STAFFORD is back on the musical map after town band Altern 8 charted again with a song first released 22 years ago.
When the Newsletter first spoke to the duo's Mark Archer about a campaign to get 1991 rave tune Activ-8 (Come With Me) to Christmas number one there was a Facebook page with more than 15,000 likes. The page has since grown to over 28,000 likes and the single has made it back into the top 40, charting at number 33.
This week Mark spoke about the emotional journey down memory lane and his thanks to the campaign.
"It's all been a bit weird – it's been such a long time since I last did all this," he said.
"I wasn't expecting to get into the chart, not because we've not had any support but because I know how many copies you need to sell to get into the charts and the Christmas chart especially is fiercely competitive."
A late surge kept the track in the running despite fears it would drop off the scale.
"We made number 30 in the midweek chart but sometimes sales can drop dramatically so I was worried it would drop out of the top 40 by Sunday. Thankfully there was a surge of sales on Friday and Saturday so people must have been waiting for payday."
He puts the success of the campaign down to nostalgia for the rave scene of yesteryear.
"It was such a big movement. Even on its original release [Activ-8] got into the top 10 without airplay. We've had support from the evening DJs like Annie Nightingale and Rob Da Bank like we did from Mark Goodyear back in the 90s but no plays in the daytime. It's impressive really that a song can get back into the charts with no radio support and no television presence – Little Mix and Sub Focus who have been constantly on the radio were lower than us. People hold the rave scene very fondly.
"I had no idea where we'd chart until they announced it on the radio. I thought if we hadn't heard it by number 30 then it wouldn't be in there. When they announced it I felt so emotional - I even had a bit of a cry. I never used to get like that."