The man who invaded the stage at Kanye West’s Glastonbury headline set last night (June 28) has said he was “helping Kanye out” and admitted that he wishes he’d stayed on stage for longer.
The stage invader was Simon Brodkin, best known for his character Lee Nelson, who had a BBC3 TV show, Lee Nelson’s Well Good Show. Brodkin ran onstage in a “Lee-zus” T-shirt and carrying a mic during ‘Black Skinhead’, the fourth song of West’s set. Though he was quickly apprehended by a security guard, Brodkin’s actions disrupted the rapper’s debut headline show, and he was forced to restart the track.
Speaking to NME in character, Nelson said he was “helping Kanye out” with the stunt and standing up for the thousands of people who signed a petition to have him dropped from the line-up. “Quite a lot of people were thinking, ‘I don’t want him to headline’. I thought I’d offer them an alternative. I gave them a second headliner.”
Describing West as a “plonker”, Nelson admitted he was upset not to have been on stage for longer but that he did not get into any trouble with either the festival or the rapper’s security. “Unfortunately afterwards Kanye continued singing. That was a blow for everyone. I was disappointed it was only 20 seconds as well. I thought I was doing a good job. It felt to me like Kanye was a kid who doesn’t want to share.”
Nelson also explained how he managed to get onto the Pyramid Stage, claiming he had no passes and simply used his own bravado.
“You’ve got to be in blagger mode,” he said. “Walk the walk, talk the talk and get your swagger on. I felt like I should have been there. I had the attitude, that invincible walk. I boshed a load of legal highs in the toilets and just got on it. One bloke said, ‘Can I see your ID please’ and I just said, ‘I’m about to go out on the stage. I’m about to sing’ and he just let me past.”
Brodkin has form, having previously taken to the pitch at Everton’s football ground Goodison Park in an attempt to warm up with Manchester City in March 2013, an incident for which he was arrested. Brodkin claimed at the time that he was filming a prank for new BBC Three series. West’s Glastonbury set was being broadcast live on BBC networks. He was arrested a further time in 2014 for attempting to board a flight to the World Cup in Brazil with the England football squad.