Sometimes you get a day in Christchurch that just makes you think ‘why can’t it be like this every day?’, days when there’s a warmth that just permeates the air around you, a lazy, carefree spirit in the people around you and an overwhelming sense of relaxation. But then you realise if it was like that every day in Christchurch we’d just be another Noosa, Byron Bay or Miami with overcrowded city streets, painfully slow traffic and sky-high rents.
Still when you get one of those days the place you want to be is Hagley Park, soaking up the soulful sounds of the Departure Lounge. I was there along with a lot of other people (maybe you were one of them; check the photos I took just in case I caught you) and it was a great day to be showing off this fine city of Christchurch.
Held in the Central Lawn area (by the Rose Garden) in Hagley Park, Lazy Sundays is part of the Summertimes programme run by the Christchurch City Council, although reading between the lines based on what the MC was saying it might not be around next year. So we’ve been asked to let the CCC know how much we want it back.
Well, if last Sunday was anything to go by it has my vote to run for another year or ten. The weather and the musical talents of Departure Lounge made for a very pleasant afternoon of lazing and picnicking. While they don’t have any regular gigs in the city they have been known to make appearances at Als Bar on occasions and are planning on doing a few shows this winter (some of the band are going to Melbourne for a few months until then).
Their sound is soulful jazz, with a rock/roots edge to it, and if they had been around I would think they would be a serious contender to be a headline act for the upcoming Christchurch Jazz Festival (as it happens one of our favourite bands is making an appearance – Grand Central Band – we will see you there!).
Sadly the gig was over too soon but you walked away with a sense of civic pride – now if only my relatives had visited Christchurch on a day like this, they would have a completely different view of this place. I guess I’ll just have to keep the secret of this great city to myself.