California, the UK and Iceland…

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Hi this is Gemma Dempsey and welcome to The Global Gig Guide. In this edition we’ll be checking out Neil Young’s Bridge School Concert in California, Oxjam all over the UK and the Iceland Airwaves festival in Reykavik.

This year sees the 21st Bridge School Benefit Concert taking place at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View near San Francisco in California. This school provides educational programs for children with severe speech and physical impairments. Two former students of The Bridge School are son’s of Neil Young and it was he, together with his wife Pegi Morton,that founded this fund raising concert 21 years ago. Every year the line up is eclectic and tantalizing and this year is no exception  -Tom Waits with Kronos Quartet, Metallica, Jerry lee Lewis, John Mayer, Eddie Vedder with Flea, Tegan and Sara, Regina Spektor and last but most definitely not least, Neil Young. It takes place on October 27th and 28th but it’s always very popular so I recommend you sorting yourself out with tickets as soon as possible. Go to for the link to this event and how to purchase tickets.

Hopping 6,000 miles east to the UK, there is another fund raising event which will be taking place all over this green and pleasant land during October. Its called Oxjam and will raise funds for the charity Oxfam – an organization that helps people in need all over the world  to earn a living, get an education, provide health care, food and fresh water . Almost every high street in the UK has an Oxfam shop but in October a special shop will be converted for the Oxjam sessions  - by day it will sell second hand music and charity memorabilia donated by the likes of Elton John and Corinne Bailey Rae, by night it will host live music sessions. The actual location of this special store has yet to be announced but the line up has  and it includes Fatboy Slim, The Kooks, Hot Chip, Jarvis Cocker and Jamelia. Oxfam is encouraging Everyone  to participate – whether you turn up and buy a pair of Elton’s socks or perform ‘Stairway to Heaven ‘ on your local village green – the main thing is to get involved . Fatboy Slim who has donated his unwanted records to Oxfam in the past, is quoted in Music Week as saying that all you need to put on an Oxjam event is a couple of decks, a few ‘choice tunes’ and a place to play them  so ‘ there’s no excuse not to get involved’. So why not follow Norman’s lead , have fun and make some money for a great cause?

And so we leave the UK and head north for one of the most hotly anticipated events in the Global Gig Guide calendar –  Iceland Airwaves  in Reykjavik . Festival passes went on sale in mid September and they offer some amazing travel packages to tempt international punters to attend. There’s lots of Icelandic acts for you to check out such as Jackobinorina, GusGus, Minus and Hairdoctor and from elsewhere in the world  Bonde de Role, !!!, Slow Club, Bloc Party, Ms John Soda and Trentmoller. Iceland is famous for its unique natural beauty and the Blue Lagoon  is a bright blue, white mud based body of geothermal water, pumped up from the depths of the earth by the nearby Svartsengi Power plant. The water is a toasty 100 degrees and is famed for its curative powers. So after a busy all nighter of music and parties, what better way to relax than another party – this year the tunes will be provided by DJs from Les Eurockeennes de Balfort festival.

That’s it for this weeks Global Gig Guide – feel free to email me about festivals and music events in your part of the world – the address is Otherwise check back with us next week for more information about Global Gigging.

The Global Gig Guide is produced  for by JC Swiatek and the theme music is composed by The Plush Interiors.