Springsteen and McCartney cut off because of sound curfew

“If they'd have called me, my answer would have been for them to jam in the name of the Lord!” says London Mayor

Rock stars Bruce Springsteen and Sir Paul McCartney were silenced after defying the sound curfew at Hard Rock Calling.

Sir Paul had joined Springsteen on stage at the end of the singer's headline slot in Hyde Park, London, but both stars found their microphones cut off before they could address the crowds.

Springsteen, known for his long performances, had been playing for more than three hours and had exceeded the curfew by half an hour.

After belting out hits such as Born In The USA and Because The Night, he welcomed Sir Paul to the stage to sing Beatles hits I Saw Her Standing There and Twist and Shout, but neither performer had the chance to thank the crowd, and they had to leave the stage in silence.

Springsteen, who played with his E Street Band, had earlier invited Rage Against The Machine's Tom Morello on stage to perform two songs, and singer John Fogerty had joined him for one.

He delighted the crowds with his energetic set, and often left the stage to shake hands with audience members.

At one point he rewarded a fan's loyalty by playing an obscure track from his back collection.

The singer spotted a man holding up a banner asking him to play the song Take 'Em As They Come, and listing the concerts around the world where he had requested it.

Holding up the banner on stage, Springsteen praised the “big investment” the fan had made to see him in places including Madrid and Paris, then said: “Tonight, my friend, this is your lucky night.

“You're going to hear this damn thing.”

He added: “It's a completely obscure track I wrote for The River when I needed some rock songs.”

Today singer Paul Simon takes to the stage.

Leith Penny, Westminster Council's strategic director for city management, said: "Concert organisers, not the council, ended last night's concert in Hyde Park to comply with their licence, which allows them to run the concert until 10.30pm.

"Licences are granted until certain times to protect residents in the area from noise late at night."

Actor and musician Steven Van Zandt, who plays guitar in Springsteen's E-Street Band and stared in cult US drama series The Sopranos, voiced his frustration on Twitter at the gig's ending.

In a series of tweets from StevieVanZandt, he said: "One of the great gigs ever in my opinion. But seriously, when did England become a police state?

"We break curfews in every country but only English cops needs to 'punish us' by not letting us leave until the entire crowd goes.

"Is there just too much fun in the world? We would have been off by 11 if we'd done one more. On a Saturday night! Who were we disturbing?

"The cops got nothing more important to do? How about they go catch some criminals instead of f****** with 80,000 people having a good time?

"English cops may be the only individuals left on earth that wouldn't want to hear one more from Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney!

"I'm sorry but I have to be honest I'm p*****. Like I said, it didn't ruin the great night. But when I'm jamming with McCartney don't bug me!

"If it's a public transport issue I'm sorry but people are adult enough to go get a train if they need to without the cops pulling the plug!"

he number of concerts which can take place in Hyde Park will be reduced from 13 to nine from next year following complaints about noise.

The crowd limit will also fall from 80,000 to 65,000, and in some cases 50,000 from 2013 after the decision by Westminster Council's licensing sub-committee last February.

The number of concerts to be held came into question after residents in well-to-do Knightsbridge and Belgravia complained about noise.

There were 109 complaints from residents in 2011, around twice as many as in 2010.

Boris Johnson waded into the row this morning, saying the musicians should have been allowed to continue their set.

Speaking to Kay Burley on LBC radio, he said: "It sounds to me like an excessively efficacious decision.

"You won't get that during the Olympics.

"If they'd have called me, my answer would have been for them to jam in the name of the Lord!"

PA

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