Glastonbury: controversial headline acts that played memorable sets

Glastonbury: controversial headline acts that played memorable sets

Kanye West isn't the only headliner to disgruntle a few of the festival's fans

So, it seems that some Glastonbury fans don’t love Kanye as much as Kanye loves Kanye, and have gone and started a petition asking organisers to cancel his headline slot and replace him with a rock band.

The petition already has over 35,000 signatures, but Kim Kardashian’s fella isn’t the only artist to face such a backlash. Here, we look at some of the best examples of artists proving their critics wrong and going on to deliver a top notch set, because when faced with a load of doubters, all you can really do is ‘work it, make it, do it, make us harder, better, faster, stronger’, right?

Jay-Z (2008)
Jay-Z proved the hip-hop haters wrong when he headlined back in 2008. His appearance at the festival notoriously riled the likes of Noel Gallagher, with the Oasis star saying: ‘If it ain't broke don't fix it … If you start to break it then people aren't going to go. I'm sorry, but Jay-Z? No chance.’ The rapper responded by playing Gallagher’s criticism at the start of his set, before covering ‘Wonderwall’. And just in case the message wasn’t clear enough, he said: 'For those that didn't get the memo, my name is Jay-Z and I'm pretty fucking awesome.’

Beyonce (2011)
With her husband paving the way for more pop-friendly sets, Beyonce put the pedal to the metal and proved that you don’t have to be in a rock band to make the Glasto fans happy. There were concerns that her appearance would lead to ‘popification’, but let's be honest: all it really led to was everyone loving Beyonce a little more than they already did (who knew it was even possible?)

Metallica (2014)
Last year, it seemed that quite a few people wanted the heavy metal band to ‘exit: light’, or better yet, not turn up at all for their Saturday night headline slot (largely due to frontman James Hetfield’s associations with bear-hunting). Despite the controversy, the band went on to become the first heavy metal group to headline the festival, and their performance received rave reviews.

Kylie Minogue (the one that never was)
Ms Minogue made her Glastonbury debut in 2010, though it was as part of the Scissor Sisters set. She was originally set to headline in 2005, with some fans worrying that her act may be a little mainstream for the festival. Sadly, she had to pull out due her breast cancer diagnosis, but her subsequent tours have proved that the artist is a champion of showmanship, and it’s a fair assumption to make that her Glastonbury set would have been very memorable indeed.

Let's hope Kanye can step it up.

Kanye West - Stronger

Glastonbury Festival

The UK's largest music festival.