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Dubai to host zero-carbon rock concert

Rock the World – Save the World, the “first-ever 100% environmentally sustainable rock concert”, is taking place at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium on 15 November with a capacity of 6,000.

The concert is the brainchild of biofuel company Neutral Fuels, and is produced in partnership with non-profit environmental organisation One Tree Planted and eco-clothing manufacturer DGrade.

Organisers aim to achieve net zero carbon emissions, showing that it is possible to “enjoy mind-blowing rock without contributing to climate change.”

“Ordinarily, a rock concert with its massive sound, complex lighting and special effects, emits tons of carbon into the atmosphere using energy from the national grid,” says Neutral Fuels founder and chief executive Karl Feilder.

“Rock the World – Save the Planet is different. It will achieve net zero carbon emissions by using Neutral Fuels B100 net zero biofuel to power the entire event.”

“Ordinarily, a rock concert with its massive sound, complex lighting and special effects, emits tons of carbon into the atmosphere using energy from the national grid”

A recent report revealed the use of diesel generators to power live music events in the UK alone produces over one million tons of CO2 equivalent a year.

By partnering with One Tree Planted, the Neutral Fuels team hopes to neutralise “all unavoidable carbon expended on behalf of the event”, such as flights for bands, by planting trees to absorb emissions. Fans are encouraged to use public transport to travel to the event.

DGrade will collect all plastic used at the event to convert into sustainable yarn for producing clothes and accessories.

The event will feature performances from Filipino rock band Urbandub, pop rock bands Cueshé and Razorback and Dubai rock cover band Sandstorm, featuring Neutral Fuels’ Feilder.

Tickets are priced from AED125 (US$28) and are available to buy here.

 


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Rock in Rio founder plans Chilean fest

A Chilean edition of Brazilian mega festival Rock in Rio is in the works for 2021, confirms festival founder Roberto Medina.

Rock City-promoted Rock in Rio, founded by Medina in 1985, is the second highest-grossing festival in the world and the largest in South America. Rock City, in which Live Nation recently upped its shareholding to a majority stake, also operates a sister event in Lisbon, and formerly in Las Vegas and Madrid.

The Santiago de Chile edition marks the first expansion of the Rock in Rio festival brand within the Latin American region. Medina estimates investment needed for the new festival to be “nearly $150 million”.

The four-day event is billed for October 2021, just after the flagship Rio de Janeiro festival, with “practically the same line-up”. Drake, Foo Fighters, Bon Jovi, Iron Maiden, Pink and Muse are among those playing Rock in Rio this year.

“Chile is a calm country with a stable economy, it seems like a logical step,” Medina told Chilean newspaper La Tercera. “800,000 people live in Lisbon, whereas Santiago has five million inhabitants in a country with a much bigger economy than Portugal.”

“Chile is a calm country with a stable economy, it seems like a logical step”

Medina also cites “great political and economic stability” in neighbouring Argentina as a major deterrent for a potential Argentinian branch.

“[Chile’s] proximity to Brazil is a positive,” states Medina, saying “almost 200,000 people” miss out on tickets for the Rio edition each year. Fans now have the option to attend the sister event a four-hour plane ride away. According to Medina, acts have traditionally played solo concerts in Santiago after their Rock in Rio appearance.

Medina also cites the positive economic impact the festival would bring to Santiago, estimated to be US$500 million over the four days.

Lollapalooza Chile, which has taken place in Santiago since 2011, is not viewed as competition for the Rock City festival. “The scale and approach [of the two events] are different,” explains Medina.

Rock in Rio takes place from 27 to 29 September and 3 to 6 October in Barra Olympic Park. Tickets will be available soon via Festicket.


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Roxodus promoter MF Live files for bankruptcy

MF Live, the company behind cancelled Canadian rock festival Roxodus, has filed for bankruptcy.

The company, whose “sole purpose was to organise the Roxodus Music Fest”, owes over CA$18 million (US$13.8m) to around 200 creditors, including $5m ($3.8m) to ticketing provider Eventbrite and $11.1m ($8.5m) to contractors Taurus Site Services. MF Live’s assets equate to $154,000 ($118,000) in cash.

According to liquidator Grant Thornton Limited, “the event did not generate sufficient ticket sales to cover the expected costs, leaving MF Live Inc. insolvent.”

“We also understand that earlier wet weather posed certain challenges in preparing the site for the event and prevented MF Live Inc. from being able to host a safe event,” reads the document.

“The event did not generate sufficient ticket sales to cover the expected costs, leaving MF Live insolvent”

A statement on the festival’s website blames “rainy weather” for the cancellation of the festival, which was to feature performances from Nickelback, Blondie, Aerosmith and Kid Rock.

Last week, Eventbrite announced it would provide all ticketholders with a refund, while continuing “to aggressively pursue the return of funds from the festival’s creators.”

At the same time, MF Live co-founder Mike Dunphy denied all responsibility for issuing refunds. Dunphy also refuted rumours that he had “stolen monies”.

Dunphy and fellow MF Live founder Fab Loranger parted ways ten days before the festival’s cancellation and are no longer on speaking terms, according to an interview with CTV News.

The first meeting of the creditors is scheduled to take place at 10 a.m. on 30 July at the Grant Thornton offices in Toronto.

 


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LN, SGE present new touring rock festival Disrupt

The Rockstar Energy Disrupt Festival, a Live Nation and Synergy Global Entertainment (SGE) touring festival, will make its debut across North America this summer.

The 25-city rock roadshow kicks off on 21 June in Dallas, Texas at the Dos Equis Pavilion (20,000-cap.) and make stops in Austin, Atlanta, Toronto and Denver, among others, before wrapping up on 28 July in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the Isleta Amphitheatre (15,000-cap.).

The touring festival will feature unique line-ups in each city, with performances varying from artists including The Used, Thrice, Circa Survive, Sum 41, The Story So Far, Atreyu, Sleeping With Sirens and Andy Black.

Disrupt Festival will take place as a one-day event across two stages in each city it visits. The event will be the United States’ only major touring festival, following the final edition of travelling punk rock festival Warped Tour last year.

Warped Tour founder and promoter Kevin Lyman cited an increasingly competitive festival market, a lack of available talent and declining ticket sales as the reasons for the travelling festival’s cancellation after 24 years.

Fans who bring an empty can of Rockstar Energy Drink to recycle at the main gate will skip the queue and enter a prize draw to win a signed festival guitar and exclusive meet and greet with festival headliners.

Tickets for Disrupt Festival go on sale on Friday 29 March at 10 a.m. local time for each city. The full list of festival dates and line-up details by city are available here.

 


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Live Nation acquires another Nordic festival

Live Nation Entertainment has announced the acquisition of a majority stake in Tons of Rock (10,000-cap.), Norway’s biggest rock and metal festival.

The move comes following last week’s acquisition of Finnish urban music festival, Blockfest, as Live Nation continues to expand its foothold in the Nordic region.

Launched in 2013, the three-day rock and metal festival takes place in Fredrikstemn Fortress, Halden in June each year. The festival received recognition from the Norwegian Concert Organisers (NKA) in 2017, winning the organisation’s best Norwegian festival award.

Tons of Rock organisers have worked with Live Nation Norway since the festival’s first year, securing acts including Slayer, Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, Ghost and Five Finger Death Punch, among others.

“We have worked with Tons of Rock from the very beginning and are excited about our future with the festival,” says Martin Nielsen, Live Nation Norway head promoter. “The Tons of Rock team have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to the festival and to audience experience.”

“We wanted a strong strategic partner who would help us continue to grow, and the answer was obvious – Live Nation Norway”

The announcement comes at a time of change for the Norwegian festival, which moves to its new home in Ekeburg, Oslo for its 2019 edition. Headliners for this year’s Tons of Rock include Kiss, Volbeat and Def Leppard.

“We are ready to take the next step in the festival’s journey and the line-up for the 2019 festival speaks for itself,” comments festival manager and co-founder, Jarle Kvåle. “After five successful years in Halden we saw potential for further growth.”

Kvåle adds: “We found the perfect venue and wanted a strong strategic partner who would help us continue to grow. The answer was obvious – and close at hand – [in] Live Nation Norway.”

Live Nation has acquired a string of festivals, promoters, venue operators and other industry businesses this year, including Tennessee-based event marketing company Neste, Canadian venue operator and promoter Embrace Presents and Spanish Latin music promoter Planet Events.

 


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Ie:music hires rock specialist, adds Neck Deep to roster

Management company ie:music has recruited rock and metal specialist Leander Gloversmith, who will add Neck Deep, As It Is and Frost Koffin to its roster.

The ie:music roster currently includes Robbie Williams, Passenger, Cher Lloyd and Ladyhawke. The agency hopes to diversify with more rock and metal artists through the hiring of Gloversmith.

Gloversmith will focus on the management of UK pop-punk act Neck Deep, who played at the 12,500-capacity SSE Arena, Wembley in London this weekend.

The manager’s roster also includes Brighton post-hardcore group As It Is and newly-signed Texan metal band Frost Koffin.

“We are delighted to welcome Leander and his roster to the ie:music family. He has proved time and again that he has an eye for what’s next,” comments Michael Loney, president of ie:west in Los Angeles.

“It is a privilege to be part of a company with such an effusive legacy, who continue to evolve and remain a source of ideas and creativity”

“It is particularly exciting to have two outstanding artists that already have a firm US fan base – Neck Deep and As It Is – and we are also thrilled to welcome Frost Koffin.”

Gloversmith has 12 years of artist management experience. He signed and developed British metalcore band Architects and managed the rock group Lower than Atlantis and punk band Creeper.

“It is a privilege to be part of a company with such an effusive legacy, who continue to evolve and remain a source of ideas and creativity,” says Gloversmith.

“A lot is said about the diminished state of this scene, yet ie:music are doubling down on rock and metal as we believe it to be in rude health, birthing some of the most exciting and creative artists around, many of whom are quietly ascending to arena headline status without a drop of mainstream support.”

Based in ie:music’s London office, Gloversmith will also operate from the agency’s Los Angeles headquarters as bands embark on upcoming US tours.

 


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