The Gorge‘s big Memorial Day event, End Of The Rainbow, was the early summertime festival that was supposed to be the next big thing. The Live Nation-hosted festival, which was supposed to replace Sasquatch on May 24-25, had a high-powered billing with Bassnectar, GRiZ, Lil Uzi Vert, STS9, and many more headlining the event.
But when Live Nation sent out e-mails to ticket buyers late last evening, would-be attendees were riddled with as much shock and dismay as they were with questions. Why would a “too-big-to-fail” company like Live Nation be canceling 60 days out from an event? Was Bassnectar the key artist that backed up? After all, the event was being framed as his event with a dual night performance.
“Due to unforeseen complications and key artist cancellations, we have been forced to reschedule,” said Live Nation in an e-mailed statement. “We will promptly refund all tickets…while we work to schedule a new date.”
Fans then immediately took to Twitter to express their frustrations, mainly monetary complaints that ranged from airline flight cancellations to third-party ticket buyers potentially being scammed out of hundreds of dollars. The @FestiveOwl even reached out to Bassnectar for a statement, spurring speculation over a conflict of interest between his Coachella booking in April, particularly because of AEG‘s onerous radius clauses for booked artists.
Coachella has strict contractual guidelines for artists that they cannot book any North American Festival from mid-December into early May, and the guidelines are even stricter for all West Coast events. While a Bassnectar booking may have very well been in the legal parameters of AEG and Goldenvoice’s radius clause, it does raise eyebrows at the ongoing contentious relationship between two of the country’s most antagonistic live music conglomerates. After all, the two are constantly bringing forth public lawsuits against one another… so an AEG booking in April and a Line Nation booking in May isn’t exactly a good look. This is mere media speculation insofar as no one really knows what goes on behind closed doors. But one thing is certain: People need answers.
Read the full statement below and join the fan forum discussion here.