In a brand new feature, we’ll be asking our favourite festivals how they got started, what they’re looking forward to and what you can expect from their festivities. This week, we’ve got Ian Chadderton of the Bristol-based Fat Lip Fest!
How did you get involved with Fat Lip fest?
Fat Lip started back in 2013, I had worked closely with The Lanes on another night and we got on so well together that we decided to work together on something new, which at the time, the alternative scene in Bristol really needed. Other nights were becoming boring and being ran by people outside of the city, so they never had the best interests of the people in Bristol at heart.
We wanted to make an alternative night that was made by people in Bristol, for the scene living here. After the past 4 years of success, including us playing at Download Festival last year, the idea of doing our own festival has been thrown around for years, it’s always been a dream of mine since I started working in promotions to host my own so we decided now was the perfect time to give it a go!
What can people expect from the festival?
Everyone loved it when Hit The Deck Festival was in Bristol, bringing incredible line-ups of bands such as Don Broco, Brand New and Skindred in a multiple venue capacity, but with the increasing popularity of other major festivals such as Slam Dunk and Download, Hit The Deck unfortunately was no more. We’re starting off small with 3 stages at The Bierkeller and The Lanes, but people should expect the same caliber of bands you will expect at the major festivals as well. I guarantee you’ll find your new favourite band, it’s going to be an amazing day!
What’s your favourite thing about the festival?
My favourite thing about it so far has been the amazing reaction to the diverse lineup we’ve put together, we’ve got some of the best UK touring acts the country has to offer spanning rock, pop punk, metal and alternative music. With the bigger acts such as Young Guns, ROAM, Feed The Rhino and Devil Sold His Soul holding down the fort, it’s an incredible chance for people to check out some of the newer acts that are going to be huge in years to come. Holding Absence are a prime example, signed to Sharptone Records (Don Broco, While She Sleeps, Attila) after releasing just 2 songs, these guys are going to be huge, I’d recommend seeing them for yourself!
What’s the most difficult part of organising a festival?
I’d say a very difficult thing to do was put the initial lineup together. This being our first year, obviously agencies and managers are very wary of new events to add to band’s touring schedules, however it’s very nice to be included and trusted by them to put on a great day! It’s been a real eye-opener into the process of booking of bigger acts and it’s tested my organisational skills for sure.
I’d say the most difficult thing I’ve dealt with though is the criticism from certain groups in the city regarding the line-up itself. However, I think of all the major festivals in the country, and how they put on such huge incredible acts and have to deal with keyboard warriors on a daily basis. On a much larger scale than myself too! It must be very disheartening for them to work really hard and constantly have people criticize them thanks to how easy it is on social media to do so. Luckily for me, the general feedback is very positive!
What’s different about Fat Lip that no other festival has?
I’d say that no one else has a lineup like ours for such a low price tag. You’d expect to spend roughly £15 on a ticket just to see Young Guns or any of the other big acts on a regular headline show, the fact that our tickets are currently at that price you’d be a fool not to grab one quickly before they run out!
Is there anything people would be surprised to know about Fat Lip?
I’m not sure! We’re always very open about everything we do. People might be interested to know I had an email asking for some information about Fat Lip from none other than Sum 41’s manager not that long ago, just in case we can work together at some point in the future. Who knows, maybe a future Fat Lip Fest headline slot… well, I can dream.
Fat Lip Fest takes place from 29th-30th July. Grab a ticket here and in the meantime, check out headliners Young Guns below.