Roller Derby: Life on Wheels

So, it’s taken me a little while to upload this, but I’m glad I finally have!

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This is a documentary created about Roller Derby, during a group project in university. It follows the Central City Roller Girls team in Birmingham, as they explain how to play the game, male involvement, what Derby means to them and even how to get onto Team GB.

During this project, it was my job to do the initial edit and organise and conduct the interviews. Paul then added the music to the piece later.

It took a serious amount of time to edit, but I really enjoyed the process and interviewing the team. I’m seriously considering doing more freelance documentary work in the future. Whilst doing this documentary, I feel that I found my audio style.

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Download Festival 2013 Clash review

Download this year was absolutely ace, so ace in fact that I got to write a kick ass review all about it.

Check it out here http://www.clashmusic.com/reviews/download-festival-2013-live-at-donington-park or read the article below. 

From its high-speed motorbikes to its classic sports car races, everything about Donington Park is fast-paced and loud. And the third weekend in June is no exception. However, it’s not big engines and pristine mechanics that bring this audience to the grounds: it’s large amps, even larger stages and, of course, brilliant bands. It’s Download Festival.

Despite the first morning’s poor weather, fans battle on putting up their tents and head down to the arena, where things are starting to take off. Gypsy punk fusion crew Gogol Bordello may seem like an unusual act to play such a heavy festival; but as soon as their colour and presence fills the stage, there’s no question that this is where they belong.

Wearing tie-dye clothes, theirs is a wide-ranging sound, members banging drums and stomping gleefully throughout the performance. The unmistakable ‘Start Wearing Purple’ gets a great reaction.

As the sun begins to rise on Saturday afternoon, Seattle grungers Alice In Chainsstep out onto the main stage, kicking things off with the classic track, ‘Them Bones’.

The band’s singer, William DuVall, is as smooth and charismatic as his voice suggests, as he leans over, exciting the audience with his cool attitude and harmonies. Halfway through the set, the singer changes his guitar to an acoustic, giving him the soft noise needed as the band breaks into the beautiful ‘Down In A Hole’.

As well as older hits, the band gives the audience a taster of their new material, playing ‘Hollow’ and ‘Stone’ from ‘The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here’. After a flawless performance, the group ends on ‘Rooster’, warming the audience for the other acts left to come.

Opening with the legendary ‘Feel Good Hit Of The Summer’, Queens Of The Stone Age seem to have every person in the field screaming their lyrics.

“We’ll give you something to get laid to,” says the cheeky Josh Homme, before breaking into another groovy guitar riff. With ‘No One Knows’, ‘A Song For The Dead’ and ‘My God Is The Sun’ all worked into the performance, who could ask for a better set-list?

“God, what is that helicopter doing?” Homme asks, as said vehicle circles the field. “Maybe he should just go with the flow…” he says, before launching into that song. Little does Homme know: that helicopter is planned for something that falls under the category of unthinkable.

As the crowd waits for Iron Maiden, the spectacular happens and a Spitfire flies directly over the stage and audience. This is debatably one of the best starts to a gig ever.

For those not wanting to see Maiden, The Hives serve as a lighter option, playing funky tunes such as ‘Walk Idiot Walk’ and ‘Tick Tick Boom’ on a smaller stage.

As the sun shines down on Download’s finest, it’s clear on Sunday morning that the festival has claimed many victims. Today, people are scattered around the arena, waiting to be woken from slumber.

The Gaslight Anthem seems like the perfect band to finish the festival on, as they blast out their clean cut guitars and gritty vocals to the Sunday afternoon crowd. Brian Fallon tells his audience a story of love and loss, crossing the whole of American.

‘American Slang’ and ‘Too Much Blood’ are just a couple of songs to name, and the band busts out a surprising yet brilliant cover of Misfits’ ‘Astro Zombies’. As The Gaslight Anthem finish on ‘Backseat’, for Clash the festival experience is over. However, for others, Thirty Seconds To Mars and the pyro madness that is Rammstein still await.

  Published : CLASHLIVE / REVIEWS / 18 · 06 · 2013

 

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Alternation – (17/06/13)

Recently, me and my co-host have revamped our radio show – this is the result.

Join us as we play new tracks from Black Sabbath, Stone Temple Pilots and an awesome band from Download called Broken.
There’s also an interview with Mudhoney, Download reviews and so much more.

It’s all happening here…

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A Pretty Mess Interview

Recently, I was lucky enough to speak to Dee and Megan from the LA band A Pretty Mess.

Here’s the interview:

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Download Festival Schedule 2013

yea!

So it’s that time of year, the tents and wellies are coming out and everyone is getting ready for three days at one of the biggest rock festivals in existence.  Yep, that’s right guys, it’s Download Festival 2013!

Like me, if you’re awful at organising what’s on at what time then look no further!

This year, because I’m super skint and can’t afford a programme, some of my nearest and dearest have put together a lovely little schedule spread sheet of all the bands playing over the weekend – so now you can know who’s one when and not miss anyone!

To download as an excel file click:

http://sophiesparham.co.uk/DownloadSchedule2013.xls –

Or for a quick online look, you can click here:

https://sheet.zoho.com/view.do?url=http%3A%2F%2Fsophiesparham.co.uk%2FDownloadSchedule2013.xls

Don’t thank me, just buy me a drink if you see me over the weekend 😉

Have a lovely festival!

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Bearded Theory

So recently, I attended Bearded Theory festival which was ace!

I’ve been every year and the festival just keeps getting bigger and better!

Here’s a short documentary of the weekend:

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DIY Punk Documentary

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So whilst most people spent their holidays going back to their families or spending time relaxing. I decided to through myself into the DIY punk scene, touring with the band ‘Addictive Philosophy’ for two weeks.  In this time, I slept on floors, saw fights, reattached van doors and traveled over 2000 miles around the UK and Ireland. Why did I do all this? In order to make my first documentary.

I’ve always wanted to make a proper documentary about a music scene and believe that now is my chance. These past few weeks I’ve interviewed distro owners, promoters, DIY radio presenters,  bands and of course, all sorts of punks. I’m hoping I’ll be able to use the audio collected to make something worth listening to and something that’ll make an impact on the underground music scene.

I think the trouble with a lot of radio presenters and music journalists is they spend so much time in offices they forget what’s actually out there in the local music scene. Before I broke up for Easter I felt that my passion, especially within music, was becoming corrupted by deadlines, playlists and PR agencies. So it was great to get back to the grass root approach, in which bands were putting on their own gigs outside the restraints of media.

I’m aiming to spend the next few weeks trailing through and arranging audio to get about an hour’s worth of documentary footage. I know that this is a huge challenge as I’ve never made anything like this before, but am prepared to put in the effort in order to tell a good story.

I cannot wait for the end result!

The Band on Stage

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Flatpack Festival, Arts Lab Project

 

arts lab

Recently Vivid Project has had its yearly ‘Flat Pack Festival’. This time, I was luckily enough to get involved and embark on one of the most difficult and challenging projects I’ve had to take on so far; rearranging and editing interviews for an art piece.

The artist I was working with was called Trevor Pitt, a known figurehead around the art scenes within the city. Trevor had conducted interviews with a series of people that used to be involved with Birmingham Arts Lab back in the 60’s and 70’s.

I didn’t know this at the time, but the Lab had been one of the only surviving and influential Art’s Lab in the country, consisting of a cinema, performance arts space and café. The original lab pushed the boundaries on many different pieces of art, including Jolyon’s ‘Anti Symphony’. As I began to edit the interviews, it was then that I understood the importance of it’s contribution to the art scene and to Birmingham’s history.

The project didn’t come without its challenges, I’d never done anything like this before, normally I was told to take pauses out, make audio fast and smooth paced. Trevor however, wanted me to keep things as raw as possible, leave the pauses and take out his questions to create a narrative. He also asked me to find ‘audio satellites’. These were pieces of audio that I found interesting and were to be made to fly across the room. Trevor said he wanted them to sound like light reflecting off a mirror ball.

As well as being able to demonstrate my editing skills with audio editing, I was invited to set up the exhibition. There I met a sonic artist, who projected the audio from different areas of the room, not just headphones but coming out of bins and old fashioned amps.

The exhibition was a success and I felt that I learn lots about audio within the art world. Unlike the structured world of radio, the sounds used in art have a lot more freedom. I would definitely work with Trevor again and hopefully will get to in the summer.

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