Tuesday, 17 June 2014

glastonbury unfayre

The music festival season in the UK is underway. Not that we'd know that from watching any of it's coverage on TV. Unlike previous years when wall to wall footage of say, The Isle Of White Festival, has spilled over from the BBC3's "yoof" channel, this year there's been none. They probably realised the huge cost of the army of support that goes into a live broadcast has resulted in 70 highly paid technicians doubling up on overtime and having a long weekend off once the filming is underway. No doubt the esteemed public broadcasting will be keeping their camera's dry for Glastonbury and chucking their all into that.

And Glastonbury this year has caused somewhat of a controversy. Which is long overdue when it comes to rock and roll festivals. Who can remember the last time one even raised itself above the most common complaint, that of high prices.
But this year the Grand Poo-bah of Glastonbury, Trevor Eavis, made the controversial decision of awarding Metallica as the main headliners on Sunday night. Good grief can this be true, the American metal band and their legion of fans arrive in the home of the perceived world of the new age and post hippy hipness. Surely somethings got to give.
And it did. Amongst a whole load of complainers who objected most strongly to Metallica being at the festival was not because of the music, or nothing so mundane as the worry of a turn out on biblical scale of metal maniacs amongst them, but that Metallica's front man James Hetfield, does some hunting and is also going to narrate “The Hunt”, a new TV series about bear hunting in Alaska.
The social media was consequently lit up with rage by the usual burger scoffing tweeters having one of their big moments and started the modern day action of the outraged...
another online petition.
Which of course is the best way to register your protest when you can't be bothered to move your rear out of the armchair. There's also been much talk about this all not being in “the spirit of Glastonbury.”
So much for free speech in the home of the hipster peace camp.

Anyway Trevor Eavis has replied to the doubters
"There's no other band in the whole history of the festival that has been so keen to play, they will do the best set of their lives here."
Having thought the whole protest thing was about the music and missing the point entirely.
Frankly, it will do everyone a lot of good to hear what James Hetfield is actually going on about with "The Hunt" misguided or not, and also for everyone to hear something that they wouldn't normally hear.
That was the idea of the 'music festival' in the first place wasn't it? A festival of music. Where you'd hear a folk singer come on next to a rock band, next to a top jazz player, next to a funk band etc etc. Just have a look at the lineup at some of the early festivals (Monterey, Montreux, Woodstock, Isle Of Wight,). Not too many music fans complained after being at one of those.

And Ricky Wilson of the Kaiser Chiefs will tell you it's all going to be really good...