Jane's Addiction frontman's give-and-take festival vision
July 31, 2011 - 11:09AM
Perry Farrell at The Forum tent at Splendour in the Grass. Photo: Michelle Smith
When Perry Farrell wasn’t talking about the future of music festivals yesterday he was putting his theories into practice on the Splendour in the Grass stage to glorious effect.
The Jane’s Addiction frontman and founder of the modern touring festival spoke candidly to a riveted Woodford crowd about his Lollapalooza creation yesterday morning, during a special keynote appearance.
During the question and answer session, compared by a starry eyed Wil Anderson, Farrell revealed how the Lollapalooza festival had been made totally carbon neutral to ally climate concerns.
He also outlined his vision of music festivals giving more back to the communities they are held in, in the future.
Farrell made just as big of an impact on the amphitheatre stage later in the night time session as his gang of Los Angeles rockers put on a equal parts classy, equal parts sleazy performance as the Saturday night headliner.
Showcasing new song End to the Lies, while also mining material from the band’s four previous albums, the foursome were in fine spirits, closing the show with an obligatory run through signature tune Jane Says.
Lacking the powerful bottom-end of original bassist Eric Avery, whose four string touches helped make last year’s reunion tour such a highlight, the band still managed to produce a joyous spectacle, two buxom dancers twirling from the rafters and thriving from side to side in bondage gear through much of the band’s classic era tracks.
It was the personification of the celebratory scene Farrell said was crucial to create a great rock festival.
“When you create a good festival good people will come in to listen to your cool music and then you’ve got a party on your hands,” he said earlier in the day, at the festival forum tent.
“Musicians, they’re the attraction but in the end they are really just a lure, because really what we’re looking at is hot chicks and hot guys, right?”
“[For a good festival] You have a great location, great music that is attracting really cool people, like this place,” he said.
Farrell spoke of the corporate pressures which saw Lollapalooza be reduced from the classic touring format to a one-off show.
But he was optimistic about the future of music festivals, calling for organisers to give back more to communities where the events are held worldwide.
“I would like to see music [festivals] work closer with the government to do everything from bringing music programs back into schools to beautifying the cities [they are held in],” he said before calling for a percentage of the profits from festivals going back to the hosting communities throughout the world.
Ever thinking of the future of the concept, Farrell revealed he had plans in store for a game-changing festival to be announced next year, but was guarded about what exactly that would entail.
“Next year I am going to be building yet another festival concept that I think is going to elevate what we’ve done in festivals so far,” he said.
“It is going to elevate it to a degree that I can safely say you’ve never seen before.”
Farrell’s decision to make Lollapalooza, which draws 90,000 people each day for three days to the US city of Chicago, carbon neutral touched on an earlier forum discussion on modern protest songs and how artists can spread the message of climate change featuring local federal MP Wyatt Roy.