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Thread: Upcoming NEARfest Interview on Sea of Tranquility

  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post

    3. Surprised about no mention of Kenso, a Japanese fusion band that appeared to bring tears to many of the audience during their performance of Billy Joel’s Allentown. After killing with one of the most innovative Prog-fusion shows I have ever seen, with 2 keyboardists and Japan’s top heavy metal drummer. The show was a perfect example of me attending NF with no idea of what was coming and not having done the research, and hearing something totally unexpected and getting blown away.

    4. Honorable mention must go to Bethlehem Brewery for the Apocalyptic Ale and many other great beers before that.
    That Kenso show was amazing. Like you, I went into the show knowing very little about the band and not owning any of their stuff. One of the best shows of all of the festivals.

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by nearfest View Post
    yes, so why was 2010 an instant sellout, but 2011 landed in the crapper, then 2012 another instant sellout. It's gotta be the band roster. :-)
    I have no argument with what you and Chad are saying. However, NF was such staple for many people and I do recall comments on PE about economic issues and those issues got worse through 2011. Not saying the kicker wasnít the band roster, you should know. The incredible lack of sales for the 2011 program is hard to believe.
    On the verge of indecision
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  3. #53
    Member Firth's Avatar
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    Raffaella Berry:

    Obviously, as all too often happens in similar circumstances, speculation was rife, as well as unashamed finger-pointing. People will always be people, and, in their disappointment, the NEARfest ‘orphans’ were looking for something – or, even better, someone – to shoulder the blame. While some blamed the poor state of the economy, others pointed their finger squarely at the close-mindedness, snobbishness and elitism of prog fans, which this year reached unprecedented levels due to a rather controversial line-up. The choice of a so-called ‘jam band’ like Umphrey’s McGee as Sunday headliner drew fierce criticism, and – added to a rather ‘experimental’ line-up lacking (unlike the previous years) any of the big names of the Seventies – contributed to a general lack of enthusiasm for this year’s edition. Some were even berating the organizers for not having disclosed the reality of the situation and asked for help before cancelling the event – something which, after some of the flak they got for their choices, I cannot blame them for not doing.

    http://www.prog-sphere.com/specials/...call-for-prog/


    From the organizers announcement of the cancellation:
    “This unfortunate result is likely the product of lower-than-expected interest in a transitional lineup of talented international acts combined with a slow-to-rebound U.S. economy. Despite utilizing our well-established avenues of communication and traditional revenue streams, including the annual Patron Program, it has become apparent to the five of us that ceasing operation of NEARfest 2011 is truly the only recourse.
    Last edited by Firth; 3 Weeks Ago at 07:37 PM.
    On the verge of indecision
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  4. #54
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    I think Rob and Chad could have easily said screw it after the cancelled year, but did the best thing by coming back the next year and throwing everything into one last year to go out on a high note. I respected the way they handled it.

  5. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fracktured View Post
    I think Rob and Chad could have easily said screw it after the cancelled year, but did the best thing by coming back the next year and throwing everything into one last year to go out on a high note. I respected the way they handled it.
    After reading a couple of commentaries about the reaction of the Prog fans, especially on PE, I they did a great job on the recovery.
    On the verge of indecision
    I'll always take the roundabout way

  6. #56
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    My best memory of NEARfest (among many)was an explanation of the music of Present."Music that would make you commit suicide so you wouldn't have to listen to it"I caught the whole set and remember quite a few people leaving.Sleepytime Gorilla Museum coming in at a close second.Eternal Thanks to Rob and Chad and all involved

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by loshammeros View Post
    My best memory of NEARfest (among many)was an explanation of the music of Present."Music that would make you commit suicide so you wouldn't have to listen to it"I caught the whole set and remember quite a few people leaving.Sleepytime Gorilla Museum coming in at a close second.Eternal Thanks to Rob and Chad and all involved
    I think I could have listened to the whole set of Present, but it was so freaking loud and Iím not one who stuffs toilet paper in my ears. Present is a step up from a band on a bill which included Mars Volta I saw called ďBad Acid Tripď
    On the verge of indecision
    I'll always take the roundabout way

  8. #58
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    This weekend is my annual NF memorial weekend - I'll be playing stuff I saw or discovered there.

    NP Hidria Spacefolk Live 11 AM

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firth View Post
    I think I could have listened to the whole set of Present, but it was so freaking loud and I’m not one who stuffs toilet paper in my ears. Present is a step up from a band on a bill which included Mars Volta I saw called “Bad Acid Trip“
    I loved that Present set! The more people left, the more that I liked it!! Along those same lines, I remember a guy sitting behind me, becoming more and more incensed as some people were walking out on Pallas (2004, I believe), who he and his girlfriend were enjoying immensely. He was then further irate, as nobody walked out on the following act, Mike Kenneally, that he and his girlfriend were not enjoying, lol.

    I attended from 2003-2012. Standout years for me, were my first, 2003 (what a line-up), and 2005 (another absolutely amazing line-up, and I had 2nd row seats). Honourable mention goes to 2007, as I and a couple other guys, hung out talking to Christian Vander in front of the main hotel, until the wee hours of the morning!

    As always, a colossal thanks to Rob and Chad and the whole staff, for all their efforts over the years!!

    neil

  10. #60
    NEARfest Officer Emeritus Nearfest2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firth (via Raffaella Berry) View Post
    Obviously, as all too often happens in similar circumstances, speculation was rife, as well as unashamed finger-pointing. People will always be people, and, in their disappointment, the NEARfest ‘orphans’ were looking for something – or, even better, someone – to shoulder the blame. While some blamed the poor state of the economy, others pointed their finger squarely at the close-mindedness, snobbishness and elitism of prog fans, which this year reached unprecedented levels due to a rather controversial line-up. The choice of a so-called ‘jam band’ like Umphrey’s McGee as Sunday headliner drew fierce criticism, and – added to a rather ‘experimental’ line-up lacking (unlike the previous years) any of the big names of the Seventies – contributed to a general lack of enthusiasm for this year’s edition. Some were even berating the organizers for not having disclosed the reality of the situation and asked for help before cancelling the event – something which, after some of the flak they got for their choices, I cannot blame them for not doing.
    I have always felt that blaming the fans for not buying tickets is a chicken shit tactic, especially in this case. People spent their hard-earned money to trek to NEARfest every year and if you don't present a lineup that is worth that (significant) cost, they won't buy the tickets. It's very simple. Now consider that the economy was down. That means you need to work even harder to have a VERY attractive lineup that people will STILL pay for, even in tough times. The opposite happened. An experimental lineup with one less-than-headliner caliber headliner and Umphrey's McGee as the other one was presented. I only mention UM because they were also a bit experimental. In no way do I blame UM. [Aside: They were nearly booked in the pre-headliner spot in 2010, but it fell through for whatever reason. They also planned to do a prog-focused set for 2011, which I personally think would have been great. And I don't mean cover tunes.] IMO, 2011 was the time to reach for a big, widely appealing lineup, but we all saw what happened.
    Last edited by Nearfest2; 1 Week Ago at 11:27 AM.
    Chad

  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nearfest2 View Post
    I have always felt that blaming the fans for not buying tickets is a chicken shit tactic, especially in this case. People spent their hard-earned money to trek to NEARfest every year and if you don't present a lineup that is worth that (significant) cost, they won't buy the tickets. It's very simple. Now consider that the economy was down. That means you need to work even harder to have a VERY attractive lineup that people will STILL pay for, even in tough times. The opposite happened. An experimental lineup with one less-than-headliner caliber headliner and Umphrey's McGee as the other one was presented. I only mention UM because they were also a bit experimental. In no way do I blame UM. [Aside: They were nearly booked in the pre-headliner spot in 2010, but it fell through for whatever reason. They also planned to do a prog-focused set for 2011, which I personally think would have been great. And I don't mean cover tunes.] IMO, 2011 was the time to reach for a big, widely appealing lineup, but we all saw what happened.
    Raffaella Berry authored that statement I posted.
    On the verge of indecision
    I'll always take the roundabout way

  12. #62
    Quote Originally Posted by Nearfest2 View Post
    ...People spent their hard-earned money to trek to NEARfest every year and if you don't present a lineup that is worth that (significant) cost, they won't buy the tickets. It's very simple. ...
    That is exactly the case for us. Every year, we had to weigh the cost of flying from St. Louis, hotels, tickets, food, etc. vs. the line-up. This also took into account whether we had already seen bands at Progfest, Baja Prog, or Progday. I think we missed about 4 years and were not planning to attend 2011. (Personally, I would have liked to have seen that lineup but couldn't justify the cost.) If we had lived closer, we probably would have attended every year.

  13. #63
    I lurk a lot but wanted to pop up and thank Rob and Chad for the great interview and all the memories.

    Looking back what you gentlemen were able to accomplish seems more and more miraculous as the years go by.

    Life sure is short and Iím grateful to have been able to have seen all these bands.

    Todd

  14. #64
    NEARfest Officer Emeritus Nearfest2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prog Lives View Post
    I lurk a lot but wanted to pop up and thank Rob and Chad for the great interview and all the memories.

    Looking back what you gentlemen were able to accomplish seems more and more miraculous as the years go by.

    Life sure is short and I’m grateful to have been able to have seen all these bands.
    Thanks Todd and everyone else that provided their support and gratitude. We still have trouble believing what we pulled off.
    Chad

  15. #65
    Member chalkpie's Avatar
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    Looking back...not going every year was one of the biggest blunders I have ever made in my life. Yes, we haf very young kids and my wife quit her job and went back for another bachelors...but in hindsight I (we, all of us) can now realize what a magical weekend that was every year, and I for one took it for granted. I am sooo grateful for the ones I actually got to. And performing on the stage was another surreal moment that I still will never get over (in a good way I think ). So yeah, thanks again lads!

  16. #66
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    ^ With 20/20 hindsight, I regret skipping some years too.

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