Glastonbury Festival 1999 has now been and gone.

This is my account of the Glastonbury 1999 festival, the second Glastonbury Festival I  have been to. What a man Michael Eavis is.   He still went ahead with the festival despite the death of his life long partner Jean Eavis a month before the event. Now all the preparation is over, and the festival is over, how must he now be feeling?

This is a picture account of the Festival.  Selina, Dan and I spent four days at this event.  We had a great time.  The weather was almost perfect.  A remarkable change over the previous year, where I had been walking through deep mud.  The dry areas meant I could sit, and lie down on the grass.  The previous year, although mostly warm and sunny after the Friday, was full of mud.  You could not sit down and relax.  To me, that was the greatest change the weather made.

We, (that’s me the old hippie, Selina my daughter, and Daniel her boyfriend) decided we should aim to be at Glastonbury by Thursday midday. The aim, to miss the hoards arriving, and to get a good spot for camping. I had been checking the festival web cam the previous day, and saw the first tents arrive in the field next to the stage.

So at 9.35 am we set off from Buckinghamshire and headed off down the A34, M4, M5 and turned towards Glastonbury at junction 23. We arrived just outside of the entrance at 12.15 in a small queue.  Eventually, we parked at 12.30. The only stop on the way was to purchase Daniel some Cancer sticks.

Daniels and Selina

We took as much as we could from the car and headed for gate 6. This was a 600-yard walk. Once inside we looked for somewhere to camp. I decided we should, if possible camp roughly where we had camped the previous year. This was in front of the other stage, in a strip of land 25 years wide between a hedge and a metal road. The advantages would be:

  • Not far to walk
  • Did not flood last year
  • The tent would be easy to find.  Selina has no idea on how to Navigate.  The previous year she had been unable to find her way back to her Tent, leaving one distraught parent searching for her all night.
  • Security.  There were so many stories of tents being Nationalised.  I hoped being pitched near the main thoroughfare this would not happen.


Well, the tent erection was over, so now to go and explore the site and see what is happening.  First, a lager to replenish all that lost fluid, and a quick look at the Glastonbury guide to planning Friday’s bands. Must go and see, Ian Dury, Blondie, Hole, REM, Dark Star.

The administrative work complete, wandered over to Green Fields and the stone circle, then back on down to Jazz World. Some bands were playing, (Sound Check). The first band I watched was Cantaloop. Hey, there were not bad. Rock, with a Sax player.

The weather was fine, with cumulus clouds, although they had overdeveloped. So no getting sun burnt at this time.

The next band on was at 5.30 and were called Big World Skunk. Eight-piece Funk band, 2 Sax/Trumpet, 2 guitars, 1 drum, 1 keyboard, 1 tambourine, TomTom etc. Guest Asir Amrit sang a few numbers.

Had a good time with this band.

7.30, and another band was being set-up when an announcement was made that there would be no more live music today at Jazz World. The festival was not licensed for live music on Thursday. They had been fined and told no more music.

I wandered around the site. Looked at all the stages, and the film stage. Plenty of camping space available, especially over by the file stages. Passed by a possible Internet cafe in a red London bus. It turned out to be a place where I could send emails but was an on-line CD shop.

8.45 back at the tent. No one was around

9.30 Sent an e-mail from the red bus. Then onto the film set where I watched Antz, followed on by Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. The last film was cut short because again the festival did not have a licence to show films on Thursday

Oh well off to bed.  Kept awake by dance music all night.  Finally, in the morning I realised it was from the tent/stockade just 10 meters away.  I had thought the sound was from green fields.


Up and ready for action at 7.20. The day was bright and clear. It was going to be a glorious day. Sleep had come slow during the night with the dance music all night. I had thought it was coming from the green fields direct, but now I could see it was from the enclosure 30 yards way.

Breakfast and then to the Jazz World where I watched CCQ. After watching CCQ, I  had to hurry over to See Ian Dury. Oh disappointment, Ian was Ill and could not make the festival.


Instead, I went on to boxman and checked my Emails. I had had a response from Katie at Paramania who asked me to say hello to the Tiny Tea Tent. The Tiny Tea Tent was at the Paramania fly-in back in May. Adam is a flyer.

Here we have the Tiny Tea Tent. They were located on the main track that takes you up out of the Jazz World Stage to Green Fields. They appeared to e doing great business.  The cakes they sold were really good.

Tiny Tea Tent

Saw Selina and Daniel at 1.00.p.m. trying to meet up with her school friends. Watched the last bit of Skinny. AT 2.00 watched Los Amigos Invisibles from Caracas Venezuela. They were OK, but I would not go out an pay to see them.


Another must-see band on my list. Hopefully, she should be there. Yes, 3.30 and Blondie starts on the main stage. Oh heaven, a band from just after I left university, and look people still love her. She did a really good show. Dressed in a red dress and red hat, which she removed after the first number to reveal her blonde hair.

She played all her old hits and ended with a heart of glass. Then before Hole, I went to watch a band called Dark Star, but first some more e-mails to Rosemary. Dark Star was not so good.  Back to the main stage for Hole.

After Hole, I had quite a bad time choosing bands. First I went to the Acoustic Tent at 8.30 to hear Marianne Faithful. I lasted out a couple of songs before I left. I did not enjoy her type of music at all, so I went back to the tent and had some food.

Selina’s friends

Selina’s friends turned up at the tent. We all went to see REM. They one way, and I another way. The whole world must have gone to see REM. I got a reasonable place to see them to the right of the mixing tower. But after five songs I had to get out. The music was diabolical. It might explain why I do not have any of their records. Getting out was easier said than done. As I got nearer out, the harder the crowds pushed together, so out seemed further away.

Eventually, I managed to get to out, and then on to the film stage where I watched the final part of Star Trek Alien Insurrection, and all of Lock Stock and two smoking barrels. I did feel a little cold after this. The sky was lovely and clear, but the tee-shirt and two long sleeve tee shirts were not adequate protection to keeping me warm.  I must rewatch Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels because I did snooze through some of it.


Saturday is already with us. Again the weather is good. Not a cloud in the sky when I get up.

Pops Mohammed

Off to the first band at the Jazz World at 10.15. Pops Mohammed. Quiet start to this 3 piece band using some traditional Southern African instruments. The first piece was the sounds of the Kalahari Desert. Later the band had some keyboards, drum and bass guitar for a real jazz feel. Not at all bad.

At this point 11.00, I discovered the Brother Bar by the Jazz World. The normal beer tent had not opened, there was not an itinerant can seller insight, but the Brothers Bar was open. They sold 7%(by volume) pear cider (I thought that was called Perry). It was nectar, so smooth not like the scrumpy. At two pounds the pint it was definitely good value. Bought a pint and laid down in the glorious sun in from of the stage waiting for:

The Egg 11.35

The Egg.  Oh, this was bliss.  If only every day was like this.

They were definitely a dance band. Electric Guitar, Keyboards, samples and drums. They all came on with white tee shirts numbered 1,2,3,4 and shorts. They were easy to dance too. Good fun, then back to the bar for another cider and-

Groove Armada 12.50

They are a Hip Hop, Dance band. Really enjoyed myself. Or was it the cider beginning to kick in? I could dance there in front of the stage in this warm sunny weather. I began to consider not seeing any of the main groups of the day. I was really quite enjoying myself here. Oh heaven.

Another cider and it then was:-

Junior Delgado 14.10

Reggae band. Had some TV taken of me. Not seen this though.

Hey, the weather is still fine. Over 90 per cent clear, although there are some cirrus clouds signalling the approach of a warm front. Look out for the rain later!

This was all I watched at the Jazz stage on Saturday.  Next stop would be Joe Strummer.  Here are a few pictures taken around the Jazz Stage.

A Rhino???

A Rhino

Joe Strummer

The time was 16.10, The Cirrus clouds were there, the wind had increased to 20 miles per hour, and it was Joe Strummer. I was two rows back on the left side of the stage. At last, there were some tracks I could sing along to. Joe played both new songs and old songs from the Clash days. I suppose I preferred the old Clash songs because I knew them. Anyway sang along to London’s Calling, and My Daddies a Bank Robber. Did a little pogoing.

Joe attacked the TV crew (literally) and accused them of not even allowing him to have a piss without being filmed. I though ended the show feeling slightly disappointed. It could be because I had had such a good time at the previous sets. I don’t know.

The Cardigans

I now had a little break, went back to the tent and planned my attack on the Manics. I decided I would watch the Cardigans on the Other Stage at 7.00, and then go to the main stage for the last of Texas. I would watch Underworld and then the Manics. Hopefully, I will be at the front of the Manics.

It started to rain, heavily but rained only for a few minutes. By the time the Cardigans came on the rain had long since finished

19.00 At the Cardigans. I thought I know none of their songs, but suddenly I remembered them. So funny hearing things on Radio One, but never remembering who had sung them. Had a good time acting for the TV cameras.

The Cardigans
The Cardigans


Arrived for the last of Texas. At the Front Left. As they ended I moved into the crowd for the Underworld set. I was at the near the front and to the left side of the stage. I did loads of dancing. By the time the set had ended, I was some 4 rows back nearish the centre.  The only downside was the Manic’s fans.  They just stood around getting in the way.  Just waiting for the Manics, not enjoying anything else.  I do think Manics fans are rather self-centred and selfish.  I had a bit of an argument about this on a Manics fan list.

Me in the crowd

Manic Street Preachers

The Manics were on. I was three rows back and it was hellish. The crowd surfers were those trying to escape the crush. Partway through Yes, the gig was stopped to allow the ‘fallen’ to be picked up. All the people in front of me were removed. I was then at the front. By the end of the set, I was an exhausted wreck of a man. Wet, (my sweat, other peoples sweat and water was thrown over me), emotionally drained and physically exhausted after two great bands. All I could think of was to get back to bed and sleep, but before that, I had to have my first and only Glastonbury beefburger. My body was telling me I needed meat now.

The Set was

  1. You Stole The Sun From My Heart
  2. PCP
  3. Tsunami
  4. La Tristresse Durera
  5. Kevin Carter
  6. Yes
  7. Everything Must Go
  8. You’re Tender And Your Tired
  9. No Surface, All Feeling
  10. Prologue To History
  11. Motorcycle Emptiness
  12. Motown Junk
  13. My Little Empire
  14. Australia
  15. You Love Us
  16. If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next
  17. A Design For Life


Now we are on to the last day. Woke up after my best nights sleep to the pouring rain. The rain

finally stopped at around 11.00 Had breakfast and then went to see the first bands of the day: By the time we got out it looked like a typical cold front day. Clear sky, with towering cumulus clouds. Should be a good day for weather.

Dr Didg 12.40

I have seen Dr Didg before. This time Selina and Daniel came and watched with me. He basically plays instruments and samples these to make rhythm tracks while on stage, Of course, the major instrument he uses is the didgeridoo.

Jazz Jamaica 1.20

Went over to the Jazz stage to listen and dance to Jazz Jamaica. They have 4 CDs out the latest called Double Barrel. They played Manic, Ska and Rock Steady Reggae. They had us learning the dance moves to Ska. They are on my buy list now.

Frederic Galliano 2.50

This was a disaster. They were late starting. The sound set-up was f**ked. Distorted and some of the instruments not connected. I could not be bothered to wait to see if it was sorted out.

Dog Star 3.40

I never heard of this lot before, but went to see them. I listened to two sets before leaving. The lead and vocalist were absolutely crap. I am ashamed to admit that I thought the rhythm and base section was quite good. Oh well? I hear that Keanu Reeves got pelted with oranges and bottles.

Courtney Pine 4.20

Trumpets. Quite good.

Feeder 6.00

I watched feeder from the left-hand side. I enjoyed them but did not participate in the action. I saw the same old faces crowd surfing over and over again.

At this stage, we went back and packed up the tent and carted it all over to the car. This took some time, but we were able to get back to the Cabaret tent to see Jerry Sadowitz at 8.40. Oh Oh, he had not turned up, although was believed to be on site. Well, that was it for us. We had some food and were driving out of Glastonbury at 10.00 pm


The Jazz Stage

The Jazz Stage

Pyramid Stage

Pyramid Stage

The Other Stage

Other Stage

From the Tent


Full Gallery