Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Bush live shows prompt massive album sale uplift

Kate Bush has seen a massive lift in sales this week with 11 of her albums appearing in the early midweek sales flash for the Official Albums Chart Top 100, as she prepares to kick off her first run of shows in 35 years. As legendary singer Kate Bush gears up to play her first run of shows in 35 years in London. OfficialCharts.com revealled that early figures show all of her studio albums and greatest hits collection The Whole Story are set to re-enter the chart this week. Her retrospective The Whole Story, which originally hit Number 1 upon its release in 1986, is currently Number 8 on the tally (a sales lift of 536% from the previous week), followed by 1985’s Hounds Of Love at Number 14. Elsewhere, her 2011 LP 50 Words For Snow and her 1978 debut The Kick Inside are at 32 and 33 respectively, and 1989’s The Sensual World is up 52 places at Number 41.  However the first shows have also prompted complaints after the singer omitted 'Babooshka' and 'Wuthering Heights' from her set.

Friday, 22 August 2014

Sea fort - see new nightclub?

Scottish promoter Minival has launched a cash drive to buy a nineteenth century sea fort, which sits off the Isle Of Grain in the middle of the Thames Estuary, and transform it into a 'party fort' - something like Belgium's Berghain or [soon-to-close Dutch superclub] Trouw - "in the middle of the sea". The fund raiser is now active on GoFundMe, looking to raise the asking price of £500,000 for the fort and an additional £250,000 to make the building 'safe'. At the tie of writing se £55,000 had been pledged. Access is by a low tide causeway. The fundraiser says "Imagine a place you could go to, to get away from it all. With the worlds best DJ's and music running continuously. A place where you are allowed the true freedom to express yourself among friends. Lets do this. 150,000 people donating £5 each would deliver us this fort from the party gods. Every single donator would be a fort member for life. "

http://www.gofundme.com/d23bsk

Thursday, 21 August 2014

NFL proposes pay-to-play option to potential Super Bowl acts

The NFL is reportedly asking the shortlist of artistes set up to play the Super Bowl half time show in February next year to bid for the slot, according to the Wall Street Journal. Traditionally the NFL has covered performers' travel and production expenses although sources have told the WSJ that Rihanna, Katy Perry and Coldplay have been asked if they would be willing to contribute a cut of their post-Super Bowl tour income to the NFL in return for having the high profile half time show performance spot. The NFL apparently said it would also accept other financial contributions if giving a share of touring profits wasn't agreeable. The NFL refused to comment on potential deals to the WSJ, but said the only aim was "to put on the best possible show". Artist's have reportedly given the idea a 'chilly' response. 

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

FESTIVAL NEWS

Canada has suffered a spate of tragic deaths and festivals and events with deaths of a woman at the Boonstock Music Festival in Penticton and a man at the Pemberton Music Festival — with police warnings about alcohol and drugs after dozens of Boonstock attendees were sent to hospital. The deaths followed on from two deaths and 13 non-fatal overdoses at a concert in Toronto that caused police to issue a warning about party drugs and in Columbia, Maryland, at the Mad Decent Block Party concert, two died and 20 more were taken to hospital with Leo Knight at 24 Hours Vancouver saying "And there’s the rub. It’s not the organizers’ fault. It’s not the fault of police or security doing their best to try and keep out contraband. It is the fault of each person who makes a conscious decision to ingest chemicals — not knowing or caring what’s in them." Previously the organiser of Melbourne's biggest New Year's Eve party said he could not be blamed if party-goers overdosed at the Telstra Dome event.Sensation dance party organiser Duncan Stutterheim said it would be his "biggest nightmare" if any of the 40,000 ticket-holders overdosed, as did 12 ravers at a dance party at Festival Hall last week.  More here http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/2014/08/05/dont-blame-music-festival-organizers and http://www.theage.com.au/national/dont-blame-me-if-ravers-overdose-says-dance-party-organiser-20081230-776l.html

A woman has died after she was found unconscious in a toilet at the BoomTown Fair festival by security staff and medics. The 31-year-old was attending the event with her husband. She was taken to hospital from the site at Matterley Estate in Winchester, Hampshire, where doctors tried to revive her, but was pronounced dead shortly afterwards. Hampshire Police cordoned off the scene where she was discovered at around 1.50pm on the Saturday.


The Reading Festival, which takes place over the August Bank Holiday, has decided not to supply toilet paper for any of the 70,000 music fans set to descend on the site this year. The festival website says: 'We are always improving on our sustainability policies, and this year we're going to crack down on the sheer amount of paper/tissue we have to purchase, considering the amount that gets wasted rather than used for its intended purpose.' Organisers say there will be traders on site selling toilet rolls and people will also be able to bring their own.

The final day of the Boardmasters festival in Cornwall was cancelled "in light of the extreme weather conditions caused by hurricane Bertha", organisers said in a statement. The remains of the hurricane hit most of the UK producing hgh winds and heavy rain in many areas - nearly a month's rain fell in Wales overnight.  Initially it was announced that the opening of the third day of the annual surfing themed event would be delayed. However, as conditions failed to improve, the event day was called off at 12.30pm. The day was due to be headlined by Bastille, with Peace, George Ezra and 2manydjs also on the bill. Refunds will be available.

After a spate of venues have been closed or threatened by closure by often just one complainant or by those who have moved into residence beside existing venues – often in new developments,  a new e-petition has been sent up to challenge noise laws in the UK – “Urgent Review of Noise Abatement legislation” calling upon the Secretary of State to: “conduct an urgent review of all applicable Noise Legislation so that the collective right of local communities to be able to enjoy well-run and managed music venues is properly balanced within the law against the individual rights of owners and occupiers of adjoining properties to limit environmental noise.” http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/65582

Rob Da Bank is planing to replicate his Bestival franchise in North America and at additional sites in Europe. Da Bank has confirmed he's expanding his weekend festival telling The Telegraph: "The deal has been a long time coming. I've never been in this industry for the money but now I'm 40 with three small kids, it's time to get business minded". He adds: "We've made a real impression on the festival market and pioneered a lot of ideas. People think Bestival pours multi-millions into my bank account every year and it doesn't... That's not a sob story but now it's time to knuckle down a bit. My 20s and 30s were a total laugh, but now I have to be responsible". This year's 50,000-capacity UK Bestival takes place at Robin Hill Park on the Isle of Wight between 4-7 Sep, with Outkast, Beck and Foals headlining

Cate Le Bon's planed all-day festival Mas Mas has been cancelled. The event, which was meant to happen on 28 August was facing licensing problems, and will not be rescheduled. 


The schedule for the 2014 FESTIVAL CONGRESS is now online - more here.



Can Kate can the cameras?

Kate Bush has requested fans do not take any photographs or record footage using mobile devices at her upcoming series of live concerts at London's Hammersmith Apollo. The 56-year-old star said on her website: "I very much want to have contact with you as an audience, not with iPhones, iPads or cameras." The musician added it would mean "a great deal to me" but admitted that it was "a lot to ask". Tickets for the 22 Before The Dawn shows  which begin on the 26th August sold out within 15 minutes of going on sale in March.

Friday, 15 August 2014

Jabberwocky organisers in the spotlight as cancellation chaos ensues

All Tomorrow’s Parties role in the late cancellation of the Jabberwocky festival is attracting increasing scrutiny as attendees complain of ticket refund chaos, and the event's ticketing and PR companies have gone public with criticism of ATP's company - Willwal Ltd

ATP organised the festival with Pitchfork and Primavera Sound but just tree days before the London event Barry Hogan of All Tomorrow’s Parties issued a statement saying: “It is with deep sadness we regret to inform everyone that as of today Tuesday 12th August 2014, ATP is being forced into cancelling this weekend’s Jabberwocky festival. Refunds will be available to all customers at the point of purchase. We have put everything into promoting Jabberwocky, and despite healthy ticket sales all our efforts could not take those sales to the point that we needed to finally stage the event. Over the past month and all the way up until this moment we have tried every possible course of action to follow through in delivering Jabberwocky to you, but the position we unfortunately find ourselves in as a result of a succession of events that have lost money in an increasingly aggressive festival market, means we are no longer able to do so." Bands such as Deafheaven, James Blake and Neutral Milk Hotel were set to play the festival which was to be held at the ExCeL Centre in London."

ATP put the ticket refund responsibility on Dash and those with tickets were told to seek refunds at the outlet from which they purchased them. But Dash was not impressed by these instructions, and the ATP statement was followed by one from Dash pointing out that its terms of sale say that responsibility for refunds lay with the promoter of the event. It also added that all money from sales had already been passed on to ATP. Saying that it was considering legal action, the ticketing firm said: "Our trust in ATP seems to have been misplaced, as their emails to fans and customers today concerning refunds have become deliberately misleading. It is for this reason that we feel compelled to make it clear that Dash has given to ATP all funds that Dash received for ticket sales to Jabberwocky. In addition to giving ATP all the ticketing funds, Dash has made substantial advances to ATP which remain unpaid, as do considerable fees for the work we have undertaken on their behalf". The company later added: "To be clear about our service to ATP and yourselves, we have not been acting as a traditional 'ticketing agent', but have simply provided online software as a service exclusively to ATP in the UK. ATP has used our software to setup the Jabberwocky event and sell their tickets. This is why the T&Cs went to lengths to alert everyone that ATP holds the funds on all sales and that refunds can only be actioned through ATP".

However, ATP again refuted that it had any responsibility for any refunds. In a new update to ticketholders, the promoter said: "For the vast majority of people, Dash Tickets will be their point of purchase. It is their responsibility to refund the customer, as they were the company that took payments; not ATP. And if Dash are not being helpful facilitating this matter, your next point of contact should be directly with your bank or card provider to order a chargeback of your purchase amount".

There has also been further confusion over the involvement of other partners on the event. Jabberwocky was billed as being presented jointly by ATP, Pitchfork and Primavera. However, ATP's original cancellation statement did not mention either of these partners, and both merely re-posted that announcement without reference to their own involvement either - Pitchfork as a news story and Primavera as an update on its website without context. Pitchfork then posted an update on its website stating: "Pitchfork worked alongside All Tomorrow's Parties and Primavera Sound to curate Jabberwocky, helping to choose which artists would play. We did not have any financial involvement in the festival, in terms of either providing funding ourselves, managing how the money was spent, or receiving any portion of the event proceeds" and continued with: "Apart from recommending artists, we were not involved with decision-making concerning the event. Our sales team did assist in trying to find sponsorship for the festival, but the sponsors that ultimately signed on didn't come through Pitchfork's channels".

It also seems that the event's PR firm is looking at legal action, with the Zeitgeist Agency 
saying it would "like to distance ourselves from both the event and the promoter of the event - Willwal Ltd (ATP)" adding in a statement "Willwal Ltd have failed to pay us for several months. We have tried hard to overcome this situation and find solutions, but Willwal’s representatives have revealed to us in writing that they used the funds destined for us in order to protect payments for venue and artists, rather than settle essential and agreed amounts to our company. It would appear that Willwal Ltd has been experiencing and is continuing to experience cash flow difficulties. We had a great campaign and as a trusted and respected contact we wanted you know to know that this situation has nothing to do with any wrongdoing by The Zeitgeist Agency Limited." adding that Zeitgeist had "no alternative but to pursue Willwal Ltd by instituting legal proceedings on the 20th July to recover the substantial debt, to which Willwal Ltd have not responded." 

ATP has responded to both Dash's and Zeitgeist's comments saying that the PR agency had been dismissed for  "for doing a disappointingly substandard job" and that Dash had changed their T&Cs to attempt to avoid making refund repayments saying "The claim that ATP has received all the funds for Jabberwocky is not true. We have not received a payment from Dash for more than two months. Any advances from the sales before that went straight into event costs such as various artist fees and venue hire. But we have not received all the funds for Jabberwocky sales from Dash, and for them to make statements on their social media saying we have in fact received all these funds is simply not true. If that was the case, then we would not have struggled to stage the event".

http://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2014/aug/13/jabberwocky-atp-music-festival-cancelled-no-surprise

http://www.dazeddigital.com/music/article/21267/1/atp-is-being-taken-to-court-over-jabberwocky-cancellation

Monday, 11 August 2014

AIM's Labelled With Love lines up

Femme
Bella Union, Gringo, Fortuna Pop, Fire Records and Houndstooth are some of the independent labels hosting live nights as part of this year's AIM Labelled With Love programme. The first date is presented by Newcastle-based development agency Generator and its blog The Tipping Point and takes place on 30 Aug at The Boiler Shop, and will feature sets by Lisbon, Symphonic Pictures, Gallery Circus, and Mat Hunsley. Other acts in the season include Femme, Seth Lakeman, Ghetts, The Wharves, Spacemen 3's Sterling Roswell and The Proper Ornaments

Warners' revenues up in Q3 - but losses up too

Warner Music Group's total revenues for the third quarter of its financial year ending on 30 Jun were up 18.9% on the previous year. And for recorded music the increase was 22.8%. But net losses were up by 196.8% year-on-year.  CEO Stephen Cooper SAID: "A stronger release schedule, combined with sustained investment in exceptional artistic talent and first-class execution by our operators, delivered robust results this quarter. We are especially pleased to see our strategic moves pay off, with the acquisition of Parlophone Label Group being a key contributor to this quarter's success. We expect our momentum to continue through the remainder of the fiscal year, due to several exciting artist releases in the coming months". Overall, digital income across the group now represents 41.1% of revenues. On the recordings side, digital accounts for 45.6% of total revenues, while in publishing it's 19.7%, thanks in part to a 22.7% increase in revenue from streaming services.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Concert stampede kills 34 in Guinea

Debris left behind after the stampede
Police in the African state of Guinea have arrested four people after a stampede at a seafront rap concert left at least 34 people dead, including 11 children. The tragedy happened on July 29th at a beach in the capital city of Conakry as thousands reportedly surged to the narrow exits at the end of a performance by rap group Instinct Killers. The event was organised to mark the close of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. A death toll of 33 was raised by hospital authorities after another concert-goer died of head injuries overnight. A further 60 people are recovering from injuries. Local sources told news agencies that the arrested suspects include two of the event's organisers, a public official in charge of managing the beach and the suspended head of the Guinean government agency in charge of public events. Guinea is now observing a week of national mourning and the government has banned seafront public events. Eyewitnesses said there up to 10,000 people, mostly young people, at the beach event.  http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-28558081

Thursday, 7 August 2014

HMV Manchester in store chaos prompts safety rethink

Manchester HMV will re-evaluates its safety policies after "hundreds" of Bars And Melody fans were locked out of an in-store appearance. According to the Manchester Evening News, the teen rap stars made an appearance at the store to sign copies of their debut single, 'Hopeful'. Entry was via the purchase of a paiud for copy of the CD, but many arrived after the shop had sold out. With many fans barred from meeting the duo and growing increasingly angry, HMV staff apparently pulled down the shop's shutters and called the police. Store manager Terry Doyle told the MEN that the store's capacity was a maximum of 600 people, and that 800 copies of the Bars And Melody single had been ordered in, which sold out on the morning of the event. A HMV spokesperson said "The safety and welfare of all customers is a priority and all events will continue to be organised with this at the front of mind. Clearly there may always be disappointed fans when events are organised with extremely popular artists, and HMV will work to minimise this disappointment wherever possible."


Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Victoria to promote 'agent of change' noise rules

Residential developers building next to existing live music venues will have to foot the bill for sound-proofing under new planning changes to be introduced by the Victorian Government. The "agent of change" principle, which will also apply to new music venues, will put the responsibility of noise mitigation on the new development, not the existing businesses and residents nearby. Planning Minister Matthew Guy said once the new regulations are in place, established pubs and clubs will not be forced to close due to noise complaints from new neighbours saying "Should an apartment block or others move next door to an existing music venue, it is then incumbent upon those people to ensure they have adequate noise and soundproofing requirements in place for themselves, rather than putting that onus upon the live music venue". Whilst it has been argued that a clear definition of what constitutes a 'live music venue' is needed, the Planning Minister said that the changes meant that  Victoria will have the strongest level of protection for live music venues in Australia : "We are doing absolutely everything we can as a government to ensure live music is vibrant and a strong part of Melbourne's cultural scene," Mr Guy said.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-04/live-music-sound-proofing-law-change-in-victoria/5646570

Fisherman's Friends deaths result in criminal charge

A man has been arrested over the deaths of Fisherman's Friends singer Trevor Grills and the group's tour manager Paul McMullen. Both were killed last year after a metal door fell on them while the group waited to perform a show in Guildford. The 55 year old man, from Bridgenorth, Shropshire, is being questioned by Surrey Police on suspicion of manslaughter by gross negligence. McMullen died on-site at Guildford's G Live venue in February 2013, having been trapped and critically injured by the collapsed door in a loading bay at the site, which is owned by Guildford Borough Council.  Grills died two days later of head injuries. 

Arsenal lose High Court battle over planned concerts

Arsenal Football Club has lost a High Court case to double the number of music concerts held at its Emirates Stadium in north London.  Islington Council rejected the application and a planning inspector dismissed the club’s appeal in January 2014. Arsenal argued at High Court that the inspector had made a ‘clear error’ in judgement. The point of contention was over noise and fans and the impact on local residents who already have to put up with regular visits by over 60,000 football fans on match days.  Past concerts with the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Coldplay, and Muse have generated hundreds of thousands of pounds in extra revenue for Arsenal. 

More here

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Another UK festival cancels

The AnotherWorld Festival which was set to take place from Friday 8th to Sunday 10th August 2014 at Silverstone Woodlands in Northamptonshire and due to be headlined by Snoop Dog  has been cancelled joining the Alt-fest and I Am Music festivals.  Organisers put out a statement on their facebook page saying:

"It is with great sadness and regret we announce the cancellation of the AnotherWorld Festival 2014. Due to unforeseen circumstances the event will no longer be taking place this weekend at Silverstone Woodlands. We are working hard to replace this event with others very soon within the coming weeks and hope you will check back here on Wednesday at 4pm to hear our exciting new plans.

our tickets can be refunded in full by contacting your ticket agent. As a sign of our deep respect and gratitude for the support you have shown us we will be posting out the Founders Pack including the AW headphones and aviators to everyone that purchased a weekend ticket.

We apologise for any inconvenience and thank you for your continued support. If you have any questions at all please email customerservices@anotherworldfestival.com.

Thanks
The AnotherWorld Team."

Read more at http://www.efestivals.co.uk/news/14/140805b.shtml#gQZUJSRrbdRpTTeq.99

Sunday, 3 August 2014

4 dead after Italian festival flash flood

The BBC reports that four people have been killed and at least 20 others injured after a flash flood tore through a festival site in Northern Italy. A mud-filled torrent swept people away late on Saturday night at the festival at Refrontolo, North of Venice, after a burst of very heavy rain meant that wall of water suddenly ripped through the area, also causing local landslides. According to local media, some panic-stricken party-goers managed to cling to trees at the site  at a historic mill house beneath a waterfall while the muddy torrent raged around them, but tragically others were swept to their death in the flood, which also carried away cars and tents. A rescue operation went on throughout the night and with several people missing, divers are continuing to look for more victims.

Friday, 1 August 2014

Power faces PRS ban

Veteran festival promoter Vince Power has been banned by the High Court in London from staging live events in the UK until he settles a dispute with music collecting society PRS For Music over royalties owing on his Hop Farm festivals.  According to the BBC, editions of the Hop Farm music event from 2009-2012 went ahead without a licence from PRS - Power  did not defend the action and the court decided the matter in his absence, The collecting society wants Power held personally liable. It argues that the promoter was the "guiding will and mind" of the event and the company which produced it. #

UPDATE: A statement has been issued on behalf of Power saying "Vince would like to state that he has not had any correspondence from PRS regarding this situation and was surprised to read about these supposed outstanding fees of £7987, this is miniscule compared to the amount of money paid to PRS over the years by Vince Power and companies" [although the sum referred to is actually legal costs].  He also complained the PRs was being 'vindictive' saying  "In light of the long strained relationship I have with them, I can only see this as PRS being vindictive and a means of deflection for what I see as the real problem within PRS; They have a long list of artists that are owed money which they do not pay. I am very happy for any artists who have been chasing PRS unsuccessfully to contact me to see if there is a way we can group together and get the money they are owed".

The Revolving Door

PIAS's Play It Again Sam has announced the appointment of a new label Senior Press Officer, Paddy Davis.

The Managing Director of Tonic Media & Productions, Gloria Abramoff, has been announced as the interim CEO of UK radio industry group The Radio Academy.

George P Johnson UK's VP and managing director Olivier Vallee has left the organsation after four months in the role.  The agency revealed Conference News that it is searching for a new MD after Vallee decided to leave his role to explore new opportunities.

Ticketing firm Eventbrite has announced Laurent Sellier as its new Vice President Of Product. Sellier has previously worked for Amazon and most recently Twitter.

Brand experience agency Jack Morton Worldwide is expanding further with offices in Seoul, South Korea, and is building a new affiliation with Brazil-based agency. The agency, which is celebrating its 75th year, is expanding its presence in Germany and South Korea, building campaign teams with staff sourced from its global network. 

Warner Music Group Executive Vice President Of Digital Strategy And Business Development,
Stephen Bryan, has announced that he is departing the major after seventeen years to take up a new role at SoundCloud as Senior Vice President Of Business Development And Strategy. 

7digital has announced the promotion of Paul Shannon to VP Of Technology. He replaces the departing Rob Bowley.

The Leeds College Of Music has announced its new Principal and Managing Director as Gerry Godley. Currently Director of the Improvised Music Company, he will take up his new role on 22 Sep, replacing Philip Meaden.

The UK record music collecting society PPL has announced the promotion of Financial Controller Christian Barton to the role of Finance Director. Barton will replace current CFO Ben Lambert, who is due to leave the company next week.

Direct-to-fan firm Baboom has hired a former major label exec Tony Smith to be its Chief Financial Officer. Smith spent four years as Director Of Finance for Sony Music in Australia and New Zealand, and before that worked at both BMG and Polygram.

Bestival boss and DJ man Rob da Bank is teaming up with his manager Ben Turner to launch a new music supervision company called Earworm, which aims to curate music for TV, film, gaming and ad projects.

Google's acting Chief Business Officer and long-time senior staffer, Omid Kordestani, has joined Spotify's board of directors. And YouTube's Chris LaRosa, is departing the video streaming giant to go and join a start-up. LaRosa has been with the Google subsidiary for seven years, and played a key role in the expansion of music content on the video platform, and in managing the firm's relationships with the music companies, including getting YouTube stats to count towards the Billboard 100 singles chart.

Richard Hinkley and David Rowe have been promoted to the role of joint MDs of Universal Music Catalogue. But Universal Music Publishing's CEO Zach Horowitz is stepping down. He has been in his current role for just over two years, but with Universal Music Group for 30.

America's third song right collecting society SESAC has new management and is planning further expansionL John Josephson, a former MD at investment bank Allen & Co, becomes CEO; Pat Collins becoming CEO of SESAC Performance Rights; and Kelli Turner becoming CFO and VP Of Corporate Development.

RIP

Thomas Erdelyi, better known as Ramones' drummer Tommy Ramone, has died aged 65. He had been receiving treatment for bile duct cancer and was the last surviving Ramone.  As well as drumming with the band on three albums Erdelyi was their manager, producer and co-songwriter (including 'I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend' and 'Blitzkrieg Bop'). He produced the band's fourth album, 'Road To Ruin', and later returned again to produce 1984's 'Too Tough To Die'. Following his departure from the band, Erdelyi continued to work as a producer and later formed Bluegrass band Uncle Monk with his long-term partner Claudia Tienan.

American lyricist Gerry Goffin, writer of hits like '(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman', 'Up On The Roof' and 'Will You Love Me Tomorrow?' has died at his home in LA, his wife Michele has confirmed. He was 75.

Booby Womack has died aged 70. The singer songwriter who penned hits such as It's All Over Now, That's the Way I Feel About Cha and Woman's Gotta Have It. The Soul legend had been due to perform at the Womad music festival in Wiltshire, UK, in July.

Johnny Winter, prodigious guitarist and a great bluesman, protege and friend of Muddy Waters, has died aged 70. He leaves his wife Susan.

Music Producers Guild founder Bob Hine has died, the trade body has announced. He had been receiving treatment for cancer.

John Gee, the first manager of London's Marquee Club, has died aged 86. His bookings included Led Zeppelin, the Who, Yes and Pink Floyd. 

Farewell to Jon 'Fat' Beast - promoter at the legendary Bull & Gate (and TimeBox) in North London and friend and compere for Carter USM. As John Robb says  ‘farewell you fat bastard and it was good to have known you".An appeal for his send off is here  http://www.gofundme.com/c6cbn8

FESTIVAL NEWS

Bonnaroo beacon activity
Aloompa, the company behind the iBeacons deployed at the recent Bonnaroo music festival, has shared some numbers it gathered on festival goers, giving event organizers new insight into how to improve the festival next year.  The iBeacons tracked the most popular stage, the average length people spent in specific areas of the festival, how many users went inside the VIP area. No personal data is collected. Aloompa says one of its goals with the iBeacon deployment was to “lay the groundwork and precedence for real time crowd heat mapping for never before seen operational views.” It’s also hoping to let users in the future “relive their experience in a new way: a “retrospective itinerary” — not just looking at photos and tweets, but the chance to see where you were, when, and who you were with — creating a community feeling even after an event is over.” More here http://9to5mac.com/2014/07/14/bonnaroo-festival-used-ibeacons-to-collect-valuable-data-about-concertgoers/


The 31st edition of the Gurtenfestival attracted  over 78,000 visitors over the course of four days, marking a new Gurtenfestival record. Even a short rain delay during the performance of Placebo, the final headliners, couldn’t put a damper on the positive mood. Headliners included Franz Ferdinand, local heroes the Glanton Gang,  Stiller Has and B√ľne Huber, Seasick Steve and Placebo who returned to stage after rain delay  - Gurten was hit by a strong thunderstorm with heavy rain showers. In order to avoid any risks, the band interrupted their performance and returned half an hour later to complete their set despite the wind and rain. Even the first aid tent had good news to report. Numerous visitors were seen, but most cases required only minor treatments. Only three people had to be transferred to a hospital – considerably fewer than in previous years. When a pregnant woman showed up at the first aid tent, there almost was a premiere of a different kind. But in the end, she delivered a healthy baby at the local hospital. 64 live acts (25 of whom were bands from Switzerland), 61 DJ acts, 800 musicians, 1400 helpers, 78,000 visitors, and one unique atmosphere: these are the numbers of the 31st Gurtenfestival. More pictures: http://www.gurtenfestival.ch/de/gallery.


The Fashion Meets Music Festival in Ohio has scrapped R Kelly as one of its headliners following criticism of the singer's booking, due to ongoing allegations of sexual abuse. Although the Fashion Meets Music Festival, which is due to take place at the end of August, initially defended Kelly's appearance on its line-up, calls for it to cancel the booking continued to grow, with two bands, Saint Seneca and Damn The Witch Siren, pulling out of the event in protest and local radio station WCBE 90.5 FM withdrawing its sponsorship. Kelly was acquitted of a number of child abuse charges in 2008.

The first ever Alt-Fest, which had been scheduled to take place in Kettering on 15-17 August, has been cancelled - in a move announced by headline acts Gary Numan and Marilyn Manson via the social media. There was a deafening silence from organisers of Alt-Fest who remained tight-lipped apart from a post on their website that said "We at Alt-Fest HQ would like to sincerely apologise for our silence over the last 24 hours. Currently we are working all hours to deal with some extremely challenging & stressful issues for Alt-Fest. We will be able to provide an official statement with full information before Monday and answer any questions you may have at that time. We want you to know that we have been doing everything we can to take the right steps for you: our fans, friends & customers – we assure you we only have your best interests at heart.” Alt-Fest raised £60,000 in funding for its inaugural edition via Kickstarter earlier this year, double what organisers originally asked for. It's not clear what will happen to that money now, which has presumably been spent already. Rob Ferguson, of Transcend Music, tweeted: “The stoney silence from Alt Fest organisers is staggeringly insulting to all those who bought tickets or invested in their Kickstarter!”

UPDATE: Organisers Missy and Dom Void have blamed low ticket sales, the last minute departure of an investor, a "costing error" and the usual cash flow traumas for the cancellation.
The pair wrote: "We were doing very well for a first year festival. We sold over seven and a half thousand weekend tickets, and as you were aware we had a great line-up with plenty going on. This, however, meant we had to pay [substantial band advances], with the remainder due just before and at the festival itself. Securing bands was not the only cost". They continued: "[Even] if we were to sell a minimum of another 1000 tickets between now and the festival, we'd have suffered a significant loss that we couldn't carry. This recently came to light based on a costing error and ... the fact that an investor unfortunately pulled out last minute. We were expecting to sell more tickets based on our line-up, and if we had sold just 3000 tickets more then we would have been over the break even line".

Festival Insights reports that a festival-goer died in hospital after falling ill at the Global Gathering festival. Shane Kirkwood, 20, from Coventry, was taken from the event to Warwick Hospital  and died just after 1am that night.  The cause of his death has yet to be established. A post-mortem examination is due to take place.