BlackBud signed a record deal on 9th July - just two weeks after their storming Glastonbury Festival performance - intense label battles raged right down to the wire, so the guys are confident that they have got a good deal. The band went the big independent route, despite strong competition from Warners Atlantic and Polydor. This brave move means they are are now signed to Independiente. Independiente is run by Andy Macdonald who broke the Beautiful South, The La's and Billy Bragg as well as Paul Weller's solo career, the Housemartins, Portishead, Gabrielle and Travis - it's also the home of new acts such as Kinesis, so fingers crossed this means that they are in safe hands!
Blackbud are one of the two main bands (along with The Subways) to win the opportunity to play at Glastonbury 2004 through the festivalís official new bands competition. As it turned out, they actually won twice, having already secured a place to play on the Avalon Stage after a smaller local contest was held last year.
A late morning slot on a tented stage on the edge of the festival might not fill a new and relatively unheard of young band with optimism for a big crowd. However the three teens were all upbeat before the show Ė and as they hit the stage you can see why. The New Stage holds several thousand people, and it is full from the barrier to the tent flaps.
With no sign of nerves, Blackbud play through a confidently funky set that reaffirms why it is that competition organiser and main festival booking agent Martin Elbourne later confided to us his deep-seated belief that both The Subways and Blackbud should be filling venues the size of Brixton Academy within a year or so. The bandís manager made it clear that he wasnít just trying to squeeze a couple of chart singles from the boys based upon their Glastonbury success. He believes firmly that this band represents genuine talent, both in terms of song writing and musicianship, and he wants them to have the chance to mature and develop into a long-term force, rather than fizzing away like so many acts do when they are over hyped early in their careers.
Getting time with the band after the show becomes a protracted affair. As any upcoming band without a distribution deal should do, they take the opportunity after an enthusiastically received gig to try and sell a few CDs. They donít have to try very hard. Sam, Joe and Adam frantically exchange copies for money at the front of the crowd, signing autographs and taking the time to talk to new fans. The 400 copies of their EP that they brought along with them are rapidly exhausted, and itís clear that their only regret of the festival is that they didnít bring more!