What is STSA all about?
Something to Smile About is a small Grass Roots Festival, not just a festival of music, or arts, but a festival, in its base meaning, a gathering to celebrate, to throw off your worries and just enjoy the simple things. A welcome haven for those wishing to escape, meet like minded individuals, dance, laugh, drink, play and just be merry. We are proud to hear people say that they came knowing no-one and left feeling like they were leaving their home and family. We are blessed to attract such an amazing group of people to our event and ourselves and every other Smiler invite you to join us!
We are a Family Friendly Festival and that includes Dogs, we love seeing all your lovely pooches at our event and even have a stall just for them! We are also nestled amongst the countryside meaning plenty of space to walk dogs outside of the main arena.
We offer free workshops in our Tribenation Arts Collective space including but not limited to drumming circles and circus skills as well as free face painting. Many other activities and workshops are also on site for both children and adults alike, most of which just require a small contribution for material costs.
With a main stage packed with the biggest names from the UK & European festival scene, as well as our smaller ‘Hidden Stage’ which hosts acoustic music, spoken word and comedy with performers again from throughout the UK and beyond.
Keep checking back for updates about next years Something to Smile About Festival. For more regular updates find us on Facebook here..
The STSA Way
When it comes to music and arts we do it our way. We will always work harder on setup to reduce costs for basic infrastructure and this enables us to put on huge line-ups for such a small and independent event.
Our choices in music vary dramatically, from chilled out folk, to boot slinging punk and ska as well as all genres between. We curate our stage to suit the energy in the crowd at that time of day, if we think it’s time for dancing, you’ll know about it and soon agree with us. Music and art should take you on a journey and that is our first thought when booking bands and curating our spaces.
Most bands that we support are on the Grass Roots level, like us, doing it for themselves and the vast majority are unsigned. Without the support for music at this level, there would never have been some of the great bands that you know and love today and we want to support, showcase and encourage these up and coming artists.
Whilst we are a family festival, some of the bands we have performing can and will swear or share opinions which may cause offence to some, we feel that because music is a form of expression that bands are welcome to do this, however we will endeavour to mark in guides and online any bands we feel parents should look into first before sitting to watch with young children.
For those times we have on offer one of the best selections of workshops and activities for families to take part in as well as our more acoustic Hidden Stage and performance space where family friendly music and entertainment will almost always be on offer.
We believe in paying all bands and artists fair wages and all of the money we generate is spent on making our festival one of the best in the UK, we are totally non profit and our only payment is the Smiles on your faces!
We also like to support local communities and charities, often inviting them to come along to raise awareness and money at our festival and bringing along some of their volunteers and service users for some well deserved fun.
Here are the first acts to be announced for 2020!
Coming to Smile for 2020 we have Will Whisson, performing solo, which is ever becoming a rarity as he looks to start out 2020 with a new album and a full band behind him. ‘Out of the Woods’ is the title of Will Whisson’s debut album set for release in the fall of 2019 and has been in the making for a period of 15 months. Having just come off of a 3 month solo European tour, Will began work for the album by setting up a small home studio in Kent to write and experiment extensively in.The album would later take him to London and Wales before finally being recorded in Ireland.The title, chosen for its double barrel meaning, reflects the long periods of time spent in isolation riddled with uncertainties and self-doubt whilst at the same time also symbolises the completion of the project and with it, a renewed sense of balance.With influences that include The War on Drugs, Angus & Julia Stone, Coldplay and Mumford & Sons, the record sways between hypnotic passages of music that are unafraid of taking their time to more impactful and euphoric singalongs. Recorded in Kells, Ireland, with the expertise of super producer Martin Quinn, the pair meticulously sculpted every sound to the tiniest of details with Will recording every instrument aside from the drums. This collection of songs is Will’s most ambitious body of work to date and showcases songs that would have been impossible to comprehend when he started his journey back in 2016.It’s a story that began with an acoustic guitar and a rusty old campervan in the hope of becoming a travelling musician via the route of busking on streets all over Europe. Now, with two EPs, hundreds of gigs and thousands of miles under his belt, not to mention a hugely successful recent Kickstarter campaign and all thanks to a strong grassroots following, the release of his debut album is a fitting way to cap a journey that is rare, real and hard to match. Will currently lives in London [embed]https://youtu.be/2kjMLqQ1v3k[/embed]