O’Neills, Bournemouth

Stand Up To Cancer & Rock!!

Featuring: 9 Left Behind, Dakota, Walk The Night and The Jack Ratts
A group of kind hearted souls got together one day and decided that they wanted to make a difference by raising some much needed funds for cancer research. They came up with a gig at O’Neill’s on a Sunday night.

They charged £5 entry along with a raffle, they invited everybody they know and even pestered people they did not know to come along. The day of the gig came and their hopes and dreams came true as the storms of the previous few days that hit Dorset full on subsided and the place was crowded with many generous people looking for a great night out.

The evening kicked off with a refreshing blast of energy from 3 piece pop/punk band “9 Left Behind”, who blew away all the cobwebs with a set of great original tunes. There were as well a few cheesy, fast-paced covers like Nena’s “99 Balloons” and the Tom Jones classic “It’s Not Unusual” which gave the slightly jittery crowd the confidence to let their hair down and move on the dance floor. The band powered through an impressive 45 minutes on stage giving the evening just the right start it needed with quality musicianship coupled with some much needed audience interaction.

9 Left Behind
9 Left Behind 1

Next up were local covers act “Dakota”, fronted by Verena Chantal who herself is only seven weeks away from giving birth. This however seemed to make no difference to her and the bands more than impressive showing. The now much more lubricated audience were treated to a slightly predictable set of covers from a host of well know artists such as “Reef”, “Blink 182” and of course the tune to which the band are named after; possibly the most played pub cover “Dakota”, originally by the Stereophonics. The well known tunes did exactly what they should and got the audience singing at the top of their voices. Verena’s voice was powerful and she really sang the songs with loads of passion. However, it was slightly off-putting when she had to read some of the lyrics from a lyric sheet! Dakota left the stage to huge applause and lots of love from the more than impressed crowd.


Dakota 1

One of Bournemouth’s finest Rock acts “Walk The Night” were up next and the young four piece did exactly what they do best. Power through a set of their own well written, original material that easily stands side by side with any professional bands out there. There are songs like “Parade” and the epic “The World Is Still Mine” which really show the quality of these guys impressive musicianship. The guitar work is simply awesome with front man Chris’s vocal being delivered with a true Rock star swagger and masses of emotion. These guys really know the way to the audiences hearts and it’s with total honesty, with their hearts on their sleeves that they play their music. A great version of the Foo Fighters “The Pretender” and one of their own tunes “Number 1” ends their set on a real high.

Walk The Night
Walk The Night 1

The last band of the evening “The Jack Ratts” do everything to keep the momentum high with the crowds energy slightly dwindling after the long night. Arriving on stage at 11pm their fiddles, banjo’s and accordions got people back up off their seats and on to the dance floor, moving their feet once again. They perform a mix of covers by The Pogues, traditional songs as well as many of their own from their debut album “Sail The Deadly Seas” . Like “Walk The Night” The Jack Ratts have really used their skills with this genre to create a unit that delivers some really great music which is equally at home in a pub or on a festival stage. The remainder of the audience were kept dancing right until the last note was played and the curfew stopped the evening in it’s tracks.

The Jack Ratts
The Jack Ratts 12

Tonight the bands all gave their time for free. A whole team of people gave up their valuable recreation time to help others by putting on this event that not only raised valuable funds for cancer research, it gave a whole crowd of people a really great night out. Usually, most of these people would have been sat in front of their televisions of a Sunday evening watching boring programmes. Instead, tonight they were out of their front rooms for a very good cause. Claire Pitcher and her team of lively generous souls raised £1052.81 for Cancer Research. An amazing effort for “Lets Stand Up To Cancer and Rock”.

Let’s hope this is not a one off as I’m sure it is worth doing again next year. I for one would be more than happy to put my hand in my pocket once again.


Band Links

Words Pictures & Videos By Dave Chinery (Chinners).

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