You know the music festival world is changing
when Billy Joel is playing
Bonnaroo and Paul McCartney
is headlining Lollapalooza. So you’d think it
would not be a surprise when Glastonbury books Kayne
West. 125,000 fan disagree.
The petition at Change.org says: “Kanye West is an insult to
music fans all over the world. We spend hundreds of pounds to
attend glasto, and by doing so, expect a certain level of
entertainment. Kanye has been very outspoken on his views on
music….he should listen to his own advice and pass his
headline slot on to someone deserving! Lets prevent this
musical injustice now!”
Festival organizer Emily Eavis responded to the petition in an
article in The Guardian where she defended the festival’s
decision to book the polarizing West.
Eavis says that she wouldn’t typically respond to this sort of
criticism but due to the media attention that the petition has
generated, she felt compelled to respond.
“We think the story this year should not be: ‘Why is Kanye
coming?’ but: ‘How amazing is it that Kanye is coming?’ One of
the world’s biggest superstars and a music legend, always
interesting, never boring. He has agreed to play a festival
where headliners get paid a fraction of their normal rate in
support of Oxfam, Water Aid and Greenpeace as well as thousands
of other worthy causes. We think that’s pretty great,” Eavis
wrote in The Guardian.
She also correctly notes that Glastonbury, particularly in
recent years, has been anything but a rock exclusive festival.
“Those acts never have been limited to rock, and they never
will be. Stevie Wonder, the Prodigy, Curtis Mayfield, the
Chemical Brothers, Jay Z, Gorillaz, Beyoncé and plenty of
others prove that,” she wrote.
She also defended the choice of Kanye to perform, saying,
“Ultimately, there is no question in my mind that we have got
one of the greatest artists of his generation headlining, and
we have no regrets at all about booking him.”
“As the late, great Glastonbury regular Lou Reed said about
Kanye: ‘The guy really, really, really is talented. He’s really
trying to raise the bar. No one’s near doing what he’s doing,
it’s not even on the same planet.’ And we’ve got him coming to
our farm! In rural Somerset! That’s great, right? I certainly
can’t wait to see his performance,” she added. –