My Cultural Life: Paddy Glasgow

Everyone's favourite festival promoter on Deep Purple, Bob Dylan and the trials and tribulations of organising Glasgowbury. Photo copyright Phil O'Kane (

When did you first fall in love with music?

I was very young. Listening to all the old, early blues and rock music from my older brothers got me hooked. I was probably around 10 or 11.

Did you attend many festivals as a young pup?

I went to Knebworth when I was about 16. Deep Purple headlined after they got back together and it was a great experience. It hooked me on live music for life.

How did the Glasgowbury festival idea come about?

It was initially about raising awareness for a cancer charity but after the acts coming through were so strong I knew that there was a gap for a local music group to offer tailored packages and support for the country’s finest talent.

Do you travel around the other summer festivals like Oxegen/Electric Picnic to see what the rivals are up to?

I’ve been, but only as a festival-goer. They’re huge, successful festivals with a massive budget and we couldn’t start to compete with them - we have no need to compete with them. We’re small but massive.

What was your all time festival highlight?

I think the image of going to Knebworth and being young and soaking in such a relaxed and exciting atmosphere is something that will always stay with me.

If you could have three cultural figures from throughout history round for dinner, who would they be and why?

Chief Sitting Bull -because he was a multi-layered character, Billy Connolly – for the craic, and Bob Dylan – for the music.

If you could have written any song in history, what would they be and why?

Neil Young – 'Rocking In The Free World'. It’s a song about freedom and it’s a brilliant piece of work.

What cultural event did you most enjoy in the previous few months?

I haven’t had time to go to any for being so busy in the run up to the festival.

Why should people come to the Glasgowbury festival?

It’s a unique experience in a fabulous arena with great music and a great vibe. We’ve picked up two international festival awards and we’ve proven how successful we can be by pulling in the biggest and best acts. Our prices have always remained the same for the last nine years and we have given a platform for up and coming acts while no-one else would.

If you could write your own epitaph in no more than 10 words, what would it be?

There were good times, bad times, sad time, mad times. 

Glasgowbury takes place at Eagle's Rock, Draperstown on Saturday July 25. For more information check out