SEDGEMOOR CONTEMPORARY MUSIC
Rock, pop, jazz and folk music
have all been central to Bridgwaters creative life at one time or other.
last century Cecil Sharp rediscovered British folk music in the aural tradition of
the Somerset Agricultural workers and wrote it down for posterity. Today Halsway Manor at
Crowcombe near Bridgwater is the home of the English Folk Song and Dance society.
1940s American servicemen based in Somerset brought with them big band, swing and
1950s and 60s rock n roll inspired the Nation. American rock legend Eddie Cochran played
his last concert at bristol Hippodrome before being killed in a car Crash and dying at the
age of 21 at Bath Hospital ,Somerset.
60s top acts like the Who and the Stones played Bridgwater as part of the gig
circuit of the day. Beatles Paul McCartney and George Harrison visited Somerset as
teenagers and chose locations for their later films in the Bridgwater area. The trainn
scene from 'Hard days Night was filmed in Crowcombe station. The Beatles also
once stopped at Terry Downes café in Bridgwater.
Glastonbury pop festival-now the countries largest such event, originated in Somerset as a
series of Free Festivals during the 1960s and 70s.
Bridgwater Arts Centre under the management of Bob Ormrod in the 1970s was a centre
of modern Jazz and blues music with world famous acts such as the South African
Brotherhood of Breath and American bluesman Dr.Ross the harmonica Boss inlcuding
Bridgwater on their tour
the Art Centre was home to the Bridgwater punk scene pioneered by THE DANGEROUS BROTHERS
and developed by SHEEP WORRYING the Alternative theatre, rock and publishing Collective
which ran a series of gigs at the Art centre throughout the 1980s , fighting a
constant battle against Conservative opponents and finally losing in the 1990s.
During the 80s the Art Centre was a Regional centre for original, contemporary
music seeing such National bands as CRASS, UK SUBS, CHUMBAWAMBA, PETER & THE TEST TUBE
BABIES, BLACK ROOTS, & HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT playing there alongside 3 or 4
original local bands
bands in the Bridgwater area have again formed themselves into a co-operative movement
(The Sedgemoor Contemporary Music group) and although the Art Centre can no longer put on
Rock gigs-due to the imposition of a noise limiter at the venue (after years of
campaigning by next door neighbour, former Tory councillor Margaret Rees) once more the
town is gaining a reputation for being a centre of Original contemporary music.
2 CD albums by local bands are available through us for £5 each
Woof! We are destroying your Culture
is Bridgwater (Volume 3) 2001
Like Bridgwater" 2002
SCMG meets regularly at the Bridgwater arts centre
and runs regular gigs featuring local bands at the 3 crowns. We also
the Annual Somerfest rock event .
SCMG member Matt Bartlett has set up the Midnight
Mango web site..tap into this for more information