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Big Day Out promoter KenWest: “We won’t makethe mistakes of the pastagain”

On that note you’ve chosen not to do sideshows with the Chili Peppers?
There will be something in New Zealand for them, but even there it is just a sideshow – there are no [mini-festival] combinations of six bands, which we were talking about doing at some stage. This year is fully focused on Australia – working out what is right for the event. Put it this way [the bands] like coming out to Australia and not working too hard, you know there is four days off between Gold Coast and Adelaide. There is a point with certain acts where the money is up to someone else to work out, the bands don’t want to do fifteen Entertainment Centres anymore, they’ve done that so therefore it’s really more like a holiday that they are getting really well paid on.

And it allows you to put the focus back on the festival?
Well this time we were limited in what we could do anyway. We also did get to the point unfortunately, where everybody will tell you what they need to say to get you to pay more money. ‘Oh, now we are going to do this run because it is shorter and it’s the same amount of money’ and I’m going, ‘But I’m paying for all the accom and don’t you want four days off in the middle of summer – isn’t that good?’ Don’t people like that?

In some cases [in Australia] they have six festivals in four days – how is anyone going to have any fun at that. Let alone occupational health and safety and caring for your crew and your acts. This competition to try and make it so tight, that these bands are in such demand worldwide that they couldn’t possibly be here for an extra four days and have a holiday is wrong. It’s just agent speak to try and get more money, it’s not want the bands really want.

Does this mean there will be fewer sideshows?
What the main principle of the sideshows is, if any [band] really wants one they can have one, but they’ve got to be underplayed. We don’t want to be hard selling anything. Not that we are lazy, but we are trying to create some heat [for the festival].Part of the problem is that [bands] are doing big crowd shows at sideshows and they should be doing something more intimate instead to make those shows much more special. We have plans afoot down the track to try and get [bands] to perform other projects as their sideshows, because a lot of the acts have different projects.

Has that helped you cut costs – as earlier this year you spoke a lot about costs getting too high due to bidding wars between promoters?
Absolutely, absolutely. Also, without giving any trade secrets away, once we got the Chili Peppers in position it was a bit easier to negotiate the others because they all sort of start talking about their worth, and we go ‘Well we’ve kind of got that covered’ and now we are just really wanting you to be on the show. You know it started with bait and hook, trying to put acts together that would compliment each other, but also be in competition with each other. Acts that respected each other. The great thing about this lineup, and the ideal thing about the Peppers, is that there are hardly any bands that don’t want to play on the same show as the Peppers.

“There were certain bands we couldn’t get, like Refused"

Which bands were you unable to secure?
There were certain bands we couldn’t get. Like Refused; we just had to contact the band direct because we didn’t know what was going on. And they said the guitarist is producing an opera in Sweden, so they said he might have some work clashes but then we thought, ‘Well you don’t get time off for that, he is working for himself”. So that idea timed out and I think they are coming in three months, it’s still in the bidding process. Probably AJ [Maddah, Soundwave promoter] will get that, he ends up getting all that stuff. He always over offers and hopes that someone will work it out for him at the end of the day…but that’s another story.

At one stage we were looking at The Strokes earlier on but Julian Casablancas wasn’t able to commit because [he] was just going into the studio and didn’t want to commit until they were out of the studio, and nobody knows when that would be. So we had to unfortunately move on from that and that timed out perfectly because we were also talking to The Killers at the same time – and that rolled well. But really there wasn’t that much we missed out on; there were a few acts that we pulled out the bidding for because people were offering stupid money which is always going to be the case when you are competing against dance events as well.

You would have been competing with dance festivals for acts like The Killers or Bloody Beetroots…
[The Killers] single just got played today, they are nice people. They are doing ridiculous interviews where they are saying ‘This album’s is a reaction to the last album, which is a reaction to the first album’ and I love this double negative approach. I think they are a good stadium act and a really good act to take a bit of the status off the Peppers.

A few months ago Charles [from C3] had The Killers new album played to him over the phone. You know, like the old days. You used to say ‘Just play me something over the phone’ and it was great. And it’s been a pleasure to find people – such big acts – that still have that structure in place. The process has really changed and that’s fantastic. I just got off [the phone] from the Beetroots [and] we’re going to stream live their world premiere, because I’ve put together the world premiere of the Beetroots new show in Sydney.

Comments

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45387
jacegalvin

jacegalvin said on the 15th Jul, 2012

"New Zealand should have never happened"
Quote of the day.

TheOriginalSlipdog

TheOriginalSlipdog said on the 15th Jul, 2012

No he makes worse ones, fuck.

Napoleon Solo

Napoleon Solo said on the 15th Jul, 2012

"New Zealand should have never happened"
Quote of the day.

No. Quote of the day.

Ken West

There were certain bands we couldn’t get. Like Refused; we just had to contact the band direct because we didn’t know what was going on. And they said the guitarist is producing an opera in Sweden, so they said he might have some work clashes but then we thought, ‘Well you don’t get time off for that, he is working for himself”. So that idea timed out and I think they are coming in three months, it’s still in the bidding process.

My pants are heading to explosion town.

Napoleon Solo

Napoleon Solo said on the 15th Jul, 2012



I just quoted the article. I thought it was obvious.

Ironic-Satire

Ironic-Satire said on the 15th Jul, 2012

i hate how he felt the need to accuse aj of offering bands too much money. 1) what's wrong with giving bands plenty of money. 2) they probably prefer soundwave because it has better overall lineups.

loudQUIETloud

loudQUIETloud said on the 15th Jul, 2012



Because it means ticket prices are more expensive and he was talking about Harvest festival and tours not just Soundwave.

jacegalvin

jacegalvin said on the 15th Jul, 2012



Oh, you meant the quote about Refused.
My bad.

doubtfulsounds

doubtfulsounds said on the 15th Jul, 2012

"why there will never be another BDO in New Zealand."

A bit misleading, West only says it is difficult and would be hard to make work but doesn't necessarily rule it out completely.

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 15th Jul, 2012

The New Zealand dollar must make it more difficult to put on the show in New Zealand. Your costs to hold the event there are obviously going to be lower in AUD terms, but the artists will cost the same. When you combine a smaller crowd with a much lower ticket price (in AUD terms), it makes it pretty hard to be economically viable.

They already have to deal with Adelaide and Perth being borderline economic prospects.

deanoss

deanoss said on the 15th Jul, 2012

"We won't make the same mistakes of the past again"

Tell me more...
http://www.theage.com.au/ffximage/2007/07/23/GRINSPOON_wideweb__470x277,0.jpg

Fake Plastic Android

Fake Plastic Android said on the 15th Jul, 2012

Every promoter is making a mistake until they bring out Silversun Pickups for a proper tour.

shazie

shazie said on the 15th Jul, 2012



Words of beauty and wisdom

SeniourButtkiss

SeniourButtkiss said on the 20th Jul, 2012

make it a hard rock/metal festival again and people will come... simple

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 20th Jul, 2012

It never was just a hard rock/metal festival.

BDO has really just followed musical tastes over the years.

Heretik

Heretik said on the 20th Jul, 2012

yeah, possibly the worst lineup so far this time around!

Stugalug

Stugalug said on the 20th Jul, 2012



Surely you meant to say best? Surely?

Maximillian Billion

Maximillian Billion said on the 20th Jul, 2012



Not that I comment much on here, but surely you didn't wait 4 odd years on these forums just to open with that?

bigval

bigval said on the 21st Jul, 2012

This idiot should just stop talking, he couldn't have made a bigger fool of himself over the past 12 months. The lack of professionalism is staggering.

Go and ask Mike Patton why none of his bands will ever play on the BDO again (after Fantomas in 2009) and why Soundwave/Harvest are the festivals of choice for him (Faith No More in 2010/Mondo Cane in 2012).

Quicky

Quicky said on the 21st Jul, 2012

Can you elaborate on that? Not all of us are close friends with Mike Patton....

Oflick

Oflick said on the 22nd Jul, 2012

I'm with Quicky on this. I was unaware Mike Patton had sworn off Big Day Out.

Quicky

Quicky said on the 22nd Jul, 2012

AJ Maddah is apparently good friends with Mike Patton and ultimately at the end of the day, this discussion of "Mike Patton vs BDO" comes to two factors I think at the end of the day:

1) Loyality / more friendly with the Soundwave Team. We need to take into account that AJ Maddah wouldn't of had Fantomas at SW 2009 and Harvest wasn't established in 2009. BDO took the opportunity and provided a good band to play on the side stage during Neil Young.

2) More money on the table - we're in a day & age where people are buying less and less music and illegal downloads is of the highest concern. Lets not forget the bidding wars.

I don't think that Mike Patton hates BDO in any regard. From what I understand from reading articles, there are alot of bands who come off the BDO tour loving it wishing they could do it again because its a holiday with a few shows a week.

Oflick

Oflick said on the 22nd Jul, 2012

The only thing I can imagine that would have made Mike Patton hate BDO would be because they kicked Mr. Bungle off in 2000. But he played in 2002 and 2009, so it would have been a major delayed reaction for him to start hating them now. What you said is probably right Quicky.

But Bigval's wording implied that something happened in 09 with Fantomas:

monokhrome_nite

monokhrome_nite said on the 22nd Jul, 2012

Most of bigval's posting history consists of how Big Day Out and Ken West are the most terrible things to ever happen to Australian music anyway.

Quicky

Quicky said on the 22nd Jul, 2012

Was there ever a reason for kicking Mr Bungle off the bill in 2000?

I think Faith No More seemed like a reunion for funds for Patton projects and SW threw alot of money at them so therefore SW wins at the end of the day.

Oflick

Oflick said on the 22nd Jul, 2012



The Red Hot Chili Peppers hate Mike Patton and/or Mr Bungle.

Quicky

Quicky said on the 22nd Jul, 2012

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica][SIZE=2]Good read from http://www.bunglefever.com/faq.html#I.14

What is this about a feud between Mike Patton and Anthony Kiedis of the Red Hot Chili Peppers? Did it really get Mr. Bungle kicked off of a festival?
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica][SIZE=2]Based on various interviews with the people involved, it seems to boil down to this: In 1989 Faith No More released an album called "The Real Thing," and several singles from that album for which videos were made. The video for "Epic" became very popular, and Patton was suddenly seen in silly clothing, swinging his long hair around, rapping to Faith No More's funk-metal sound, all over the world. Anthony Kiedis seems to have been oblivious to the fact that this sort of combination of funk, metal, and rap (always accompanied by bad clothing and hair) had been the trend on the West Coast for some time, and wasn't actually invented by his band. Envious of Faith No More's success, and angry that it seemed to have been achieved at least in part due to the wild frontman who he thought had stolen his "moves," he accused Patton of ripping him off in the press. Members of Mr. Bungle responded by gleefully threatening Kiedis with bodily harm in the press. Eventually Patton and Kiedis met in person, were polite to one another, and everyone lost interest.
Many years later, after Faith No More was long gone and the Red Hot Chili Peppers were hugely successful, the release of Mr. Bungle's "California" was pushed back by Warner Bros. so it wouldn't come out at the same time as the Red Hot Chili Pepper's similarly-named "Californication." Then, when Mr. Bungle were asked to play at some European festivals in the Summer of 1999, Kiedis threatened to cancel his band's appearance, and Bungle were dropped. That Halloween, Mr. Bungle retaliated by playing a show in Pontiac, Michigan dressed as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, complete with freqent heroin injections and covers of really bad songs. This resulted in Kiedis having them kicked off of some Australian festivals.
Fun quotes:
"OK, here's what happened, 'cause I know he has his opinion, now here's mine. In that interview the writer said, 'Are you guys sick of people ripping you off?' I said, 'Who are you referring to?' and he said, 'Well, Mike Patton in Faith No More.' So I told him what our drummer said, and yeah I watch that 'Epic' video, and I see him jumping up and down, rapping, and it looked like I was looking in the mirror. The thing is, I had no problem with him personally. I mean, I love 'The Real Thing,' and I liked his vocals on that record. I mean, when I heard the record I noticed subtle similarities, but when I saw that video it was like, 'Wait a second here, what the fuck?'" -- Anthony Kiedis
"I mean, the Chili Peppers is something I hadn't really thought of in years. And I'll go ahead and tell you this. Why not? I haven't told anybody else yet. We were looking at booking some Mr. Bungle shows in Europe this past summer, some big festivals, which is something we'd never done before. We figured it'd be a good thing: We'd get to play in front of a lot of people who wouldn't otherwise hear us. Our agent was in the process of booking these festivals, and it was becoming apparent that we'd landed some pretty good ones—one in France, another one in Holland, some big-name festivals. Turns out someone's holding a grudge! We were booted off several bills, including a really big festival in Australia, specifically because Anthony Kiedis did not want us on the bill. He threatened to pull the Chili Peppers if Mr. Bungle was on the bill. Now, rationalize that one! That's so fucking pathetic! I mean, this guy's selling a million records! We are not even a speck of dust on this guy's ass! What's the fucking problem? It's unbelievable." -- Mike Patton
"I would not have given two fucks if they played with us there, but after I heard about some Halloween show where they mocked us and read another interview where Patton talked shit about us, and I was like, you know what, fuck him and fuck the whole band." -- Anthony Kiedis
"We were booked, months in advance, to do eleven festival dates in Europe. Come Summer, we get a call from the three biggest of those festivals, all of them the same day, saying that we can't play, because the headlining band retains the right to hire and fire whomever they wish. We found out it was the Red Hot Chili Peppers, so our manager called their manager to find out what the hell was going on, and their manager was very apologetic, and said, 'We're really sorry, we want you to know this doesn't reflect the management's position, or the band's for that matter, it's Anthony Kiedis who wants this.'" -- Trey Spruance

bigval

bigval said on the 23rd Jul, 2012



Something did, I don't know what that something was but was told by a person who spoke to Patton on that tour that none of his bands will ever play at the BDO again.

When there was speculation in late '09 about FNM doing an aussie tour in early 2010 the same person assured me it would be Soundwave and not the BDO regardless of what kind of money was on the table.

jacegalvin

jacegalvin said on the 23rd Jul, 2012

Something did, I don't know what that something was but was told by a person who spoke to Patton on that tour that none of his bands will ever play at the BDO again.

When there was speculation in late '09 about FNM doing an aussie tour in early 2010 the same person assured me it would be Soundwave and not the BDO regardless of what kind of money was on the table.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TPuSJeVOw7I




Fixed, your original post didn't have enough.

sarcasm_mister

sarcasm_mister said on the 23rd Jul, 2012

finally got around to reading the interview and thoroughly enjoyed it. the right questions were asked and the appropriate answers were given, albeit rather candidly. i think Ken West really understands the importance of staying onside with the media so giving half-hearted interviews or playing his cards close to his chest is a thing of the past now.

a couple of aspects stood out to me. i had no idea how much control bands had over sideshows. i always figured it was a case of ok if the festival sells well you can do a sideshow. the festival+sideshow combo is probably one of the best things about being a music fan in this country so i hope it stays strong for a while.

he has taken a bit of a gamble by putting acts near the top of his lineup before they release an album. but all he really needs is for two or three of them to have a big hottest 100 track and he'll be cheering. the chances of that seem very high. so good on him for taking a punt i'm confident it'll pay off.

and he shouldn't be disheartened by last year. a lot of people including me had an awesome time at the 2012 event. half the reason im going again this year is because of the great experience i had last time.

Bandolier

Bandolier said on the 25th Jul, 2012

big day out is a gather. of 15 year old kids.

HardcoreMusic

HardcoreMusic said on the 25th Jul, 2012

to be honest big day out has been prretty gay for the past few years but i still went to the last four (in auckland). its wasn't always the best lineup but its about checking out something new and supporting artists. however i would still heavily prefer soundwave over big day out (i've flown over to that fine country you call australia twice for it so far) and so long as the lineup is great again in 2013 i might make that three years in a row. so now that ken west has said nz sucks, aj should fly his epic soundwave to my doorstep. :)

Stugalug

Stugalug said on the 25th Jul, 2012



What do you mean? Do you think the Big Day Out is similar to a Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras?

Quicky

Quicky said on the 25th Jul, 2012

I thought this year's BDO was fairly ordinary - Best Coast, Kanye West, Papa Vs Pretty and Nero were the real standouts to me. I'm just hoping a shit timetable doesn't result with this lineup.

liquidtopaz3

liquidtopaz3 said on the 25th Jul, 2012

This year's BDO was one of my favorites. I was only at the Main stages for Boy & Bear and Kanye, so spent most of the day in the shade, and had great views at the front of the crowd for plenty of sets at the Green and Converse stages.

01seb

01seb said on the 25th Jul, 2012

This year was amazing with no crowds. Wondered in 15 mins before Royksopp started and got barrier, got 2nd row at Kasabian and got centre barrier for Noel Gallagher after everyone left at the end of Foster the People.

tyler07

tyler07 said on the 25th Jul, 2012

This year's BDO I thought was pretty awesome with lower crowd numbers and some killer performances.

Yeezy, Parkway, Frenzal, Royksopp, My Chem, Soundgarden. Was definitely an awesome time.

jacegalvin

jacegalvin said on the 25th Jul, 2012

This year had Regurgitator.
Nuff said.

tyler07

tyler07 said on the 25th Jul, 2012

So did BDO 2008, which was my first and still best BDO I've been to.

sarcasm_mister

sarcasm_mister said on the 25th Jul, 2012

Battles --> Kimbra --> Kasabian --> Soundgarden --> Kanye --> Noel was near perfect. actually would've been perfect had Kasabian not been so boring.

tyler07

tyler07 said on the 25th Jul, 2012

My ex-girlfriend made me see Kasabian.

We broke up because she cheated on me, but dragging to me to Kasabian was by far the worst thing she ever did to me.

sarcasm_mister

sarcasm_mister said on the 25th Jul, 2012

the friend i saw Kasabian with never paid me back for the ticket.

jacegalvin

jacegalvin said on the 25th Jul, 2012

I really liked Kasabian's performance....

Quicky

Quicky said on the 25th Jul, 2012

They were great at their sideshow. Otherwise really average at BDO.

liquidtopaz3

liquidtopaz3 said on the 25th Jul, 2012

They were great at the 2010 BDO, but couldn't be bothered seeing them this year. I think we decided to have a dinner break when their set was on.

monokhrome_nite

monokhrome_nite said on the 25th Jul, 2012



Pshaw. If anything, BDO has not been gay enough as of late.

Braveheart81

Braveheart81 said on the 26th Jul, 2012



Totally. Rammstein has really been the only homoerotic band to play in recent years and the crowd loved them.

Miss Pye

Miss Pye said on the 28th Nov, 2012

yeah yeah yeah, iv just been stabbed in the heart....