Published Jun 25, 2010It's easy to hold on to those memories of Perry Farrell holding a bottle of wine while lazily singing a rendition of Jane's Addiction's "Three Days" during a nice summer evening performance during an early '90s Lollapalooza festival. But times change, and some behind-the-scenes information that has surfaced about the contracts at this year's Lollapalooza has got the event sponsors, C3 Presents, and their partners under investigation.
The Office of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is investigating the company for anti-trust issues in relation to the radius clauses that are imposed on all artists playing Lollapalooza. Radius clauses are not uncommon at festivals; they prevent bands from playing in the area of the festival for a period of time before and after the fest happens. However, the time period and mile radius that C3 Presents is imposing in its radius clauses for artists appearing at Lollapalooza is what's got them under fire.
Some sources have claimed the clauses stretch from six months before the festival to three months after it, and they include a 300-mile radius, which, in the case of Chicago, would include several other big concert markets, reports Vocalo [via The Daily Swarm].
Club owners and concert promoters in Chicago have complained that these clauses are "decimating the community," according to Vocalo, and are unfair and anti-competitive.
However, C3 Presents says that it can - and often does - waive the clauses for artists; it's just a matter of the artist realizing that and then asking the company. According to Billboard, artists regularly break the radius clause, with no repercussions, and C3 doesn't enforce the clause.
The fact that C3 Presents is based in Austin, TX, and the three-day Lollapalooza fest is in Chicago, also has some people upset as they feel the promoters can't really see what it's doing to the local music scene.
This year's Lollapalooza is going down August 6 to 8, with a freshly reunited Soundgarden headlining, as well as Green Day and Lady Gaga. There are over 100 bands playing.
For an interesting look at some contract excerpts from various festivals - including Lollapalooza - regarding radius clauses, head here.