly - the sun was dropping behind the main stage by this point, and the evening was beckoning. It was time for Tom Misch - the album cover of his latest record, What Kinda Music, was projected on to the stage, filling it with lovely hues of warm reds and orange.
Tom took us through his now extensive catalogue of tunes, a peppering of early work was a treat too. But the real surprise came when Yussef Dayes – with whom Tom recorded What Kinda Music – took to the stage, and again when Tom’s sister, Laura, joined us for a track. What a day.
Heading in to the night – we caught Franc Moody at the South Downs tent. The London duo are a modern day Jamiroquai, without the weird hats. I have never understood why Jay Kay wore those things. And Daft Punk with those stupid helmets. Weird.
Franc Moody are all about funk. They ooze it. It is just properly good dance music which stacks up against the best in the business – the perfect set up before heading off to dance the night away.
And so, the final day, and it is looking a little cloudy, but hopefully it holds out. We’ve got a day packed with stars. Nubiya Garcia will be fantastic, as will The Brand New Heavies.
But there is one reason we are all here: Sister Sledge. Party time.