Ferocious Dog Set To Be Unleashed At Solfest
From what started as a spirited idea, the beloved west Cumbrian music and arts festival, has come a long way. By its third year, Solfest was already a huge success and this small project quickly ballooned into one of UK’s best loved independent festivals.
This year, taking place over the weekend of 25 – 27 August, Solfest boasts a lineup which covers all genres and demographics. From the mainstream, to the underground, as well as a whole plethora of local acts.
The six-piece, punk folk band, Ferocious Dog will join headliners including, Newton Faulkner, The Stanton Warriors, The Dub Pistols (live), Beans on Toast and Will Varley. We caught up with singer and frontman, Ken Bosnall, before they storm the Solway Bar stage this summer.
What is happening for the band at the moment?
KB: We are halfway through recording our third album, so we’re in the recording studio as much as we can be. The Red album, should have been out a long time ago but The Levellers got in touch and asked us to do a full European tour, so we couldn’t turn it down. But we’re back in the studio now and the album will be out in September.
Do you have a lot of loyal fans that have been with you from the beginning?
KB: We don’t have fans, we have family. They call themselves the Hell Hounds, named after our song. As a tattooist I have done over 200 Hell Hound tattoos and people have travelled from all over the world for one. When we finish a set on stage, we take time to talk to everybody because it means a lot to us that people spend the money to come and see us and follow the band. When you’ve had 30 years down a coal mile, you’re never going to turn into a rock star.
You were originally a coal miner, how did you transition into music?
KB: Growing up my dad was always playing Irish folk music, which I hated, but when I got married I learnt to play guitar and knew all the songs off by heart. My son Dan (who plays fiddle and manages the band) turned out to be amazing on the fiddle, when he became a teenager I started the band to keep him playing.
The name came from Lee (Ken’s son and Dan’s brother Lee, took his own life in 2012 after suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, following years in the army) as a joke really, when he was a boy. After he died, Daniel and I chucked everything at the band to get us through. That’s why it really took off, it’s testimony to Lee.
Why is it that you have never signed with a record label and decided to stay independent?
KB: We don’t want to be multi millionaires and the next big thing, we just enjoy what we’re doing. We surpassed ourselves years ago with how far we thought we’d take it. Every year it’s getting bigger and bigger and all we can do is keep playing our songs, being ourselves and enjoying it.
Have you been to Cumbria before?
KB: As a child, every holiday we would go up to the Lake District. We’ve always camped even when I was a small boy, biking round countryside with my parents. Me and my brother, we’d camp at Castlerigg Campsite in Keswick and spend a two week holiday walking. Cumbria has been a massive part of my life growing up and now I take my wife and the kids, who love it too.
Are you looking forward to playing solfest?
KB: I am still old school when it comes to festivals. With solfest I can stay there all weekend and that to me, is a dream. I’m taking the family out on the road in August and when I saw the Solfest line-up, I knew we had to stay for the whole weekend. I’m really looking forward to it and getting back to the Lakes with the family for the weekend, camping and enjoying the festival, that’s what it’s all about.
For festival tickets and the full line-up visit http://www.solfest.org.uk/