Rock the Garden, Soundset, Outdoor Music Festivals, etc.

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Realstreets
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Rock the Garden, Soundset, Outdoor Music Festivals, etc.

Postby Realstreets » March 3rd, 2015, 9:59 am

Rumors on headliners?

I have always wanted to go in the past but the headliners haven't been enough for the ticket price.

twincitizen
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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby twincitizen » March 3rd, 2015, 10:14 am

Pro-tip: Volunteer for a couple hours and get in for free!

I did this last year and will almost certainly do so again, unless the bands really don't interest me.

I emailed the volunteer coordinator at the Walker and got signed up on their volunteer schedule thingie (called shiftboard or something). You have to attend a single training session which is like 1 hour long. You can volunteer on one or both days of the festival, doing really mundane tasks like putting on VIP wristbands or telling people which stuff goes in trash/recycle/compost. Sign up early to ensure your shift is at the beginning/middle/end of the show (per your preference).

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Realstreets
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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby Realstreets » March 3rd, 2015, 10:26 am

Thanks for the tip! I'm a little weary of volunteering based on a past experience of sort recycling at a camping music festival. People throw away a lot of gross stuff when camping.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby twincitizen » March 3rd, 2015, 11:12 am

Haha. You don't have to touch anything. You just stand there and point at which receptacle stuff goes in. The Eureka people actually do all of the labor. Volunteering at Rock the Garden basically amounts to standing around and talking to people. It was astoundingly easy/boring, but saved me a chunk of change.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby IllogicalJake » March 3rd, 2015, 12:46 pm

I could totally be up for volunteering. I'll have to check it out. Who else was at the last one?
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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby Didier » March 3rd, 2015, 1:54 pm

I get that Rock the Garden is supposed to be eccentric and everything, but having De La Soul as the Saturday headliner last year was really a letdown. Especially after having Metric the year before.

RTG probably needs to decide on its identity pretty soon. Does it want to be a show for people who like to sit on a hill on a summer day and expand their musical horizons? Or does it want to be an alternative rock festival with at least a few bigger bands? The lineup indicates the former, but the continued expansion indicates the latter.

St. Louis had an admittedly bigger two-day festival last year called LouFest, and their headliners were Arctic Monkeys and Outcast. Meanwhile, we get Spoon and De La Soul.

Maybe RTG isn't the right venue to have true "big" alternative bands, but it kind of sucked last year that our only outdoor festival of this nature couldn't do better than that lineup.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby twincitizen » March 3rd, 2015, 2:03 pm

Definitely agree on the identity thing. Everything I've read/heard indicates that RTG will continue to play that middle ground. Creating and sustaining a bigger festival that can attract slightly bigger headliner(s) is something the Twin Cities have struggled with for a while now. There's a limit to how big a band will play to a crowd the size of RTG (e.g. it's a damn small crowd as far as non-free outdoor festivals go).

You'd think with our sorta-proximity to Chicago you could schedule a festival a week before or after Lollapalooza and pick up a portion of their consistently great lineups.

What's the best venue though for a larger, centrally located outdoor festival? Harriet Island? (I'd certainly have no issue with that).

In sum, I'd be ok with RTG going back to one-day and focus on tighter lineups, mixing 2 local and 2 national artists that have been in popular rotation on The Current.

You really gotta hope someone will come along and hit a home-run with a successful major outdoor festival in MN. There has been a vacuum for quite a while and all of these little festivals trying to sorta fill it doesn't really help. First Avenue needs to step up and partner with some big corporate sponsor(s) and get this thing done.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby Didier » March 3rd, 2015, 2:15 pm

twincitizen wrote:What's the best venue though for a larger, centrally located outdoor festival?
Isn't this why the long-planned First Avenue summer festival hasn't taken off yet?

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby Tyler » March 3rd, 2015, 2:20 pm

Spoon>>>>>>>>>>Arctic Monkeys
De La Soul > Outkast
Towns!

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby QuietBlue » March 3rd, 2015, 2:50 pm

twincitizen wrote:You really gotta hope someone will come along and hit a home-run with a successful major outdoor festival in MN. There has been a vacuum for quite a while and all of these little festivals trying to sorta fill it doesn't really help. First Avenue needs to step up and partner with some big corporate sponsor(s) and get this thing done.
Soundset, Moondance Jam, and WE Fest all do pretty well, though I know those are for different genres of music.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby grant1simons2 » March 3rd, 2015, 2:59 pm

Soundset trended nationally today.. Then again the lineup was just released. I was thinking this morning how amazing it would be if soundset found a permanent place to play inside the city. Most of the hip hop artists are from Minneapolis or St Paul, and it's hosted by Atmosphere. I could only imagine the place rocking to Atmosphere while the sun is setting with the skyline starting to glow in the background.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby twincitizen » March 3rd, 2015, 3:06 pm

They must be pretty happy in Shakopee and/or have a great deal on the site, because I can't understand for the life of me why they haven't relocated Soundset to Harriet Island.
QuietBlue wrote:
twincitizen wrote:You really gotta hope someone will come along and hit a home-run with a successful major outdoor festival in MN.
Soundset, Moondance Jam, and WE Fest all do pretty well, though I know those are for different genres of music.
Dang, I knew I shouldn't have said "MN". I definitely meant the Twin Cities, and specifically a festival for alt rock / indie music (i.e. a smaller version of Lollapalooza, Sasquatch, Outside Lands, etc.)

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby mplsjaromir » March 3rd, 2015, 3:11 pm

I really wish there was a better venue than The Walker, or Canterbury. I really like Union Park in Chicago for Pitchfork Music Festival. The park is fairly small at 13 acres and in the middle of the city, connected to rapid transit, but the event still has the festival vibe. Maybe Hall's/Boom Island could be something cool someday.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby grant1simons2 » March 3rd, 2015, 3:15 pm

If they renovate or revitalized Boom Island I could see some great concerts on a larger scale being hosted there

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby MNdible » March 3rd, 2015, 3:16 pm

Speaking of Hall's Island, did somebody post this already?

First Avenue is hosting a show there at the end of May.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby xandrex » March 3rd, 2015, 3:17 pm

I wondering how Eaux Claires fits into the music scene. It's obviously not in MN, but it's pretty damn close. And it got a lot of attention. Probably a little too indie, but it should be an exciting festival.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby Didier » March 3rd, 2015, 3:18 pm

Tyler wrote:Spoon>>>>>>>>>>Arctic Monkeys
De La Soul > Outkast
That's fine if you like them better, but its hard to imagine RTG keeping its momentum with those types of headliners.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby twincitizen » March 3rd, 2015, 3:24 pm

I'd go insane if RTG got Arctic Monkeys, but that's just me. (Where are they playing??)

In general, I think any headliners of the above-noted caliber are enough to sustain RTG. I know one of the two days did not sell out last year, but the festival is small enough and still carries enough cultural cachet as "a thing you do in June for $50" that I'm not too worried about it.

EDIT: I'd agree with realstreets, it is a bit too "sporadic". If they stick with the 2-day thing, I'd hope they try to make each day a little more consistently appealing to that particular subset of The Current's listener base. With the advent of Spotify, Pandora, etc. - there is phenomenal data available about how fans of Band X feel about Band Y. The Current needs to work that out a little better for a 2-day lineup when there are only 4-5 bands per day on a single stage.

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Realstreets
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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby Realstreets » March 3rd, 2015, 3:26 pm

I think the headliner caliber is usually ok for the festival but RTG just seems to take what they can get and that creates a sporadic lineup. Maybe it's a result of being affiliated with the Current, which literally plays every type of music. Even if I really liked two bands I'm not going to drop over $100 to see them if the other bands are old and past their prime. That's what is so attractive about Lollapalooza, fresh, new bands that play great live shows. I mean I didn't even know Dan Deacon was still around until I heard he was headlining
Last edited by Realstreets on March 3rd, 2015, 3:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Rock the Garden

Postby MNdible » March 3rd, 2015, 3:27 pm

I don't think that RTG aspires to be anything more than what it currently is, so I'm not sure what the concern about "momentum" would be.

It would be interesting to see the finances for a festival like this -- to know how much cash The Current & The Walker end up pocketing from it after all the vendors et al. get paid out.


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