As we approach the end of 2018, we reflected on the most iconic events of the year. From incredible musical films to breaking world records, its definitely been a special one…
10. Tokio Myers’ BRIT Award Success
Classic pianist Tokio Myers has had an incredible year following his triumphant win at Britain’s Got Talent 2017. Not only did he sell out his headline UK tour and make festival appearances, he will also round 2018 off with a Classic BRIT award! In June he walked away with the PPL’s Breakthrough Artist of the Year award at the first Classic BRITS ceremony in five years. He also ticked off another major item from his bucket list as he performed with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at the ceremony’s venue, The Royal Albert Hall. Along with the infamous music group, he showcased some of his best mashups from BGT including ‘Clair de Lune’ and Ed Sheeran’s ‘Bloodstream’, and the Interstellar soundtrack by Han’s Zimmer and Rag’n’Bone Man’s ‘Human’.
9. Post Malone’s Album Went Platinum Upon Release
On 27th April Post Malone made history when he released his second album Beerbongs & Bentleys, as it was already legible for Platinum status as soon as it was released. In order to go Platinum, an album or single must ship/sell/stream a million units. Beerbongs & Bentleys received the certificate through a technicality as it surpassed over a million units through just the three pre-released singles alone. Lead single ‘rockstar’ featuring 21 Savage, released September 2017, was the 22 year old’s first Billboard number 1 and stayed in that position for eight consecutive weeks. The two other singles ‘Psycho’ (feat. Ty Dolla $ign) and ‘Candy Paint’ contributed to the current figure of 1.1 million.
8. Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again Revived ABBA Fans
This summer, ABBA fans were met with a treat as the sequel to the ABBA musical romcom Mamma Mia! (2008) hit cinemas. Not only did it provide a backstory for Donna and fuel the mystery of Sophie’s real heritage, it also included an incredible cameo from Cher! UK fans have also treated to a tour from the most infamous ABBA tribute band, Bjorn Again. Their show was founded in 1988 in Melbourne by musician and director Rod Stephen. Designed as a rocked-up light-hearted satirical ABBA spoof, the show rapidly achieved worldwide Cult status and acknowledged for singlehandedly initiating the ABBA revival which brought about ABBA Gold, Muriel’s Wedding and of course Mamma Mia!
7. Frank Turner Sold Out Festival
Frank Turner returned this year with the second installment of his very own 4-day festival, Lost Evenings, which completely sold out for a second year running. The festival took place at London Roundhouse, showcasing different performances by the folk-rock singer and his band The Sleeping Souls, as well as performances by Felix Hagan & The Family, PD Liddle and Stick In The Wheel and many more. In 2017, Lost Evening won the AIM Best Independent Music Festival award, and has grown to be an international affair as Turner is taking it to Boston next year.
6. Ariana Grande Empowered A Generation
Ariana Grande truly has become the people’s princess over the past year, and is completely deserving of the title. Despite the tough times she’s faced, the music video for her latest track ‘thank u, next’ sees her with head held high alongside a few familiar faces and a plotline we all know and love. Her Mean Girls-inspired video which calls out her ex partners features some of the biggest names in pop culture from Kris Jenner, Jennifer Coolidge and Troye Sivan – not to mention the Aaron Samuels from the original cult film. Whether you’re a pop fan or not, the nostalgic and hilarious video paired with her empowering songwriting will have this marked out as one of the most memorable moments of 2018.
5. Ant Middleton Conquered Everest
Former soldier and now acclaimed adventurer Ant Middleton defied the odds as he completed the monumental challenge of climbing Mount Everest this May. The SAS: Who Dares Wins star climbed the world’s highest mountain as he was being filmed for Channel 4’s Extreme Everest with Ant Middleton; each episode highlighting the next step of his treacherous journey. Over 4,000 people have been successful in their climb since the first couple Sir Edmund Hilary and Tenzing Norgayt reached the 30,000 feet summit in 1953, however as Middleton saw for himself, not everyone returns. On a mission that’s changed his perspective for life while battling the elements, its a grand achievement that not many can relate to.
4. The 1975 Captivated Critics With Album Campaign
On 29th April The 1975 dropped a mysterious message on their socials, declaring the next phase of the Music For Cars era. Posters began popping up in Manchester and London with cryptic phrases such as “First, disobey; then look at your phones” Each poster and online clue had varying catalogue numbers (e.g DH00325 and DH00280) which suggested a countdown. Fans and journalists alike were hooked as they each tried to work out what each segment meant, which became increasingly difficult when they wiped their platforms. Eventually a countdown clock appeared on their site which ended on 1st June. A hidden zip-file was also found on the site, which contained four pictures whose file names collectively formed a link to a conversation between a person and a machine discussing morals, ethics and what it means to be human. Altogether this formed the ideology behind the album A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships: technology and art. This has definitely gone down as the most intricate and interesting campaigns of the year, and the album itself definitely lived up to the hype.
3. Tom Grennan Broke World Record
Tom Grennan has quickly become one of the most successful newcomers of 2018 with his debut album Lighting Matches which was praised highly by the likes of NME. In July, a week after the album’s release broke the Guinness World Record for the most gig played in multiple towns in 12 hours. The singer from Bedford performed in 10 cities, beginning in Breightmet at 6:46am then travelling to Knutsford, Market Drayton, Bridgnorth, Pershore, Monmouth, Gloucester, Faringdon, Chipping Sodbury and coming to a close in Marlborough at 6:30pm. The rules of the challenge were that he had to perform five songs on a stage in towns over 30 miles apart, with populations of 5,000-15,000 people, and in front of at least ten spectators, which he achieved with ease.
2. Childish Gambino Squared Up To Prejudice
Childish Gambino, also known as Donald Glover, shook listeners with his music video for ‘This Is America’ in May. The politically-driven track sparked conversation about the current state of the US, with lyrics such as “You just a black man in this world / You just a barcode” paired with controversial images of violent shootings juxtaposed with choir singers and dancing children. Covering the crucial topics of racism and gun control through the direction of Hiro Murai, Glover creates a chilling piece of work that got the world talking.
1. Spice Girls Reunited
On 5th November, the rumours were addressed. Spice Girls are back. Two decades after they revolutionised the 90’s pop landscape – Emma, Mel B, Melanie C and Geri are reuniting to perform a huge UK tour, including dates in London, Manchester, Coventry, Sunderland, Edinburgh, Bristol and Cardiff. This maybe their first time onstage together since the London 2012 Olympics, but the era-defining, history-making, best-selling female group of all time are more than prepared to bring the girl power back in full force.
From all us at Gigs and Tours, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and we’ll see you in 2019 for more unmissable shows! Check out everything we’ve got coming up here…