If you’ve attended 2000trees before, there’s a chance you’ve heard of Camp Reuben. If you haven’t, or if you have and had no idea what it was, it would be helpful to be acquainted with Reuben , a heavypoprocksomething three piece from Surrey who were, until they broke up about 5 years ago, one of the finest acts that the British rock scene had to offer. Here’s a youtube playlist: Go. Fill your ears, then come back. I’ll wait.
In 2008, Reuben were booked to headline the second ever 2000trees festival, but for a number of reasons too lengthy to go into here, they broke up just weeks before it was due to happen. This tragic loss to the UK music scene left myself, my good friend Steph Eastty and a whole horde of other Reuben fan(atic)s with tickets to a festival we knew nothing about, purchased solely to see a band who now wouldn’t be there, and initially no one could muster much enthusiasm for attending the festival without Reuben. After some discussion however, we decided that what the hell – we’d go along anyway, on the off chance that there were some other bands worth seeing, or some hijinks to be had. We formed a plan to camp together under the (admittedly unoriginal) moniker “Camp Reuben” and together we would drink, laugh, and sing Reuben songs all night, to celebrate the band we loved rather than mourning their demise. I’d bring my guitar, Steph would make a flag – it was a fine plan, and one that came to fruition in an unexpectedly spectacular style: after the last band finished their set on the Friday night of the festival, Camp Reuben found itself playing host to a sing-along on an epic scale, as Reuben fans from all over the festival came to join the party. Amongst these was Frank Turner, who eventually ended up with the guitar, playing pretty much whichever songs we shouted at him for the best part of 2 hours. It was awesome. When we ended the night we had well over 100 people crammed into our small campsite, all of them singing their hearts out.
Since then 2000 Trees has become a regular fixture in our calendars – we’ve been back every year, bringing the same Camp Reuben flag and the same beaten up old acoustic guitar. We’ve repeated the sing-along too, though never on quite the same scale as that first year. It’s an incredible festival, so it’s nice to remember how we discovered it in the first place and it’s always a great moment when someone stumbles upon our campsite, spots the flag and says “So THIS is Camp Reuben!” – it’s quite cool feeling like part of the furniture, however small. Which is why it’s particularly exciting for us that this year, the lovely folks at 2000 Trees have asked us to make Camp Reuben an official part of the festival – they’ve offered us a Busk Stop of our own, where we’ll be inviting bands who are playing throughout the weekend to come along and give us an acoustic set (and maybe even a Reuben cover or two), and we’ll be using it as the venue for our standard Reuben sing-along. Apparently Frank Turner may even pay us another visit – check out this video for more information on that:- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYBwR8832s4&feature=share&list=UUoQBMRkc1z9J5gXIl4nLjCA
So please do come and find us. You can join the Camp Reuben Facebook page for updates on what we’ve got planned and exactly where we’ll be. Whether you want to play, sing, or just hang out then drop us a line and say hello. Extra points if you bring a comedy ‘tache…