18/12/2018: Promoter Profiles - Eat Up
The majority of the events that make up the programme at Exchange and booked by promoters hiring the venue. We think it's therefore only fair to let the world know about the wonderful people who help us fill our diary with their awesome events and to give a little insight on why they do it. The first collective of promoter's we wanted to focus on are Eat Up, so we asked them for a few words and they most kindly obliged.
Eat Up started in December 2017, when a group of friends, who met through going to punk gigs in Bristol, decided to create our own events uniting music, performance, art, politics and activism with a strong feminist and queer ethos. Bristol already has some great promoters putting on excellent events and a wide variety of queer nights, however it still felt like there was room for more female and genderqueer voices. The punk scene is traditionally dominated by white, straight, cis male performers and promoters, and as a group we wanted to challenge that and have more bands on stage that we, and the people who come to Eat Up, could identify with and be inspired by. So here we are!
We currently put on events every two months at the Exchange bringing together bands from Bristol and beyond. At our last event, we hosted an unofficial pride party, where we were excited to add queer performers such as Brizzle Boiz and Dancing Queer to our usual brilliant music lineup. We hope to continue this for future events.
Acts that have recently graced the Eat Up stage include Charmpit, Witching Waves, Crumbs, Bellies!, Molar, The Wine Mums and many more. We also invite local DIY artists to sell zines and artwork and Active Distribution joined us earlier this year to share some of their anarchist literature. Our queer politics are also central to the work we do and as such we offer a table to activist groups too. For example we recently had ACTUP Bristol who are dedicated to ending the HIV pandemic. We really want our events to showcase the Bristol queer community and are dedicated to diversifying this as much as possible - we’ve got lots of things to be proud of in our city, and we want to show them off.
We always want to build on what we’ve made so far and have recently launched our Eat Up For Starters programme – it’s a series of workshops and events that aim to act as an aid for people forming bands. We’re specifically aiming this for people who have never been in bands before, people who felt it wasn’t for them. We want to hear as many voices as possible – it would be great to diversify the Bristol music scene, so we’re giving it a go. Exchange is a place where many super established acts now have cut their teeth – and it is now supporting us, with space in kind for workshops, to support others to grow those teeth they’ll be cutting soon.
We’ve really appreciated the support that the Exchange has offered us. Without them Eat Up nights couldn’t be what they are now. We’ve found all the staff really friendly - excellent sound technicians who are open to our bands varied requests! It’s really great to be able to put on Eat Up in a place where staff share our values and believe in the importance of safe spaces so we can trust that everyone that comes will be looked after across the board and everyone is focussed on making the nights the best they can possibly be. It means a lot to us as a collective of women and queers that the Exchange values groups and events such as ours, and sees that the representation that we are trying to showcase is as important as we think it is.
So far feedback for the events has been really encouraging and shows us that our personal need and want for a night such as this was probably felt by quite a few people. Some people have come to the nights not really knowing the bands and have gone away wanting to listen to them at home, or holding one of their records. And probably one of the best things we’ve heard is that one person who doesn’t usually feel comfortable out dancing in public spent two whole hours on the dimly-lit Eat Up dancefloor to the awesome tunes of DJ Sissy Boy Tears having the best time! And that really is testament to the people who are coming to Eat Up supporting the event and the acts who have come to perform. So we can’t thank you, and them enough! Bring on more Eat Up fun!
If you want to come to any of our future events please check out our Facebook and Instagram pages:
For specific For Starters events: