Merry Hill HMV and toast successful debut live music showcase

By Leigh Sanders | Brierley Hill | Entertainment | Published:

Organisers of the first live music showcase at the Merry Hill branch of HMV are toasting its success - promising it will return next month.

Gornal's Alex Ohm performs at the live music event put on by and HMV Merry Hill Photo: Danielle Clarke

Management at the relaunched HMV outlet teamed up with Birmingham-based online music magazine show to host two local bands last weekend.

Gornal singer-songwriter Alex Ohm and his band, as well as Wolverhampton rockers The Jack Fletcher Band, were providing the entertainment.

The team with HMV staff Photo: @RawSoundTV

The artists performed for customers on the day, were given their own shelf space in-store and also put together a playlist to go out over the store's PA for the day playing tracks from bands they have filmed since their first show in the summer of 2017.

The idea is to promote local musicians, showcase the work of and also to "bring HMV closer to its customers", according to management.

And co-founder Mark Piddington, who owns the Glass Onion Recording Studio in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter where the show is filmed, was delighted with how their first event had gone.

Customers came in especially to see the bands play Photo: Danielle Clarke

"It was absolutely fantastic," he said. "It really went well, I can honestly say without a hitch.


"The bands were really well received and they put on some really good sets that pulled in some crowds.

"We had three cameras and a 360° VR camera there too so got lots of good footage. The sound in the shop was brilliant and the staff were excellent too. We're committed to going onwards and upwards with this store.

"The shop said sales were up and we've had other HMV stores such as Manchester getting in touch to ask if we can send artists up, as well as HMV head office interested in rolling it in their other stores too."


And based on that, they've already got their eyes on the next performance.

"The next one is pencilled in for July 13. We're just pencilling in the bands at the moment.

"We'll hopefully be able to release the show footage this weekend too, but it depends how much time I've got with our normal fortnightly show due out too."

The regular episodes, featuring two bands each fortnight as well as bonus tracks from previous guests, come out every other Sunday at 4pm on their website. The latest episode, featuring two former Unsigned column stars from Wolverhampton - Crest Glider and Runaway Hounds - is out this weekend.

Fans are asked to keep an eye out on their website for the HMV special as well.

The Jack Fletcher Band perform Photo: Danielle Clarke

Of the bands performing, Alex Ohm had a particularly good day. He sold out of all the merchandise he took with him having performed two sets for customers. That made him the shop's highest selling artist of the day - outselling the new Bruce Springsteen record as well as other heavyweights such as Queen and Elton John who had compilations out.

He took to his Instagram account to declare: "Yesterday was all sorts of crazy. We had a great time at HMV. We sold out all our CDs (outselling Bruce Springsteen that day ) and had a lot of fun playing.

"A massive thanks must go to the team at and HMV. Their passion and effort that went into yesterday’s event was something else. Thanks so much for having us and looking after us. We must say a huge thanks to everyone that came down. It was so good to see so many familiar and new faces."

The bands were given their own shelf space to sell merchandise Photo: Danielle Clarke

HMV were happy with the event too, with assistant manager Andrea Pritchard saying: "We had more traffic in the shop than usual and there was a cracking atmosphere. We had so much positive feedback from customers in-store and on Twitter.

"We sold out of material for Alex Ohm and what was nice was he stayed afterwards to meet the customers who bought his stuff and sign things for them. It's bringing customers closer to what we want to do and used to do, so we'll be doing one a month hopefully."

For more pictures, video and reaction from the event, check out @RawSoundTV and @hmvMerryHill on Twitter, and keep an eye on for the finished special episode covering the showcase.

Leigh Sanders

By Leigh Sanders

Senior sub editor for the MNA portfolio and entertainments writer leaning towards features and reviews. Get releases to me at

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