The Garden Festival talk to Team Love

Art & Culture

Two institutions of the party universe, the crew behind Team Love (Dave & Tom – Love Saves The Day, Glastonbury Silver Hayes etc) and the pair behind the mighty The Garden Festival (Nick & Eddie) were locked in a room by R$N and forced to interrogate each other – with the conversation ranging from haircuts to E17 via Sun Loungers and Flirtinis – oh and a bit about The Garden Festival too. Read on for the scoop on how they met, how the Garden’s grown in the intervening years and their dream bookings for the festival…

Questions from Dave and Tom (Team Love) to Nick and Eddie (The Garden);

How did we meet you? Who’s haircut did you like the most at first? And now?

Futureboogie were one of the crews we invited over to the first Garden Festival way back in 2006, we knew from the off that they were a perfect match for what we were trying to achieve musically and every season since then they have inspired an ever growing collection of music loving reprobates to make the trip with themAs far as haircuts are concerned with Dave it was more plumage that caught the attention. On one of the first boat parties he was sporting a velvet cape with feathers attached (he has toned down slightly in recent years) Toms more of an each hair in place kind of guy ,if they were drinks Tom would be a well pulled pint of bitter and Dave a Flirtini.

What will we be doing for you this year at the festival?

Troubleshooters and fall guys would be nice!! But seriously with all the great stuff you guys are doing back in the UK like your Love Saves The Day festival and the Wow arena at Glastonbury you have both built up not only operational skills but great personal relationships with the majority of the artists we are bringing over. For a more intimate festival like Garden its enormously important for everyone but especially performers to feel comfortable that the event will run smoothly, it will look and sound fabulous and then they can relax and let their hair down which most do in quite spectacular fashion !

How does Garden Festival match up to your original expectations? Has it surpassed what you first hoped to achieve?

Oh without question, we both knew deep down that the idea had long term potential but back then it was the first event of its kind and the motivation was simply get the right people here by all means necessary and the freshness and beauty of the location will do the rest. By the right people we mean folks with such a deep love of all forms of underground dance music that there is no compulsion to trot out Big Names or slavishly follow trends, and fortunately we have managed to retain that ethos throughout the 9 seasons.

There have been plenty of acts perform at Garden Festival, which would you most love to see make a return?

Eddie: Personally one of my favorites was Mayer Hawthorne who we booked very early in his career and was superb, I think we would stuggle to get him back now though as he is currently working with Pharrell!!

Nick: Not sure I can pin it down to one act really but I love having the Crazy P guys involved each year along with the other acts we now class as family such as PBR – Greg Wilson – Eric Duncan to name a few – it would not be the same without them joining in the shenanigans each year. Oh and of course everyone that comes under the banner Futureboogie DJs.

What attracted you to holding the festival in Tisno? 

Panic at first!! When we were forced to leave the much loved Petrcane site after 6 great years we had just a few weeks to find an alternative which would match up, so there were many sleepless nights while we all scoured the coastline. When we finally found the new site in Tisno it had so many amazing new features like our own private bay, onsite apartments and a nearby outdoor clubspace to build the new Barbarellas Discotheque it made all the stress worthwhile. And feedback from festival goers has been overwhelmingly positive. Having the beautiful town of Tisno just a short walk away has been another massive plus.                                                                                              

Is there anything new and exciting lined up for this year’s festival? Will our involvement this year free you up to live out all your wildest fantasies at it?

Of course!! We are always plotting some new adventure, last year we did our first excursion to a Secret Island location with your good mates from Berlins Wilde Renate which was all sorts of memorable for so many reasons and in addition to another like that we are planning another super special event that we should all keep top secret for the moment. As for you guys giving us a chance to fulfil our wildest fantasies of course this would be the very least we should expect from your involvement and anything else would be a bonus..

What are each of your personal highlights so far from your time running Garden?

Eddie: Just too many to single any one out, but with a gun to my head I would have to say one of the most special moments was when Odyssey played their classic Native New Yorker live, it was spinetingling !! But aside from all the magical musical moments one happy side effect is that among all the potential stress and chaos something hilarious will always pop up to relieve the tension. One funny story springs to mind ..on one of the very early Boat parties  we decided on an impromptu stop on one of the islands for a swim,  some of the guys ordered  pizzas for everybody from a seafront restaurant but hadnt told the captain and then panicked and ran as they saw the boat about to leave without them. A couple of miles offshore the music went off because a police launch had pulled over next to the boat with an irate restauranteur demanding his cash which we quickly paid up. Of course when your boarded by police on a boat we were all expecting that it was party over when the policemen came up from below all smiles with a huge stack of pizzas. Then the music comes back on and everyone was so relieved they were hugging the police and waving them off. .i seem to remember that we then cracked on until every last drop of drink had gone!. I think it says a lot that while quite rightly coming after the money the police still thought to bring the pizzas !!

Nick: For me again far too many to single out one highlight but loved the impromptu performance from Chali 2na on one of the boat parties – very special and a very special guy. Hanging out with The Hot 8 Brass band for a few mad days was an experience, great people with many stories to tell and I’m not sure I can repeat half of them to be honest!. Each year has its own highlight and the one that sticks out above all is meeting you guys ;-).

?Nick & Eddie to Tom & Dave 

?Tell us about your history with us at Garden.  How did we meet again?

Tom = It’s a little vague, I always remember being a little scared of you both when I first came to Petrecane as I was on a blag, and had a crew pass that I shouldn’t have had, which meant I was generally hopping onto boat parties that I didn’t have tickets for, or trying to get my girlfriend and all her mates into the sold out Barberellas!  That being said I was more scared of Charlotte, as she definitely knew what I was up to and was gunning for me…. think I even got shouted at by her once……. but not even that could put me off coming back – totally fell in love with the place

Dave = I met you both at the very first Garden, in the midst of storms and madness with a handful of the hardcore – I think initially you thought what on earth is that nice boy Steve doing with this lairy bastard – took a few years to get beyond that. I was hooked from day dot, amazing site and proper special vibes from the off. I remember just thinking I can’t believe these Brummies have started this out here, in a bloody fishing village  – and seem to be getting away with it! 

Do you do anything else in your time away from running Garden? I’ve heard you don’t really get up to much the rest of year! 

Tom = We both spend most of our time on sun loungers soaking up the Bristol rays and thinking about how to spend all of our ill gotten gains….  when we get bored of that we have our own little festival in the Uk called Love Saves The Day, we’re assistant programmers of the Silver Hayes field at Glastonbury Festival, run the Wow stage there, have run/program stages at a few of our over favourite festivals such as Secret Garden Party and Wilderness. I also run a venue called Motion Ramp Park and the In:Motion Series, Dave obviously runs Futureboogie, the label and parties with Steve, plus we do lots of events throughout the year, St Pauls Carnival and also produced the quite frankly massive See No Evil project in out fair city…. and erm we are also opening a bar this Spring called ‘The Love Inn’….  so yes… Idle Hands and all that…

Any chance of you working with East 17 again?

Tom = I have John and Terry’s numbers still on my mobile phone… so anything is possible…

Dave = That is unless they realise it’s you that has left them all the weird answerphone messages

Where do you think the future of UK festivals lies? 

Tom = Abroad???  Ha….  It’s still pretty fucking healthy isn’t it?  Every year people go “it’s so saturated”, “the bubble has got to burst” etc  and every year a few more appear.  I think the competition is a good thing, it means everyone really has to go into it 100% dedicated and also has to innovate and come up with something unique they offer.  As to the future I’m not sure – everything would point towards it becoming monopolised and homogenised with the big boys crushing smaller fish out…..  but then you look at the recent strength of the independent sector with Boomtown, Secret Garden Party and Shambala being some of the best and most popular festivals in the UK – and it gives you some faith in the future…

Dave = Yeah I think it’s pretty healthy at the moment to be honest – it’ll be interesting to see what happens again this year, there’s definitely a few more springing up  – I have faith that the less homgenised mainstream events will tough it out and continue to thrive – I think that there will always be people who don’t want the same thing you can get everywhere, it’ll end up like high streets otherwise.

How does running Love Saves The Day differ from being involved with a festival abroad like Garden?

Tom = Its definitely not as laid back and enjoyable as The Garden thats for sure.  The whole vibe is so special in Croatia, your right by the sea, amazing food, surrounded by all of your friends and family.  It’s just completely different.  We always come to Garden straight after Glastonbury, it’s the best follow on you can imagine 

Dave = and it rains – sometimes! Love Saves is on such a bigger scale in terms of infastrcture and crew it doesn’t really compare – although I definitely run around more at Garden than Love Saves!

What can we look forward to seeing from the Team Love’s influence at Garden?

Tom = More disco balls, capes and glitter??? 

Dave = let’s see what we can get away with – we always like to really push the decor side of things so would be ace to do some more of that in Tisno

Which artists would you most like to work with if given the chance?

Tom = Prince… with out a doubt…  Tell Nick to get his Chequebook out…. 

Dave =  we still hold out a hope for the other Harvey to come in one day…but we’ll see – all the artists coming over make us proper excited every year and this one is particularly strong…..

?What has been the defining ‘Team Love’ moment for each of you?

Tom = With regards to The Garden, I think each and every Futureboogie boat party has been a defining moment for Team Love, there is nothing like it in the world, words can’t describe the love and joy that boat brings every single year without fail….  

Dave = yeah defo the boat parties – but the defining one has to be meeting my future wife, what a peach!

The Garden Festival takes place from the 2nd to 9th of July, tickets are on sale at RSN Tickets along with the Double Whammy Garden and Electric Elephant tickets! 

For more information check out the brand spanking new The Garden Festival website.

Tisno… by night! 

Till July…

Photo credits: and Khris Cowley.