Kim Wilde is looking forward to being part of the line up to mark the 25th anniversary of Rhythms of the World.
The music festival is hosting a series of events in its milestone year instead of one full-scale weekend, and celebrations continue tomorrow and Saturday with Music From Around the World. Codicote-based Kim will be forming part of the stellar line-up playing at St Mary’s Church in Hitchin on Friday, before more musical talent heads there for a free event between 10am and 8.30pm the following day.
Kim, best known for her Kids in America hit, said: “I’m delighted I’m free to pop down to the church with my brother Ricky Wilde to provide a short acoustic set in support of the confirmed acts. ROTW’s mission strikes a chord since throughout my career – I have seen how music can engage and unite communities like no other medium. Both my son and my daughter have performed at ROTW in recent years so I’m doubly proud to be able to support them in some small way.”
Kim be on stage at 9.00pm on Friday and is followed by the Swan Vesta Social Club, whose Latin-fused covers – along with reggae stalwarts Wayne McArthur and the Universal Players Band – always get gig-goers on their feet.
Saturday’s free show includes St Chris Jazz Group featuring Dele Sosimi, The Piano and Cello Duo, Easydread, Hope, and Hitchin Band who will perform with a group from Hitchin’s German twin town Bingen am Rhein, called KKM Sponsheim. Also appearing will be Rhythms veteran Sukhi Rayat who has played every festival since it began in 1991. Canon Michael Roden – not a man to stand on ceremony – is also looking forward to the festival coming to St Mary’s.
He said: “I’ve fallen in love with ROTW. I found the organisers tapping on my vicarage door when I arrived St Mary’s 14 years ago and we opened a stage with Buddhists, Sikhs and bhangra. The church found itself caught up in the adventure of a great festival. ROTW has shifted around quite a bit, but in all of its forms it has done a huge amount for multicultural communal relations in our town. Long may it continue!”
And when you hear about the vicar’s background, you realise there’s nothing surprising about his close links to ROTW. He added: “Life could have turned out so differently as I was involved in a band when I was younger called Monsters Of The Deep which then turned into a group called Pigbag. You could describe Pigbag as a post-punk band who had hit with Papa’s Got a Brand New Pigbag – which actually reached number three in the charts in 1982.”
Tickets for Friday’s gig cost £10 on the door. Money raised will help support fundraising efforts for the ROTW charity and help ensure its long term future. For more, head to www.rotw.org.uk.
Or you can buy tickets at Farleys Hair Emporium on Hermitage Road, Merrick Confectioners in Market Place, Dr Hadwen Trust Charity Shop in Churchyard, and David’s Music in Eastcheap, Letchworth.