Glastonbury’s Wonderful Birthday

Soul legend Stevie Wonder provided what may be the abiding memory from this year’s 40th anniversary Glastonbury Festival by inviting Michael Eavis on stage to sing “Happy Birthday.”

Apart from the sold-out, 140,000-member crowd, millions will have seen or heard the BBC2 and BBC3 coverage, which was also on its red-button interactive service, iplayer and various radio stations.

Even the weather, which has so often turned the huge Worthy Farm site into a mudbath, was perfect. The UK basked under three of the hottest days it’s seen this summer.

The festival medics said thousands of fans who came equipped with waterproof clothing and Wellington boots ended up being treated for sunstroke. The Daily Telegaph reported 1,200 of them seeking medical treatment before the festival started.

In 2005, when parts of the Pilton site were under four feet of water, 90 festival-goers were treated for trench foot.

“I’ve never enjoyed myself so much,” Eavis told a post-festival press conference the morning after his stage appearance. “I hope you enjoyed yourselves too. It has been the best party for me, it really has been the best – the weather, the full moon and last night in a crowd of 100,000 people there was not one drunk person. Isn’t that extraordinary?”

Eavis almost always says the latest Glastonbury was the best ever, but this year he may have a point.

“I think the wonderful thing was that he asked me to onstage for the final number,” Eavis told Pollstar of the moment when he joined the band at the end. He was also presented with a harmonica similar to the one the U.S. superstar presented to Barack Obama shortly after he became U.S. president.

“I can sing in tune because I do it every week in chapel, but it is something of a problem when you don’t know the words – I think I winged it,” he revealed.

The other acts helping Eavis make music June 25-27 included Gorillaz, Faithless, Dizzee Rascal, Snoop Dogg, Willie Nelson, The Flaming Lips, Florence and The Machine, The Black Keys, Mumford & Sons, Fatboy Slim and Transglobal Underground.