To call it an avalanche would be an exaggeration, but in the last few days I’ve received a small land-slip of emails congratulating me on my forthcoming appearance at Glasto next weekend.
There’s a reason for this. There has been media coverage (rather negative coverage, in truth) about the fact that the Wombles are booked to appear. And a troublingly large number of my friends and acquaintances know that I did indeed play some of the Wombles music a million years ago. As two plus two = four, surely Wombles return plus ex-Womble means Lucian must be doing Glasto, right?
Completely wrong. It’s true that a millions years ago, I did spend a few months playing the Wombles music (cringing with embarrassment, grimly hiding the humiliating truth from my closest family and friends, determined to keep all reference a million miles from my CV, totally failing to understand that this would in fact turn out to be the only remotely interesting thing that I would do in my life). But sadly, from there, the story is all downhill. I wasn’t a Womble, I was a bass guitarist (you can’t play anything, not even Underground Overground Wombling Free, with a furry suit covering your whole body and more importantly both hands). I was probably one of at least a dozen bass guitarists who played some of the music during that period. And if the Wombles do indeed play Glasto, it’ll be done in the same way that it was all those years ago, with some actors and dancers dressed up as the Wombles onstage, and either a bunch of backing tracks or a bunch of musicians off stage providing the music.
I’m touched, I must admit, by the fact that quite a few people I know have read the story about the forthcoming appearance and jumped immediately to the not-unamusing idea that Lucian is playing Glasto.
(Little do they know that in fact, even longer ago than those distant Wombling days, I did in fact play Glasto, back in 1972 when it was a crappy and disorganised mudbath and the only band with a record deal who were willing to appear, unpaid, was Hawkwind.)
But today, all of this is unimaginably long ago. And with the greatest respect to my emailing friends, the idea that a 50-something financial brand and marketing consultant will spend next week prancing around under the Pyramid bashing out the bass part to “Remember You’re A Womble,” well, it’s not really the most plausible suggestion you’ve ever heard, is it?