Neil Young's Hyde Park Show With Bob Dylan Drops Barclays Sponsorship

Alice Chiche / AFP
Neil Young performs on stage in Quebec City during 2018 Festival d'ete de Quebec on July 6, 2018.

When Neil Young performs at Hyde Park this summer as part of AEG's summer concert series, he won't be doing so with a "fossil fuel funding entity" as a sponsor.

The iconic rocker appears to have won an unlikely fight against Barclays bank, which has been the title sponsor of the British Summer Time concert series in London since its inception in 2013. Earlier this week, Young took to his site Neil Young Archives to say the July 12 concert was announced without his knowledge and that he was opposed to Barclayscard sponsoring the gig, saying the credit card is owned by a bank that funds projects that have accelerated climate change.

"I believe in science. I worry about the climate crisis and am deeply concerned about its massive global ramifications," he wrote of his opposition to the affiliation with the bank.

On Wednesday (Dec. 12) he seems to have scored a victory with AEG announcing that Barclays would not be sponsoring Young's upcoming concert with Bob Dylan and that the event would no longer be part of the British Summer Time series.

"Neil Young has made the decision to move away from the Barclaycard presents British Summer Time concert series. Neil Young and Bob Dylan will play a stand-alone concert in Hyde Park on the same date, 12th July. All tickets will remain valid. The Barclaycard presents British Summer Time concert series remains unaffected and will continue as normal with more headliners to be announced in early 2019," a statement from AEG reads.

Young had previously learned of the decision and leaked out some of the details on Tuesday, writing on his site that he was "happy to announce that the Hyde park show will proceed without Barclays as a sponsor".

"We are overjoyed, so happy to be playing the show!" says Young, who played the festival series in 2014 with his band Crazy Horse and didn't raise any objections to the sponsorship at the time.

Barclaycard will continue to sponsor concerts by Robbie Williams, Florence + The Machine and The National will not be affected.

In earlier posts, Young said the upcoming concert was announced prematurely and complained that tickets hadn't been offered to members of the Neil Young Archives in advance, which is typical of his shows.

"I had no idea the announcement was coming that day," he wrote. "I was still finessing the art for the poster and trying to make sure that all of the details of the show were agreeable to me. Then, suddenly, someone jumped the gun. The tickets were put on sale and the announcement was made, all without my knowledge."

Climate change has increased the size and deadliness of wild fires in California -- he and wife Daryl Hannah lost their Malibu home in the recent Woolsey Fire. Barclays was listed as top financier of oil drilling and fracking in a 2018 report by the non-profit group Banking on Climate Change, receiving a "D+" rating.


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