PHOTO BY NICK GRIMLEY
Our first NWOBHM band on Sunday Rampant were third on and I knew this was going to be something very special indeed. Rampant were created in 1980 but then haven't been in action since 1981 due to tricky life stuff. They reformed specially for Mearfest with the original vocalist Tee Rets along with guitarist Paul Playle, this was going to be a very historic moment.
Expectations were high but after a rocky start as they were 'Fighting For Freedom' in the wrong key, they picked themselves up and took off, back on that rocky road they call metal. Chris Chitticks and his son Lee Chitticks were brilliant additions, as was the amazing guitarist Jamie Carter who was not even born back in 1980. 'Run For The Hills' was next up, which went well.
Third or fourth into the set came a big surprise for us, I was told to "FIND CLAIRE, the next bit it's important!" Well, who could have imagined the flow of emotion to come. Tee was saying a few words and looking at us and pointing to Molly's hand. 'Beyond The Stars', now entitled 'Angel Of Dreams (Beyond The Stars)' was about to be performed with passion and gusto.
Angel of dreams is the poem I wrote for our daughter Molly in 2016, Tee was telling the story of how the new words came about. The idea just came to him....? Molly was obviously hard at work spirit side. He had very little time to prepare for it, as he just about managed to have the new chorus 'almost' in his head, but thought he might have to read the words whilst singing, which his professionalism would not allow. While driving to Slough in the back of the car, he was still rehearsing some of their other lyrics, as it had been a while since 1981. He went over and over my words until he could recite them back verbatim. He had successfully stored the correct words in the correct order deep within his heart. As he got the mearfest crowd behind it, he was visibly fighting back tears, we all were. Molly's mother Claire was in total bits by this point, as she looked beyond the band to the handprint, this was all we had left of her, today we now have so much more. The whole band could see and feeling their impact on this day, it was an incredible moment.
This is why we say we are not a normal regular rock festival, as anything can happen that hits your heart strings with a big wobbly twang. While singing this one song, Tee was thinking of his partner Gina, who lost her son Mark, so he felt he was being channelled by Molly herself, (no doubts there Jimmy) to sing our combined lyrics for all our lost children. For which we thank you for being so open minded, guided, creative and honest.
The next song that followed was an anti nukes/war song called I'll Press The Button Before You, which was originally recorded as their first single back in 1981, but sadly it never saw the light of day and they broke up soon after. Fast forward to 2019 Tee could not believe people were asking for autographs or more 21st Century Selfies, which took him by surprise.
A truly tremendous performance, charged with emotion, power and the sheer joy of performing.
I have got to say that the whole band threw themselves totally into the event helping us both throughout the weekend with numerous tasks . This is far and above what we expected and was most welcome
There is something to be said about the saying " the more you put in, the more you get out"
We are both so appreciative . Thank you Xxx
11 / 10 !
FOR MARK & MOLLY - FLY HIGH ANGELS
Brian & Claire Mear pride themselves on putting on a good show. Photography is Claire's passion, only the finest collection of images will be added here by the best photographers.