I have been excited about the Hackney Weekend ever since my friends and I managed to get tickets for the Saturday entry, but the day before the D-day I was literally bouncing off the walls! So Saturday came and it was agreed that I meet my friend at Homerton station and we will just walk to the Hackney Marshes where the festival was held. You know how it is with the best laid plans? Yes, they never work the way they are supposed to.
So, after the public transport threw few sticks underneath my feet (no Overground trains in my part of London), I ended up at Stratford station. I knew that there were free shuttle busses supposed to run from Stratford, so I decided to go and check it out. And although I didn’t know from which stand the free busses went, it was very easy to spot the right queue – yes, it was the one with the biggest collection of wellies :D
Anyways, it was time to jump on the running part of the Overground and get myself to Homerton. By the look of the train, I wasn’t the only one who had this idea as the train was full of bright tops, hot pants and (yes you are guessing right) wellies :) By the looks of it, London was expecting sunny and hot weather.
Throughout the whole day I was impressed with how the event was organised and the attention to detail which started right when we stepped off the train. I don’t know how about you but I usually have only one question on my mind and one dread when on my way to a festival. The question is – how do I get there asap? and the dread – portable toilets. I have nothing against them, but with 50 000 people attending the festival on each day, you can only imagine that by the end of the day, they can get bit unpleasant. Well fear not, the toilets were kept clean throughout the day with plenty of toilet paper. Impressive, huh? And there were plenty of stewards to show you the way to and from the event as well as very efficiently managing the queue, that was actually moving forward in a good pace so we reached the first checks before we knew it. After that, just a ticket check and we were in!
Six stages and plenty of great music and us trying to make the plan of the day so we see everyone who we wanted to see. Yeah baby, the party was on!!! Here is few pictures to map our journey through the day ;)
Leona Lewis kicking off the show on the Main Stage.
Leona released balloons with small pink hearts inside them. Shame it was so windy that they just passed the crowds and off they went over the fence to explore the Hackney…
Dance Arena with Annie Mac playing in the background.
Full BBC Radio 1Xtra Stage during great DJ Fresh performance.
Back at the Main Stage with Rizzle Kicks in full swing.
And the crowd is having great time!
Eric Prydz keeping the Dance Arena on its toes.
D’Banj next at 1Xtra Stage. This was my discovery of the day! My friend said that she must see him, so we went. Apparently D’Banj is massively popular in Africa and I could see that he has a massive follow-up here as well. The tent was packed and everybody was dancing and having a great time! What a vibe! Check out his new single – Oliver Twist – on YouTube, really catchy!
D’Banj in action.
Calvin Harris sweeping the Dance Arena off their feet.
Our next stop was Kasabian, which I was looking forward to see, but I was slightly disappointed with the performance. They just couldn’t get the crowd going for almost the full first half of their performance. I think they slightly underestimated the crowd and decided to play their new songs, which only the first ten or so rows of fans in the front knew and the rest of the people didn’t react at all. But the mood changed once they started playing their well known hits and everyone got energised again.
We also saw Example on Main Stage and Sean Paul on 1Xtra Stage, but way too busy dancing and enjoying myself to remember to take pictures :D
And the wait is over! Jay Z is on stage…
And after Jay Z’s second guest – M.I.A. – we got our final treat – Kanye West!!! What a treat and great finish of an amazing day!!!
Sorry guys that the last picture is bit blurry, but this is as much as I could do between jumping and screaming and the rain didn’t help either but who cared!
Well done Radio 1 and Hackney, you did yourselves proud!
Next stop: Coca-Cola Torch Relay Concert in Birmingham :)