The heavy Glastonbury coverage on the BBC had me thinking about all the festivals I have been to. I'm extremely good at downplaying things I have done mostly because I do so little now, relatively.
Social media has definitely changed festivals. But that's both something for another time and the ill-advised ramblings of a loser approaching middle age.
- Ozzfest 2001. Newly into metal but a long time fan of Black Sabbath thanks to my Dad. First Tool show, Slipknot were brutal, everything else was largely forgettable.
- Deconstruction 2001. Two days after Ozzfest, in the steel-box London Arena that was built for a hockey team. Sick Of It All and 11 other punk bands I didn't care for.
- Reading 2001. In the days before Download, Reading and Leeds was the place for heavy music. Marilyn Manson on 50ft stilts blew my mind. They also had a whole day of Ska Punk, which was genuinely great.
- Reading 2002. The only bands I firmly remember are Sick Of It All and Muse. I don't really like Muse, but live is a different thing.
- Glastonbury 2003. I remember Radiohead headlining and I think I remember Squarepusher taking me to another plane of reality. The problem with Glastonbury is that the line up is so extraordinarily deep it's impossible to find a good record of it.
- Reading 2003. Metallica closing the show. The Mars Volta playing a 45 minute set and performing just 2 songs.
- Glastonbury 2005. I don't remember anything about this but I have the ticket stub. So I assume I had a good time.
- Bonnaroo 2006. I was there for Les Claypool, both solo and with Oysterhead. Radiohead was a nice bonus, and the super jam was pretty overwhelming; all these incredible musicians at once. I'll never forgive them for scheduling Medeski Martin and Wood at the same time as Claypool. That's like Sofie's Choice (with admitedly lower stakes).
- ATP vs The Fans 2007. The lineup for this was fucking incredible. Mogwai, Patti Smith, Why?, Subtle, Battles, ISIS, Shellac, Do Make Say Think, Edan, Echo and the Bunnymen, Slint... This more than made up for weird issues with who I was there with.
- Glastonbury 2007. I was lucky enough to attend for free as part of the crew for Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip. I was supposed to take photos, but I didn't get anything because I am terrible at taking photos of live music. That, and the stage they played had no photo pit, no light show, and half a dozen people watching.
- Gathering of the Vibes 2010. My 17th Les Claypool show, but first Primus show. Also: Galactic.
I'm fairly sure I won't be adding to this list, but that's ok.