My Glastonbury 2014 Highlights

Each year on the last weekend of June, thousands of expectant revellers make the pilgrimage to Worthy Farm to witness the Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts. Whether it’s the hippy, counter-culture heritage, the impressive and iconic line-ups, or the British masochistic affection for terrible weather, it is the archetypal festival on anybody’s calendar.

Started in 1970 by the impressively bearded Michael Eavis, it was originally called the ‘Pilton Pop, Blues & Folk Festival’. The headliners then were T-Rex, tickets only cost £1, and the 1,500 festival goers were provided with free milk. Fast forward to the year 2014 and things are a little different. The headliners are Arcade Fire, Metallica and Kasabian, tickets are £210, and the 175,000 in attendance are offered plenty more than the white liquid secreted by our bovine chums. I know, because for the first time in my life, I got to go to Glastonbury.

From registering online and submitting a passport photo so offensive I’m surprised Operation Yewtree weren’t on my case, I eventually purchased tickets for myself and my girlfriend on the last day of the re-sales. Hours, days, weeks then passed, and before I knew it I had my Glastonbury wristband and was ready to go.
Now it’s over, and I’m still here to tell the tale. Was it what I expected? Yes, and no. Did it rain? Yes, on an almost biblical scale, but not without the sun making an occasional appearance. But most of all, did I enjoy it? Does Dolly Parton sleep on her back?! It was the most complete festival I’ve had the fortune of being part of, and here are just some of my highlights (and lowlights).

 

Michael Eavis’s tribute to Tony Benn, The Leftfield Stage

Tony Benn, a keen supporter and participator in Glastonbury's activist movement.
Tony Benn, a keen supporter and participator in Glastonbury’s activist movement.

When flicking through my pocket-sized Glastonbury guide, one of the first things that caught my eye was that on the Friday, to kickstart the festival, there was to be a tribute to the late, great Tony Benn by Michael Eavis. Located in the Leftfield Tent, an area in Glastonbury dedicated to mixing visual arts and politics, I dragged my girlfriend to go and check it out.

Tony Benn is a man that I greatly admire. For me, he is the quintessential conviction politician; regrettably, he represents a dying breed. Since my Mum decided to pop me out in the late Eighties (yeah, thanks Gill!), I either wasn’t born or was far too young to witness his political tenure, but I have since been able to read and study just how inspiring and influential a man he was.

For the 10 years that the Leftfield Tent has been running, Tony Benn has been a Glastonbury stalwart. A real showman. The tribute started with a five minute film made by local students, documenting Tony’s festival appearances. From the interviews and soundbites, it was clear to see his love for the Glastonbury’s coming-together of like-minded people. Glastonbury was his “morale boost”, he said, “and in these difficult times it’s important to keep up the morale”.
A visibly moved Michael Eavis then took to the stage, offering kind words and humorous anecdotes involving Tony Benn’s vivacious personality.
“What a fella, hey?”, Eavis said. “He didn’t do what was popular, he did what was right”.
This was followed by two emotive speeches from Tony Benn’s granddaughter, and Labour MP, Emily Benn, and his eldest son, Stephen Benn. It was then Billy Bragg who closed the tribute, ending with a mass singalong to the hymn ‘Jerusalem’.

Benn Tower of Strength at night.

Benn Tower of Strength at night.

It was a moving memorial, reminding me of the essence of which Glastonbury existed, and exists. As we left the tent, I saw the ‘Benn Tower of Strength’. Named after Tony Benn himself, the tower structure depicts people from all races and creeds pulling a rope in the same direction.

Whilst outside in the big wide world, our Tory-led government is dismantling the NHS amongst other things, but in Worthy Farm, after the Benn tribute, there was a real sense that things could, and would be put right. And it felt bloody lovely.

 

Ed Sheeran, The Pyramid Stage

Ed Sheeran on the Pyramid Stage.

Ed Sheeran on the Pyramid Stage.

I’m going to admit something here. I only agreed to go and see Ed Sheeran because my girlfriend wanted to. Dismissing the red-headed wonder kid as just another singer-songwriter type that writes wishy-washy love songs for girls, I thought I’d stick it out for a couple of hours, half-heartedly sing-along to ‘The A-Team’ and then crack onto seeing other more interesting acts. How wrong I was.

Gracing the stage with his trademark orange mane and his miniature acoustic guitar, he launched straight into hit single ‘You Need Me’ with the showmanship of a proper star. Rattling through the rest of his crowd-pleasing set, it was at times hard to hear for all of the screaming girls. The set included mass impromptu rapping, mass sing-alongs and audience participation (at one point he got everyone to take off an item of clothing for the chorus of ‘Sing’ and swing it in the air. Unfortunately a rather rotund chap to the right of me took the memo a bit too seriously, taking his top off to reveal the bare-chested physique of a pie-eating Newcastle United fan). His stage presence was made all the more astonishing for the fact he was completely alone. No band. No backing singers. Just Ed Sheeran, a guitar, and a loop pedal.

He writes unashamedly catchy, poppy songs, which might not be to everyone’s tastes, but it would take a real cynic not to appreciate the supreme talent that this guy possesses. As he left the stage, I left with a new found admiration for the ginger bloke from Suffolk.

 

Camping

A typical festival campsite.

A typical festival campsite.

Ah, festival camping, how I love and loathe thee in equal measure. You trek for miles, lugging your booze-filled rucksacks in search for the perfect place to pitch up for the weekend. Once you’ve found your spec, you spend an age fiddling around trying to put up your tent (unless you’re one of those pop-up bastards!). After that is all done, you sit down on your camping chair, pour a cup of your warm, boxed Chardonnay and proceed to soak up the rays, until you need the toilet that is.

Now festival toilets are always a contentious issue. For guys, we can wee anywhere. For girls, things are a little different. What I will say is Glastonbury toilets are far better than the other festival restrooms I’ve had the displeasure to use. Rather than Portaloos, Glastonbury installed ‘long drop loos’ for the first time. These toilets store the waste underground, which is eventually turned into manure and spread across the farmland (mmm, lovely). As eco-friendly as they were though, the stench of the long drop toilets come the Sunday has left an irremovable imprint on my soul.

We were camping in an area of Glastonbury called the ‘Pylon Grounds’, named after, you guessed it, the pylons that run through the grounds. One of the girls camping with us was a doctor, and she said it was actually really dangerous to be camped near pylons because the electromagnetic energy can lead to cancer and all sorts. I joked that I’d come back home with a third arm. That hasn’t happened (but the extra two fingers that I’ve grown aren’t half helping me type out this blog).

One particular highlight (or lowlight, depending how you look at it) took place on the Thursday morning, after mine and my girlfriend Stacey’s first night in the tent. The night before, after several cups of said Chardonnay, we all made our way to the ‘Power Ballads vs. Indie Anthems’ Silent Disco. By about 3am, after a night of boogying, I was a sweaty, drunken mess, and it was time to sleep, but not before an early hours feast. I opted for a gargantuan portion of sausage, chips and beans, and chomped my way through it, until the worst thing that could possibly happen, happened. I DROPPED THE SAUSAGE. It was pitch black at this point, and I didn’t have a torch, so me and Stacey were clambering around on the floor in search for it. Eventually we found the sausage, covered in a combination of hay and mud. I was in such a hazy state of drunken relief, I ate it anyway. Big. Mistake.

A flock of ducks preventing Batman from disposing of the bomb.

A flock of ducks preventing Batman from disposing of the bomb.

The next morning I woke up drenched in my own sweat.
“Stace! Stace!”, I mumbled as I shook her in desperation, “I’m going to be sick!”. What happened then can only be described as utter chaos. It was a bit like the classic scene from the 1966 Batman movie, where Batman is frantically trying to dispose of an oversized, ticking bomb but is constantly faced with obstacles blocking him from doing so. Sure that I was about to puke at any moment, I was hunting desperately for something to be sick in. First I picked up a Tesco bag. “Great”, I thought. That was until I discovered a gaping hole in the bottom. Bollocks! Next I picked up one of my wellington boots. As I leaned my head in to be sick, it dawned on me that these were the only shoes I had for the weekend, and given that it was only Thursday morning, I’d need them in good condition. Yikes. What was I to do?! Finally, I somehow clambered inside my bag and pulled out a bin liner, and within a millisecond of prizing it open, I vomited inside.

“GET OUT OF THE TENT!!! GET OUT!!!”, were the words that echoed from behind me. “IT’S GOING TO STINK. GET OUT!!!”. I turned around for some moral support, the sort of TLC you pine for when you’re being sick, only for Stace to scream back,
“YOUR BREATH STINKS!!!”. Dejected, I carried the bulging bin liner to the long drop loos where there was a bin. Once I’d disposed of it, I sat myself down on one of the bogs and spent a good few hours soul searching. What a way to start my first morning at Glastonbury Festival, hey. Some days you just can’t help but throw up in your tent.

 

Hearing Manic Street Preachers perform ‘If You Tolerate This…’, The Other Stage

Sean Moore, Nicky Wire and James Dean Bradfield. Manic Street Preachers

Sean Moore, Nicky Wire and James Dean Bradfield. Manic Street Preachers

In 1998, when Manic Street Preachers released ‘If You Tolerate This…’, I was in primary school and spent the majority of my time swapping Pokemon cards and playing with my yoyo (not a euphemism). Yet despite this, ‘IYTT…’ was the first single I ever bought. I went into the Liscard branch of WHSmith with my Mum, picked the CD in its cardboard case off the shelf and hurried excitedly over to the cashier. Once I got home I couldn’t wait to play it. I ran up to my bedroom, placed it carefully in the CD player and listened to the title track on repeat for what felt like hours. I loved the opening flange-effected guitar. I loved the accompanying video featuring those spooky, faceless humans. I loved everything about it. Admittedly I had no idea the song was about the fight against fascists in the Spanish Civil War. Still though, it was the first time I felt a tangible connection to music.

Because of this, I couldn’t wait to see the Manic’s play at Glastonbury 2014. When they got round to playing ‘IYTT…’, I was taken right back as my 10 year old self, playing air guitar around my Robbie Fowler-adorned bedroom. Those opening flange-effected guitar chords still give me goosebumps.

 

Being well too drunk for Jake Bugg, The Other Stage

Jake Bugg

Jake Bugg

Jake Bugg, the dour faced Notts troubadour with a voice before his time, is known for his more laid back, no frills performance style. Where a performer like Ed McFarlane from Friendly Fires grinds around the stage like a man with acute haemorrhoids, Bugg remains stationery, expressionless, letting the music do the talking. Looking around the Glastonbury audience, there were lots of nodding heads, crossed arms and stern, muso expressions. Not from us however. Me and Stacey were well and truly plastered. It was a polar opposite scenario the night before. Stone cold sober, we went and watched Paolo Nutini shower us with his smooth Scottish soul, leaving us both in a sort of serene and breezeless state of trance. Which was great, until we discovered that following Paolo were the dubstep wobbles and high-pitched synth bleeps of Skrillex and his on-stage spaceship. We were both freaking out.

Now I’m what you’d call a moderate fan of Jake Bugg. He’s a very talented chap, with, in my opinion, a handful of great songs. My favourite being ‘Broken’, a heartbreaking acoustic ballad about a close friend of his who committed suicide. He played this song mid-way through his set, and it was probably THE highlight of my festival experience. I know I was away with the fairies thanks to my good friend Captain Morgan, but with Stacey in my arms, and the whole crowd singing along to every word, it was a festival moment that I’ll cherish.

 

The Food

One of the many gourmet food stands in Glastonbury

One of the many gourmet food stands in Glastonbury

Goan Fish Curries. Paella. Fresh lobster. Ostrich burgers. Cream tea parlours. Sushi bars. Kebabs. Thai food kitchens. Glastonbury Festival is a foodie heaven. Gone are the days of just having the choice of greasy burgers or hot dogs with fried onions slopped on top, the selection of festival food is as sophisticated as ever. Being as greedy as I am, I loved it. My favourite was a place called Pieminister, offering up gourmet pies with the most inventive fillings. The beef and stilton pie I had still makes my mouth water to this day.

I’ve since found out Pieminister has a couple of stores in London, not far from where I live. Brilliant! I’m coming for you, diabetes.

These are just some of my personal highlights of my time at Glastonbury. I would have included Dolly Parton, but I’d feel like I was cheating; we only caught the last couple of songs from her set, as we opted to see Sam Smith instead. From what I’ve heard though, the Princess of Dollywood stole the show. Other bands that we saw that stand out were Chvrches (Lauren Mayberry, phwoar), Clean Bandit, Lana Del Rey, Circa Waves and Disclosure.

But that’s the thing about Glastonbury. It’s not really about the bands. There’s so much to see and do there, you could spend the whole weekend occupied and not even have to set foot near the Pyramid Stage. There’s a Kidz Field, an Acoustic tent, a themed after hours dance village called Shangri-La, a place called the Healing Fields where you can take part in a whole host of holistic-based therapies (the sex yoga was an absolute sell out), an area called the Sacred Space with its own stone circle, a Cabaret marquee featuring performances from the countries top comedians, and a Circus field amongst other things.

It’s the best and most varied festival I’ve been to, reflected in its broad demographic. Parents with young children, 70+ year old hippies and everyone else in between, you’ll find everybody here. It’s a place where, no matter who you are or where you’re from, you can let your hair down, rid yourself of any judgements and enjoy life for what it is. Some people criticise it for its middle class, bourgeois leanings. I’d tell those people that they’re taking it far too seriously.

Michael Eavis, you beautiful bearded farmer. I’ve well and truly caught the Glastonbury bug.

 

Advertisements

Sad over England’s World Cup 2014 Exit? Why?! We have the Internet.

It was Wednesday 26th June, 1996, and England were playing Germany in the Semi Finals of the UEFA European Championships at Wembley Stadium. After 120 minutes of high blood pressure-inducing football, the score finished 1-1, and England found themselves faced with a penalty shootout against the organised and resilient German team. Put it this way, if there’s ever a situation you don’t want to be in, it’s having to take penalties against Die Mannschaft. And that night was no exception.

Gareth Southgate, shortly after his penalty was saved by Andreas Köpke

Gareth Southgate, shortly after his penalty was saved by Andreas Köpke

I remember the miss like it was yesterday; I believe everyone watching the game that night does too. For me, it’s my,  “Where were you when Kennedy was shot?” moment.
I was sat on the living room floor, wearing my fetching black and orange Kappa tracksuit, sporting a bowl head haircut so spherical it defied the laws of physics. Both teams converted all five of their penalties, and with sudden death now in place, it was Gareth Southgate’s turn to try and salvage England’s Euro 96 hopes. His effort was easily saved by Germany’s Andreas Köpke, and after Moller converted his penalty, England were out of the competition.

I cried. Bucket loads. My Dad tried to console me with a meagre pat on the back, but nothing was going to shake my blues. It wasn’t supposed to end like this. My sister, Hannah, barged into the room to see what was going on.
 “Oh my God, are you CRYING Charlie?!”, she yelled unsympathetically, basking in the schadenfreude with a wry smile. Like a shitting dog being stared at, I felt helpless and exposed, but I had no option but to let it all out. It was a grim ending to what had promised to be a fairytale. After 30 years of hurt, mine had only just begun. Well, that’s what I thought.

FIFA World Cup Brasil 2014 Logo

FIFA World Cup Brasil 2014 logo

Fast forward eighteen years and it’s the World Cup 2014 in Brazil, and what a tournament it has been. Goals, drama, vanishing spray. The lot. We’ve witnessed the frenetic energy of the South American teams on their home soil, a revival of Holland’s Total Football, a newly energised French team that have found their Va Va Voom again, as well as the rise and fall of the mighty giants Spain. It really has been a joy to watch, and we’re barely half way.

For Roy Hodgson’s England, however, things haven’t gone so well. After two early defeats, England were eliminated from the group stages. In part due to being seeded in an extremely tough group alongside Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica, but largely down to the fact that we’re just, well…a little bit shit.

When Suarez scored to make it 2-1 to Uruguay, hammering the final nail in England’s proverbial coffin, you’d be right to assume that I was disappointed. Was there a repeat of the Euro 96 floodgates though? Was I a blubbering, inconsolable wreck? No. I was pissing myself with laughter, and I have the internet to thank for that.

Within seconds of England’s untimely World Cup exit, my social media channels were awash with viral images and videos. Here are some examples:

suarez airport meme

royhodgsonsuarez

suarezchangearound

48-years-later

These memes offered light relief in a time of loss and disappointment. What could have been a miserable evening turned out to be a rather amusing one at that. I spent the rest of the night scouring Twitter with the hashtag #suarez, which was trending Worldwide at that point. It seemed I wasn’t alone in using the Internet to take solace from England’s World Cup set back.

Memes have been a key feature of the tournament. According to Zero Hora, a Brazilian national newspaper, this World Cup has been dubbed as Copa dos Memes, or ‘The Cup of Memes’.

Robin Van Persie’s swan-dive header against Spain has become a viral sensation too. Known as ‘Persieing’, the wonder goal has been followed up with photoshop parodies and photo fads, with Robin’s 93 year-old Grandad even getting involved.

Van Persie Goal

vanpersiewrestling

fc8

bqf2mv7iqaal3vb

article-2661479-1EE384C600000578-832_634x356

Robin Van Persie’s Grandad getting involved

Other incidents that have gone viral include Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa depicted as Superman after his heroic display against the hosts Brazil, Bruno Martins Indi’s laser eye stare at Diego Costa, and a levitating Claudio Marchisio.
A particular favourite of mine is of Cameroon midfielder Alex Song’s imbecilic foul on Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic. Unprovoked, Song elbowed Mandzukic in the back, and has subsequently been banned for three games. Feeding off his moment of lunacy, several GIFs have emerged providing an alternative as to why Mandzukic went down so sharpish.

def

According to the Wall Street Journal, this World Cup is predicted to generate “more social media posts of any mega-event in history”. The fact that Brazil has a population of 200 million and is the fifth-largest Internet market by population must have an influence, but I believe we’ve all caught the viral bug. The memes compliment the beautiful game. They add a different dimension. And what’s more, they’re universal. They reflect just how much social media has changed the way we watch television. Whilst Phil Neville is sending us to sleep with his monotonous, torturous, yet oddly endearing commentary, most of us have one eye on our Twitter timeline, waiting for the next viral hit to pop up.

Now it’s Tuesday 24th June 2014, and England are out of the World Cup. I’ve ditched the Kappa tracksuit. I’ve destroyed all evidence of the bowl head haircut. And I’ve swapped the tears of pain for tears of laughter. No more years of hurt. Bring on the memes. Well, that’s until we ever have to face Germany in a penalty shootout.

#IStillHaventForgivenYouSouthgate

Farting in a Onesie.

Something happened to me last night that took me by surprise. I’ll set the scene.

The clocks had just turned 8pm. Midsomer Murders was on ITV, and I had nothing better to do other than sprawl out on the sofa in my onesie. As my flatmate (and older brother Ol) was away for the rest of the week, I could afford to be extra slobbish.

So I did what every honest person would do in this situation; I let out a massive fart.

Now I’m not one to blow my own trumpet – unless a noxious odour is involved – but it was one of my most impressive farts to date. Its high, mid and low frequencies aligned beautifully to create a wondrous, foghorn-like racket – imagine Brian Blessed playing the tuba with his trademark gusto in an empty corridor. The sheer power and panache of the fart caught me by surprise. And given that there was just me in the room, I had a little chuckle to myself. Life at its most mundanely magical.

It was around about this time that I just so happened to scroll aimlessly down my Facebook timeline, something I’ve been perfecting for the past seven years. Quite a few of my friends had commented on a link, automatically grouping it to the top of my page. The link contained this picture below.

Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan

Within seconds of laughing, and with barely enough time to evacuate the plume of methane that was suffocating me, a wave of guilt washed over me. Guilt and shame.

Here I am, in my pokey West London flat, in an ill-fitting onesie, watching Inspector Barnaby solve YET ANOTHER MURDER IN THE COUNTY OF MIDSOMER, while basking in the hilarity of my own farts. And there Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan are, looking impeccably sun-kissed and impossibly beautiful as they stroll along a beach in Dubai. For a moment, I felt like the less hygienic brother of Harry Enfield’s ‘Wayne Slob’ character.

The comments my friends had left on Facebook were of a similar nature.

“THEY’RE SO PERFECT”

“THE PERFECT COUPLE”

“OMG, FOR ALL DA LOSER GUYS WHO R WATCHING MIDSOMER MURDERS IN THEIR ONESIES RIGHT NOW, DIS IZ WHAT A REAL MAN LOOKS LYK”

Ok, maybe that last one wasn’t true.

But then I thought to myself, “NO!”.
(Admittedly, the smell had dissipated at this point, so maybe that’s what had clouded my judgement in the first place). What do I have to be guilty about? I was well proud of that fart. And more importantly, with no offence to Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan, why are we basing our ideals on a photograph like the one featured above?

The moral of this rather aimless blog entry? Try not to take the polished, Instagram-filtered snapshots we see on Facebook and the like as gospel. Nothing in reality can compete with them, yet it’s the raw moments, like sprawling out on your sofa in a onesie and letting out an earth-shattering explosion of methane from your backside that make us human. I’ll leave it for you to decide if I’m just spouting a lot of hot air.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moving to London and stuff.

It has been almost three months since my last blog post on September 20th, eighty eight days to be precise. Since then we’ve lost the great Nelson Mandela, we’ve been enlightened on the cocaine habits of Nigella, and we’ve had to endure yet ANOTHER series of X Factor with Louis Walsh proclaiming each week that his latest prepubescent protege was still “ONLY SEVENTEEYYYN”. It can’t be a coincidence that the following day, September 21st, I hung up my flat cap, waved goodbye to Ted the whippet, and fled my Northern hometown to try my luck at life in the Big Smoke.

You’d think moving to one of the most vibrant and culturally rich cities in the world would be the perfect inspiration for writing a blog. So why has it taken me so long to put pen to paper, fingertips to keypad?

In my defence, I spent the first few weeks without a wifi connection, which is the modern day equivalent of a hunger strike. And it’s only recently that I’ve managed to stop crying myself to sleep over the sheer scale of the rent and other bills, so my mind has been elsewhere. But excuses aside, I’ve not really felt like writing. When travelling earlier this year, each day was a unique onslaught to the senses. I was blogging as though my life depended on it. If I wasn’t jumping 12,000 feet out of a plane, I was doing something equally as skid-mark inducing.

I may have temporarily lost the appetite for writing and blogging, but I’ve really enjoyed myself here. Turnham Green is my patch, where I share a (rather dubiously listed) two bedroom flat with my brother. I’m in the ‘compact’ bedroom with a bed small enough for Ronnie Corbett to complain about its size. I’m the cook of the house, producing countless money saving meals with help from my ‘Saving with Jamie’ cookbook. To be honest, I’ve been quite surprised at the results. Give me five loaves and two fish, and I may not be able to feed the five thousand, but I’ll make a very tasty ‘Fish and Bread Surprise’. I work in Hammersmith and in Fulham, which is only about 30 minutes away on the dreaded District Line. For part of my duties, I drive a red van along the streets of London, not quite in the sky diving league, but nonetheless quite ‘skid-mark inducing’ at times. All in all, the transition from my pie eating, pipe smoking, whippet racing, pigeon fancying – I’ve given up the latter thanks to Stacey – life up North to life down South has been memorable.

And with the New Year just around the corner, I will make a resolution here and now. I, Charles David Whitfield, pledge to you, the reader, to write and blog more. If I don’t, you have permission to hit me over the head with a wet fish, though don’t be surprised if I turn your weapon into a tasty budget meal for two.

Merry Christmas x

My Top 10 People You Must Follow on Vine

Since its launch in January 2013, Vine has soared to the top of the iPhone app charts. It now boasts well over 13 million users worldwide, and with a recent release on Android, Vine looks set to become even more popular.
At its core, Vine is a mobile app that enables the user to create and share six second video clips. It follows a wave of apps centred around confined communication, from Twitter (who bought Vine in 2012) and its 140 character limitation, to Snapchat, where the user has 1-10 seconds to view a post before its deletion. But where the former comprises mainly Facebook friends sending pictures of their genitals to one another, Vine is home to a genuine community, where people are stretching the confines of the six seconds to produce and project all sorts of wonderful things. Comedy, music, animation, journalism; there’s a Vine for everyone.

So, after hours and hours of deliberation and sleepless nights, I’ve whittled down my favourite Vine performers (or Velebrities) for your delectation. From Jerome Jarre, a quirky, smiling Frenchman in New York City, known for embarrassing strangers with his infectious love for life, to Limmy, a Scottish comedian and creator of Limmy’s Show!, whose lateral take on life in Glesga’ makes him one of my favourite users on the app.

In no particular order:

1. Nicholas Megalis – With over 2 million followers, Nicholas Megalis is the most followed person on Vine, and it’s easy to see why. A talented musician in his own right, the moustache bearing funny man from Cleveland is famed for his witty 6 second raps, as well as several other comic creations, including a talking fire hydrant, a singing caterpillar, and a jar of peanut butter with a hipster persona.

2. Meagan Cignoli – A fashion and portrait photographer from New York City, Meagan takes Vine video making to another level. By using techniques such as stop start animation and time lapse, she offers her followers a beautiful six second snapshot into her life.

3. KingBach – An actor/writer/producer based in Los Angeles, KingBach remains one of the most popular Vine performers with his unique brand of slapstick, energetic, observational comedy.

4. Brandon Calvillo – With comic timing beyond his years, Brandon Calvillo has garnered a loyal Vine following with his idiosyncratic style. I particularly enjoy his series of videos starring a psychopathic version of Walter from The Muppets. You will never be able to watch The Muppets film in the same light again.

5. Vincent Marcus – A talented impressionist, Vincent has wowed Vine audiences with his impersonations of various famous voices, from The Simpsons and Family Guy characters, to Russell Brand and Michael Caine.

6. Limmy – Known for his dark, surreal and whimsical style, Scottish comedian Brian Limond, creator, producer and star of BAFTA award winning TV series Limmy’s Show!, has turned to Vine to air his latest comedy masterpieces. You never really know what you’re going to get with Limmy; you just know whatever it is, it’s going to make you laugh for all the right, and all the wrong reasons.

7. Jerome Jarre – Whether he’s approaching a pregnant lady and claiming to be the father, scaring the crap out of an unsuspecting sunbather by whispering “I love you” in his ear, or shouting “WOOHOO!” on a crowded train and filming the bemused reactions of those around him, the happy, smiling French entrepreneur living in New York City is a Vine maker you just have to follow.

8. Philip Larkin – It was through Limmy that I discovered Philip Larkin, an Irish TV/Comedy writer with a knack for making hilarious Vines.  Ever wondered what the Queen does to relax on a Sunday? Was it really Tommy’s milk that splattered all over The Rugrats logo on the opening credits? You’ll find your answers here.

9. Bo Burnham – Having conquered YouTube with his hilariously catchy songs, Bo has since forged a successful career in comedy, fusing his musical talents with a self deprecating and politically incorrect style of delivery. His Vine clips are very much of the same ilk, featuring a constipated Luke Skywalker, a card trick that can change your race, and the pitfalls of having Jesus as a flatmate.

10. KC James – Based in Los Angeles, and with over 1.5 millions followers, KC James is one of the most consistently funny and popular contributors on Vine. Often playing the part of the idiot, most notably in his series of “Saturday Night Loner Dance” videos, KC’s ridiculous antics never fail to win me over.


So there we have it. My top ten people to follow on Vine. You may have noticed that my list mainly comprises of comedy performers; this is just a personal preference. With the ability to chop and edit scenes, and the fact you only have to wait 6 seconds for the punchline, I think Vine lends itself well to comedy. But as I mentioned earlier, there’s a Vine for everyone. If you haven’t downloaded Vine already, I can’t recommend it enough. Lets see what magic you can make in 6 seconds.

If you have suggestions on who else people should follow on Vine, leave your comments and suggestions below. And whilst I’ve got your attention, why not check out one of my Vine posts as well.