Former Beatle Paul McCartney has been discussing his major collaboration plans with pop star Taylor Swift before the coronavirus pandemic put a holt their duet.
McCartney, discussing live music ahead of the release of his forthcoming project McCartney III, sat down with Rolling Stone to reveal some of his secret plans for the now postponed 2020 Glastonbury Festival. The new album finally sees the bass player complete the trilogy of records which began with his debut solo album, McCartney, in 1970. He then followed it up a decade later with 1980 effort McCartney II. The iconic musician recorded both previous albums at his home studio and featured additional vocals from his late wife Linda, who passed away in 1998. Now, Macca has confirmed the final effort in the trilogy which is released next month.
While fans of Paul McCartney have new music to look forward to, the disappointment will still linger following the cancellation of his planned headline event at Worthy Farm. The 50th anniversay event, which was due to take place over the summer, would have welcomed Macca on the Pyramid Stage for a remarkable evening. While the Beatle was undoubted the main attraction, ticket sales had also been boosted by the news that Taylor Swift was going to fill a headline slot on a different evening.
The two musicians, sitting in conversation for a new Rolling Stone series, discussed the planned event: “Wow, it would’ve been so fun to play Glastonbury for the 50th anniversary together,” Swift said to McCartney. Then, somewhat surprisingly, McCartney revealed replied: “It would’ve been great, wouldn’t it? And I was going to be asking you to play with me.”
“Were you going to invite me?” Swift asked. “I was hoping that you would. I was going to ask you.”
Explaining further: “I would’ve done ‘Shake It Off’,” McCartney revealed, which Swift then said “would have been amazing”.
In other Glastonbury related news, the festival‘s General Counsel Ben Challis has said that plans are going ahead for the festival to be staged in June 2021 despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic which has meant that many people are unsure whether or not the date is too optimistic.
The entertainment lawyer has represented the festival for 26 years and has said that work on the Worthy Farm event will begin in March. “For 2021 we will have to start building in March, or the end of March because its a big festival and it takes a lot to build, and no one wants to do a ‘light Glastonbury’,” he told Behind The Noise Podcast’s Marc Farquhar.
Challis added: “The plan would be to rebook the 2020 bill, it will move everything, including our 50th-anniversary celebration to 2021”. The lawyer was then asked whether there were many people requesting a refund after this year’s event was cancelled in March, Challis said: “It was literally a handful, it was extraordinary. No one wanted a refund.”
His words were in a similar vein to Emily Eavis’ comments back in August when she said: “For those who have been asking, we have no plans to move next year’s Glastonbury to September 2021 – we’re still very much aiming for June.”
However, Eavis and Challis’ comments both differ from when her father Michael Eavis recently cast doubt over whether next year’s event will go ahead. “500 people is ok isn’t it,” Michael Eavis told ITV News West Country in August about the current issues surrounding the social distancing guidelines. “But my job, 250,000 altogether is too many people I suppose isn’t it really.”
He added: “I’m still hoping I’m going to be running next year and I’m going to be moving heaven and earth to make sure that we do. But that doesn’t mean it will necessarily happen. That is just wishful thinking really.”
Despite the uncertainty of the festival’s immediate future, Eavis remained confident that Glastonbury will still be able to come back stronger from this current setback. “No I do not worry at all, I am so confident that it will survive. The only certainty I think is the year after, 2022, to be perfectly candid. So we might have to wait for two years maybe,” he said.
Fingers crossed the biggest event in the British music calendar will be able to return next year and things will start to return to something that resembles a normal social life. Paul McCartney, Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar were booked in to headline the Pyramid Stage in 2020 but it is yet to be confirmed whether they will still headline the rescheduled event.