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.

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