Robbie to play for the Queen

Robbie Williams is the latest artist added to the bill for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. The line-up is looking increasingly bizarre, although it must be tricky trying to find the right mix for a monarch in her 80s who has never expressed the slightest enthusiasm for popular music.

Robbie joins a mixed bag of the venerable and the perky, so far including Sir Paul McCartney, Tom Jones, Kylie Minogue, Annie Lennox, Alfie Boe, Jessie J, Shirley Bassey, Cliff Richard and Ed Sheeran. The policy seems to be ensuring there is at least one act that will annoy somebody.

The concert takes place at Buckingham Palace on June 4, with live screening on BBC TV. Which means the nation can enjoy the sight of Prince Charles and Prince William nodding stiffly in suits and ties, Prince Philip glaring balefully at the infernal racket, and maybe, if they are lucky, Prince Harry jigging with Pippa Middleton.

When Williams was announced on the bill he said, "If this doesn't get me a knighthood, nothing will". It was actually the old pals’ act that secured him the gig. Take That chum Gary Barlow is curating the show, and had obviously raided everybody else in the contacts book before calling Robbie.

Current teen sensations One Direction could also be involved, but are presently negotiating the deal. Negotiating? For a diamond jubilee? They’ve been spending too much time with Simon Cowell. Such impertinence should see them slapped in irons and dragged to the Tower until they begged to be allowed to run through a couple of their insipid ditties for the Queen.

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