News

We're Back For 2018!

Wednesday 20 June 2018

With the 2018 Musical Mystery Tour barely 2 months away, the team are hard at work preparing for one of the county's most eagerly awaited music festivals.

There will be live music of all kinds from literally hundreds of artists at up to 40 venues all round Hertford town from lunchtime to bedtime! And all for free!

L-R: Kev Saunders (HMF Co-Chairman), Iona Smith (White Hart), Jo Asker (HMF) Tilly Freed (HMF Talent Scout), GEORGE CLARK (HMF/White Hart/Moony Blue Events), Phil Stradling (Adaptor Clothing), Paul Brown (Adaptor Clothing), Rob Guinn (HMF Co-Chairman/Treasurer)

"This year started out feeling rather daunting - how could we follow the last couple of amazing years? But when the guys from Adaptor got in touch to ask if they could get involved that all changed," Hertford Music Festival Chairman Kev Saunders says. "'Kindred spirits' was the phrase that came to mind… ".

Based in their Mead Lane Hertford showroom, Adaptor Clothing's the Internet's No. 1 Mod, Skinhead, Rudeboy and Scooterist clothing store - and they've got music in their blood just like all of the Hertford Music Festival team. That's why they're not just this year's main sponsor - they're at the heart of the whole thing, co-curating and co-hosting the stage that's figuratively and literally at the centre of it all: The White Hart stage in Salisbury Square. 

"In collaboration with Kev and the team we're putting together a really exciting line-up for the White Hart stage," adds Adaptor boss Phil Stradling. "We’re looking forward to a great day - and to seeing all our local customers at the show!"

"Having attended the two of the previous Musical Mystery Tours, we have always been impressed by what a positive, entertaining and eclectic event it is, attracting tens of thousands of music fans to the pubs, clubs and bars of Hertford. We're big music fans, and run our business on that very fact ... selling clothing that represents the uniform of so many music driven subcultures,’ adds Adaptor's Paul Brown. "When we were offered the opportunity to become the main sponsor, we jumped at the chance ... it just ticks so many boxes for us and we are delighted to be associated with such a fantastic event. Make sure you come and find us at the Adaptor stage this year!"

Lined up for the White Hart so far, and all confirmed but one, are:

  • The Adaptones (Hertford’s answer to Booker T and the MGs)
  • Block 33 – dirty riffing Britpop with Oasis-style anthemic choruses
  • Trojan Horses (TBC) – classic ska and rocksteady covers from the South Bengeo shanty towns
  • The Mynd Set – Britpop modified
  • The Bonnet
  • Homegrown – two of our top local covers outfits, both renowned for their huge repertoire and for the authenticity and passion they put into everything from 60s, ska, Britpop and  virtually everything else!

On MC and DJ duties respectively are local performance poet Daren Peary and DJ Andy Hill


A Match Made In Music Heaven

Thursday 8 February 2018

We're very chuffed to announce that Hertford's Adaptor Clothing are to be our headline sponsor for 2018.

Not familiar with Adaptor? Well you soon will be! Based in their Mead Lane showroom, Adaptor Clothing's the Internet's No.1 Mod, Skinhead, Rudeboy and Scooterist clothing store, offering an unbeatable range of retro and lifestyle inspired clothing. They source the best quality, most reasonably priced and most authentic attire available from around the world - classic brands such as Fred Perry, Ben Sherman, Dr Martens, Trojan, Delicious Junction and Lambretta and loads more, not to mention Adaptor’s own label.

Just like the Hertford Music Festival team, the Adaptor Clothing team are driven by a passion for they do - we all love music and we all love Hertford. So watch this space - it's going to be great!


Mystery Tour Scores a BIG 10 out of Ten!

Friday 1 September 2017

With more than 160 acts, at 36 venues all around Hertford Town, playing an astounding 250 performances all in one day from lunchtime to bedtime and all for free, the twelfth Musical Mystery Tour last Sunday the 27th August was acclaimed by all as the best yet.

Commenting on this year's hugely successful festival, Co-Chairman Kev Saunders commented: "I was worried that last year's event would be hard to beat, especially since we had the one and only Glen Matlock, former Sex Pistols bassist and songwriter, as our headline act. But if anything the crowds were even bigger and even happier and the whole town was filled with the carnival vibe: you might call it the 'Not in Notting Hill Carnival'! And this year’s headliners at the White Hart, which is geographically and figuratively the heart of the town, where the irrepressible BIG 10’s ebullient, skanking versions of the songs of the likes of Madness and The Specials had everyone on their feet.’

The Musical Mystery Tour started out as a single stage event back created by Kev Saunders in 2006 . Since then, and with Co-Chairman Rob Guinn joining the team in 2012, the pair more than doubled the size and scope of the event. Last year, crowd numbers were estimated at well over 20,000 and there’s no question this year was equally busy if not more so!

"It’s become a vast undertaking - we simply couldn't do it without the support of all our helpers too numerous to list, the hundreds of musicians and DJs who play unpaid, the tireless technicians," adds Co-Chairman Rob Guinn.

"We're also very grateful to all our sponsors: Steve Beeston Photography, Brass Tacks Web Design, Waterpoint, Couvre Feu, Hertford Town Council, East Herts Council, Media Alive for programme artwork and - headline sponsor for the second year running - Hertford Planning Service," Kev Saunder adds, "as well as the East Herts Council street cleaning team, who had the whole town spick and span before most of us were up and about on Monday!"

More photos of the 2017 Musical Mystery Tour, along with previous years, can be found in the Photos section of this website.


Programme Now Available

Thursday 24 August 2017

The lineups for the Musical Mystery Tour are all sorted and our programme for 2017 has gone off to the printers.

If you can't wait to see our guide for 2017, then you can download it right here.

The programme includes a welcome from The Team, a big thank you to our sponsors and and advice on being cool, considerate and kind!

Plus, of course, details on all the acts and venues taking part in this year's Musical Mystery Tour.

Whilst the lineups were correct at the time of going to press, with so many artists taking part there will inevitably be last minute changes. So if there's an act you particularly wanting to see, check this website for up-to-date information. 

Many thanks to Media Alive for putting together this year's guide.

Just click on the programme cover to download the guide.


Venue Lineups Are Coming

Tuesday 1 August 2017

The huge task of scheduling what amounted last year to more than 240 individual performances by over 600 individual artists is well under way and we will soon be ready to publish the first few venues' line-ups.

'As always, the stage in the back courtyard of the White Hart is geographically and metaphorically the centre of things,' says Kev Saunders. 'We wondered at first how we could top last year's headliner, former Sex Pistol Glen Matlock, but I'm certain we've got a band more than worthy of the job. We're making the White Hart our carnival stage - a sort of Not-in-Notting-Hill-Carnival! So it's bands with loads of brass, bass and party grooves, including Lip Service Brass Band, Trailer Trash Orchestra, The Trash (Clash tribute), The Bleeding Hearts Rhythm and Blues Fan Club, The Trojan Horses, The SGs and to close the show the mighty BIG 10 – the magnificent Two Tone/Ska tribute band who rocked last year's Rock at the Castle! During the live part of the show reggae sound system Stone Lion Hi Fi will be spinning roots, dub, ska and lover's rock and from 8.30 the Friday Fox DJs take over, spinning feelgood dance music, made for those who refuse to be pigeonholed, defined or restricted by genre.'

Renowned for a huge Ska sound, entertaining stage antics and a loyal following, Big 10 are one of the most popular ska/2 tone acts in the South East. With 8-10 musicians on stage at gigs ( a 2-3 brass section and 2-3 singers) including Jase Tourette, Splendid Brown, Spazz, Buster Bricklayer, Saxy Liz and more, a Big 10 performance is a real treat for the senses!

The relatively new landlord at the White Hart has been part of the Musical Mystery Tour a few times in his former job at The Stonehouse – but now he’s right at the heart of the action.

'It's great being back in Hertford at the new, much-improved White Hart and all of us in the team are excited about hosting the Musical Mystery Tour’s flagship show!' says Manager Steve Walsh


This Year's Music Festival Sponsors