August 26 to 28
WOW! What an incredible fun-packed and family friendly weekend we had at Camper Calling 2022.
The size and scale of this ever-popular festival gets more and more impressive. It was much bigger than last year’s first post-pandemic event with the ‘second’ Arrow stage being just as much a draw as the main ‘Lakeside’ stage this time.
We are so lucky to have Camper Calling right here on our doorsteps and it’s always a nice surprise to bump into friends and old friends over the weekend.
Basement Jaxx got the old ravers in us up for the festival, headlining Friday night having been supported by Charlotte Church singing pop covers.
Saturday was another packed day with Echobelly taking many of us back to our college and uni days at the height of Britpop.
The highlight of the Lakeside stage on Saturday for me though was Starsailor, a band I’m perhaps guilty overlooking at the time! Frontman James Walsh looked and sounded as fresh as he did back in 2003 when Silence Is Easy was a big hit for them.
Shed Seven went down a storm too but I couldn’t resist switching to the Arrow Stage to catch The Bootleg Beatles. There was a sea of thousands having a fab time there and it’s not surprising as they were in top form.
Sunday featured a warm up from Craig Charles, despite a hitch with his DJ kit, before The Dualers, who were a pleasant surprise for the unacquainted like me. Their fusion of ska and chilled out reggae gave a great feel-good vibe that was par for the course over the weekend.
Excitement built through the day for Elvana – a Nirvana tribute band fronted by an Elvis impersonator to put it in simple terms – who lifted the roof off the Arrow Stage. The silent disco had hundreds queuing for it too.
We also managed to catch Del Amitri who were giving a more mellow set of their classic hits like Nothing Ever Happens and Kiss This Thing Goodbye on the Lakeside stage.
Another quality 90s band who are enjoying a renaissance at festivals like Camper Calling as the demographics work with parents reliving their younger years, this time with their kids in tow!
James picked up the pace to headline the last night and close a brilliant weekend on the beautiful Ragley Hall estate.
The atmosphere exploded into life when they took to the stage with the effervescent frontman Tim Booth (now 62!) throwing shapes like he did in their late 80s/1990s heyday.
With an energy that defies his years and put us fortysomething dads to shame they did not disappoint.
Laid, Sit Down, Waltzing Along and Getting Away With It ticked the crowd pleaser boxes but they are much more than this as a band, proving why they have been together for 40 years now.
Such a big name were a great choice to end another brilliant festival which had so many happy and positive vibes. It’s easy to see why ‘campers’ were already planning their return for 2023 as the sun went down on 2022’s event.