Return to Lollapalooza with Perry Farrell (Relix Revisited)
You spoke earlier about technology and progressive thinking. How much do you think your ENIT festival has informed this Lollapoolza?
Well, for me, it was a wonderful experience because on a musical level, I was so happy to be able to marry electronic music with live music. What that did, what my worry might have been was that two might have cared about each other… I also have a thing where when I’m forced to make a choice, I’ll so, “ok then, I choose both.” And there it is a choice. I don’t have to say, “I like rock music therefore I don’t like electronic.” My choice is I like both. It was a happy marriage but the world has changed since that ENIT festival to some degree. It’s more difficult to keep that marriage there and I’ll tell you why.
We had Moby, who did the Area 2, and there was also a chance to marry electronic and live players on the festival. The music industry had a brief affair with electronic music and then I think it decided it’s not worth the effort because it doesn’t bring the big income that it’s looking for. So it’s quick to discard it. I kind of look at electronic music and its industry as kind of like natural resources in this country. You have natural resource. You want natural resource-it’s beautiful and you need it but a lot of people would say, “ah, screw it, put up some buildings. What’s the natural resource worth versus buildings?” To me, I’d rather have the natural resource because I appreciate the beauty. So it’s become more difficult to get quality electronic music in America. I think it’s safe to say that in the U.K. and Europe too, the numbers have dropped off and that’s a whole other discussion of why that. But the fact is that promoters don’t have the belief therefore when you’re going to put a package together, they will bite and they will be interested in live music, right now. Electronic music is one of those natural resources and they question… they’re not going to put much money into that. So it’s difficult, no, not difficult… you need more strategy to carry electronic music which we are going to be doing.
What I did was, I started about saying, “Ok, look. If I put a great package of living musicians together, the money will come in. I’m not going to book any DJs yet, I’m not going to do any electronic music yet. First of all, I wasn’t going to get any money from it so once I got the money to come in for the bands, then the sponsors saw the line-up and they loved the line-up, so from there, then… we were still contacting people, just putting them in a holding pattern to let them know what was going on to see if we could draw sponsors into subsidizing stages that we would need for the electronic. Now we’re at a point where subsidiaries are coming in strong and I can look to… start putting in electronic. For me, I love electronic music and I think that electronic musicians and producers are amongst the headiest and classiest musicians out there. But it’s not the case. The economic climate of electronic music is not worth… bring in a lot of cash and attention from promoters so it’s been a little different this year.
What do you think the crowd will be like at Lollapoolza this year considering so many original attendees are now adults with kids?
Once again you start with the musicians because the musicians would provide the music that demographic would listen to. So we don’t have Top 40 esque bands, so whoever is looking for top 40, is not going to be there. If that happens people that used to go to Lollapoolza, I’m not sure. I’m sure there’s some, people have really, really mellowed out. But you keep the demographic, musically, in the 20 year old range and take it from there. There’s other things going on on the grounds as well, technology, cell phone gaming, video riot, things like that, the demographic is once again in the 20’s. There’s going to be some people lower and some people above….
You keep getting older and the crowd stays the same age.
Well, I think that… I do for sure keep getting older. As far as the crowd it will be interesting to see. I didn’t necessarily detail this so that old Lollapoolza people came back and I didn’t necessarily detail so that new people, young people would… I didn’t try and suck up and kiss up to young people’s demographics because up until now young people were listening to boy bands and some other kind of rock that I honestly don’t feel it. As I call it, “youth culture.” You can be youthful and seventy, eighty. You look at Tim Leary or…
What’s your take on a festival like Bonnaroo and the comment that true alternative music is in the jamband scene and not the indie rock world?
I would say that I like the jamband vibe. I think they have a great thing. I would love to go like a jamband party and I think it’s fun to experience it but I wouldn’t discredit bands like The Vines, The Hives, The Datsuns, Strokes, Warlocks, Kings of Leon. They’re hot. To me, I like that vibe too so it’s not black and white. I appreciate what the jambands do in way of their parties-they set them up and they’re very free feeling. The only problem is that it is still… there’s no problem with it. It’s fine, it’s just another flavor.
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Australia’s Alpine recently made their NYC debut at the Relix office with this song from their new album A is for Alpine.
In honor of Umphrey’s McGee’s return to Summer Camp this weekend, we present the group’s Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger performing this version of “The Pequod” from UM’s Anchor Drops.
Dame shares a song from her new EP Preventions of Heartbreak.
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