“It’s a beautiful day, and do you know what a beautiful day needs? The songs of a beautiful man – It’s George Ezra” The voice of Radio 1 star Greg James lights up an excited Glasto crowd as George Ezra walks out onto one of his career’s greatest performances
Due to no fault of his own, a sprained ankle has the English singer songwriter entertaining the huge crowds from a stool. This doesn’t stop him. Off his latest 2018 album, ‘Staying at Tamara’s’ the joyful ‘Don’t Matter Now’ provides a euphoric opener in the scorching heat. Crowd singalongs are everything in this style festival performance, and Ezra really hit the nail on the head early on.
As well as bringing his wonderful songs to the stage, George proves himself as a sublime storyteller and entertainer, keeping the audience interested with tales of his past, and the history of his tunes, in between songs. Receiving a huge cheer, George laughs as he launches into his third song upon the famous Pyramid Stage.
‘Barcelona’ seems to perfectly capture the atmosphere at Britain’s, perhaps Earth’s most iconic music festival as the sun begins to set on a smiling Worthy Farm. The ‘Budapest’ hitmaker closes his eyes and grins, as a childhood dream comes to life. He often talks about how in his house, watching Glastonbury on TV was their version of the World Cup, and now here he is. Watched on by adoring fans at home, George brings the peacful, beuatiful track to a fitting close.
Keeping the electric atmosphere alive, Ezra launches right into his latest single, ‘Pretty Shining People’. Urging the people of Glastonbury to dance for him, with a catchy, pop anthem like chorus, the crowd does not let down. With fans on each others shoulders by the second verse, the 26 year old from Hertfordshire is a fan favourite this year. Teaching the whole festival his lyrics, an uplifting crowd singalong of ‘Don’t we all need love, the answer is easy’ is a highlight of the fourth song of this sunny set.
Rising to fame with singalong indie hit ‘Budapest’ Ezra enjoyed a chart topping success with his debut album ‘Wanted on Voyage’ , feauturing hits such as ‘Blame it on Me’ and ‘Listen to the Man’. The 23rd of March 2018 saw the release of his commercially successful follow up, ‘Staying at Tamara’s’. As he tells the Glasto crowd, the album name was inspired his album writing trip to beautiful Spanish city, Barcelona, where he rented a room with Air BnB, staying with a young Spanish woman named Tamara.
Despite lesser known, rock inspired ‘Did you hear the Rain’ not being widely accepted by the crowd, the atmosphere picks up again as George’s dad comes onto the stage for his family tradition: swapping his son’s guitar at Glastonbury! Soon after telling the tale of how he wrote this on a tour bus, with Ezra encouraging the crowd’s ‘awhs’ and cheers, the singer and his energetic band launch into 2018 hit, ‘Paradise’. It’s smiles all round as the clap and dancd together to George’s driven, more well known single.
Dressed in a classy black shirt and trousers, George rolls into a beautiful rendition of ‘Hold my Girl’ as golden coated arms go into the air and fans sing along as the first day at the Pyramid Stage sees its’s last ray of sun.
Maintaining the euphoric sing a long atmosphere, ‘All My Love’ is next. Despite its argugably simple, anodyne lyrics, a brilliantly crafted melody line pulls the buzzing crowd in, alongside the band improvising incredible solos, the people of Worthy farm particurlaly love the brass section of this amazing live band.
Once again inviting the fans to dance, my personal highlight of this set is the party worthy ‘Blame it on Me’ with the live band adding an extra special aspect to this song, over the studio version. A killer atmosphere lights up the evening as colourful confetti sprays over the crowd. George is onto a winner. Not a single person in the audience isn’t loving this, as young children and old men alike are up on someone’s shoulder’s, dancing the night away. This is a beautiful sight.
Taking a break from the music, Ezra takes the opportunity to tell the story of his next song – with a twist. Explaining how he actually never actually went to Budapest, the crowd laugh and cheer as the opening chords of the star’s breakthrough single. Budapest at Glastonbury 2019 was more like Budapest – the crowd, featuring George Ezra. Knowing every single word, the fans take control, singing entire choruses of the hit alone.
Overwhelming joy is the general feeling as the band roll straight into the fast moving ‘Cassy O’ as even the band members are running around the stage, dancing. Worthy Farm’s famous flags wave, proud, as George Ezra beams, reflecting on his beautiful achievement. The crowd bounce, elated.
We’ve been anticipating it. “We have one more song”. The crowd are buzzing. George demands ‘one last party’ as the opening chords roll in. It’s time. Shotgun. The crowd go wild. Arms flailing, flares alight as people of all ages engage. This is one big, wonderful party. Behind him, vibrant colours reflect the feeling of an hour of singing, dancing and smiling. For the first time of the evening, the man of the hour rises. On his sprained ankle, he cheers on Glastonbury, Laughing and smiling, he waves goodnight.
George Ezra – live at Glastonbury is available on BBC iPlayer now.