Dizzee Rascal, who played on Glastonbury‘s West Holts stage last night, has spoken out about what he sees as a lack of support for British rap acts at the festival – and has suggested that he himself should have been yesterday’s Pyramid Stage headliner.
“I’m basically at the stage where they need to have me headline this thing. Because they’ve had no British rappers headline this festival,” he told the BBC.
“They way I’ve tore this festival up for years. Never disappointed. You can always count on me. Put me on that main stage,” he added. “I mean, I’ve been on the main stage. I need to headline the whole thing.”
But are Glastonbury bonkers for not heeding his advice?
In fairness to the organisers, who have been criticised in the past for their homogenous lineups, this year’s event has arguably seen a marked improvement in the diversity of the acts on offer, and in the billing afforded to them.
Boy Better Know are going up against Ed Sheeran on Sunday night, which will be a real clash for certain millennials – and while 2016 saw Skepta play the Pyramid Stage at 1 pm on Saturday, this year his whole crew will be headlining the Other Stage.
Likewise, Craig David, who astounded a packed out crowd at a tiny stage last year, has been promoted to the Pyramid Stage today. Kano, who was relegated to the smaller Silver Hayes stage last year, is playing the Park Stage tomorrow night, with a much higher billing, and Stormzy, who is performing on the Other Stage tonight just before headliners Alt-J, was on a smaller stage last year.
Dizzee himself was also the second highest billed act on the Pyramid Stage on Friday in 2013.
Whatever his reservations about the current line-up, however, the 32-year-old star, whose real name is Dylan Kwabena Mills, hopefully, won’t be boycotting the festival anytime soon.
During his BBC interview, he said that performing live to the festival crowd, and witnessing their response, is one of his all-time favourite experiences.
“To me, [the crowd reaction to hit song Bonkers] is the best thing you can see,” he said. “Other than like, I don’t know, watching someone give birth to a child or something.”