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Dereham bands' Spanish success

PUBLISHED: 13:44 05 November 2008 | UPDATED: 14:48 07 July 2010

Three up and coming Norfolk bands now have an army of Spanish fans after the success of their tour in Barcelona.

Dysfunction, The Crush and The Union Jacks have just returned from being wowed by crowds of hundreds.

Three up and coming Norfolk bands now have an army of Spanish fans after the success of their tour in Barcelona.

Dysfunction, The Crush and The Union Jacks have just returned from being wowed by crowds of hundreds.

The groups are all from JDT Music in Dereham, and the music centre organised the tour to give the youngsters a taste of what life is like for professional musicians.

Their first gig was on Monday at Centric Point, a youth centre in the heart of Barcelona, followed by a gig in front of 300 pupils at an international school and finally a show at a Spanish jazz venue before they returned home on Thursday .

“When we played in front of the school they were really hyper and they really enjoyed the music. The whole tour was like the superstar lifestyle,” said 15-year-old George Page, the drummer and lead vocalist from pop punk rock group Dysfunction, which also includes Thomas Page, 11 (backing guitar), Ella Mitchell, 11 (keyboard), Connor Miller, 13 (vocals and lead guitar), and Vickee Berry, 14 (bass guitar).

“The tour has helped us become more of a band and now we really want to start writing more of our own songs,”

Matt Udberg, the 15-year-old drummer from pop punk rock group The Union Jacks, said: “We learnt so much. As well as performing we were also setting up our equipment and doing sound checks. It was really cool walking down the street and seeing posters advertising our band in Barcelona.”

Rhythm guitarist and vocalist Jordan Baxter, 15, is also in The Union Jacks along with James Crosse, 15 (bass guitar), and George Perks, 15 (lead guitar).

Jordan said: “The tour was an opportunity not to be missed - the chance to get our own music out to different places and people.”

Connor Manning, the 16-year-old lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist for The Crush said the Barcelona gigs were some of the best experiences he had ever had of playing in a band.

He said: “The crowds were amazing. I threw a Crush T-shirt into the crowd when we were playing at the school and the noise was insane, and everyone was trying to grab the T-shirt.

“The tour was a really good gelling experience for the band and it was great working with the other bands too.”

Also in The Crush, who play everything from soft rock to heavy metal, are Lewis Jenkins, 16 (drums), Jamie Bishop, 16 (bass guitar and backing vocals), and Jonnie Carfrae, 16 (lead guitar).

Janel Spalding, from JDT Music, said: “The tour was successful and educational at the same time. The bands went to Barcelona as amateurs and came back as professionals. It has helped to open new doors for them and I am so proud of them.”

She said JDT Music planned to do more tours abroad with bands and the next destination would be New York.

t Video from the band's trip will be on www.edp24.co.uk

t For more information on The Crush visit www.thecrush.me.uk

For information on The Union Jacks visit www.theunionjacks.com or www.myspace.com/theunionjacksofficial

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