The Bandstand next to the large picnic area and new Street Food Catering Court, was a wonderful way to relax for a while and listen to some of the diverse bands and musicians that came to the Show.
Faversham Mission Brass Band (Friday)
Faversham Mission Brass is a non-contesting brass band based in the lovely market town of Faversham. Over the years, the band has become more and more a town band than a church band, although the band is still connected to Faversham Gospel Mission and plays at its services about three times a year particularly Easter, Harvest and Christmas. The band plays regularly in the town for concerts and community events, as well as on the district’s bandstands and for many charity organisations to assist with their fund-raising activities.
Casablanca Steps (Friday)
The Casablanca Steps, four very individual and talented musicians, unequalled in their field, combine musical and vocal talents guaranteed to be the entertainment highlight of any event and now considered to be one of the main attractions at many of the UK’s major shows. Casablanca will be attending on Friday.
Kent Police Band (Saturday)
They are a friendly brass band based at the Kent Police Headquarters, Maidstone, Kent. The band is self-funding and consists of up to 35 musicians from all over Kent and Sussex. Their membership is made up of serving and retired police officers, as well as a large number of civilian players. They have a vast repertoire ranging from marches and overtures, classical arrangements to selections from popular shows, films and even swing and pop and rock numbers.
The Biggin Hillbillies (Saturday)
The band was formed in 1998, with the current lineup performing John McDonagh on Mandolin & vocals, Bob White on Banjo, Ray Butcher on guitar & vocals, Nye Davies on Bass and James Lin on fiddle. Whilst their mainstream is bluegrass music, their varied repertoire of acoustic music includes country and folk numbers, 50’s and 60’s pop, Irish favourites and jazz standards. As well as bluegrass standards from Flatt & Scruggs, The Stanley Brothers & Bill Munroe they also include numbers from the likes of The Country Gentlemen, Banjo Dan Lindner and Don Reno, plus of course the ever requested ‘Duelling Banjos’ and ‘Foggy Mountain Breakdown’ featuring Bobs’ unmistakable bluegrass banjo style.
Rock Choir (Saturday)
Rock Choir is much more than a choir – it’s a multi layered singing experience. The power of music, meeting new friends and performing at life changing events, together contribute to an emotional and powerful journey for their members. They have been perfecting Rock Choir for ten years now and have achieved an award-winning standard of excellence in both the educational and emotional aspects of what they try to do.
Isle of Sheppey St John Ambulance Band (Sunday)
2017 marks the 71st year of the Isle of Sheppey St John Ambulance Band. Over the years the band has gone from strength to strength and has played at events all over the Country and Europe. Performing at local fetes and carnivals to higher profile occasions such as the Lord Mayor’s Show, Disneyland Paris, Menin Gate and for HM Queen. The band is very proud of its heritage and works hard to maintain the high standards and traditions that have evolved from its beginnings. All the musicians are volunteers and come from the Island. Dean Faulkner, the Band Master explained ‘we are delighted to be supporting the 2017 Kent County Show, it is one of the largest event in Kent and a great family day out and we are looking forward in performing our new displays and tunes.’
Invicta Jazz Orchestra (Sunday)
The Invicta Jazz Orchestra: a friendly group of approximately 30 amateur musicians with a huge variety of ages from GCSE students to retired! Previously they have played at Whitstable Oyster Festival, Sevenoaks Festival, Faversham Festival, Cranbrook Music Festival and The Marlborough Jazz Festival. Their director of music, Scott Jenkins, was a founder member of the band. Scott spent 3 years at Middlesex University Studying a BA in Music (Jazz) and a year of teaching. He served several years with the Kent Youth Jazz Orchestra and his work with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra led him down the funk and fusion line.
Fred Clark (each day)
Local acclaimed musician Fred Clark was at the Show with his unique sound on all three days. Fred Clark is an exciting acoustic singer/songwriter from Maidstone, Kent who performs with incredible energy and writes with an upbeat, vibrant style. The last 7 years have seen Fred play over 400 gigs including at Maidstone Hazlitt Theatre (Headline Self-Run Show), Chatham Brook Theatre, Manchester Hard Rock Café, Lounge on the Farm, Guilfest and many more pubs, churches, theatres, festivals and other events. Since the release of his self-produced debut album ‘Open Road’ in 2009 Fred has gone on to release a further 4 albums and various EP’s . The latest release ‘Long Walk Home’ came out June 2014 and showcases a great maturity in both songwriting and production. Fred was in attendance on all three days.
City String Trio (Members Area, Friday)
The City String Trio was formed by Edward Morton (violin), Sarah Blundell (viola), and Diana Bailey (cello). The members of the City String Trio are based in Kent and Surrey and they perform regularly in London and the South East. Brilliant violin, viola and cello trio combining classical with contemporary music.
The Damsels (Members Area, Sunday)
The Damsels are a female vocal group based in London and the South East. They were created by Samantha Giffard, Claire Marlowe and Emma Odell. We want to bring a fresh look and style to female function groups. The Damsels are made up of professional performers with West-End and International credits, but most of all, infectious voices and personalities. Damsels will be performing on Sunday.
Rachael Hayward – Steel Pan Player (Members Area, each day)
With over twenty-five years’ experience, Rachel Hayward delights audiences throughout Britain and Europe with her eclectic mix of calypso, pop, reggae and jazz performed on the only new acoustic instrument of the twentieth century – the steel drum. Rachel performs with her own pre-recorded backing tracks, which are carefully produced and multi-tracked with kit, keyboard and bass, together with live pans and Afro-Caribbean percussion, which gives a lively and authentic full band sound. This versatile artiste can tailor her sound to add subtle, intimate exoticism to smaller venues or the pan can be miked up and amplified to bring a vibrant Caribbean flavour to large-scale and outdoor events.