News January 30, 2020

Music fans react to Sound Relief cancellation

Music fans react to Sound Relief cancellation
Sound Relief 2009 by AP Photography Facebook

A second attempt at a follow-up series of Sound Relief concerts has failed, with the announcement that the planned bushfire benefit events will no longer go ahead.

A statement from organisers late on Wednesday was met with confusion and disappointment from music fans, with many criticising the “poorly worded” explanation that failed to provide a clear reason for the cancellation.

“It is with regret that the organisers of Sound Relief have decided not to proceed with concerts in March as originally planned,” read the statement on Facebook.

Organisers pointed to the excellent outpouring of support towards the fires and thanked the many offers of assistance from artists, industry, media and suppliers.

Despite that, the decision to cancel the series of gigs was made because organisers have resolved that proceeding “won’t produce the impactful result we believe these events can”.

According to the Herald Sun, sources said the event was struggling to lock down artists and venues with suitable venues already booked by major sporting events.

The tabloid also said that Elton John, Pink, Ed Sheeran and Kylie Minogue had been approached to perform.

TMN notes that the official Sound Relief 2020 Twitter account remains branded: “In response to the devastating bushfires, the Australian Music Community will band together once again under the unified banner of Sound Relief.”

It is with regret that the organisers of Sound Relief have decided not to proceed with concerts in March as originally…

Posted by Sound Relief on Tuesday, 28 January 2020

That response didn’t sit well with punters, with many criticising the “confusing” way the statement was worded.

“This is worded quite badly,” said one. “You say you’ve decided not to proceed with the concerts “in March”, making it sound like they’ll be postponed… but the rest of the post sounds as if they’re cancelled altogether.”

“Most amount of jargon I’ve heard in a statement. Still don’t understand why?” said another.

“Probably couldn’t afford nsw govs sniffer dog invoice,” joked another.

Another made the point that organisers ­Frontier, Chugg Entertainment, Live Nation, Secret Sounds and IMC had simply given up after being “beaten to the punch by the other mob”.

TEG Dainty and TEG Live are holding the sold-out Fire Fight Australia at ANZ Stadium Sydney on February 16, with Queen & Adam Lambert, as well as Alice Cooper, Amy Shark, Hilltop Hoods, Grinspoon John Farnham, Tina Arena and more.

Others called the move “a cop-out” while another concert-goer said that following a 2011 attempt they weren’t “holding their breath” that the March 2020 gigs would even go ahead.

TMN has approached Frontier Touring for comment.

The original Sound Relief concerts took place in Sydney and Melbourne 2009. They were attended by over 120,000 people and raised $8 million for victims of Queensland floods and bushfires in Victoria.

It featured sets from Kings Of Leon, Paul Kelly, Crowded House, Wolfmother, Midnight Oil, Jack Johnson, Kylie Minogue, Coldplay, Marcia Hines, Taylor Swift, Eskimo Joe and Icehouse.

A 2011 follow-up after the Brisbane floods did not proceed due to worsening weather conditions.

The false start was not lost on fans, with YouTuber Dave Lee suggesting this edition should have been called “the original Sound Relief 2”.

“Just as baffling (and confusing) a reason this time round too. Don’t announce something like this if you can’t pull through. Poor effort.”

Live Nation and its businesses Secret Sounds, Ticketmaster AU and Moshtix pledged $500,000 earlier this month to support bushfire relief.

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