Thetford: James thrill their fans with dynamic set in the forest


- Credit: Archant

James, Thetford Forest, last night

The rain held off and it became a clear, cloudless but chilly night in the forest.

Many people probably decided to opt for the comfort of their armchairs but those who decided to venture into the great outdoors and head off to the first of this year’s Forestry Commission’s annual concert series Forest Live series, at Thetford, had a evening to remember.

James, one of the most influential British indie bands, thrilled their devoted fans with an hour and 45 minute-long dynamic set of their classic hits and also included some of their new material, one or two which they said they were performing for the first time.

Front man Tim Booth was suitable attired with a wooly hat but soon dispensed with the headgear as the dynamic seven-piece outfit got into their stride.

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Their unique and distinctive sound rang out from the stage, set up in the huge clearing, and filtered through the forest.

The chill air was warmed by the band’s pulsating sounds as they ran through their programme and the adoring fans were left dancing and swaying in front of their idols as they sang along with their familiar tunes.

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That was never more evident during Just Like Fred Astaire and their big finale and most well known hit Sit Down.

Formed in Manchester in 1982, their 20 UK top 40 singles include Sit Down, Laid and Sometimes and they’ve sold more than 13 million albums worldwide and they included many of the favourite numbers throughout the evening.

The band are reported to have learnt about 50 songs and say their set lists are chosen on the night. Tracks are regularly rotated and rested. What gets picked depends on their mood, the environment, the audience.

And that was plainly evident as they turned up the volume and warmed to those who flocked to the forest.

Tonight Paloma Faith is the star attraction and tomorrow Blondie are on stage.

Tickets are available from the Forestry Commission box office on 03000 680400 or online at

Forest Live is an independent programme organised by the Forestry Commission, bringing music to new audiences without commercial branding or sponsorship.

Income generated from ticket sales is spent on improving the forests for people and wildlife.

Read a full interview with Tim Booth on our online sites.

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