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Thursday, July 24, 2014 
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Chatting With ATP's Barry Hogan

The Los Angeles version of the "All Tomorrow's Parties" (ATP) music festival, which was originally set for June 18-22, has been rescheduled for September 26-28 due to poor ticket sales. This is the first major setback for the otherwise successful and innovative alternative music festival, which debuted in 2001 at the Camber Sands Holiday center in England, curated by Tortoise. Last year, founder/director Barry Hogan held festivals in both England (curated by Shellac) and Los Angeles (Sonic Youth). This year he's going for a trio of them. Already, he's scored with a UK event, curated by Autechre, that took place in April; in addition to ATP L.A., which "Simpsons" creator Matt Groening is curating, a New York event, curated by Stephen Malkmus, will take place in September. The other day Neumu's Nicole Cohen questioned Hogan via email about the ATP festivals, including the problematic L.A. event.

Nicole Cohen: I understand the June ATP L.A. festival has been postponed until September. What happened? Was there a problem with ticket sales?

Barry Hogan: Yes, they were slow; a lot of the bands scheduled to play the event ended up touring around it, and the fans from other towns could see most of the bands in the local venues. And unlike last year, this lineup did not boast exclusive performances from acts like Television or Big Star. I really dug the lineup this year, but perhaps I am at fault for not securing more exclusive acts to the bill. Some have criticized it as third-rate, but most of them couldn't book a taxi, let alone a music festival.

Cohen: What adjustments to the organization/planning of the festival do you plan to make in order to ensure the September event takes place? Are you going to sign on bigger artists to make it work?

Hogan: We are going to parade naked around Hollywood with ATP flags wrapped around our genitals and hope that people notice our endearing plea for people to come. No, seriously, we are going to a stronger lineup and make attractive additions to the event.

Cohen: Why is UCLA not the venue for this year's festival, as it was last year?

Hogan: Because the UCLA venues were not right for the event and UCLA is controlled by too much red tape that makes an event like ATP hard to work on,

Cohen: Will Matt Groening still be curating the September event? What has been his reaction to the postponement?

Hogan: Yes, MG is curating the September event. He was very disappointed and frustrated like we were, but he has enough faith that the revised event will work out to be great success.

Cohen: Have the same bands scheduled to appear at June's event agreed to perform at September's event? Who in particular has confirmed?

Hogan: Yes. Mission of Burma, The Boredoms, The Magic Band, Throwing Muses, Daniel Johnston — there are plenty more, but they are just checking their schedules

Cohen: Will people who bought tickets for June be refunded their money, or given replacement tickets?

Hogan: The tickets they have purchased are still valid for the revised date; however, if they decide to seek a refund, they are more than entitled to, and will receive them at the point of purchase.

Cohen: Why do you think ticket sales were slow this year? Do you think the price of the passes contributed, and will the prices be reconsidered for the fall event?

Hogan: Why, do you think they were expensive? We may look at a cheaper option for day tickets

Cohen: Do you think it is too much to stage an ATP festival in England, L.A., and New York, in terms of focus and ensuring the event's success?

Hogan: No, I think L.A. can work. If we deliver a suitable lineup and make it attractive, then people will come. L.A. is full of people who are all about the lineup, and one guy keeps telling me that L.A. is spoilt for choice, that there are all these bands playing every night of the week. He needs to get off his crack pipe, because the L.A. music scene is not very exciting, and that was one of the ideas of bringing ATP to L.A. They make out that bands like The Boredoms play every night. I lived in L.A. for a year and went to about three gigs, so I am thinking these people should appreciate that they will never see a collection of bands like this in one place at the same time again. I like the idea of the event "This Ain't No Picnic," as that has a similar ethos to ATP and delivers decent lineups, but the whole idea is that the lineup is not something picked by morons at MTV who jack off to Korn.

Cohen: I have read that your intention when developing ATP was to create an artist-curated alternative music festival. Why the emphasis on the "artist"? What did you imagine an artist would bring to the band selection that a promoter, critic, or other type of producer would not?

Hogan: Because artists are generally more creative than promoters or critics, and I thought how fresh and different each event would be if the acts were selected by someone different every time. It also can be really challenging if one would experiment with the boundaries by inviting curators from different musical genres. No one will repeat the formula and be as adventurous as we were by inviting Shellac last year and Autechre this year. Not unless they enjoy playing Russian roulette.

ATP is a gamble at times, but I am willing to take chances to push this event into opening up people's minds — I now realize L.A. needs a different approach, and next time around we aim to surprise our harshest critics.

Cohen: I understand you are sensitive to not growing the festivals too large, keeping them a manageable and comfortable size. What is the ideal size of a great music festival experience, in your opinion? Do you plan to create more ATP events around the U.S./world?

Hogan: I like the idea of ATP being a festival of 3,000-4,000 because it becomes more personal and intimate. There is nothing wrong with bigger festivals but those events are so big they lose touch with their fans. I am merely commenting on the events in the UK, because I have never attended a big U.S. festival, but Glastonbury is a horrible experience where soap-dodging crusties all harp on about the good vibes, but the truth is, it is a poorly organized mecca for shitheads. There isn't good vibes there at all, just obscene toilet facilities, overpriced beer, bad food and an huge underbelly of violence and drugs. Perhaps some folks dig that, but that is not my bag. ATP is about a diverse but challenging lineup, selected by a creative artist or band.

Cohen: The name of the festival — "All Tomorrow's Parties" — comes from a song by the Velvet Underground. Why was that song title chosen?

Hogan: It's a great song, and off one of the greatest albums ever. The idea is the festival is all about music of tomorrow — music that will stand the test of time and will not be throwaway music like The Strokes, who will probably cease to exist in two years. I am not too sure the track "Heroin" would have caught on as well, so ATP it was. — [Tuesday, June 10, 2003]


Alejandro Escovedo's Joyous Rebirth

John Vanderslice Kicks Genre

Paul Duncan's Elusive Pop

Stephen Yerkey's Wandering Songs

French Kicks Complete 'Two Thousand'

Spazzy Romanticism: Love Story In Blood Red

Brain Surgeons NYC Rock The Big Questions

Jarboe's 'Men' Charts Turbulent Emotions

Delta 5's Edgy Post-Punk Resurrected

Blitzen Trapper Spiff Things Up

Minus Five: Booze, Betrayal, Bibles and Guns

New Compilation Spotlights Forgotten Folk Guitar Heroes

Chris Brokaw's Experiment In Pop

Old And New With Death Vessel

Silver Jews: Salvation And Redemption

Jana Hunter's Beautiful Doom

Vashti Bunyan Finds Her Voice Again

Nick Castro's Turkish Folk Delight

Katrina Hits New Orleans Musicians Hard

Paula Frazer's Eerie Beauty

The National Find Emotional Balance

Death Cab For Cutie's New Album, Tour

Heavy Trash's Rockabilly Rampage

Help The Wrens Get Their Albums Released!

Devendra Banhart, Andy Cabic Launch Label

Lydia Lunch's Noir Seductions

Bosque Brown's The Real Deal

PDX Pop Now! Fest Announces Lineup

Sarah Dougher Starts Women-Focused Label

Jennifer Gentle's Joyful Psyche

Mountain Goat Darnielle Gets Autobiographical With 'Sunset Tree'

Mia Doi Todd's Beautiful Collaboration

Return of the Gang of Four

Martha Wainwright Finds Her Voice

Brian Jonestown Massacre's Acid Joyride

Solo Disc Due From Pixies' Frank Black

Heartless Bastards' Big-Hearted Rock

Mike Watt's Midlife Journey

The Black Swans Balance Old And New

Nicolai Dunger's Swedish Blues

The Insomniacs' Hard-Edged Pop

Yo La Tengo Collection Due

Juana Molina's 'Homemade' Sound

Beans Evolves

Earlimart's Songs Of Loss

Devendra Banhart's 'Mosquito Drawings'

Negativland Rerelease 'Helter Stupid'

Alina Simone Transforms The Ordinary

Sounds From Nature: Laura Veirs

Octet's Fractured Electric Pop

Sleater-Kinney Working With Lips Producer

The Cult Of Silkworm

The Evolution Of The Concretes

Devendra Banhart's Exuberant New Songs

Catching Up With The Incredible String Band

Gram Rabbit's Desert Visions

Three Indie-Rock Stars Unite As Maritime

Remembering Johnny Ramone

Jarboe's Many Voices

Phil Elvrum's Long Hard Winter

First U.S. Release For Vashti Bunyan Album

Incredible String Band To Tour U.S.

New Music From Lydia Lunch

Le Tigre Protest The Bush War Presidency

Joel RL Phelps: Bleak Songs Rock Hard

Time Tripping With Galaxie 500

Patti Smith Wants Bush Out!

Sharron Kraus: A New Kind Of Folk Music

The Fiery Furnaces' Psychedelic Theater

Harder, Heavier Burning Brides

Sonic Youth's Ongoing Experiment

The Dt's Do It Their Way

Poster Children Cover Political Rock

Rare Thelonious Monk Recordings Due

Uneasy Pop From dios

Beck, Lips, Waits Cover Daniel Johnston

Understanding Franz Ferdinand

The Truly Amazing Joanna Newsom

Mylab's Boundary-Crossing Experiments In Sound

Have You Heard Jolie Holland Whistle?

The 'Magical Realism' Of Vetiver

The Restless, Rootsy Songs Of Eszter Balint

The Sun Sets On The Blasters

Devendra Banhart To Tour U.S.

The East/West Fusion Sounds Of Macha

Destroyer Gets Mellow For Your Blues

TV On The Radio Get Political

Sonic Youth, Modest Mouse To Play Lollapalooza 2004

New Music From The Fall

Apocalyptic Sound From The Intelligence

Fast And Rude With The Casual Dots

'Rejoicing' With Devendra Banhart

New Album, Tour From The Polyphonic Spree

Shearwater Take Wing

Sleater-Kinney To Tour East/West Coasts

Resurrecting Rocket From The Tombs

Visqueen Want To Get A Riot Goin' On

Lloyd Cole Makes A Commotion

Funkstörung's 'Cut-Up' Theory

Waiting For Mirah's C'mon Miracle

Electrelane Find Their Voice

The Television Is Still On!

Experimental Sounds From Hannah Marcus

The Ponys Play With Rayguns

Ex-Mono Men Leader Returns With The Dt's

Mountain Goats' Darnielle Adopts A More Hi-Fi Sound

Sun Kil Moon To Tour U.S., Europe

Nothin' But The Truth From The Von Bondies

Sultans Survive 'Shipwreck'

Sebadoh Reunite For Spring Tour

Xiu Xiu's 'Reality' Rock

Meet The Patients

Beth Orton, M. Ward Make Sadness Taste Sweet

Oneida's Pathway To Ecstasy

Radiohead, Pixies, Dizzee Rascal To Play Coachella

Young People Tour Behind War Prayers

Pixies Tour Dates Announced

Ani DiFranco Tells It Like It Is

Deerhoof Back For 2004 With Milkman

McLusky Set To 'Bring On The Big Guitars' Again

Pixies Reunite For U.S., European Tours

American Music Club, Decemberists To Play NoisePop 2004

Damien Rice Set To Tour U.S.

The Frames Accept Your Love

Punk Rock's A-Frames To Re-Record Third Album

Finally! Mission Of Burma Record New Album

A Solo Detour For Ladybug Transistor's Sasha Bell

Return Of The Old 97's

Spending The Night With Damien Rice

Tindersticks Reissues Due This Spring

The Evolution Of 'A Silver Mt. Zion'

Neil Young Rocks Australia With 'Greendale'

Poster Children Back In Action

'The Great Cat Power Disaster Of 2003'

Chicks On Speed's Subversive Strategies

Oranger At A Crossroad

Peaches On Tour And In Control

Jawbreaker's Complete Dear You Sessions To Be Released

Belle & Sebastian + Trevor Horn = Sunny Pop Nirvana

Von Bondies' Pawn Shoppe Heart

Descendents Are Back!

Modest Mouse Touring; Album Due in 2004

London Suede Take A (Permanent?) Break

Saul Williams Wants You To Think For Yourself

The 'Zen' Sound Of Calexico

Elliott Smith Dead AT 34

Debut Due From Mark Kozelek's Sun Kil Moon

The Hunches: Music That'll 'Fucking Live Forever'

Vic Chesnutt Speaks His Mind

90 Day Men Cancel Tour

Keith Jarrett, Cecil Taylor Highlight SF Jazz Festival

For My Morning Jacket, It's The Music That Matters

EP Due From The Polyphonic Spree

Bright Eyes, Neva Dinova Collaborate On EP

The Rise & Fall & Rise Of Ben Lee

Catching Up With Cheerfully Defiant Tricky

Hanging Around With The Polyphonic Spree

Sophomore Album Due From The Shins

Noise Rock From Iceland's Singapore Sling

Death Cab To Tour U.S.

Rufus Wainwright's Want One Is 'Family Affair'

Death Cab's Transatlanticism On The Way

Heartfelt Rock From Sweden's Last Days Of April

The Minus 5 Get Down With Wilco

Tywanna Jo Baskette's Southern-Gothic Rock

Xiu Xiu's Stewart Takes On 'Gay-bashing'

Portishead Producer Resurfaces Behind New Diva

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Wire, Primal Scream On Buddyhead Comp

Yeah Yeah Yeahs To Tour West Coast

Sonic Youth, Erase Errata Kick Off 'Buddy Series'

The Locust Are One Scary Band

Damien Rice In The 'Here And Now'

Remembering Karp's Scott Jernigan

ATP-NY Postponed 'Til At Least 2004

The Soul Of Chris Lee

Gits' Frenching The Bully To See Re-Release

Stephen Malkmus Is In Control

Superchunk To Release Rarities Set; Teenage Girls To Swoon As A Result

Summer Touring For The Gossip

Babbling On About Deerhoof

Irish Song Poet Damien Rice's O Released In U.S.

Chatting With ATP's Barry Hogan

Former Digable Planets Frontman Surfaces With Cherrywine

ATP L.A. Festival Rescheduled For Fall

Freakwater's Janet Bean Takes A Solo Turn

Lee's 'Cool Rock'

Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs Highlight YES NEW YORK

Mark Romanek's 'Hurt' Revives Johnny Cash's Career

The Rapture's Post-Punk, Post-Dance Sound

R.E.M., Wilco, Modest Mouse Highlight Bumbershoot Fest

Set Fires To Flames' Sleep-Deprivation Sound

Southern Gothic Past Shadows Verbena's La Musica Negra

The Subtle Evolution Of Yo La Tengo

Spring Tour For Jolie Holland (Plus A Live Album)

Liz Phair Still Pushing The Limits

Gold Chains Wants You To Dance And Think

Young People's War Prayers On The Way



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