What’s your fantasy festival line-up?

Michelle Corbett

So my best friend goes skiing in Canada, I look after her gerbil for two weeks and what does she bring me back? A lousy festival poster!

Joking! It’s only the best darn poster EVER – featuring the all-star line-up of the legendary 1970 Isle of Wight Festival.

The Doors, Moody Blues and Joan Baez get top billing while some random guy named Jimi Hendrix languishes in the footer. Ironically his performance in the small hours of August 31 would go down in musical history as THE highlight of the entire festival.  

Looking at this poster in all its psychedelic glory I can’t help but wonder – if I had to choose my fantasy festival line-up who would make the cut? If time ceased to matter and I could dip into the past as well as the present, who would I want to see? So, for the record, here’s my nominees for 12 killer headliners over three killer days.


Guns n’ Roses (original line-up): It’s 2am and Axl’s still combing his hairpiece. Get on with it son! The Council are threatening to cut off all the power. Still, when Slash finally straps on his axe and ”ËœWelcome to the Jungle’ kicks in, I throw up with excitement.

Nirvana: A snarling dog of war with haunted eyes and a hobo’s jumper, I want Kurt Cobain vocally and lyrically wrenching out his innards yard by yard for my viewing pleasure.

Rage Against The Machine: If I’m going to die by quick-as-a-bullet rap, then please God let pistol-packing RATM be my executors. Slayers of the all-conquering ”ËœX Factor’ beast I kneel before thee!

Pixies: When smoking- hot Kim Deal’s doing the business on bass and Frank Black’s gargling razorblades through the mic, this monkey’s ”ËœGone to Heaven’.


The Doors: Jim’s in his ”ËœYoung Lion’ phase – bare-chested and hungry. Ray’s freaking out on the keys. I’m freaking out to ”ËœThe End’ and all without a whiff of peyote!

The Violent Femmes: Preferably in a teeny-tiny tent filled with, oh let’s say, 10,000 people all going crazy to ”ËœAdd It Up’. If it wasn’t for the promise of Mr Morrison I’d be going home right now.

The Velvet Underground: Cue the announcer: “Mr Reed will not be playing ”ËœPale Blue Eyes’ this evening or anything else you may remotely recognise. Don’t bother to ask.” Lou’s in a super-pissy mood and proceeds to hum ”ËœI Am The Music Man’ over the drone of a circular saw.

The Stone Roses: What could be better than a late afternoon singalong to ”ËœI Am The Resurrection’? My head’s thrown back, my arms are nailed outwards. I’m sloshing my drink over the next person but he gets it. He’s doing the same.


Queen: Freddie Mercury – the greatest frontman ever – is strutting his stuff with a vacuum cleaner. Friday and Saturday have bitten the dust. They’ve got enough gold to see us through to the end. Axl and Jim who?

David Bowie: I’ve got my silver spacesuit and Ziggy make-up on”¦ I’ve pledged allegiance to the outer rim of the galaxy and I made it to the arena on time. David, it’s over to you.

Morrissey: He’s halfway through ”ËœThis Charming Man’ when all of a sudden some knobhead chucks a pint of piss on the stage. With a sneer of contempt, Steven Patrick Morrissey flounces off stage to go and listen to his Sandie Shaw LPs. It’s over before it’s even begun but God they were a good five minutes.

Lady Gaga: I’m in the mood for theatrics and for heaven’s sakes she’s WEARING the hot dog stand. Sorry baby, but I was ”ËœBorn This Way’.

So, should I reserve you a ticket? What’s your fantasy line-up? Answers on a postcard please”¦


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  1. I would go for pixies then nirvana headlining the friday, then the stone roses then the cure headlining the saturday and then on sunday itll be the smiths and then blur to finnish

  2. Friday-
    James Brown
    Public Image Limited
    The Brian Jonestown Massacre
    The Fall

    The Smiths
    The Cure

    Otis Redding
    Dusty Springfield
    The Faces

  3. I’m gonna keep it late 60’s / early 70s so my brain doesn’t implode trying to think of great bands of all time.


    The Stones
    Curtis Mayfield
    Silver Apples
    Creedence Clearwater Revival


    Led Zep
    The Stooges
    13th Floor Elevators
    The Upsetters


    Funkadelic ( first 3 albums type stuff )
    Jimi Hendrix
    Velvet Underground
    Van Morrison ( Astral Weeks/Moon dance phase )

  4. Fri
    The Prodigy
    The Who
    The Damned

    The Cure
    The Horrors
    New Young Pony Club
    Young Knives

    The Charlatans
    Brian Jonestown Massacre

  5. Throughout the weekend, festival attendees of the “Best Damn Festival Ever” will see the likes of:

    Todd Snider, Cancer Bats, Grinspoon, Beatsteaks, Neil Young, Rancid, Hall and Oates, Marshall Crenshaw, Nik Gilder, Marty Stuart, Roger Clyne, Madball, Tone Loc, Stray Cats, Refused, Prince, China Drum, Chixdiggit, Kelly Willis, Kevin Welch, Skinny Puppy and SNFU.


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