Monday, April 14, 2008

Somewhere in a field

Noel Gallagher has been flapping his gums again about, among other things, why Jay-Z at Glastonbury is A Bad Thing. Now, in the great Not Selling Tickets War we take the view that of course it's not one headliner causing the shirking - hell, it sold out when Rod Stewart brought his Las Vegas act in 2002 - but all the same we'd much rather see Jay-Z as headliner than Kings Of Leon as headliner.

That thinking led us down a seperate road regarding the profusion of festivals around at the moment. What we did was cut away the extraneous lot and and devise a list of the big hitting, name aware or big name affording festivals taking place every weekend from from Glastonbury to the end of August (there's only Bestival and End Of The Road worth bothering with after that):

28-29/6 Glastonbury, Wakestock
5- 6/7 Wireless, Hop On The Farm, Wakestock Wales, Zoo Thousand, Blissfields, Guilfest, Cornbury
12-13/7 T In The Park, Two Thousand Trees, Lounge On The Farm
19-20/7 Latitude, Camp Bestival, Lovebox, Truck
26-27/7 Secret Garden Party, Global Gathering, WOMAD, Ben & Jerry's Sundae
2- 3/8 Live at Loch Lomond, Cambridge Folk Festival, Kendal Calling, Big Chill
9-10/8 Summer Sundae, Field Day, Underage, Belladrum, Cropredy, Rip Curl Boardmasters Unleashed
16-17/8 V Festival, Green Man, Beautiful Days
23-24/8 Reading & Leeds, Creamfields, Solfest, Get Loaded in the Park
30-31/8 Connect, Jersey Live

That's quite a few over ten weekends, isn't it? And that's before you factor in the popular European circuit - Benicassim and Summercase are both on the 19th-20th July weekend. Now, clearly not all of these are going for the same markets, but for example note the ungainly movement in Wireless moving back three weeks from last year, forcing T In The Park to the following weekend from last year, which forced Latitude back into the path of Rob da Bank's new spinoff startup, which itself is taking custom from the almost venerable Truck, not to mention a Lovebox that diversifies more year on year and this year includes the Flaming Lips, Goldfrapp, Jack Penate and the Young Knives. Indeed, despite it being commonly held that festivals had reached saturation point, trust Melvin Benn to come up with a new one, 6th July alone sees two new events and one, the Abersoch leg of Wakestock, moved forward by a fortnight, with Guilfest also a week earlier this year. Do they all agree this is permanently sustainable?

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