T in the Park: HisToric Rise of Our Top Festival

The Mirror (London, England), July 9, 2005 | Go to article overview

T in the Park: HisToric Rise of Our Top Festival


Byline: By GRAHAM MARTIN

T IN THE PARK has grown to become one of the most exciting and critically-acclaimed festivals in Europe.

The festival was the brainchild of DF Concerts' founder Stuart Clumpas, who staged the first T at Strathclyde Country Park in Hamilton, Lanarkshire, in 1994.

He teamed up with brewers Tennent's, who had been supporting live music events in Scotland since the 1980s, and T in the Park was born.

Around 17,000 fans saw Rage Against the Machine, Bjork and rappers Cypress Hill headline the first festival.

But that year is best remembered for the amazing line-up in the smaller King Tut's tent, where Blur, Manic Street Preachers, Pulp and Oasis all shared the same bill.

Within a year all those groups would become headline acts.

But while the first festival was an overwhelming critical success, it failed to break even.

The following year Kylie Minogue stole the show, setting records for the longest queue at the signing tent.

T in the Park bade farewell to Strathclyde Park in 1996 in style, with memorable performances by Radiohead, Prodigy and the Foo Fighters.

This was also the year that Holyrood star Keanu Reeves turned up, fronting his rock band, Dogstar.

The move to Balado in Perth-shire allowed the festival to grow massively, as crowd capacity rose towards today's 60,000 capacity.

Robbie Williams stole the show with his first official appearance after turning up backstage in 1994 to play football with Oasis.

Sets by up-and-coming Scottish bands Idlewild and Travis were highlights, and Pulp triumphantly returned to headline the festival.

Blur and Manic Street Preachers headlined in 1999, alongside Massive Attack.

The 2000 festival proved to be a momentous occasion for Travis, who had played the first T in the Park as unsigned band Glass Onion, when they closed the Main Stage.

Other highlights included Moby, Scots legend Lulu and a relatively unknown band called Coldplay who played at the King Tut's tent, which had cemented its reputation as one of the UK's premier showcases of emerging talent. …

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