True story: at the turn of the current decade the word ‘groove’ was on the verge of dying out. As the final echoes of the seventies faded to silence the word found its way on the margins of common usage, slipping from the dictionary and kept alive only by the occasional mutterings of panel beaters, CDT teachers and Austin Powers diehards. Sure, ‘groove’ may have lingered in the heart, but linguistically it was a goner.
And then a small boutique festival started up down the Moulin and everything changed. Like a phoenix from the verbal ashes ‘groove’ roared back to life – threw itself its own Renaissance, if you will – acquiring a capital G in the process. Suddenly you could hear it everywhere. ‘Are you Grooving this year?’ they’d ask. ‘Looking forward to getting my Groove on.’ ‘Can’t wait until this year’s Groove.’ And so on.
Who’d have thought a one day event in a little field at the bottom of a big old hill on the north coast of Jersey could achieve such a feat? It did though, and for the past three years the word Groove has been synonymous with an annual and community-driven celebration of local music, talent and produce set amidst the bucolic spread of the Moulin de Lecq’s freehouse and fields.
And guess what, Groovers? It’s back. It’s that time again. On August 1st 2015 the gates are open and all – yes all – are invited to come partake of the fourth Groove de Lecq. Having sold out with ease for the past few years the festival has now expanded to welcome 2500 happy souls over the threshold of what promises to be an absolute doozy of an day.
Regular Groovers can expect the usual assembly of acoustic delights; a professionally equipped main stage featuring the likes of Joe Young and the Bandits, Little Black Dress, Killig and Fernweh and Flashmob; a sister Saloon stage bearing host to acts such as Acres, Any Given Sunday, Western Promise and Sula; the much-loved Reggae shack complete with mocked up beach and a TV-styled open mic stage featuring children’s theatre and YOU (yes you, though no pressure, obvs.). All in glorious sunshine, of course.
As if that wasn’t enough to fill your ears and send you plain crazy the festival will also feature a new 80s themed silent disco proudly presented by the team at iQ Apple store, which alongside 80’s classics will feature funk from the fortuitously named DJ Stefunk. This year for the first time Groove will be pushing the boundaries of the festival to enable more people to join the party. There will be a Woodlands Acoustic stage, which will feature children’s storytellers and poets supplied by and in association with new fezzy-on-the-block, Connections: Jersey Festival of Words. If you go up to the woods that day, you’re in for a nice (and at times literary) surprise.
It’s not all about the ears, though. Oh no. As ever Groove de Lecq will serve as a playground for an array of creative spirits, with local artists, designers and entrepreneurs doing their best to tickle your brain via interactive installations, unique set pieces and truly original products for sale on a wide range of stalls. The (in)famous fancy dress zone will be bolder and more outrageous than ever; revellers should come prepared to be de-stressed, impressed and then dressed. A variety of tantalising local produce will be on display, new local food outlets producing organic and vegetarian food and should you require a glass or two of locally brewed ale or cider, well there’s that too. Purely optional, of course.
Tempted yet? Feeling the call of the Groove? Of course you are, and we look forward to seeing you there, ‘we’ being the team of friends, volunteers and grinning grafters who knuckle down the same time each year to create this unique family-friendly event. We do it because we love it, quite simply – the sense of community that Groove de Lecq engenders, the smiling anticipation that builds as the weeks creep by, the rush of excitement, camaraderie and sheer flipping joy as the big day dawns.
Grateful as ever to perennial sponsors iQ Apple Store, Stage 2 Productions, SGB and all the other firms and individuals that donate their time and energies to making Groove work, we take a real pride in putting on an environmentally conscious event that every generation can enjoy, the proceeds of which go directly to Autism Jersey. Over £20,000 was raised last year; this year we hope to smash that.
Are we excited? Just a bit. Chief organiser and general wonder-woman Beth Gallichan promises a festival set ‘to capture your imagination and transform what is ordinarily an expanse of garden and greenery into a magical family friendly festival,’ and we’re with her all the way.
So let’s do it. Get your Groove on, people. Groove de Lecq is back and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever. We look forward to seeing you there.