View Full Version : Ideal Rock Festival for The FIXX

03-19-2008, 02:07 PM
new rock festival fixx should play atū......

Pemberton location great, concert promoter says
John Mackie, Vancouver Sun
Published: Friday, March 14, 2008
Shane Bourbonnais of Live Nation concerts looked all over Canada for the perfect site for a multi-day music festival that could accommodate 40,000 people. He found it down the street from his vacation home in Pemberton.
"I was going to Toronto and looking at other places, and it was right underneath my nose," he says with a laugh.
"I was driving by it and it kind of clicked. I went 'Wow.' "

Tom Petty will be playing the Pemberton music festival.
Reuters files
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The wow factor was the site, a lush green hayfield with the snow-capped Mount Currie as a backdrop. But it wasn't just a great setting, it was close to Whistler and its Olympic buzz, hotel rooms and amenities.
And so this July 25-27, superstar acts like Coldplay, Tom Petty, Jay-Z, Nine Inch Nails, the Tragically Hip and Death Cab for Cutie will headline over 50 acts at the inaugural Pemberton Festival.
It isn't designed to be a one-off. The idea is to make the Pemberton Festival an annual affair along the lines of the great European festivals like Glastonbury in England. Three-day passes are pricey - $239.50 plus service charge - and you can't buy a ticket for a single day. But Bourbonnais is confident people will embrace the three-day concept.
"When you look at the European festival experience, part of it is staying at the festival site and experiencing the whole weekend," he says.
"You're really building a community and meeting people. We really hope that half the people stay in the campground, 'cause that's what really makes these festivals so special. We want people to go away for the weekend, get up to Pemberton and spend the weekend there."
He spent six months putting the festival together, and has tried to leave nothing to chance.
Worried about rain? He studied weather patterns and selected the middle of a two-week period when "it's always been dry."
Worried about traffic jams because of the ongoing construction on the Sea to Sky Highway? He's been talking to the Ministry of Transportation, and there won't be any roadwork scheduled on the festival weekend. He's also hired traffic consultants to try to figure out ways to keep traffic flowing. The site will also be open a day before and after the festival so that everyone won't be arriving or leaving at the same time.
Worried about a place to stay? The 500-acre site will have space for up to 20,000 people camping out.
"If you don't want to camp, you could drive 25 minutes up the road and stay at the Four Seasons," he says. "It's got something for everybody."
"The site's going to have everything," he states.
"It's going to have a main stage, it's going to have a second stage with some incredible bands, it's going to have a huge dance tent, it's going to have another couple of bar tents. It's going to have a kids' zone with face painters and those kinds of things, there's going to be rides, there's going to be vendors, there's going to be an art walk.
"There's going to be a general store, and there's going to be club house that will serve food from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m.."
Bourbonnais won't divulge the budget, but laughingly admits it's well into seven figures. He says he hopes to draw at least 25,000 people, and that 37,000 will be a sellout (another 3,000 people are expected to be working on the site). The amount of money to be made is huge, in the $6 million to $9 million range from ticket sales alone.
"It's not cheap to produce a festival of this magnitude," he says.
"The lineup is the who's who of music. It's a big commitment from Live Nation, [but] we really believe in it, and we believe in the future it will make us money."
Pemberton Mayor Jordan Sturdy says he's "really excited" about the festival, which will take place only four kilometres from downtown Pemberton.
"We think it's a great opportunity for Pemberton. It'll put it on the map in some respects, as a destination in and of itself."
Pemberton has already been booming in recent years, growing to 2,517 residents in 2005 from 1,107 in 1997.
"Whistler already benefits from Pemberton in that we supply a place for employees to live for the resort, and we supply food as a farming community," says Sturdy.
"In this case, I suspect we'll be filling up their hotels."
There have been other successful big music festivals in B.C., such as the Merritt Mountain Music Festival. Midnight Oil and the Tragically Hip drew 25,000 people to Seabird Island near Mission back in 1993.
In terms of a multi-day rock festival, though, in recent times there really hasn't been much to rival the big European or American festivals.
Still, there was a multi-day rock festival in the Paradise Valley near Squamish back in 1969, the Vancouver Pop Festival.
"I was there," says Dave Chesney, a former CFOX music director who is now publisher of the White Rock Sun newspaper.
"[But] I've never ever met anybody, ever, besides the other two idiots from Surrey that I went with, that went to this thing. Yet it was the most stellar lineup of talent that has ever been assembled in British Columbia: the Chambers Brothers, the Flying Burrito Brothers, Little Richard, Sunny Terry and Brownie McGhee, Alice Cooper.
"I'm sure it was the first appearance of Alice Cooper in all of Canada; his first album hadn't even come out yet. Chicago Transit Authority, Strawberry Alarm Clock. [The poster] says Grateful Dead, but I never saw the Grateful Dead, they maybe didn't turn up. Canned Heat, the Guess Who, the Grassroots, Love."
People camped out at the three-day event, but accommodations were rudimentary.
"There wasn't a campsite," Chesney recalls.
"People just had their sleeping bags and slept on the ground, woke up and kept watching the show or whatever. There were no facilities."
The festival also had a weird vibe, the kind of thing you get when hundreds of motorcycle gang members turn up to party.
"It was like every outlaw motorcycle gang in the Pacific Northwest came to this thing, and me and my two buddies from Surrey," he laughs.
"It was unbelievable. The bizarre part was when Little Richard came on. All these bikers were right up front. I think he came on after Alice Cooper, and Alice Cooper stunned the bikers into a state of hysteria.
"Then Little Richard came on and poured gas on the fire by taunting them. I thought, 'We're all going to die here.' It was bizarre. You've got to remember it was 1969, and Little Richard was mincing it up big time, and questioning their sexuality whilst flaunting his."
Unfortunately, the Vancouver Pop Festival was a financial disaster, drawing half the 30,000 people it needed to break even. And there hasn't been another festival like it, until now.
For more information go to the Pemberton Festival website: http://www.pembertonfestival

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03-21-2008, 11:47 PM
I think they should do Summerfest again here in Milwaukee, Wisconsin....it would give me an "actual" reason to attend.