With Village Green just around the corner, we thought we would catch up with one of the most important names on the Southend music scene, SoSlam. We spoke to Iain about SoSlam’s first stage at the festival and much more, check out our full interview below.

Village Green is less than two weeks away and you’re hosting a stage for the first time, you must be very excited? 

Really excited, the excitement is tempered slightly with nerves and the anticipation of what to expect! 

You have a great line up, how did you go about selecting the artists to perform? 

SoSlam is all about supporting and developing the local music scene so we put that ethos into how we selected the musicians. The songwriters club will feature on our stage and they are all aspiring and developing musicians learning to write original material. Then the rest of the musicians are established local musicians who give their time back to either support young musicians through projects, who give their time freely to the songwriters club, or who host local open mics across the town. 

Village Green is in its 10th year now, do you have any highlights from previous years and who are you most looking forward to seeing this year? 

2017 was a huge highlight as we had worked with a group of young musicians over the Easter holiday that year and they all got the chance to play the oak stage which was great to see, one of them, Leo C even got to play on the main stage and that was a huge highlight for us. This year it’ll be hard to get away from our stage but if we do we want to see some of our young musicians on the oak stage and lots of our friends playing the Idea13 stage. 

You do great things for young musicians on the Southend music scene, what’s next for SoSlam after Village Green this year? 

Thank you, We have a great monthly open mic at Peggy Sues that we’ll be continuing, new monthly showcases at the Railway Hotel in partnership with All in Music Southend YMCA, and Essex Vocal Coaching and we’re planning a new week long YM songwriting lab at METAL HQ in Easter 2020 that we’ll be running in partnership with a local charity that focuses on young people accessing music opportunities. 

Finally, what do you love about Southend’s music scene and how do you think it could be made even better? 

To us it’s a thriving community where the people within it look out for each other and support each other. We like to see the town invest more in the music scene. Not just aimed at musicians but also the technical side and management / promotion aspects. The town has some great showcase events throughout the year, but we need to target grassroots investment. Southend is a great place to thrive.