Veteran US rocker Patti Smith has been appointed artistic director of London's MELTDOWN FESTIVAL this year (05).

The BECAUSE THE NIGHT singer is currently working on who'll appear in her line-up at the 15 day festival of music and cultural events in the British capital.

Smith, who is following in the footsteps of previous curators Morrissey, David Bowie and Nick Cave, has promised an eclectic selection for Meltdown 2005, which kicks off on 11 June (05).

The 58-year-old punk pioneer says, "I want to touch on all aspects of our culture, perhaps with readings from (playwright Jean) GENET, and I have an idea for (British actor) Jeremy Irons to read (writer MARCEL) PROUST.

"It is important we explore the new, but we should also salute the best art there is, aesthetically and spiritually."

Smith also promises her selection will be in response to these "material, exploitative and greedy times".

21/03/2005 02:54