Australia’s Music Bubble

The much anticipated Splendour in the Grass lineup was finally announced this morning and boy, did it deliver! The first announcement for this three day festival has caused a whole heap of hype via social media, blogging and word-of-mouth – just like it does every year. Quickly assembling my SITG14 crew, I’ve had mixed opinions from friends about this year’s Splendour lineup (personally, I think there are some real gems in there – Mikhael Paskalev melts my heart) – but no matter their opinion of the lineup, every person I’ve talked to says they’ll try their luck for a hot little $350+ ticket.

This gets me wondering, how and why do major festivals (such as SITG) already have such a strong and loyal following even before that year’s lineup is announced? Is it because they have such a good track record with previous lineups? Is it because previous punters are holding onto last past experiences and are longing for a repeat? Is it just purely because their whole group has vowed to go?

This also makes me wonder if we, as Australian live-music lovers, are closed off to the idea of new festivals and are wrapped in comfort in our own little Splendour-Big Day Out-Soundwave-Woodford-Bluesfest-Falls bubble. What does this mean for aspiring festival organisers out there? For example, Victorian festival, Top of the Hill Festival, held in April attracted a mere amount of less than 50 attendees. The independent and exclusively funded and coordinated festival lacked a marketing team and alcohol – both of which are seen to be major factors in a festival’s success.

The last couple of years have unfortunately witnessed the cancellation of Australian greats such as Homebake, Harvest, Parklife, Pyramid Rock, Summadayze and the Perth leg of Soundwave due to many reasons but mainly being lack of demand and poor ticket sales.

Recent research has shown that many Australians are more enticed to fork out an almost-festival-ticket-price amount to see international superstars such as Bruce Springsteen and Eminem opposed to an all day festival. If only there was a platform that could eradicate that risk of financial loss an even cancellation… oh wait – GiggedIn does! (Shameless self-promotion alert!)
I guess one of the good points is the fact that more festivals are increasingly attracted to book local talent for because it drops down the break even of events? (We love our local talent!)

Whilst the popularity of some Australian festivals are beyond peaking, others are struggling to keep afloat or even kick off. Although I do enjoy and fully support new up and coming festivals, it’s such a shame to see all-time favourites lose their spark and fail to keep their loyal festival heads.

Originally posted on the GiggedIn blog here.

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