Tuesday, 12 January 2016

a sunday in june

it was sunday, 2000.
we were woken up dry-mouthed and roasted at midday by an overly-joyous local brass band... we had been here since wednesday and this was just too much joy for the fifth day of any party! so almost without a word, we understood to walk shakely towards our lavazza man caravan...
we were 22: conor, maree and i; learning the world and finding, like so many other post-adolescents, a promising liberty in the blinkered world of the music festival... and we needed our fix; coffee and music would save us!
conor and i had been here before and knew that the line-up was secondary to the festival - and a good thing too, as this year's line-up was shit! our sunday was mostly spent walking lazily through the festival compound, consuming any magic that was on offer. besides nine inch nails and david bowie, this year's main stage line-up had little to offer us, but today was david bowie day!
as we queued for coffee, there were murmurs of the david bowie show being cancelled... allegedly, he had given a full-on show in new-york a few days prior, breaking into all the hits for the first time in decades... he had played a 5-hour long set - the wind said that he had fucked himself up so much, he had to cancel the following show... glastonbury was the next one after that - would he show up?
... we're all stood in front of the stage, i count at least a million of us (probably two million in hindsight) shouting in support and doubt of our hero's arrival. we cheered right through what i recognised as a nina simone song before his presence overcame us... then china girl and ch-ch-ch-ch-changes, the only of his songs that i thought i knew until he rolled out a setlist of fame, under pressure, heroes, lets dance, ziggy stardust... actually this dude has been part of my life all along and i didn't even realise it! a relentless and unexpected 90 minutes... never before had i been so caught up in a vibe... i'll never forget holding conor and maree in the pause between the set and the encore: we were ecstatic, and i didn't really know why but, in my 22-year-old self something had been awakened - music could go anywhere, i felt, and i wanted to go there too!
i can't remember the rest of the weekend so well - it seems to have stopped there... or was that the year that we were woken up on the monday after the festival in the bristol train station by a guard telling us that we could sleep a bit longer... ?
in any case, on this 12th january 2016, he drifts into the great unknown and i am surprised to be effected so, but fuck... he gave us so much and in the face of death screamed even louder!

david bowie - blackstar

... mind blown

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