National Lottery funding is music to Newport’s ears

The venue played a pivotal part in nurturing Welsh talent such as Super Furry Animals
A project showcasing Newport’s rock and indie music will celebrate the city’s legendary music history thanks to £58,400 of National Lottery funding.

A brand new exhibition featuring animations and memorabilia will be created by young women and girls at Newport Museum and will feature recordings of real life stories and memories, focusing on the South Wales city’s music scene in the 70s, 80s and 90s.

A rock star’s playground

In the 1990s Newport was labelled the ‘new Seattle’, as a growing international hub for rock and alternative music. With the likes of David Bowie, Van Morrison and the Sex Pistols all having played in the town, the city had been attracting the best in the business since the 1970s.

The renowned TJs nightclub became Newport’s equivalent to Liverpool’s famous Cavern Club. As well as playing host to Catatonia’s music video for their hit single Mulder and Scully, it is also where Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain is rumoured to have proposed to Courtney Love after her band, Hole, played there.

“With the help of local people, we want to make sure that the beating heart and soul of Newport – its music – lives on in people’s memory.”Amy Morris, project leader from Winding Snake Productions

Not just the venue of choice for global superstars, Newport boasted successful home-grown artists of its own - including 60ft Dolls, the Lash, and Novocaine – as well as nurturing up and coming Welsh talent Stereophonics, Manic Street Preachers and Super Furry Animals.

Making (sound) waves in the industry

Now, thanks to funding raised by National Lottery players, the Newport Rock Collecting project will make sure that memories of Newport’s once famous music scene live on. 

Addressing the lack of women in today’s music production industry, project leaders will work with women’s charities to involve 200 local young women and girls aged 15 – 25 in the project, including taking part in animation workshops and conducting interviews.

They’ll also get an opportunity to meet influential women in the Welsh music production industry, thanks to ‘Meet the Professional’ sessions, and some will also receive a formal accreditation for the new skills they’ve learnt.

Why not check out our YouTube playlist and experience the sounds of the city in its musical heyday for yourself?

Back to top of page