Strummerville Foundation for New Music

Joe Strummer was one of the greats, so how could we not give our wholehearted support to a Trust set up in his name to further the development of new musical talent?

[l-zone1]Strummerville will be a fitting memorial to the late-great Joe Strummer – a man whose influence over the music industry spread out like ripples from a stone on the surface of a millpond. His passing was a huge loss, not just to his wife and daughters, but to everyone whose lives he touched with his talent or his charm.

The Strummerville Foundation for New Music has been created as a charity with simple aims:-

“…to provide aid to groups and organisations to fund the purchase of musical instruments, studio and rehearsal time; to enable the production of music by creative young people who would otherwise be preventing from doing so simply because they lack the necessary funds.”

[r-zone5]It is overseen and managed by a small group of trustees made up of Joe’s family, friends and business acquaintences. His wife Luce and two daughters are joined by former band manager Simon Moran, (in)famous modern artist, Damien Hirst, close old friend, Dave ‘Pockets’ Girvan and Holywood agent and friend, Gerry Harrington.

[l-zone2]As massive fans of Joe’s work, from The Clash to The Mescaleros – a regular and consitently enjoyable fixture at the festivals in recent years, Virtual Festivals is adopting Strummerville as a worthy good cause to support wherever we can, and we urge anyone who believes in new music to do the same.

Before the Trust can begin to function properly it obviously needs to raise funds, and initially this is happening almost organically through spontaneous examples of generosity from bands and performers donating ticket sale money to the cause. Next month at least one London Marathon runner will be crossing the finishing line for Strummerville, and if you feel like sponsoring someone for that gruelling challenge then he’s your man… just contact Strummerville with your pledge through their fledgling website

[r-zone4]Elsewhere we have learnt that The Levellers (famous for their support of emerging talent) will be raising Strummerville money through the guest lists to their forthcoming tour and from some of the proceeds from their Beautiful Days Festival.

We have heard a few rumours that some bigger events are planned for later in the year… at present it’s all hush-hush, but we’re hoping to be one of the first to be able to bring you news of these when they are announced. It’s also likely that the Trust will seek to work very directly with the bands that it supports, but again, details are being kept under wraps until plans are more developed.

[l-zone3]In the meantime it’s worth noting that we will be donating money to Strummerville from the proceeds of selected south-west-four-sw4-2009, polls and promotions that we run – so don’t be shy in entering… it will help to fund this emminently worthy cause and in turn help to develop a whole world of new musical talent.