Born & Bred Festival set in Haggerston Park, East London was the first festival to take place by promoters Found who already host a variety of other festivals across London. This one was one made for me and bass lovers, as it specialised in Grime, Drum & Bass, Dub, Jungle, Garage and more with a plethora of artists with a distinction in each of those genres.
The four stages were prominent when we walked in, The Main Stage with headliners from different musical backgrounds, Just Jam (the Grime one), Swamp 81 (a music label set up by Loefah) and Wavey Garmz (a lot of Garage). Starting at 11am, I missed The Square, Grime’s favourite upcoming crew from Lewisham. Unfortunately this was a bit too early for me as I arrived at 2.30pm.
I headed straight for a drink as the sun was beating down on Saturday and needed to quench my thirst! Checking the line up on my phone whilst by the main stage I heard the sounds of The Heatwave for a bit who gave an Carival-esque set with Bashment & Dancehall blaring from the speakers and a host to who was getting the crowd hyped.
[Photo Credit: Marc Sethi]
Wavy Garmz was where I went to hear some old skool riddims from the likes of Oxide & Neutrino from So Solid crew, who really took me back in time with their 2 step tunes and a crowd sing-a-long to their crew anthem from So Solid.
I headed to Just Jam to catch the mighty Sir Spyro on the decks drop some classic bangers, with ad lib Grime legend Flirta. The crowd was so hyped when he touched the mic. We headed back afterwards to watch one of Grime’s favourite and famous duos, Newham Generals who graced us with new tunes from their EP ‘N To The Gs’ such as ‘Levels’ and old school classics such as ‘Hard’ and ‘Streetfighter’. It was good to see people so enthusiastic about watching Grime veterans like these on stage!
I can’t forget watching Joker on the main stage who brought life to open air field at only 3.30pm in the afternoon, and then took it down to some tracks off his newly released album. He certainly had the audience going for one of my favourite sets of the day, Digital Mystikz (Mala & Coki) who had everyone in awe of their dub classic tracks and literally had everyone raving and pulling up tracks such as ‘Earth A Run Red’.
[Photo Credit: Marc Sethi]
I caught a bit of Loefah’s set over at the Swamp 81 tent which was fully fledged with tunes full of synths and bass. I then headed back to catch a set I was really looking forward to, and that was Zinc’s Jungle set on the main stage where he played his classic track ‘Super Sharp Shooter’ and Chase & Status & Jenna G’s ‘In Love’. I didn’t leave as he played banger after banger and as Wiley was late had to extend his set (I wasn’t complaining).
Wiley turned up to his headline, 1 hour set practically 45 mins late, with B&B announcing he was on his way, but really not many people believing and leaving the main stage area as Zinc had left and they had really messed with the atmosphere by playing commercial hip hop. Once on stage he performed ‘Chasing The Art’, ‘On A Level’ ‘Step 1 Freestyle’ and ended on ‘Heatwave’. I was pretty disappointed that he didn’t pull out more classics as this wasn’t really a commercial kind of festival, he could of left them for Wireless or whatever. The sound system shut off at 9 on the dot and the crowd were not happy with Wiley who later tweeted it was not his fault though “Yesterday I was actually on time . But my manager and Dj messed up this one . #Simples . I can take blame for a rusty start tho.”
All in all for the first festival of Born & Bred, it went really well with no trouble that I witnessed and was full of harmony. It’s tapped into a market that wasn’t delivering us the bass culture we needed all in one. Well done to Found, we salute you.