I had a long car journey last Sunday morning.
While on the road, I stumbled across a discussion about Glastonbury Festival. Specifically, it was the inclusion of perennial big-haired heavy-metallers Metallica as headliners at this year’s event.
The argument centred on whether Glasto is any place for a hard rock outfit. It was a similar discussion to the one that took place six years ago when Jay-Z headlined, nine years ago when Kylie was top of the bill and in 1986 when someone mistook Level 42 for being cutting edge.
I wouldn’t call myself a fan of Metallica. I bought the album with the black cover which came out in 1991 because it was the must-listen-to cassette for trendy young bucks like myself at the time, but apart from the two singles on it I can’t remember any of the songs.
Glastonbury, however, is the right place for them – as it is for Jay-Z, Kylie and Leve… well, for Jay-Z and Kylie. The music festival is a part of British culture now. When I went to Reading in 2000, I hadn’t heard of half the bands on the bill but I loved it just the same.
Five years ago at Weldonfest I didn’t know anyone who was playing but the joy of a festival is that you get a chance to appreciate music you wouldn’t normally touch with a 10ft pole.
All you need to do is look at the size of the crowd gathered around the main stage on Sunday whenDolly Parton played Glastonbury. She wowed the crowd much like Bruce Forsyth did a year ago – a night he deems as his absolute career highlight.
The radio debate played soundbites from festival-goers who would not normally listen to Metallica but absolutely loved their set. Now Iron Maiden are slated to headline in 2015.
Why not stick them on the bill, and why not One Direction too?
It does us good to appreciate other people’s tastes once in a while.