Introducing the Burnley 'Gig family'| Tracey Smith

For those of you that are not familiar with the Gig family, let me enlighten you.

Sunday, 14th March 2021, 12:30 pm
Tracey Smith talks about her passion for live music which led to the launch of the 'gig family'

The Gig family are people from Burnley and surrounding areas that came together through their love of live music.

The live music scene in our area is as fresh and eclectic as any other inner city area! We are so lucky

to have so many talented bands/artists/solo artists right on our doorstep.

This fast became apparent after stepping out onto the gig scene some 16 years ago and realising I had been missing out on something very special. We all had a common interest and, no matter what the genre of the music was, we all felt an affinity to the excitement of seeing this talent in our local pubs and clubs.

My first real taste of live music came in the form of Shyster at the Sun Inn on a rainy Sunday night 16

years ago. I knew then I was hooked!

The pub was bouncing, the music was fantastic and the atmosphere electric. I loved it and knew there and then I wanted more.

After following Shyster, I wanted to know what else was out there. I started going to other pubs to see what they had on offer and we had so many to choose from. A local band from Todmorden were the next to entertain me then Battle of the Bands night in town on a Thursday night.

Columbia versus Velma. I loved them both!

Velma wrote their own music and were vibrant and fun, Columbia played covers but were equally as talented.

The Talbot on Ormerod Road offered bands three nights a week along with 'Talbot Wednesdays' which

gave the unsigned indie bands a chance to showcase what they could do.

It was then I started to see the same people attending these gigs and we would nod at each other and say 'hello' then return back to our solitary spot to carry on watching the bands.

Being the chatty, friendly person I am and using my new found confidence I would ask if they wanted to join me and my partner. Familiar faces would appear each weekend and the gig family were growing fast from

initially three people to more recently 30 plus.

It made sense for our new found friends to set up a facebook page so we could swap ideas, suggestions, weekends away for our next gigs.

It was aptly named #gig family and became a fantastic forum for us all to meet up. The late Nikki Salter was the main instigator for shenanigans and we always knew when she turned up at any gig we were in for a crazy night.

Venue owners in Burnley and surrounding areas loved having the gig family visit. They knew we were there for one reason and one reason only. To enjoy the music.

We might be a vibrant mix of eclectic people from all walks of life but our mutual respect for music and each other will last forever.