Neil Young closes Isle Of Wight Festival by covering The Beatles

He plays an epic set in front of thousands of ecstatic fans

Neil Young closed the Isle Of Wight Festival tonight (June 14), playing to a massive crowd of adoring fans.

Coming onstage at 9pm (BST) sharp, the legendary songwriter kicked straight into ‘From Hank To Hendrix’, performing with just his acoustic guitar and harmonica.

Switching between acoustic and electric guitar, Young played a blistering version of ‘Hey Hey, My My (Into The Black)’ early in the set, extending the song for roughly 10 minutes – and sending the crowd wild.


Young was in jokey mood throughout, saying he hoped to “cop a buzz” after his performance and teasingly labelling the audience “alcoholics” before playing ‘Mansion On The Hill’.

Treating the crowd to a stint of full-band songs, Young played tracks including ‘Cinnamon Girl’ and ‘Fuckin’ Up’.

An epic version of ‘Rockin’ In The Free World’ was just one of the highlights, with Young playing a total of four extended outros for the song (the crowd only too willing to sing along each time). At one point, Young even instructed the entire audience to wave their hands from side to side in unison with him.

At the song’s end, Young and his band left the stage to mass applause, returning a short while later and kicking into ‘Down By The River’.

He followed the track with his final song, the now customary cover of The Beatles‘A Day In The Life’. Slowing the song down, Young‘s version of the track was a hit with the crowd, who sang along throughout.

Young ended the performance in a blaze of feedback, breaking his guitar strings and shaking his instrument violently – and smiling to himself as he did so.


Photo Gallery – all the highlights from Isle Of Wight 2009

Neil Young played:

‘From Hank To Hendrix’
‘Mother Earth (Natural Anthem)’
‘Comes A Time’
‘Heart Of Gold’
‘Old Man’
‘Hey Hey, My My (Into The Black)’
‘Mansion On The Hill’
‘Cinnamon Girl’
‘Fuckin’ Up’
‘Rockin’ In The Free World’
‘Down By The River’
‘A Day In The Life’

NME.COM will be bringing you coverage of all of today’s highlights including the action from both the Download and the Isle Of Wight festivals at NME.COM/festivals. Head there now for all the best news, blogs and pictures straight from the festival sites.


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