Genesis were without doubt a force to be reckoned with back in the late 70’s. By 1978 Knebworth had become a regular venue on the British festival circuit. Back then I was an avid ‘mud festival’ goer, I use the term ‘Mud Festival’ because with the inclement summer weather that Britain has, almost all outdoor festivals disintegrated into a hippie version of ‘Swamp Thing’.  I missed Knebworth that year, as I recall I was recovering from pneumonia caught at another outdoor event.

Remember Knebworth is a fascinating DVD, not only do you get to watch part of the Genesis concert, but also an in depth interview with promoter Freddy Bannister, who pulls no punches about the trials and tribulations of putting on a concert for over 50,000 people. Although Knebworth was just a one day event (Summer Solstice) Freddy had to create all of the infrastructure of a small town. Security, medical, sanitation, food and beverage, etc.

One aspect that I found interesting was some footage of people arriving at the main gate, some carries flats of beer, others small kegs. Could you imagine any US event today that would allow you do do such a thing? Not on your life, if you want a beer, you pay the $8 at the official concession tent!

One of the things that surprised me was the cost to get into this event, 12 hours of music, including Devo, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Jefferon Airplane Starship, and Genisis, and for the equivilant of about $11 US. That was a pretty damn good deal.

You can get your own copy of Genesis – Remember Knebworth 1978: A Midsummer Night’s Dream from MVD.

Simon Barrett

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