Bryan Ferry: ‘Hyde Park shows are embarrassing’

Singer says he was "sorry" for Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney after their set was cut short

Bryan Ferry has said that the current run of Hyde Park concerts are an “embarrassment” to music.

The singer spoke out after Bruce Springsteen’s Hard Rock Calling set on Saturday (July 14) was cut short during the final song, a duet with Paul McCartney, after he broke the sound curfew.

The Roxy Music singer told the Evening Standard: “They shouldn’t have these events in Hyde Park any more if it’s going to cause embarrassing problems.”


Ferry also said that sound level restrictions mean the central London park is not suitable for rock concerts: “The problem with Hyde Park is that the volume is never loud enough. It’s always too quiet. I’m sorry for Paul McCartney and Bruce.”

Ferry recently headlined the final day at Guilfest in Guilford, Surrey and also ran over his allotted time: “We were in a similar situation — told to finish at 10pm, but we overran by five minutes. But at least the promoter didn’t turn off the volume.”

Yesterday (July 18), Live Nation’s Chief Operating Officer for Europe, Paul Latham, defended the promoter’s decision to pull the plug on the gig, saying that to continue hosting concerts in one of London’s most exclusive neighbourhoods, the company has to agree to a strict 10.30pm noise curfew with local authorities:

“The residents of Park Lane and Mayfair may not be numerous but they wield inordinate power over the Gogs and Magogs of City Hall and Parliament,” he said.

The decision on Saturday prompted consternation on Twitter, with Springsteen’s guitarist Steven Van Zandt leading a chorus of disapproval. He wrote: “Is there just too much fun in the world? We would have been off by 11 if we’d done one more. On a Saturday night! Who were we disturbing?”

Mayor of London Boris Johnson also joined the calls of dismay, saying on Monday (July 16) that he believed the pair should have been allowed to continue and joked that he would have said for them “to jam in the name of the Lord!”