Peter Hook and The Light: The Setlist Acquisition

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A new gig mystery in which Lapsed Vinyl Goddess acquires her first set list after going to shows for 40 plus years.

One of my Twitter followers from the UK kept bugging me. He noticed that Peter Hook and The Light were hitting Portland this fall. The tour included playing New Order’s Technique and Republic, with a Joy Division and New order mixed set at the end. He kept nudging, you should really go! I had noticed that Peter had been touring with the band the last few years and some of his other bands, Ad Infinitum and Monaco.  I had been a bit skeptical about Peter Hook and The light as they were touring with New Order albums themed shows at their start and wasn’t sure about it. Sometimes the retro tours work and sometimes they don’t. Also, at the time I wasn’t living in a music town, yes, that 13 years of hell. I couldn’t get to see them play.

I should have known better, that one of the founders of Joy Division was driven to play music from the past he helped create, and that he just loves to play shows. It was totally evident in this weeks show on November 7, 2019 at The Wonder Ballroom. It was a complete sellout show and absolutely pumped.

What was tantalizing was a promised Joy Division set. I was a fan of the early days of New Order, but after Brotherhood their music wasn’t doing anything for me anymore. I had hoped that a live show would prove different. It certainly did. I arrived early, near the head of the line. I managed to make it up to stage front and continued hanging out up front with people I had met in line. I found myself right in front of vocalist and guitarist David Potts (Monaco), who was a bit of a card and teased me about my photo taking. Got him back for a tease later. Peter was all over the stage and on top of speakers surfing his instrument.

Peter-Hook-Light-tour

I glanced over the top of the stage and when the stage hand taped down the set lists, we were all craning to see, upside down, what the music was. Dead Souls (Joy Division) was at the top of the last set. I was emboldened. You see I have Twitter fiends who have been snagging set lists for years. I have never been so bold. But it was tantalizing me. After the last set where we all belted out and sang horrendously along, and Peter flung his sweat soaked Fact Tee shirt into the crowd, the house lights went up and the hands were clearing up. I couldn’t quite reach the set list so I pointed and smiled. And I got it. I promptly took a snap when I got home and copied Peter on the Twitter posting, thanking them all for a tremendous show. He used it the next day for SF show reminders. 

The tours is finishing up this week in the US. However, Peter announced that they would be doing a 40th Anniversary Joy Division show starting in Spring 2020 in the UK. It will feature Unknown Pleasures and Closer, with a New Order set. If you are traveling to Europe in the Spring, especially try to get to the legendary Barrowland in Glasgow, Scotland, the tickets are selling quick! Here’s hoping they bring it to the US next Fall.

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That’s MY setlist. 

Peter Hook on Joy Division’s 40th

 

Music Festival Trash Travesty

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Reading Festival Aftermath

We come together to enjoy outdoor music festivals from spring to fall equinox, hopefully getting outside without rain to enjoy open air music and other acts,  and the company of great friends. There are music festivals for all genres and some that mix the genres to have as many party goers as possible, which of course means more of the all mighty Dollar or Euro for the promoters and hopefully some for the acts. These affairs can be small at county fairgrounds or at massive historical estates, with camping and mayhem. Or the hugely successful and amazingly well organized chaos, like America’s Burning Man, that started over twenty years ago as a nomadic gathering, and has now become a massive commercial venue.

Images of Sicily’s Fantasy Festival have hit the news. It’s the end of the line coming up for Europe’s large music festivals over the next few months. In the US, Electric Zoo just finished up with some festivals continuing into the late Fall. No matter our age, we still flock to these music festivals, sometimes with whole families going. It’s a right of passage of youth, university and since humans were once nomadic tribes, just is natural. From the  first stadium madness gigs in the US and those very lucky to be in Europe and live amongst castles or sacred places like Glastonbury, can attend some amazing music and revelry. There are many private estates with a castle and battlements where the cash poor landed gentry are happy to take money, put up stages, and bring in the bands. You can listen to some of your favorite music, meet friends, hopefully survive the three to five days if not just day tripping, and come out fairly unscathed. Then leave a trail of devastation behind you. That’s right, people can lay waste.

Music festivals have become great venues to showcase new and upcoming bands, to old favorite bands playing for decades, as well as political and Eco causes. Because they are so future friendly, you will see vast rows of sorting bins for your refuse, that rival  the rows of portable toilets. Not to mention science exhibits and save the world booths. At the garbage collecting sites, you read the international signs for food, paper, plastics, and all other disposables. You may have helpful people there directing and correcting you, and some of them militant Neo Hippies berating you if you get it in the wrong bin. The intentions are good. But why is it there is still so much human debris left behind on the grounds similar to a mass migration? The situation is getting more and more dire as more festivals pop up every year. Yes, the music festival can really line someone’s pockets, but the cleanup becomes quite questionable. Do you trust them to dispose of the waste in a correct and safe manner once you leave even if you think you got it in the right bin?

The Gripe

What I hear of mostly in complaints on Twitter is the disappointment in this festival or that one for the bands being really bad, or the sound system not working, or the biggest gripe, not being able to get out of the car park for three hours. No one really looks back at the trash that’s been left behind. Have you read any of the articles that come out each year, talking trash about the trash? Our past three years we have raised consciousness about plastics getting into the oceans, our great Pacific Garbage Patch. This years cause Celeb is the plastic straw. Did they all get in the plastics bin, if they are allowed due to their recycling emblem. Wait, do they put that on there?

What makes thousands of people who probably recycle like fiends at home, suddenly forget how to do it? Is it some mass hive-mind mentality of abandonment? Some of these events can go on for more than 3 days, some events go for a week. If you were camping in the woods, would you leave your tent behind? In some instances yes. Some revelers mistakenly thought that the tents they left behind at the Reading Festival this past August in the UK, were destined for charities. Commonly, a rumor gets started or a mass assumption occurs, it’s like a massive pass day at school where you are forgiven a homework assignment happens. You don’t have to take what you brought in back out, the magic butler robot will take care of it. Festival clean up crews call many local homeless shelters and charities after they look at the fields, but much of the sleeping bags, tents, cookers and any other camp gear gets hauled off to landfill sites if not shipped around the world on endless barge runs like the rest of the waste on the planet.

And in some cases, many attendees really thought they were doing what they were told. In some festivals, organizers have told revelers to leave behind tents or bags, they were being collected for a refugee crisis. Then the festival didn’t follow through. Later attendees find out and realize they contributed to a serious problem. To be on the safe side, always take your stuff with you. You can donate it yourself on the way home with a charity. Maybe take that extra step and do some research before you go and if anyone talks to you at the event not sure what to do, set an example and tell them what you plan to do and why. You can start a new trend.

So Why is it Always Someone Else’s Problem?

So, do you think it’s great for the planet to trash a music festival, even if it’s on private space where the rich landed gentry live because maybe you feel a little ripped off? Did the band you love have a gripe with the festival? Whatever the convoluted reason, do you really think it’s fair to protest by leaving a squalid mess behind? Really, think about it. If festival goers keep being this badly behaved, what do you think the chances are that more music festivals will happen? It’s true, there are greedy promoter types who make loads of money. You may even think that the bands are getting serious bank. Really though, depending on the venue and contracts, many of your favorite bands barely break even going to a gig like this. Some of them donate time if it’s a charity event. And if it’s a charity event, they still have to pay for cleanup, so that money is not going to the charitable cause.

Gripe Back

Contact a festival before you attend it, have your friends do the same. Get a campaign going. Ask them how they are going to manage disposing of the collected trash. Organize others around you. Take it back with you, donate if you don’t need the sleepers or tents. Take that time to look up homeless centers on your route home. Have a garage sale when you get back.

So what is the answer, the one that is so obvious? I think it’s really hypocritical to have an Eco Spectacular Save the World Festival and leave thousands of tents, sleeping bags and piles of trash behind. I guess maybe someone in your favorite punk band will stand up at the end and say. “Hey, you! Don’t forget to take your trash out of the park!” They really shouldn’t have to, shouldn’t you set an example? Go on, take it back.

https://metro.co.uk/2018/07/20/huge-sea-waste-left-behind-music-festival-everybody-leaves-7740173/

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/08/28/festival-goers-abandon-tents-mistaken-belief-go-charity-experts/

https://whyy.org/segments/burning-man-leave-desert-squeaky-clean/