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Mumfords 'match fit' for Glastonbury

Source BBC News@ tienganhvui.com


Mumford and SonsThe band recently won two Grammy awards in the US



Glastonbury headliners Mumford and Sons have said say are "match fit" ahead of the biggest gig of their lives, playing the same stage as the Rolling Stones.


The nu-folk rockers are set to draw the curtain down on a uncharacteristically sun-soaked weekend of music from the likes of The Arctic Monkeys and Chic.


They will take to the stage at 21:45 BST for the show.


Keyboard player Ben Lovett said: "We wouldn't perform if we didn't think we could do a great job."


This year's festival has seen 180,000 people descend on Michael Eavis's Somerset farmstead.


The music has catered to a wide range of tastes with sets from artists such as Laura Mvula, Chase and Status, Rita Ora and Elvis Costello.


Sunday's line-up includes Vampire Weekend, Smashing Pumpkins, Jessie Ware, Bobby Womack and Sir Bruce Forsyth.


Avon and Somerset police have said crime at this year's festival has dropped dramatically since the last event in 2011.


Crime levels were 33% lower than in 2011, with 220 reported crimes, including drug offences and thefts from tents, since gates to the campsites opened on Wednesday.


Police added that there were no major incidents on site and a total of 154 arrests have been made.


Mumford and Sons' performance will be the Grammy-winning band's first since bassist Ted Dwane had surgery for a blood clot on his brain earlier this month.


The band have said they would have pulled out of the headline slot if the 28-year-old had not made a full recovery from brain surgery.


"Was the show ever in doubt? I think it's fair to say it was," Lovett told the BBC.


The band were hit by the news of Dwane's condition while they were on tour in the US earlier in June. The bass player had been taken to hospital after being described as "feeling unwell" for several days.


His illness forced the band to cancel the remainder of their North American Summer Stampede tour and threw their first headliner slot at Worthy Farm into doubt.


"Nothing was more important than Ted's health," said Lovett.


After leaving hospital, Dwane posted a picture of himself bearing surgery scars on the band's website, accompanied by the caption: "Bear with a sore head!"


On Sunday night, the band will take to a stage still vibrating from the barnstorming set from Saturday night's closing act - the Rolling Stones.


The veteran rockers received five star reviews in most of the Sunday papers.


"The astonishing thing was that just short of 70, Mick Jagger and his band put so much of what had gone before at Glastonbury in the shade," said Gavin Martin in The Mirror.


"It's taken years for Michael Eavis to persuade the cash-conscious Rolling Stones to leave the stadium circuit for a field in Somerset," wrote Dorian Lynskey in The Observer. "They proved themselves well worth the wait."


Some fans in the audience, however, felt the sound was too quiet and there were scattered chants of "turn it up" during the band's performance.


The Rolling StonesIt was the first time in 50 years that the Stones had played Glastonbury


Mumford and Sons were among those watching the gig, as they had with Friday night headliners The Arctic Monkeys.


Lovett said the shows had made him worry that his banjo-brandishing band hadn't quite got enough hits to fill their show.


"We've only got two albums, so we've got to write more," he laughed.


"But we're match fit. We wouldn't perform if we didn't think we could do a great job.


"We're confident and we're looking forward to it."


The Grammy and Brit-winning band are the biggest stars of the nu-folk scene which emerged from West London five years ago.


Their contemporaries Noah And The Whale, who played on The Other Stage on Saturday, said the headline slot was a coming-of-age moment.


"It's funny," said frontman Charlie Fink. "Every time things get a bit bigger, you think 'I can't believe it's got to this stage' and then something else happens.


"But I think it's amazing. It's crazy everything that's happened to people we know and that genre of music."


Kenny RogersRogers is also making his Glastonbury debut


The notorious Sunday afternoon "Glastonbury legend" slot - which has played host to the likes of Shirley Bassey and Johnny Cash - will be filled by country star Kenny Rogers.


"I was told it was a special slot but I don't always believe everything my manager says when he's trying to get me to do something," admitted the singer.


He added he was unsure whether the Glastonbury audience would be familiar with hits such as The Gambler, Coward Of The County and Islands In The Stream.


"But I think any time you get that number of people together, percentage-wise I should have enough people who know my music to carry the rest of them.


"I'm convinced now that my audience falls into two categories: Either born since 1980 and their parents played my music as child abuse, or they were born before 1960, and can no longer remember the 60s."


The 74-year-old, who is the seventh-biggest-selling artist in US history, also said he was hoping to see Mumford and Sons later.


"I saw them on a Country Music Television show in the States, and I thought they were excellent.


"You know, my first 10 years, I played upright bass and sang in a jazz group - so I can really appreciate what they're doing melody-wise and time-wise.


"It's great to hear a group like that be so successful."





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