Wednesday, 11 April 2012

A change of scenery for Yard Life.

It was looking as dodgy as a Derek Trotter promise, but back from the flames, Jen Lloyd has discovered a stunning new venue that could even be better than the last. Don't worry, it's nowhere near the Nelson Mandela Estate, Peckham, but at the breathtaking scenery of St John at Hackney Church on Lower Clapton Road.

It may have been pushed back a week to the fifth of May, but that gets us past the April showers and into a bank holiday weekend where we have a Monday to rest our aching heads.

Yard Life has been moved from the Hackney Downs Studios due to behind the scenes shenanigans that aren't worth getting into, but don't cry into your computer screens, the news is good and the festival is still on!

The artists are still twiddling their brushes, Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair has packed their best tweed and lace for your pickings, the cakes are being iced, the tea brewed, the incredible musicians are stringing their guitars, and perhaps most importantly, Mr Peter Doherty has booked his seat on the Eurostar. We've heard he's even having an early night on the Friday just for you lucky ticket holders.

Doors open at 11am, and believe me, you won't have to pray for an action filled day. Come and stroll around the gardens and the concept stores. Ladies, and the long haired pretty boys in the band, get your faces put on in the powder room.

Get a cup of rosy, buy a vintage posy, have a nosy at the fine art, and then chill, drink until the music starts.

Yard Life is dedicated to making as much money as it can for an incredibly worthy charity close to its heart. It's not all about egos, backstage passes, VIPs posing in their Hunter wellies and the battle of the RayBans. It's about passion, a love for music and most importantly having a good time.

The line up is worth its weight in gold. Up and coming artists, musicians who are no stranger to the London scene playing for kicks and beer, but musicians who are worth paying to see, the Yard Life DJs spinning 50s Rock and Roll, Electro and party classics, and of course, the original Libertine, Billy Bilo.

Guys, the venue may have changed, the date may have changed, but the message hasn't.

'London Loves Yard Life'

Check out all the latest news at

Saturday, 7 April 2012

The Lauriston Loves Yard Life

A string of warm up gigs that get the mouth watering,
Talented musicians that get the ears ringing,
Tireless DJs spinning timeless classics that get the crowd singing.

It's Spring 2012, it's Hackney E9, but it feels like the 60s, and a fun loving time.
Tight jeans, tuned guitars, and loud amps in a packed East London bar.
The Cockney trendset spend their hard earned cash,
On hard earned spritzers at this free music bash.

Yard Life at the Lauriston fuses music and dance,
Up and coming artists looking for a chance,
A chance to prove their worth and their unrivalled passion,
To mix catchy tunes in a vibrant London fashion.

The lights are dim and the eye shadow dark,
Long haired lovers and musicians trying to make their mark,
On a crowd of faces, on a music loving room,
As the red lipped girls listen and the young lads swoon,
At the boys in the band, with G and T in hand,
As they tap their feet to the beat, those Yard Life bands,
Eliza, Pablo, and the NCG, plug in their guitars for a glimpse of what will be,
On April 28th, down in Hackney Town, where it's not about the money,
But about discovering new sounds.

Acoustic songs, a folk inspired drone, an Indie feeling with a Rock overtone.
I watched from the rafters like some sheepskin tearaway,
Took off my hat to hear the acts play,
To hear them sing, to watch them sway.
Taken back to a decade of pioneers,
When young guitarists were loved and always cheered,
Wherever they roamed, wherever they played,
And it seemed at the Lauriston this wouldn't fade.

It was a night to let the music do the talking, let the DJs do their work,
Let the records keep on coming, and let the bands flirt,
With the 1960s, with the dawn of Rock and Roll,
When London Town was swinging, and music was in our soul.

So with a tilt of the hat to Dylan, Hendrix and the Stones,
We check our emails daily, we check our 21st century phones,
For a ticket from Yard Life;
So just sit, wait, and smoke your cigarette to the bone.
An invite should be coming to the fresh new music event of the year
And I heard that a certain Peter Doherty might be there...........

So Let's hope for a warm and gentle summer breeze, and hopefully,
You'll meet me in London Town for music and tea.

Check out all the latest news on this brand new festival coming to Hackney Downs Studios on April 28th, at

Photographs by Kate Ford

Monday, 12 March 2012

Drowning men catch at straws

I may seem cold and pretend I'm not there, but when your head is turned I sit and stare;
at your smile that could melt me away, so many words but not sure how to say,
that I need you here and without your love I would jump and drown.
I'm not sure I can swim but my heart is too heavy and the worries are with me, there are far too many.
So stick by my side like my gold plated cane and talk me to sleep or I might go insane;
sick of the world, sick of the darkness, tired of the staring, cursed by the ghouls; old and luckless.

I may seem cold and pretend to be distant, but I promise one thing, without your kiss I'm gone in an instant.

I can't move my toes and my strides aren't as tight and I struggle to juggle or climb on my bike.
My head got messed up like that lorry's back wheel;
It's full of bad dreams, concrete and steel.
I can't catch that bus and I can't catch a break,
I can't see a future, like that trucker saw me late.
They dragged me to the court like I was dragged down the road,
I'm edgy and neurotic, I'm on defence mode.
But I can't see it getting better, I can't see the light, but I'm ready for the marathon and always up for the fight.

I'm gonna turn back the clock to relive my youth, to forget about the accident and to forget the truth.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Pill Popping Prossie

You're as game as a badger with loose morals and looser stockings,

But that smile on your face got the good time boys flocking.

He was alone with too much time on his hands,

Whilst you were surrounded by your infatuated fans.

But you had washed your hands of the good old days,

When you drank till you were drunk, but never had to pay.

You were an easy lay with money on the hip,

Popping pills, looking for your next trip.

So slip on your panties and cover your cheeks,

Tie up your bows and go catch some sleep.

You're a whore to money and a pimp to his soul,

Picking up dollars whilst he's on the dole.

You can use your charms and get what you want,

Get what you need but without having to flaunt.

Those loose morals and those looser stockings.

So go to him, cos they've all stopped flocking.

Whitechapel Wino

Caught up in the shadows,

Feral and all alone.

Despised by the London masses;

They stop, they stare, they moan.

Like a pigeon with a limp,

Like a stray with a bone.

Overlooked by many;

Refused a shilling loan.

Struggling to make ends meet,

To stay upon his feet.

Wrapped up in a blanket, keeping in the heat.

A Whitechapel wino, not a friend to his name;

Gin and scraps he lives on, to support his tiny frame.

And as the smog engulfs his backyard,

And as the Bow Runners chase him on.

I don't know where he comes from, I don't know his name.

Sitting by the fruit stalls,

As the gentry swan on by;

No emotion on his face,

He neither smiles, laughs or cries.

Living by the opium pipe;

Can only numb the pain.

It may hide the heartbreak,

But won't keep out the rain.

Staring through the Inn window;

Sprawled upon the frosty street.

An hour feels like a day;

A day feels like a week.

A Whitechapel wino, no belongings to his name;

Gin and scraps he lives on; his tiny body lame.

And as the smog makes him breathless,

And as the Bow Runners chase him on.

I don't know where he comes from, I don't even know his name.