Bill Toppers - Arctic Monkeys and Guns N' Roses will top the bill at this year's Glastonbury Festival, organisers have announced. The rock bands join previously-announced headliner Sir Elton John, who will play the last UK show of his farewell tour at Worthy Farm in June. Other acts on the line-up include Lizzo, Lana Del Rey, Lil Nas X, Manic Street Preachers, Wizkid and Blondie.
Yusuf, also known as Cat Stevens, will play the ‘legend slot’, previously occupied by Kylie and Dolly Parton. The coveted Sunday afternoon set traditionally draws one of the festival's biggest audiences, with Diana Ross attracting an estimated 80,000 people last year. Blondie will take to the Pyramid stage immediately after Stevens - effectively creating a "double legend" slot.
Eurovision Latest - Fans are preparing for the rush to get hold of coveted tickets for this year's song contest later. There is expected to be high demand when tickets for the nine public shows being staged in Liverpool in May go on sale at midday GMT on Tuesday.
Fans can try for the grand final and two live semi-finals, plus six previews doubling as dress rehearsals. Prices range from £90 to £290 for the live semi-finals on 9 and 11 May, and £160 to £380 for the final on 13 May. An account must be registered on Ticketmaster UK - regardless of the country tickets are being purchased in. They will only be available on the Ticketmaster UK website.
Facing the Waves - The Royal National Lifeboat Institution has partnered with Reading-based company PlayWell Productions and Whitby-based company Dogwood Productions to create two new musicals as the charity approaches its 200-year anniversary. RNLI, the charity that saves lives at sea, will turn 200 on March 4, 2024 and, in a partnership with the two touring theatre companies that will run until 2025, will produce two new musicals.
The shows in association with RNLI will be With Courage by PlayWell Productions and Facing the Waves by Dogwood Productions. Dogwood director, Antony Bellekom, said: "The RNLI is about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. The anniversary marks two centuries worth of tales of bravery, sacrifice and triumph.”
You Never Can Tell - A replacement guitar that rock and roll star Chuck Berry played at Wembley more than 50 years ago could fetch up to £20,000 when its auctioned. The 1964 Gibson Firebird V was hastily given to Berry when he broke a string as he headlined the London Rock And Roll Show in 1972. The moment was caught on film and a photograph of it would adorn the cover of an album of Berry's greatest hits. Quick-thinking backing guitarist Terry Gibson had handed him the Firebird. The strap, which is being auctioned in Wiltshire with the guitar, is believed to be the one worn by Berry on the night. The instrument is being sold by a private collector who bought it from Gibson's family.
Farewell - Guitarist Gary Rossington, the last remaining original member of US rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd, has died at the age of 71. One of the band's founding members, he appeared on all of their albums and co-wrote the 1974 hit Sweet Home Alabama. He was also one of the survivors of a 1977 plane crash that killed several of his bandmates. Although he had suffered heart problems in recent years, Rossington had been playing shows as recently as February.
(Jim Evans)
7 March 2023

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