Stevie Wonder sings 'Happy Birthday' with Michael Eavis

Funk star plays a hit filled set on the Pyramid Stage

Photographer:Sara Bowrey

Daniel Fahey, Dan Davies - 28 June 2010

Not even the pull of Orbital’s torch glasses could draw us away from Stevie’s shades. Despite his eccentric onstage banter, the coolest part of the show has to be his solid gold back catalogue.

Sticking to almost all of the classic period he characteristically swayed his way through ‘All I Do’, ‘Uptight’, ‘Signed, Sealed Delivered’ and ‘Superstition’ to name a few.

There was a very surreal part where Stevie drank a magical potion to make his voice sound like Little Stevie Wonder for ‘Fingetips (Part 2)’ only for it to fall over when he said the word “magic” by accident. Go figure.

Wonder even dipped into his questionable 1980s back catalogue with ‘I Just Called’ and the show’s closer ‘Happy Birthday'. For this appropriately Michael Eavis came on stage to add his atonal, Somerset burred voice to proceedings, leading Stevie to proclaim: “Man, he flat.” Flat Eavis may be but with 40 years under his belt he shows no signs of fading.

It's 20 years since ‘Chime’, Orbital's seminal slice of post acid house that helped take dance music overground and 16 years since their first legendary Glastonbury set.

Time hasn't slowed down the Hartnoll brothers though, wickedly destroying the Other Stage from the off with the deliciously rabid ‘Satan’.

Resplendent in their infamous torch-glasses and set against rear projections of giant daisies on twisting screens hung from the stage roof - for all those off their faces on A's, B's and C's - they give Glastonbury yet another amazing night of salacious electro.

Not everything is so good at Glastonbury. It's a depressing sight to see just a few hundred people gather at The Park for Afrobeat legend and Good the Bad and the Queen drummer Tony Allen.

The scorching weather may finally have taken its toll on the festival massive but it's still a disgrace to witness such a low turnout for a man that defined Afro funk drumming in his time with Fela Kuti band in the 1970s.

Thankfully it doesn't seem to faze Allen or his band as they play an hour of rich jazz drumming and African rhythms in the cool evening breeze. 

Easing into the set with some laid-back grooves and tight-ass horns, this is a masterclass of sumptuous Afrobeat.  They finish with Tony Allen classic ‘Afro Disco Beat’, leaving the privileged crowd baying for more, Allen looking slightly dismayed at the empty field.

Most of the presenters with BBC 6Music are fronting the campaign for the station’s future, but it is Craig Charles that mounts the most potent saviour plan.

Taking to the decks at Cubehenge, the Corrie and Red Dwarf star flicks through his love of funk with the Rolling Stones and Rage Against The Machine funk covers as fans funk out to his moves. For now it feels like a one  man cause, but one certainly worth fighting for.


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