Left Field – mixing pop and politics

June 20, 2013

Glastonbury differs from other major rock festivals in that it has an underlying ethos: To make the world a better place. Programmed by Billy Bragg, the Left Field endeavours to give that ethos some edge by bringing together activists and artists who strive to articulate that better world through argument and song.

Left Field begins with two daily panels where left-wingers convene to discuss and debate how to build a fairer society. Contributions from the audience are always welcome.

That’s followed by the Radical Round-Up, which pitches up-and-coming topical songwriters in with festival veterans to take turns in sharing their songs.

The early evening comedy spot brings biting satire into the mix before they bring on the bands. Left Field has a tradition of bringing young artists together with those who have spent their careers speaking out on the issues of the day and this year is no exception.  

Here’s the full 2013 programme:


12.00 Panel: The Ideology of Austerity – how should the left respond to the cuts? Featuring Owen Jones

13.30 Panel: Meeting the Challenge of the EDL – can music counter racism?
Featuring Sam Duckworth

15.00 The Radical Round Up – Billy Bragg trades songs with Martyn Joseph, Louise Distras and ONSIND.

17.00 Comedy from Phill Jupitus

18.00 The Milk

19.30 Emmanuel Jal

21.00 Billy Bragg & Band


12.00 Panel: Feminism – the unfinished revolution. Featuring Kate Banyard from UK Feminista

13.30 Panel: There is Power in a Union. Featuring Ricky Tomlinson

15.00 The Radical Round Up – Billy Bragg trades songs with Amanda Palmer, Sean McGowan and The Quiet Loner.

17.00 Comedy with Steve Gribbin

18.00 Dizreali and the Small Gods

19.30 Wayne Kramer

21.00 The Beat


12.00 Panel: The Next Election – how do we stop voters from switching off? Featuring Tony Benn

13.30 Workshop: Beautiful Trouble – practical guides to creative direct action with members of UKuncut and the Intruders

15.00 The Radical Round Up – Billy Bragg trades songs with Beans on Toast, Ste McCabe and Grace Petrie

17.00 Comedy with Chris Coltrane

18.00 Geoff Berner

19.30 Kate Nash

21.00 Amazing Grace Live! Featuring Sam Duckworth, Jehst, Sweet Billy Pilgrim and special guests

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