Michael Eavis

The good life – the future of rock'n'roll

Touring was supposed to be the music industry's financial saviour, but now even gigs are losing their allure. So can packing fans on to a cruise liner pay dividends? Gillian Orr finds out

The Timeline: Music festivals

Music festivals were nearly as common in the ancient world as they are in the modern. Though unlike modern festivals, which venerate rock gods, the ancients sought to glorify more ethereal deities. Each spring the Athenians would celebrate the Festival of the Vine Flower, a three day shindig which began with a drinking contest conducted in silence and ended with singing and dancing to "melodies that excite the soul to a mystic frenzy". A description that wouldn't be amiss applied to many a modern festival.

Festival Review: Glastonbury 2010

Forty years ago, dairy farmer Michael Eavis put on his first music festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton. Just over a thousand hippies parted with £1 to see T-Rex perform and enjoy a pint or two of free milk from the farm’s Friesians.

Glastonbury not so middle-aged as teens throng sun-baked festival

"Michael Stipe once said you shouldn't wear sunglasses on stage because it demonstrates disrespect for your audience," said Matt Berninger, lead singer of Brooklyn-based rockers The National. "But the sun is shining into my eyes and is burning my corneas." If anything defined this year's Glastonbury, it was the heat. Dry, uncompromising, and painfully affecting. The same, of course, could be said for Berninger's music.

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Sun shines on Glastonbury

Fears of another mudfest, a headlining hip-hop act, and slow ticket sales fail to dampen the Somerset festival. Andrew Johnson reports