Our friend and musician Daniel Parsons is a serial Glastonbury Festival devotee. He's been to nearly 20 Glastonbury's since his first one in 1995 at the age of 15.
Fortunately for Daniel Glastonbury came back with a bang this Summer after 2 years of forced closure due to COVID - he was there to bathe in the festival vibes and take in as much of the magic as he could. This year we asked him if he could keep a short diary of his time at Glastonbury and share his experience with us.
We think you'll enjoy this brilliant read - thank you Daniel.
My Glastonbury round up and the musical moments that blew me away.
by Daniel Parsons
The dust has settled, the wrist bands have come off and I am now reflecting back on the Glastonbury Festival of Performing Arts 2022.
One of the first things that really hits home when you come back from a festival is the quietness of normal life. The days and nights at Glastonbury are filled with sound. From the bands on the stages, the speakers on the food stalls, the cheers from the crowd and the rumbling of the late night areas until sunrise. It is fair to say I am missing all that this week.
Glastonbury has always been a big part of my life. I first went in the summer of 1995 as a 15 year old who had just finished their GCSEs. That first year I saw close to 30 bands across the weekend and became utterly hooked. Since then I have been to nearly every Glastonbury and it remains an important date in my calendar every year.
This year was extra special as it was the first event since 2019 following two cancellations due to the pandemic.
The atmosphere was electric. Everyone there had a smile on their face, tears in their eyes and happiness in their hearts.
The weather even held off with sun and clear skies and a little sprinkling of rain to cool everyone down when needed.
The festival has changed a lot in the last 27 years; it is double the size of when I first went and there are more stages, more bands, more clashes and generally so much more to explore while you are there. It has changed for me as well. I have gone from being a young kid desperate to see as many bands as possible to a dad who goes with his wife and kids and also as a musician who plays on the stages.
Whenever I get home people will always ask ‘who did you watch?’ and relate it back to the TV coverage they saw. Truth be told, I didn’t see a massive load of bands this year but the ones I did see were amazing. I also saw a lot of comedy, circus performers and the new Minions movie!
The first act I saw was actually my friend, Richard Wiseman (from the Voodoo Tweed Cult) doing a solo set in one of the smaller bars. It is always nice to watch people you know performing on stage and his set went down a treat. Next up was festival favourite Beans on Toast. Beans (or Jay) did five sets over the weekend and I managed to catch two of them. Plastic Mermaids finished the first day of music with their unique, sparkling and joyous blend of music.
As the weekend continued I watched Bonobo, Bicep, Nightmares on Wax, Lorde and Supergrass. A real highlight was taking my seven year old daughter to watch Confidence Man who were playing on The Park stage, she has been listening to their albums with me and enjoyed dancing along to their energetic set.
The band who really blew me away though were The Sugababes. They played in the Avalon field and were so popular they had to restrict access to the area. It had been about 20 years since I last heard some of their songs and they sounded as fresh as ever - a really good set.
Across the week I not only watched some great live music, I also played a couple of sets myself. I did a small show in Rimski’s Yard; a great little corner of the site. The day after I played a set in the West Holts Social club. They were both great fun and I got to try out some new tracks which I am in the middle of working on - aided by my Flare e-prototype headphones!
As I mentioned at the start of this write up there is a lot of noise going on at Glastonbury and thankfully I had some Flare products on hand to help me in different situations.
The first items I never leave home without are my Flare Calmers. In fact, I have 4 pairs of Calmers; one in the car, one in my studio, one in my bag and one always on my keys. I live in them and since they came out I have managed to get through the days with less noise induced stress. They were particularly helpful when trying to listen to the kids while we were walking along in big crowds and also for creating a clearer sound when I was playing my sets.
The other items that saved the day were my Flare Sleeep earbuds - I keep a pair in my motorhome and wear them whenever I go away.
The late night corner of Glastonbury tends to keep going until sunrise and sadly I don't anymore so they were used every night to help me get to sleep.
I am missing Glastonbury very much but now thinking ahead to Bluedot at the end of July and will again be armed with a selection of Flare products.
By Daniel Parsons / Amongst The Pigeons
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