Isle of Wight Festival

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Isle of Wight Festival
Isle ofWightFestivalLogo.gif
The current Isle of Wight Festival logo
Location(s) Seaclose Park, Isle of Wight, England
Years active 1968-1970, 2002-Present
Date(s) Early June
Genre Rock, alternative rock
Website www.isleofwightfestival.com

The Isle of Wight Festival is a music festival which takes place every year on the Isle of Wight in England.1 It was originally a counterculture event held from 1968 to 1970.23

The 1970 event was by far the largest and most famous of these early festivals and the unexpectedly high attendance levels led, in 1971, to Parliament passing the "Isle of Wight Act" preventing gatherings of more than 5,000 people on the island without a special licence.

The event was revived in 2002 at Seaclose Park, a recreation ground on the outskirts of Newport. It has been held annually since that year, progressively expanding.

Original Festival details

The original events were promoted and organised by the Foulk brothers (Ron, Ray and Bill Foulk) under the banner of their company Fiery Creations Limited. The venues were Ford Farm (near Godshill), Wootton and Afton Down (near Freshwater) respectively.4 The 1969 event was notable for the appearance of Bob Dylan and the Band. This was Dylan's first paid performance since his motor cycle accident some three years earlier, and was held at a time when many still wondered if he would ever perform again. Followers from across the world treked to the Isle of Wight for what seemed like a 'second coming'. Estimates of 150,000–250,000 attended. The 1969 festival opened on Friday 29 August—eleven days after the close of Woodstock. Dylan was living in Woodstock, New York, at the time and it was widely believed that he would perform there, after the event had been "put in his own backyard". As it happened, Dylan left for the Isle of Wight on 15 August—the day the Woodstock festival began.

The 1970 event was by far the largest and most famous of these early festivals; indeed it was said at the time to be one of the largest human gatherings in the world, with estimates of over 600,000, surpassing the attendance at Woodstock. Included in the line-up of over fifty performers were The Who, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, The Doors, Lighthouse, Ten Years After, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Joni Mitchell, The Moody Blues, Melanie, Donovan, Gilberto Gil, Free, Chicago, Richie Havens, John Sebastian, Leonard Cohen, Jethro Tull, Taste and Tiny Tim. The unexpectedly high attendance levels led, in 1971, to Parliament passing the "Isle of Wight Act" preventing gatherings of more than 5,000 people on the island without a special licence.

The 1970 festival was filmed by a 35mm film crew under the direction of future Academy Award-winning director Murray Lerner who at that point had just directed the Academy Award-nominated documentary Festival of the Newport Folk Festival. The footage passed to Lerner in settlement of legal fees after a dispute with the Foulk brothers in which the two sides claimed against each for breach of contract. Lerner distilled material from the festival into the film A Message to Love: The Isle of Wight Rock Festival released theatrically in 1996 and subsequently on DVD. In addition to this film, Lerner has created full-length films focused on performances by individual artists at the 1970 festival. To date there have been individual films of The Who, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, The Moody Blues, Free, Leonard Cohen and Jethro Tull.

1968

Held on 31 August and 1 September 1968.
Attendance: 15,000 (approx)5
Site – Ford farm, near Godshill.
Headline ActsJefferson Airplane.
Other ActsArthur Brown, The Move, Smile, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Plastic Penny and The Pretty Things.

1969

This took place on 30 and 31 August 1969 at Wootton, with an estimated attendance of 150,000.5 The line-up included Bob Dylan, The Band, The Nice, The Pretty Things, Marsha Hunt, The Who, Third Ear Band, King Crimson, Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band and Fat Mattress.

1970

This event was held between 26 and 30 August 1970 at Afton Down; attendance has long been estimated to have been around 600,000, although promoter Ray Foulk has said he believes it to have been only half that.5 Arguably the best-remembered of the early versions of the IW festivals, due to its lineup, attendance and news coverage, the line-up included Jimi Hendrix, Jethro Tull, Ten Years After, Chicago, The Doors, Lighthouse, The Who, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, The Moody Blues, Joan Baez, Free, Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Kris Kristofferson, Donovan, John Sebastian, Terry Reid, Taste, Miles Davis, and Shawn Phillips.

Revived festival details

The event was revived in 2002 at Seaclose Park, a recreation ground on the outskirts of Newport. It has been held annually since that year, progressively extending itself northwards beyond Seaclose Park along the fields of the eastern Medina valley. Many notable artists have performed since its revival including The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Muse, Stereophonics, Donovan, Ray Davies, Robert Plant, David Bowie, Manic Street Preachers, The Who, R.E.M., Coldplay, The Proclaimers, Bryan Adams, The Police, Foo Fighters and Kings of Leon. It was sponsored by Nokia from 2004 to 2006. The promoters of the event now are Solo Promoters Ltd. Apart from being held on the Isle of Wight, and featuring the now customary artwork of Dave Roe, there is no connection with the festivals of 1968–1970.

2002

Held 3 June 2002
Attendance: 8,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Saturday) – The Charlatans, Robert Plant

2003

Held 14–15 June 2003
Attendance: 15,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Paul Weller, Starsailor
Headline Acts (Sunday) – Bryan Adams, Counting Crows

2004

Held 11–13 June 2004
Attendance: 35,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Friday) – Stereophonics, Groove Armada
Headline Acts (Saturday) – The Who, Manic Street Preachers
Headline Acts (Sunday) – David Bowie, The Charlatans

2005

Held 10–12 June 2005
Attendance: 50,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Friday) – Faithless, Razorlight
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Travis, Roxy Music
Headline Acts (Sunday) – R.E.M., Snow Patrol

2006

Held 9–11 June 2006
Attendance: 50,000 (approx)6
Headline Acts (Friday) – The Prodigy, Placebo
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Foo Fighters, Primal Scream
Headline Acts (Sunday) – Coldplay, Richard Ashcroft

2007

Held 8–10 June 2007
Attendance: 60,000 (approx)7
Headline Acts (Friday) – Snow Patrol, Groove Armada
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Muse, Kasabian
Headline Acts (Sunday) – The Rolling Stones, Keane

2008

Held 13–15 June 2008
Attendance: 55,000 (approx)8
Headline Acts (Friday) – Kaiser Chiefs, N.E.R.D
Headline Acts (Saturday) – The Sex Pistols, Ian Brown
Headline Acts (Sunday) – The Police, The Kooks

2009

Held 12–14 June 2009
Attendance: 50,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Friday) – The Prodigy, Basement Jaxx
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Stereophonics, Razorlight,
Headline Acts (Sunday) – Neil Young, Pixies,

2010

Held 11–13 June 20109
Attendance: 60,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Friday) – Jay-Z, Florence and the Machine
Headline Acts (Saturday) – The Strokes, Blondie
Headline Acts (Sunday) – Paul McCartney, P!nk

2011

Held 10–12 June 20119
Attendance: 65,000 (approx)
Headline Acts (Friday) – Kings of Leon, Kaiser Chiefs
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Foo Fighters, Pulp
Headline Acts (Sunday) – Kasabian, Beady Eye

2012

Held 22–24 June 2012
Attendance: 55,000 (approx)10
Headline Acts (Friday) – Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Elbow
Headline Acts (Saturday) – Pearl Jam, Biffy Clyro
Headline Acts (Sunday) – Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band, Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds .

2013

Held 14–16 June 2013
Attendance: 58,000 (approx)
Headline Act (Friday) - The Stone Roses, Paul Weller
Headline Act (Saturday) - The Killers, Bloc Party
Headline Act (Sunday) - Bon Jovi, The Script

2014

Held 12–15 June 2014
Attendance: Unknown (approx)
Headline Act (Friday) - Biffy Clyro, Calvin Harris
Headline Act (Saturday) - Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Specials
Headline Act (Sunday) - Kings Of Leon, Suede

Awards

On 6 November 2007, the Isle of Wight Festival was named 'Best Major Festival' at the UK Festival Awards. The performances by Muse and The Rolling Stones at the last festival were a major influence. At the same event, the coordinator of the festival, John Giddings, won the award for 'Outstanding Contribution to UK festivals'.11

See also

References

External links








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