Patti Smith and Massive Attack At Hyde Park

Tonight, Patti Smith will fulfil a lifelong dream. While busking in Paris in 1969, she couldn’t gather enough money to make the journey to Hyde Park, London to see the Rolling Stones concert in memory of her beloved Brian Jones. 47 years later, and Smith will finally grace the London park, supporting Massive Attack at the Hyde Park British Summer Time festival.

Now in its fourth year, the BST festival will run over two weekends in July, filled with live music, comedy and film events. As a day only event, it may not have the traditional festival vibe of mud, tents and sleepless nights, but this year is set to host a number of rockin acts. On stage tonight is Patti Smith, a legend who needs little introduction. Cementing herself as the ‘Godmother of Punk’ with the release of her now iconic album Horses in 1975, Smith is known for her aversion to ‘feminine’ styles and androgynous signature style. Think traditional tailoring deconstructed; slouchy blazers, undone neck ties and oversized shirts – a winning formula that is still relevant today.
Moving on to Saturday and Hyde Park welcomes headliners Florence and the Machine. Amidst a whirlwind of award-winning albums and sold-out tours, Florence Welch makes a triumphant return to London for the BST festival. After the release of their debut album ‘Lungs’ in 2009, Florence have enjoyed non-stop success. Creating their very own niche in a world of identikit pop, Florence create both anthemic chart-toppers that have become summer festival soundtracks, and yet still connect on an intimate level with their adoring fan base. Dancing across the stage with her tousled Renaissance-locks, Florence Welch’s vocals lilt from powerful and romantic, to tender and sensitive in the blink of an eye. Switching from Stevie Nicks-esque bohemian flowing dresses to bold tailored suits, Welch’s wardrobe mirrors her free spirit above anything else.
Over the years, Hyde Park has played host to legendary artists, from Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, Canned Heat and The Rolling Stones in the 1960s, to Motorhead, The Who and Black Sabbath years later. Add Patti and Florence to the list and this London landmark holds memories of half a century of rockin’ music.