The Countdown is On:
Just weeks away, the countdown has started to the formidable and highly anticipated Future Music Festival (FMF) for 2015, the annual summer Australian festival. FMF is produced by Australia’s Future Entertainment, the electronic music entertainment company focused on developing domestic artists and musical talent. Future is based in Melbourne and was started by Mark James in 1993. This year FMF will be co-produced by the Mushroom Group, founded by Chairman Michael Gudinski more than forty years ago. As Australia’s largest and most successful independent music and entertainment group, founder Gudinski is passionate about taking home grown musicians out to the international market and recognizes that FMF is critical as one of the world’s most momentous events.
Why a Music Festival?
Festivals, like the expression of music, are an important part of an urban experience and critical to the young and young at heart. They are also integral to the many performers, bands, genres, and technicians that find a way to market their talents to thousands of people at one time. For many amateur musicians and artists, festivals are a supportive avenue to be seen for the first time, and they bridge the gap between production and performance at little cost. Festivals are also cost effective to the industry since the extensive amount of equipment, transportation requirements, and security is set up for an extended period of time. The participants benefit from the value since they are able to see their latest and favourite talents at one time. The local community and businesses profit from festivals too as hundreds of fans drop in to say hello, eat, drink, and sleep.
Woodstock: Hail to the Outdoor Music Festival
Look way back to Bethel, New York – 1969 – Woodstock, a pivotal moment in music history when artists joined together to celebrate music and peace in one farmer’s field. There were more than 500,000 people over three days anticipating ‘groovy’ performances by Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Tom Fogerty, Joe Cocker, The Band, Johnny Winter, Blood, Sweat & Tears, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Unfortunately, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, The Byrds, Bob Dylan, Chicago, The Moody Blues, Joni Mitchell, and Iron Butterfly plus many more declined to make an appearance.
2006: Future Music Festival, Sydney
Look back to Sydney, Australia – 2006 – Royal Randwick Racecourse, a one day music festival, 6 venues, with more than 20,000 attendees waiting to hear the music of Armin van Buuren, Markus Schulz, Tocadisco, David Guetta, Goodwill, Shamus, and Steve Angello with many more. The first Future Music Festival (FMF) was a formidable birth of the world’s largest ‘techno’ dance festival that headlines the best in electronic music. The following year, FMF beat its own records in outdoor events and entertainment through performances in house, trance, indie, ambient, minimal, and techno music. In 2008, the Chemical Brothers headlined the event that reached more than 100,000 people. Also on the roster were Tracey Thorn, Deadmau5, Robbie Rivera, David Guetta, and Axwell with a ticket price of $89.00. That year a compilation CD was available for the first time.
First Expansion: National
From 2008 until 2011, FMF evolved into a two week travelling event, and expanded to all major Australian cities including Brisbane, Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, and Adelaide drawing the world’s best talent in EDM such as Basement Jaxx LIVE, N*E*R*D feat Pharrell Williams LIVE, and Swedish House Mafia and were ready to blaze the music to hungry crowds. The FMF established itself as the future of music festivals for years to come and a mainstay for the best domestic and global artists and performers.
Global Expansion: Future’s Future
Even before the 2012 FMF venues hit the road, Future Entertainment announced in December 2012 its latest expansion – Asia. Taking its namesake into the future, the event held in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, was similar to its Australian sister with mixes of local and international performances, and once again headlined by The Chemical Brothers and other heavyweight performers such as the influential and iconic New Order, The Temper Trap, Flo Rida, The Prodigy, Psy, and Fun.
The 2013 festival themed as the ‘Day Of The Dead-Set Awesome’ was a huge success. FMF mascot and Ibiza kingpin Sven Vath returned for his fifth run. Headliners in trance, techno, dubstep, house, and EDM like Avicii, The Prodigy, Bloc Party, Dizzee Rascal, Azealia Banks, and K-pop sensation Psy made a second appearance to perform his viral hit ‘Gangnam Style’.
In 2014, in spite of bad press and rumors of troubled financials associated with festival owners Future Entertainment, FMF got even bigger. Headlined by Deadmau5, and bringing out chart toppers Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Markus Schulz, David Guetta, Steve Angello, indie-pop-rockers Phoenix, Drum and Bass group Rudimental, and announcing the addition of Pharell Williams at the last minute.
2015’s Future Music Festival
The 2015 FMF, still Aussie’s biggest touring festival, with Brett Robinson in the Director’s chair, and James Klein, the man responsible for the state-of-the-art sound and light at Miami’s Ultra Music Main Stage at the helm, is slated to start on February 28th and back to its birth at Royal Randwick in Sydney. The 2015 FMF schedule includes:
Sat 28 Feb – Royal Randwick Racecourse, Sydney
Sun 1 Mar – Arena Joondalup, Perth
Sat 7 Mar – Brisbane Showgrounds, Brisbane
Sun 8 Mar – Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne
Mon 9 Mar – Adelaide Showground, Adelaide
FMF 2015: Who Is on Board in Australia?
The list of artists on board for the 2015 FMF is a star studded example of some of the most in-demand performers. Veteran performers like The Prodigy will be in attendance along with Die Antwoord, South Africa’s outstanding rap-rave artist making a return visit after years of absence. In addition, Animal’s Martin Garrix, Nero, London’s Example, Afrojack, 2 Chainz, and Canadian Drake, the rap superstar, will finally make an appearance on the heels of the success of albums ‘Thank Me Later’, ‘Take Care’, and ‘Nothing Was The Same’. Another Canadian, Kiesza, now based in London where her chart topping hit ‘Hideaway’ hit #1 in the UK in May, will make her first appearance. Then of course there is Avicii, who will debut some of his brand new material off his second album, Stories. Other performers include Klingande, Sigma, Gorgon City, Bassjackers, Blasterjaxx, Carnage, and Yellow Claw. As usual there will be a second round anouncement with more acts joing the festival.
FMF 2015: Who is On Board in Asia?
After its three year run in Kuala, Lumpur, FMF Asia is moving to Singapore in 2015. The two day event, scheduled for March 13th and 14th will be held at the Changi Exhibition Centre. Livescape Group and Future Music Australia, expect more than 50,000 fans to attend. With more than fifty domestic and international performers on the bill, including Avicii, The Prodigy, Afrojack, Chemical Brothers, Flo Rida, and Fatboy Slim, the cross-genre festival will be the biggest festival in the region.