Those of you going to or considering going to Patti Smith's Meltdown, taking place from 11th to 26th June at the South Bank Centre, will be as interested as Londonist Music to hear that Eels have (has?) been added to the line-up. They/he will be playing the Queen Elizabeth Hall on 12th June. One day before that, to kick off the festival, will be The Brian Jonestown Massacre (nothing to do with the late, great cricket commentator Brian Johnstone's fondness for cakes, as Londonist first thought), along with Ed Harcourt.
For people interested in learning more about the roots of the current folk revival, 24th June is your day. There's a special appearance by Shirley Collins, who recorded a version of a song from which we presume The Eighteenth Day of May took their name. She'll be speaking about the nature of the ballad in folk music. If you're sneering at that, then firstly we'd ask you to open your minds a bit, and if that just makes you scoff then how would you feel if we said Johnny Marr and The Healers were part of the night which explores UK and US folk connections? This particular concert takes place at the Royal Festival Hall.
The Songs of Innocence (Lullabies, Poetry and Protest Songs for and about children) concert on 18th June looks like a cracking evening, with the current line-up now looking as follows: Yoko Ono, Sinead O'Connor, Tori Amos, Beth Orton, Kristin Hersh, Marianne Faithfull and Patti Smith herself.
Tickets for Patti Smith's Meltdown can be obtained from the Box Office (08703 808 300) or online.
There's so much quality in this festival we could go on forever but for the sake of brevity and our typing fingers, the line-up so far is below. You should check the website anyway, as some of these events may already be sold out.
Saturday 11th June at 7.45pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Tickets: £14-£16
The Brian Jonestown Massacre and Ed Harcourt
Sunday 12th June at 7.45pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Tickets: £17.50
Friday 17th June at 8.30pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Tickets: £20-£22.50
Friday 17th June at 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, Tickets: £17.50-£20
Rachid Taha with special guest appearance by Patti Smith
Saturday 18th June at 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, Tickets: £22.50-£25
Songs of Innocence (Lullabies, Poetry and Protest Songs for and about children)
Featuring Yoko Ono, Sinead O'Conner, Tori Amos, Beth Orton, Kristin Hersh, Marianne Faithfull and Patti Smith
Saturday 18th June at 8.30pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, £15
Saturday 18th June at 8pm, Purcell Room, Tickets: £12.50
An Evening With Richard Hell – Richard Hell reads from his new novel Godlike as well as other writings.
Sunday 19th June at 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, £22.50-£25
Steve Earle and Patti Smith
Monday 20th June and Tuesday 21st June at 7.45pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, £20-£22.50
Wednesday 22nd June at 7.45pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Tickets: £12.50-£15
The Coral Sea
Text: Patti Smith Music: Kevin Shields, Cat Power and Patti Smith
Thursday 23rd June at 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, Tickets: £25-£30
Stand Bravely Brothers - A homage to Bertolt Brecht
Featuring Antony, Dresden Dolls, Marc Almond, The Finn Brothers, Martha Wainwright, London Sinfonietta, Patti Smith and more
Friday 24th June at 8.30pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Tickets: £15-£17.50
Antony and the Johnsons
Friday 24th June, Royal Festival Hall – on sale soon
UK-US Folk Connections
Featuring Lenny Kaye, Johnny Marr & The Healers, Roy Harper, Robyn Hitchcock, Bert Jansch and more
Friday 24th June, RFH Ballroom – times to be advised
Tibetan Monks & Sacred Dances – Masked bonpo performed by Monks from the Monastery of Triten Norbutse
Saturday 25th June at 8.30pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Tickets: £14-£16
Saturday 25th June at 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, Tickets: £15-£30
Patti Smith performs Horses
Plus the music of John Cale with special friends Flea, Nick Franglen, Terrie & Andy (The Ex), David Dramm / Dominik Blum / Marino Pliakas / Lucas Niggli - as the Meatgrinders!
Sunday 26th June at 7.30pm, Royal Festival Hall, Tickets: £22.50-£27.50
Songs of Experience - the work of Jimi Hendrix and the music that inspired him
Featuring Jeff Beck, Flea, John Frusciante, Joanna Newsom, Patti Smith and more.