Hard Rock Calling (formerly Hyde Park Calling) is an annual music festival held in Hyde Park, London, which first took place on Saturday July 1 and Sunday July 2, 2006. The music played is primarily rock music, and various performers, including The Who, Aerosmith, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen have played at the event. The festival is organised by Hard Rock Cafe and Live Nation.
Hyde Park Calling 2006
The inaugural festival had two stages, and was headlined by Roger Waters (performing in its entirety the Pink Floyd album The Dark Side of the Moon as part of his set) and his band (featuring Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason) on the Saturday and The Who on the Sunday. Gates opened at 14:00 and the show ended at 22:15 on both evenings. The Who’s Sunday headline performance was released as part of their Encore Series 2006 of CDs & DVDs.
Hyde Park Calling 2007
After Hyde Park Calling’s success, a Hyde Park Calling 2007 quickly entered planning stages. It was announced that the event would take place during the weekend of 23–24 June 2007. It was Aerosmith’s first concert in the United Kingdom for 8 years, and featured Peter Gabriel and the recently reformed Crowded House as a joint-headliner for the first day. Other draws to this year’s event were the addition of a new third stage. Only one band to have played at the previous Hyde Park Calling, Rose Hill Drive, played again in 2007. With six bands per stage instead of five, and an extra stage, the expansion of the festival only a year after its inception has been dramatic.
Hard Rock Calling 2008
In late December 2007, the Hyde Park Calling 2008 website was launched. It confirmed the dates for 28–29 June 2008.
Hard Rock Calling 2009
In 2009, for the first time it was a three day event, beginning on the Friday rather than a Saturday, running over the 26th, 27 and 28 June. Neil Young headlined on Saturday and his encore was a cover version of “A Day in the Life” by the Beatles. Paul McCartney joined him on stage for parts of this performance. Bruce Springsteen finished his headlining set with “Dancing in the Dark”, while he also joined The Gaslight Anthem for their song “The ’59 Sound”. Springsteen’s entire set was released on DVD in June 2010, titled London Calling: Live in Hyde Park.
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