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New McGee-backed Tokyo music festival cancelled

By | Published on Tuesday 2 April 2013

Tokyo Rocks

A new Japanese festival called Tokyo Rocks has been cancelled just over a month before kick off, likely leaving many European fans saddled with flights and hotels they no longer require.

The event was being staged by a local promoter called Takashi Yano, but won worldwide attention thanks to the involvement of a certain Alan McGee who put together a line-up which included Creation alumni Primal Scream and My Bloody Valentine, alongside other Western acts like Blur, Carl Barat and The Brian Jonestown Massacre.

Milking the McGee connection (especially after the one time Creation chief announced that his involvement in the festival had left him plotting a full-on return to the music business), Tokyo Rocks was promoted heavily to a UK and European audience. But this weekend the whole show was called off, with an official statement, available in Japanese only, citing “management problems”.

What exactly those problems were is not currently known, though some have speculated that poor ticket sales or other financial issues may have had an impact. Meanwhile some in the Japanese music industry say the collapse of the event doesn’t come as a surprise to them, they having raised concerns about Yano’s ability to stage a festival of this size when it was first announced last year.

It’s not clear what impact the cancellation will have on the Western acts booked to play. Yano did reportedly boast on Facebook recently that his headline acts had been paid upfront in full, which was an odd update for a festival promoter to provide his ticket buyers, but typical of the Tokyo Rocks man’s social media ramblings, it seems.

If true, that means the bigger names on the line-up will be unaffected financially, though smaller acts, service providers and backers could lose out. And while ticket refunds are promised (or, if they fail to materialise, may be accessible via credit card companies), those aforementioned Western music fans who made arrangements to travel to Japan for the event will still be out of pocket.

As yet McGee hasn’t commented on the cancellation. It will be interesting to see what effect the latest development has on the Creation man’s relationship with Yano, and his plans to relaunch Creation.