• James McGee

Van the Man...

To take my mind off the state of the nation - and to some extent the latest manuscript (almost at the end, thanks for asking...) - I nipped off to see Van Morrison's gig at Glastonbury Abbey last Saturday.

That's the thing about Van, of course; you never know what sort of mood he's likely to be in. He has been known to turn his back on an audience and even walk off stage after 50 mins because he thinks the band's playing badly..!

Well, all I can say is that he must have been in a good mood this last time because he was on stage for a good hour and twenty minutes and put in a cracking performance before, as they say, a very appreciative crowd. It was one of those very relaxing evenings, with picnic hampers on display as far as the eye could see, along with more folding tables, camping chairs, chicken legs and tubs of coleslaw than you could shake a stick at, with sparkling wine flowing like no tomorrow.

He was supported by Jamie Cullum and the Wells Cathedral School Big Band and joined on stage, individually, by Clare Teal and Joss Stone (who at one point appeared to forget the words, bless her, which had us quaking in our boots in case Van told her to sling her hook, but we all breathed easier when he simply smiled and continued through it like a true professional).

All in all, a smashing gig, in a fantastic setting with fireworks to end. And all for £35.

Talk about a bargain....!

Mind you, the band did finish with a blistering rendition of Gloria with Van, true to form, buggering off halfway through without anyone realizing he'd left...!