pleased to report blues and blues-rock is being reasonably well-represented at
this year’s “sold

How Glastonbury looks from the air. Over 100,000 will attend

out” Glastonbury music festival, kicking off tomorrow (Wednesday
June 25).

Before the festival
started in 1970, you might be interested to know Glastonbury’s main claim to
fame was the visit supposedly paid by young Jesus Christ, with his Uncle Joseph,
on a tin-finding expedition. This was during the Roman occupation of Britain,
when there were plenty of trade routes between the Middle East and south-western
England, so the tale’s not quite as
far-fetched as it seems. Logic would put the date as sometime between 10 and 20AD.
In the absence of
Jesus, Glastonbury-goers will start their worshipping at the altar of Arcade

Arcade Fire. Friday’s headliners

Elbow, etc. on Friday June 26, when the festival kicks off in earnest.
The timeless Blondie will perform on “the other stage”.

Former Led Zeppelin
frontman, Robert Plant, with The Sensational Space Shifters, is expected to wheel
out a few old blues standards on Saturday night (June 28). And following Plant
onto the main stage will be former White Stripe, Jack White, who will introduce
Europe to his new vinyl-with-a-difference album, Lazaretto. Gone are White’s
previous corporate colours of red and white. The guitarist’s new colour-scheme is
Released about a week
ago, Jack’s Lazaretto disc has stormed to number one in the U.S. album charts,
selling 138,000 copies. As expected, there’s some thrilling blues-rock guitar
work there, as

A Lazaretto album shot

well as lots of other influences with all songs written by Jack. The one exception is “Three Women” by Blind Willie McTell (1898-1959), the great Piedmont blues and ragtime singer and guitarist. But take a listen for yourself.
Follow this link to the Glastonbury line-up site, click on Jack White and you
should be able to enjoy a Lazaretto preview.

Jack White’s Lazaretto here
Headlining Saturday on
the main stage is the mighty

Metallica headline Saturday

Metallica. Heavy-metal, thrash-metal – you can
call it what you will, but to me, it’s simply hotted-up blues.

Sunday’s main draw are
English rockers Kasabian, supported by the blues-rock of The Black Keys and,
believe it or not, Dolly Parton and the English National Ballet. I quite like
Kasabian’s music and they have, at least, put out the odd blues-influenced
track, such as Butcher’s Blues. But what impressed me most about the band were
the soccer skills of their 6ft 6in vocalist/guitarist Sergio Pizzorno. Although
born in England, he played for The Rest of the World v England in a charity
football (soccer) match held at Wembley Stadium a couple of years ago. Sergio
was chosen for the Rest of the World, no doubt, because of his  Italian-sounding name and an Italian
grandfather, because he was actually born in Leicester, where Kasabian
come from.  Sergio’s team mates that
day included Will Ferrell, Edward Norton, Woody Harrelson and soccer legends Edwin
van de Sar, Jaap Stam, Clarence Seedorf, Roy Keane, Hernan Crespo and Freddy
out the Kasabian guitarist’s wonder goal at Wembley Stadium

Kasabian headline Sunday. Pizzorno is second right

The goalkeeper chipped
by Sergio Pizzorno was none less than former Arsenal keeper, David Seaman, who
played 75 times for England. (Not that that representing England means much
these days after their disastrous performance in the 2014 World Cup now
underway. Let’s hope the USA progresses further.)
There are hundreds of great
acts appearing at this year’s Glastonbury, including such old timers (this blog
is mainly historic, after all) as Brian
Ferry, the Pixies, Brian Jonestown Massacre, Yoko Ono, Tony Joe White, Dr.
Feelgood, Dexy’s (previously Dexy’s Midnight Runners), Nick Lowe and The Selector.
Bruce Dickenson. Iron Maiden frontman and airline pilot

There’s even a section
in the line-up guide entitled “The Blues”, although this seems to be made up of
DJs playing hip hop, roots and dub, etc. I hope this is a misprint and not a hijacking of the term “blues” like
the term “R&B” was hijacked. If such genre pirating is the case, stand up and be counted blues lovers.

About the most contentious
issue about this year’s festival was Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickenson claiming in
the English press how Glastonbury has become “the most bourgeois thing on the
As a privately-educated
airline pilot, as well as Iron Maiden’s singer, Bruce isn’t really in a

Bedtime at Glastonbury

to cast stones (or maybe he is). “Anywhere Gwyneth Paltrow goes and
you can live in an air-conditioned yurt is not for me,” he said, referring to
Glastonbury’s VIP areas where guests pay thousands of pounds to sleep in yurts
with air beds, rather than in traditional tents, in the mud that often
accompanies the festival.

Dickenson, whose own
band plays the hard rock festival, Knebworth, just outside London, next month,
added, “We’ll leave the middle classes to do Glastonbury and the great unwashed
will decamp to Knebworth and drink a lot of beer and have fun.”