30 June 2009

Glastonbury 2009: The DeeDubya Awards

I got back yesterday from yet another majestic Glastonbury Festival. This year I tented it for the first time in about 8 years (rather than going in my campervan) which meant spendingh a lot more time with friends and hearing many more acts from the main stage from our camp. It was a lot more chilled this year, with less band chasing. Having said that I saw some brilliant acts, had wonderful sing-a-longs, great laughs, drunken dances, glimpses of random acts of weird and wonderness and generally getting away from the humdrum of real life for six days.

So, as this is The Blog of Lists, here are my "awards" of this year's best and worsts, based on last year's categories:

:: Best act:
Runners up: Neil Young, Bruce Springsteen, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Nick Cave and the Badseeds

:: Most disappointing act
Enter Shikari (not big and not clever!)

:: Best sing-a-long:
The whole of the Blur set! Truely one of the best sets I have seen at Glastonbury. I knew every song and the crowd seemed to be dancing, jumping,pogo-ing and swaying along to ever track. This is a high!

Runners up: Keep On Rockin' in the Free World chorus: Neil Young

:: Best cover:
Neil Young: The Beatle's A Day in the Life

:: Best food:
Thai stir fried chilli duck with vegetables
Runner up: The various uses of batter mix, used by BiggerHalls on his camping stove for breakfast everyday!!!

Best surprise: Bruce Springsteen joining The Gaslight Anthem on stage in the John Peel tent a few hours before his headlning set "Brooce, Brooce Brooce!!!!"
Runners up: Gaslight Anthem's Brian Fallon retuning the favour for Bruce during Born To Run, Damon Albarn getting "emotional" after This is a Low. Wanting to see all three headliners and really enjoying all their sets.

:: Loved:
Thursday night, getting so drunk I gained the nickname JellyDeeDubya, singing VERY loudly to (randomly) Queen's Don't Stop Me Now and Lionel Richie's All Night Long and trying to get the queue for the cinema tent (who were going to see Ferris Bueler's Day Off to sing Twist and Shout (and failing!)
Runners up: the view of a sunny site from the highest point in the flag field, the company, the atmosphere

:: Hated:
The fact that once past security in the Shangri-La area you couldn't turn back, had to walk all the way along the old railway track, running the whole length at the side of the area, THEN through the whole of Shangri-La itself although we didn't want to go in there, ending up coming out a few feet from where we started, if only we could have turned right instead of left.
Runners up: the trek to where we camped, but worth it in the end (great view, in ear shot of the Pyramid Stage)

:: Best improvement to the site:
The general organisation seems very good this year

:: Worst "improvement" to the site:
The lack of the "new" campervan field on the west side of the site. A couple of friends drove to this area only to find it wasn't there and they weren't allowed to sleep in the carparks (which was there). Luckily they had a tent and went onto the main site. It was advertised in all the official documkentation and maps so how many people were left queueing for hours only to find they'd have to go back out and do the same all over again on the other side of the huge site?

:: Glastonbury moment:
Neil Young's four reprises of Keep on Rockin' in the Free World.

Just as you thought he'd finished, he kicked off again (and it didn't seem indulgent or wrong, the crowd couldn't get enough). On the third he had the thousands watch waving their hands from side to side and the sea of arms was amazing, hands already in the air from clapping the "end" of the song only for Neil to start waving with a rye smile on his facing. Superb.

23 June 2009

Michael Eavis's top five Glastonbury festival moments

Well, I'm off to Glastonbury Festival (again!) tomorrow so I thought I'd add a list of the festival's head honcho's favourite Glastonbury moments (as seen on the Guardian web site)

T Rex (1970)
'The sun was ­setting, everyone was watching, it was ­brilliant. It gave me the ­courage to carry on with the festival'

John Martyn (1979)
'He was in a good mood for a change. He was always drunk and slagging me off, we had quite a stormy relationship really. But on that occasion, at that moment in time, he was perfect'

The Smiths (1984)
'We had no fence around the ­Pyramid but it was the last year we could do that, because everybody climbed on stage and the band couldn't finish their set. I think they had a good time but ­Morrissey never admits to enjoying himself'

Oasis (1994)
'Not 1995 or any later, because they ­deteriorated with age, I think. But they were fantastic in 1994'

Radiohead (1997)
'I really wanted them to play again in 2008 but I got mixed up with the dates and they couldn't do it. I just think their ­performance that night, particularly of the song No ­Surprises, was very, very moving'

08 June 2009

10 singing footballers

On this day in 793 Vikings raided Britain at Lindisfarne, off the coast of Newcastle. Today's list is about footballers who have, successfully or not, contributed their vocal "talents" to music:

  • Paul Gascoigne and Lindisfarne - Fog on the Tyne: Former England and Tottenham boozy football genius joins the old Geordie folksters on this god-awful charity single.
  • Kevin Keegan - Head Over Heels In Love: Another Geordie, only managed to reach number 33 in the British charts in 1979, though "It Ain't Easy" was a huge hit in Germany.
  • Andrew Cole - Outstanding: Big Kev managed better than this rubbish R'n'B effort by the former Manchester United striker, which only got to number 69 in 1999.
  • Michael Essien and Didier Drogba - Skin: The Chelsea stars get together and release an anti-racism benefit single
  • Morten Gamst Pedersen : The Blackburn player is in a boy band The Players in his native Norway.
  • Glenn Hoddle and Chris Waddle - Diamond Lights: The England and Tottenham stars missed a trick here, going under the name of Glenn and Chris with this tame slice of electro-pop
  • Terry Venable - What Do You Want To Make Those Eyes At Me For?: Played for England, managed England, co-wrote a TV series (Hazell) and crooned. El Tel had it all.
  • Carlos Tevez - The Manchester United (?) favourite is the front man for an Argentinian shanty town music band, Piola Vago.
  • England 1982 World Cup Squad - This Time (We'll Get It Right): they didn't get it right, not the whole album or terrible tunes nor did they get past the first round in the World Cup.

06 June 2009

Rock that isn't actually rock.

Today is the anniversary of the day that Bill Haley and the Comets' "Rock Around the Clock" hit the top of the Billboard charts, in 1955. It is considered the song that really popularised the genre of Rock and Roll and led the way to the wide variety of pop and rock we enjoy today.

So, today's list is about "rock", or rather things that call themselves rock but are not made of stone!

  • Seaside Rock - long, hard candy, usually pink and with lettering through the whole length, down the middle, usually of the name of the seaside resort from which it was purchased.
  • Rock - slang term for cocaine or crack cocaine
  • Rock music - heavily amplified form of popular music, usually incorporating electric guitar
  • On the rocks (1) - in or into a state of disaster or ruin
  • The Rock (actor) - Nickname of Dwayne Johnson - former WWE wrestler turned actor and star of The Mummy spin-off "The Scorpion King
  • The Rock (movie) - action movie starring Nic Cage and Sean Connery
  • To rock (graphic arts) - to roughen the surface of (a copperplate) with a rocker preparatory to scraping a mezzotint
  • Rock Hudson (actor) - grizzly jawed actor (died 1985)
  • On the rocks (2) - a (normally alcoholic) drink with ice
  • Northern Rock - building society bailed out by the British government which signalled the start of the current "credit crunch"
  • To rock (verb) - to move or sway back and forth
  • To get ones rocks off (slang) - to have an orgasm, to enjoy oneself thoroughly.
  • Rocky - Oscar winning film starring and written by Silvester Stallone about a boxer called, er, Rocky Balboa.