The lead singer and lyricist of a major rock band has revealed his fond memories of Reading Festival. 

I had the pleasure of sitting down with Elbow's frontman Guy Garvey ahead of his performance at Heritage Live 2024, Englefield Estate. 

Having grown up singing along in the car to 'Grounds for Divorce' and 'One Day Like This' with my father, I was more than excited to have a chat with this legendary rock star. 

Along with numerous other performances over the years in and around Berkshire (he jokingly told me who couldn't remember all of them) Guy went on to reveal some of his core memories from Reading Festival. 

"I've performed at Reading Festival many times," Guy said. "In fact, Reading and Leeds was the first festival we did, ever!"

Guy revealed that when Elbow first performed at the festival, they did so in a recycled circus tent with painted exotic animals on the lining's sides. "It still smelled of the circus," he laughed. 

One particularly hilarious memory Guy said that had stuck with him over the years was when a band, which he could not name, got heckled at the festival. 

The group was made up of a man on a keyboard and two women pretending to be robots. 

"It was terrible," Guy laughed. "They were on just before us.

"At the end of one of their songs the two girls pretending to be androids said at the same time "We are" and then they said the name of the band, and this guy in a confident voice shouted "W**KERS!" 

Guy also said that he vividly remembers intervening in an argument whilst waiting at a food stall with the drummer from Keane. 

He said that whilst in the queue the two musicians saw a festival goer who was clearly high on drugs verbally abusing a woman who had accidently pushed in front of him. 

"He was being really intimidating," Guy said. "We both stepped up at the same time and the way I did it was to be more Manc than I actually am, pretending that I'm tough which I'm actually not.

"The minute this guy sized us up, the guy at the fast food van said "Two veggie falafel wraps?" and we both just turned away and said oh yeah over here, bringing down the dangerous tone entirely."

If you want to catch Elbow's next major gig, the band will be performing at Heritage Live 2024, Englefield, Reading.  

Speaking about the upcoming show, Guy said that he will be playing a mixture of his old hits and also half the tracks from his new album AUDIO VERTIGO.

"Usually when we're playing new material we wouldn't do more than three," he said. "Particularly if it hasn't been out for a long time. The record came out in march.

"But we're actually playing half of that record because they're punchier songs. They've got a lot more energy than what our music usually has. They fit really well."

Guy said that a conscious decision that the band made when making the album was to write shorter, punchier numbers so they could litter the set with more of them.