From The Magazine

Olivia Dean’s Favorite Glastonbury Memory Involves Elton John

The British singer heads back to Worthy Farm this weekend.

“I don’t like genre,” says British singer Olivia Dean, who’s set to take the stage at Glastonbury on June 28. Her 2023 debut album Messy was nominated for three Brit Awards and the Mercury Prize, which she describes as her “made it” moment. “I feel like it let people know that I’m actually really good.”

When we meet in Los Angeles, the Coachella first-timer has just flown in from a performance in Rio de Janeiro and will soon head home for a brief stay in London before attending the annual Trinidad and Tobago Carnival. “I don’t even know what time zone I’m on,” says Dean, laughing. Her frequent-flier miles will continue to multiply when she headlines a European tour later this spring.

Ahead, a few details you may not have known about Dean:

Don’t expect her to text back. When she is on the road, Dean admits that she’s bad at keeping up with her DMs — she’d rather focus on the moment. “All the things are happening at the same time and it is so cool, but it also forces me to only be able to live each day at a time,” she says. “I really do long for the days when people just had a landline.”

Playing Glastonbury was once the singer’s biggest dream. She did it in 2023, and meeting Elton John was the cherry on top. “I went straight from the stage — I got in a buggy and they drove me over to the main stage [to see Elton],” she says. “I was like, ‘Are you nervous for your big show?’ And he was like, ‘Nah, not really.’ It was really out of a film.”

On her rider you’ll find chocolate-covered raisins, Pink Panther wafers, and sliced ham.

Post-show rituals involve chugging beer “straightaway, just go to the fridge,” she says. “And to try not to watch videos of me that people tag. I think it’s not good for your brain to do a show and then watch everybody’s feedback.”

Below, listen to Dean’s new single “Time.”

Photographs by Pat Martin

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