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Anti-Flag frontman accused of rape, sexual assault

Anti-Flag frontman Justin Sane has been accused of rape and sexual assault by thirteen women.

Allegations against Sane (real name Justin Geever) surfaced in July when a woman claimed on a podcast that she had been raped by a punk singer, who was later confirmed to be the frontman.

Anti-Flag subsequently disbanded but Sane later released a statement in which he called the allegations “categorically false”.

His former bandmates released a separate statement regarding the split and allegations that read: “A core tenet of the band Anti-Flag is to listen to and believe all survivors of sexual violence and abuse. The recent allegations about Justin are in direct contradiction to that tenet. Therefore, we felt the only immediate option was to disband.”

They added that they had “never seen Justin be violent or aggressive toward women” in the 30 years of the band’s lifetime.

“here was a clear boundary that he kept crossing over and over that should have raised flags for everybody”

In a new report, published yesterday (5 September) on Rolling Stone, a further 12 women shared accounts that accuse Sane of predatory behaviour, sexual assault, and statutory rape – including sexual relations with a 12-year-old when Geever was a teenager.

Their accounts, which date from the 1990s to 2020, follow a similar pattern – Sane would allegedly make eye contact with them while performing and then approach them after the show.

Some of the women allege that their encounters with Sane were violent and non-consensual. One of them is said to have reported an incident to the police, claiming Sane had handcuffed and assaulted her, in the UK in 2020. The woman involved said police had decided not to prosecute.

Multiple women involved in the article accused Sane’s bandmates of complacency. “They knew how young everybody was. There was a clear boundary that he kept crossing over and over that should have raised flags for everybody,” one of them said.

In a statement to Rolling Stone, the other Anti-Flag members said: “We trusted everyone associated with the band to maintain a safe and respectful environment. The understanding that abusers can be anywhere further reinforces the importance of survivors speaking out and sharing their stories.… Further, we feel strongly that all predators must atone for their inappropriate actions and be held accountable.”

Sane did not respond to Rolling Stones requests for comment.

 


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Major fests put finishing touches to 2023 bills

One of Europe’s largest festivals Roskilde this week added Lizzo, Busta Rhymes, Loyle Carner, Biig Piig, Dry Cleaning and more than 100 other acts to its 2023 lineup.

They join previously announced acts Kendrick Lamar, Caroline Polachek, Lil Nas X, Rosalía, Burna Boy, Christine and the Queens, Blur, and Queens of the Stone Age.

The 51st edition of Roskilde will take place between 24 June–1 July in the Danish town of the same name. Tickets start from DKK 2400.

Elsewhere in Denmark, promoter Down the Drain has revealed full lineups for its festivals NorthSide and Tinderbox.

Little Simz is the newest addition to the NorthSide bill, which already includes Muse, The 1975, The Chemical Brothers and more.

NxWorries (feat. Anderson .Paak & Knxwledge), Lukas Graham, First Aid Kit, Sam Fender, LP, Yemi Alade and Pusha T are also slated to play the Aarhus festival between 1–3 June.

Little Simz is the newest addition to the NorthSide bill, which already includes Muse, The 1975, The Chemical Brothers

Simz is among the acts set to play the second-largest stage Echo, which this year will be covered by a 20,000-capacity tent.

“This time of the year in Denmark is very bright, in the evenings as well, and a lot of the bigger acts ask for a slot in darkness to get the full effect of their production. We’ve talked about doing this for years, but the pandemic got in the way. Now, we’re finally launching this change and creating an amazing setting for more intimate live experiences – and we can’t wait to see it in action!” says festival CEO Brian Nielsen.

Tinderbox (cap. 45,000), meanwhile, has confirmed Red Hot Chili Peppers, Maroon 5, Black Eyed Peas and Armin van Buuren for this year’s edition, taking place in Denmark’s third-largest city, Odense.

George Ezra, Dean Lewis, Lukas Graham, Mimi Webb, Cat Burns, Gogol Bordello, bbno$, Dylan and Oliver Malcolm will also appear at the festival between 22–24 June.

“Last year, we broke records at Tinderbox, and we’ve tried our very best to give back to our loyal guests by chasing some of the world’s biggest acts,” says Nielsen.

Elsewhere in Scandinavia, Finland’s Flow Festival has unveiled a third wave of acts led by Lorde and Christine and the Queens.

Finland’s Flow Festival has unveiled a third wave of acts led by Lorde and Christine and the Queens

They join a blockbuster bill comprising Pusha T, High Vis, Caroline Polachek, Blur, Wizkid, Tove Lo and more.

The Superstruct-backed festival will return to the capital city of Helsinki between 11 and 13 August. Tickets start from €119 for a one-day ticket, €189 for two days and €225 for three days.

In the UK, Truck festival has added Mae Muller, The Reytons, Gengahr, English Teacher, Feet and Chappaqua Wrestling to this year’s edition.

The Oxfordshire festival previously announced headliners Royal Blood, Alt-J, Two Door Cinema Club and The Wombats.

Self Esteem, The Vaccines, Circa Waves, Pale Waves, Everything Everything, Kate Nash and Squid are also due to play the Superstruct-backed festival, taking place at Hill Farm between 21 and 23 July. Final Tier tickets are on sale now from £160.

Elsewhere, the UK’s Standon Calling has announced two stage headliners, with Shygirl joining the all-female lineup on the Laundry Meadows stage and Sainté and D Double E heading up a new rap and hip hop night called FutureFlow on The Cowshed stage.

Las Vegas-based event Life Is Beautiful is set to host The Killers, Kendrick Lamar, Odesza, Khalid and The 1975

Previously announced headliners for the 2023 event include Years & Years, Self Esteem, Bloc Party and The Human League.

Anastacia, Confidence Man, Dylan, Squid, Katy B, KT Tunstall and Melanie C will also perform at the 17th edition of the boutique music and arts festival.

Festival founder and director Alex Trenchard says “We’re so proud of this year’s progress in booking a gender-balanced headline bill.”

The Broadwick Live-owned festival will return to the Hertfordshire countryside between 20 and 23 July 2023.

Across the Atlantic, Las Vegas-based event Life Is Beautiful is set to host The Killers, Kendrick Lamar, Odesza, Khalid and The 1975 for the September edition.

The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Omar Apollo, Kim Petras, FLUME, Nelly and Bebe Rexha are also lined up to play the 10th-anniversary edition of the music and arts festival.

Las Vegas mainstays such as Cirque du Soleil, Blue Man Group, Jabbawockeez, Magic Mike Live, Piff the Magic Dragon and Tape Face will also be on hand for performances and appearances.

The Rolling Stone-owned festival will return to downtown Vegas between 22 and 24 September.

 


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Rolling Stone/PMC acquires Life is Beautiful festival

Penske Media subsidiary Rolling Stone has acquired a majority stake in Life is Beautiful, a music and arts festival held annually in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The festival was founded by the late entrepreneur Tony Hsieh in 2013, in a bid to revitalise the underserved downtown Las Vegas community.

In the nine years since, it has played host to 600-plus artists and more than one million fans, injecting upwards of US$350 million in economic impact and cultural capital into the local area.

The 2021 edition of the three-day festival, headlined by Billie Eilish, Green Day, and Tame Impala, was attended by an audience of more than 170,000, making it one of the highest-grossing events of its kind in the nation that year – despite the pandemic.

“There are  infinite  possibilities  to grow Life Is Beautiful in unique and impactful ways”

“Live events are an integral part of Rolling Stone’s future and Life Is Beautiful is an incredible platform to realise this vision,” says Rolling Stone CEO, Gus Wenner. “Coupled with our significant digital scale and deep journalism, there are infinite possibilities to grow Life Is Beautiful in unique and impactful ways. I am grateful to have worked with Tony on this partnership and am proud to have Rolling Stone help carry forward his mission.”

Rolling Stone and PMC plan to “expand Life Is Beautiful into new territories and broaden its digital footprint”. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“We are thrilled to realise the potential of Life Is Beautiful in partnership with Rolling Stone,” says David Oehm, CEO of Life Is Beautiful. “As a landmark institution and touchstone of the music industry for over 50 years, the Rolling Stone team will help to deepen our connection to fans of music everywhere, while also championing the cultural initiatives that make Life Is Beautiful so much more than a music festival.”

In addition to Rolling Stone, PMC is also the parent company for Billboard, Art in America, Deadline, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, and Spy.com, among others. Last year, the company made a deal with SXSW (South by Southwest) that would make the media company a long-term partner and shareholder of the Austin new music festival.

PMC is headquartered in New York and Los Angeles with 14 offices worldwide.

 


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Penske Media gains full control of Rolling Stone

Jay Penske, chairman and chief executive of Penske Media Corporation (PMC), has purchased the remaining 49% of Rolling Stone, following a majority takeover in 2017.

The media and publishing entrepreneur now has complete ownership of the music brand, bringing to an end founder Jann Wenner’s 50 year ownership.

PMC bought up 51% of the magazine in December 2017, purchasing the rest from minority owner BandLab Technologies on 22 January. BandLab bought up the $40 million share in September 2016, overseeing an international subsidiary of the company focused on live events, merchandise and hospitality.

Panske’s media corporation owns other entertainment industry publications, including Variety, Deadline and Hollywood Life.

“The need to consolidate the Rolling Stone business has become abundantly clear”

Since 2017, PMC has taken the magazine monthly, redesigned the print edition and website and expanded the events component. The media corporation now has full control the famous brand, including its live event, licensing rights and international editions.

Penske informed staff of the news on Thursday, saying: “In the twelve months since PMC’s initial investment, the need to consolidate the Rolling Stone business has become abundantly clear and something that BandLab and their leadership team also recognised and were in full support of.”

PMC purchased the 49% Rolling Stone stake from Singaporean start-up BandLab Technologies,

Rolling Stone founder Wenner opened the doors to external investors in 2016 after many years of resistance, following a drop in advertisement revenues.

 


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FKP announces new Rolling Stone Park festival

Promoter FKP Scorpio and Germany’s Rolling Stone magazine have announced the launch of Rolling Stone Park, an indoor festival to debut in southern Germany next autumn.

The new festival – a sister event to the Baltic-coast Rolling Stone Weekender event, also jointly produced by FKP and Rolling Stone – will take place in Germany’s biggest theme park, Europa-Park in Rust, Baden-Württemberg, on 16 and 17 November 2018.

More than 30 rock/guitar artists will perform over weekend on four stages in Confertainment, the park’s convention centre. Like Rolling Stone Weekender, Plage Noire and FKP’s other festivals at the Weissenhäuser Strand holiday park – and festivals staged at Butlins in the UK – all guests will stay on site, with tickets (starting at €189) inclusive of accommodation, breakfast and parking.

“In 2009 we organised the Rolling Stone Weekender on the Baltic Sea together for the first time together,” comments FKP Scorpio managing director Folkert Koopmans. “Back then, we had to convince the audience of the concept of a combining rock’n’roll with a short holiday. Nowadays, the festival sells out well in advance.

“With Europa-Park we have found the perfect location to bridge this gap”

“Similar events are missing in the south of Germany, and with Europa-Park we have found the perfect location to bridge this gap.”

In addition to music, Rolling Stone Park will include lectures, a record/CD fair, a concert poster exhibition and more in a complementary fringe programme.

Volker Schadt, Rolling Stone head of marketing, adds: “With Rolling Stone as Germany’s leader in music media and the Rolling Stone Weekender a multiple award-winning indoor festival, we are excited to be able to continue building on our successful cooperation.”

 


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BandLab eyes live market with Rolling Stone stake

BandLab Technologies, the Singapore-based start-up which this week acquired a 49% stake in Rolling Stone, plans to turn the storied magazine brand into a Live Nation-style entertainment powerhouse, it has emerged.

Rolling Stone, founded in November 1967 by current publisher Jann Wenner (pictured), has resisted outside investment for close to 50 years, but faced with declining advertising income – it lost over US$50 million in ad revenues between 2006 and 2013 – now appears to be seeking to diversify its product offering.

Bloomberg Gadfly’s Tim Culpan writes that BandLab “plans to take on the likes of Live Nation by leveraging the Rolling Stone brand for a move into events, merchandising and hospitality throughout Asia.

BandLab will not have any editorial input, but instead oversee a Rolling Stone International subsidiary focused on live events, merch and hospitality

“While revenue at Pearson, Gannett and News Corp. has declined over the past few years, that of Live Nation has risen steadily, driven by growing concert revenue that’s helped lure more sponsorship dollars. Concerts and events are hard to pirate, and while readers can easily replace one title with another, a Katy Perry concert is no substitute for a Taylor Swift concert.”

BandLab, whose core business is a cloud-based platform for music creation and sharing, is the creation of Kuok Meng Ru, the 28-year-old son of billionaire Singaporean tycoon Kuok Khoon Hong. The company has not acquired a stake in the magazine’s publisher, Wenner Media, and will not, says Rolling Stone, have any editorial input, but oversee a Rolling Stone International subsidiary focused on live events, merch and hospitality.

“I look forward to working closely with Gus [Wenner’s son and Rolling Stone’s digital director] to take the brand bravely into the future and to realise its global potential,” says Kuok.

 


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