Glastonbury’s Pyramid stage crowd carries Lewis Capaldi through voice issues

Glastonbury’s Pyramid stage crowd carries Lewis Capaldi through voice issues

Earlier this month, the 26-year-old singer cancelled all his other commitments in June ahead of the festival at Worthy Farm to allow himself time to “rest and recover”.

On Saturday evening, the Scottish singer treated the crowd of adoring fans to a host of hit tracks from his two chart-topping albums as well as taking his shirt off at one stage.

Glastonbury Festival 2023
Lewis Capaldi performing on the Pyramid Stage, at the Glastonbury Festival (Yui Mok/PA)

Among the songs on his set list were Forget Me, the lead single off his recently released second studio album, Before You Go and Hold Me While You Wait.

After performing Bruises, he admitted he was having voice issues, telling the crowd: “I’m going to be honest everybody but I’m starting to lose my voice up here, but we’re going to keep going and we’re going to go until the end.

“I just need you all to sing with me as loud as you can if that’s okay?”

He continued to apologise to the crowd, and the Eavis family who organise Glastonbury, for his voice starting to go – but the ocean of fans replied by cheering him on and chanting “Oh Lewis Capaldi”.

Paula Wickens, 53, who is a project manager from Newbury, and 59-year-old Claire Foley, who is a programmes manager in telecommunications, watched Capaldi’s performance together.

They said he was “fantastic”, despite the fact that he steadily lost his voice over the course of the set.

“I got quite emotional, I really did,” Ms Foley told the PA news agency.

“When he came on to do the penultimate song, and also when the Red Arrows flew over, that was pretty spectacular. I don’t think I’ve been to a concert as exciting as that.”

Ms Wickens added: “I was smiling like a child, my face hurts from smiling so much. He’s done so well and the fact that he even took his T-shirt off for us, I was like ‘wow, oh my God’.”

Ms Wickens said the pair waited for five hours in the “hot” sun to see the performance, and added that if she could speak to Capaldi about his performance, she would first off “give him a hug and say, you blew the whole arena out of here”.

Before his final song, he told the crowd: “I recently took three weeks off just because I’ve been none stop the past year and I wanted to take a wee break from my head for my mental health.

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“I wanted to come back and do Glastonbury because it’s obviously so incredible so I just want to thank you all for coming out. I was scared but you’ve really made me feel at ease so thank you very much for that.”

Capaldi added: “I feel like I’ll be taking another wee break over the next couple of weeks so you probably won’t see much of me for the rest of the year maybe even. But when I do come back, when I do see you, I hope you’re all still up for watching.”

He closed his set with his Grammy-nominated track Someone You Loved, telling the crowd “I love you all” and became emotional as they chanted back the lyrics to him when he was struggling to sing some of the notes.

Ms Foley said of the announcement: “He was very, very brave and very open and honest and the crowd absolutely loved that.”

The Glaswegian singer, who has previously opened up about his recent diagnosis of Tourette’s, also appeared to experience an increasing number of ticks during the set.

Capaldi, who donned a white T-shirt for the set, admitted he had a funky jacket planned for the show but the sun beating down on the festival made it impossible.

Midway through he asked the crowd if they were feeling as hot as he was and following more chanting of his name, he finally took his top off after teasing earlier in the set that he might have to abandon it when he overheated from performing.

A flight of planes also flew over the festival as he played guitar and sang his track Forever.

After he finished the track, he asked the crowd if that was a usual thing, adding: “Does that happen a lot? No? So they just thought ‘You know what that Lewis Capaldi set needs, send in the Red Arrows’.”

His set followed singer Raye, who received a great deal of support from the crowd and on social media after she took to the main stage, and Aitch.

The Manchester-born rapper cranked up the energy ahead of Capaldi’s set as he rattled through his hit tracks, attracting large crowds as well as fellow rapper Stormzy – who was spotted in the crowd.

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He also treated the fans by bringing out pop star Anne-Marie for a surprise cameo.

Nearing the end of the set, he asked the crowd what their relationship was like with their ex-partners, before asking everyone in the field to put their middle fingers up in the air.

He added “My ex is a psycho”, as the chords to his collaboration with Anne-Marie, titled Psycho, were struck up and the singer entered the stage.

The 23-year-old also nailed his colours to the wall for which football team he supports, when he put on a Manchester United shirt mid-set.

Glastonbury Festival 2023
British rapper Aitch performing on the Pyramid Stage, at the Glastonbury Festival (Yui Mok/PA)

As he changed into the red football shirt, he told some fans in the crowd wearing Manchester City tops that they were “not going to like me after this”.

He added: “So you know where I’m from now right any way so I’m going to take you to Manchester right now.”

Rick Astley opened the Pyramid Stage on Saturday, performing a Harry Styles cover and also showing off his drumming skills as he made his debut at the music festival.

Dressed in a dusky rose coloured suit, the 57-year-old singer opened the set with his hit song from the 1980s Together Forever, and later launched into a cover of Styles’ As It Was.

Taking to the drums to play AC/DC’s Highway To Hell, Astley told the audience: “When I was a kid, my first experience of being in a band was playing the drums.

“I’ve had many dreams in my life. One of my dreams has been to perform at Glastonbury – that dream has come true today.

“Maybe even possibly bigger, which I don’t know how it possibly could, is for me to play drums to the first record that I learned to play the drums to.

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“I was a 15-year-old kid in my dad’s greenhouse, and I played this album to death, I broke this record learning the drums to it. Ladies and gentlemen, will you please join in, this is AC/DC.”

Glastonbury Festival 2023
Rick Astley performed old and new material on the Pyramid Stage (Ben Birchall/PA)

Other songs featured included his song Whenever You Need Somebody from 1987 as well as new song Dippin My Feet, from his upcoming ninth studio album titled Are We There Yet?, due for release in October.

Following his performance, which he ended with his 1987 hit Never Gonna Give You Up, Astley joined indie band Blossoms on the newly-named Woodsies stage.

Their performances on the Pyramid stage come ahead of US rockers Guns N’ Roses headlining in the evening.

Guns N’ Roses – featuring original members Axl Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan – will headline the main stage after reuniting in 2015, and are expected to play a number of their classic songs including Paradise City, Sweet Child O’ Mine and Welcome To The Jungle.

Glastonbury Festival 2023
Stormzy in the crowd watching fellow British rapper Aitch performing on the Pyramid Stage (Yui Mok/PA)

Lizzo will also take to the main stage ahead of Guns N’ Roses’ set.

Actress Tilda Swinton joined composer and pianist Max Richter on the Park stage on Saturday to provide spoken word alongside his classical set, with Richter telling the crowd: “It’s great to be here, really great to be here. It’s my first time playing here and it’s just an honour to be opening up this stage today.”

Elsewhere, Labour’s shadow climate secretary Ed Miliband joined a panel in a talk called One Minute To Midnight: Can Politics Deliver On Climate Action?

Glastonbury Festival 2023
Tilda Swinton performing with modern classical instrumentalist Max Richter on the Park Stage (Yui Mok/PA)

Mr Miliband quoted Martin Luther King as he joined the debate on political action to tackle climate change and was met with cheers as he was introduced to a packed Left Field tent at Worthy Farm.

Friday saw Arctic Monkeys close out a packed day of music, with surprise appearances at the festival from Foo Fighters, Hozier and actress Cate Blanchett.

  • June 24, 2023