I went out and talked to a variety of people and bands at Warped Tour this year. I also had some fun with some of the artists and had them respond to YouTube comments and, for fun, sing some public domain songs as well. I’ve broken up all of these interviews for your viewing pleasure.
Bands Respond to YouTube Comments
Bands Sing Public Domain Songs
A GoFundMe for Warped Tour’s medic, Travis, has been started:
In the course of his job as a music tour medic, Travis is usually the one to be helping others, keeping them safe and healthy while they are away from home. While on tour in Spring of 2018, he went to the nearest hospital because he was not feeling right. That hospital sent him on his way, telling him he was fine. Unfortunately they missed the cancer that had developed and Travis wasn’t diagnosed until he returned home in the summer. Because of this, he missed valuable treatment time.
It will never not depress me that we live in the richest nation in the history of the world … and people have to crowd fund for medical expenses.
Taylor Telford, writing at The Washington Post:
Overlooking the sins of powerful artists has felt intolerable in the era of #MeToo, but at Warped, taste is tethered to identity, and what comes next for its audience is complicated. The tour has flourished because much of its music is confessional and intimate. It fosters a devotion in the young, marginalized and vulnerable that rarely fades with age. Now fans are wrestling with whether the culture can adapt and evolve, or whether its worst roots run too deep. […]
Until I got to college, I actively disliked female musicians. I was enamored with the myth of the tortured artist; I chased it not only in my taste but also in my personal relationships. Now I wonder if some of these failures can be traced back to the music that shaped me. In part, I want to scrub myself of its influence. The problem is that I wouldn’t know myself without it.
This entire piece is really good. I hope this music scene can learn from the mistakes of the past. Sometimes I see signs of progress, and sometimes I am at a loss for words.
Pennywise closed out the final Warped Tour by playing “Bro Hymn.”
New Found Glory will be playing the last three Warped Tour dates.
The Warped Tour Instagram account let it slip that Blink-182 were supposed to play a surprise show with the tour but had to cancel after Travis’s medical issues.
Chris Payne, writing over at Billboard:
Fall Out Boy and My Chemical Romance played Warped in ‘04 and after drawing fervent crowds, were signed on for the next year early; by the time June ‘05 rolled around, “Sugar, We’re Goin Down” and “Helena” were MTV staples, improbably climbing the Hot 100. 700,000 kids came out that summer, more than any Warped before or since (for context, last year pulled 300,000). Individual bands regularly sold over $30,000 of merch per day. Bodyguards were needed for the first time. At summer’s end, the tour’s profits hit seven figures. But Warped’s summer-long slog paid another price; across 48 shows in 59 days, musicians and personnel grappled with oversized egos, volatile — if not occasionally hostile — environments, and a sideshow’s worth of distractions far from home, with a massive mainstream audience suddenly watching.
Steve Knopper, writing at The New York Times:
The New York Times spoke to 75 women and nonbinary musicians who have performed on the tour, many of whom echoed NPR Music’s Ann Powers, who recently criticized Warped as a “wild boys’ paradise.” Some divulged #MeToo stories; others ripped bands known for making misogynistic remarks onstage.
Mikey Way of My Chemical Romance will be joining Waterparks on a few Warped Tour dates.
I’m sure all of us can remember where we were when we either purchased, or were given from a friend, one of the annual Warped Tour compilation soundtracks. It signified the beginning of the Summer concert season, and another year to look forward to the annual Warped Tour. Now that the Warped Tour is on its last legs, with its final installment coming this Summer, one has to wonder about what will happen to the compilation CD that we have been expecting ever year since 1996.
The history of the compilation CD is a complicated one, much like the changing music industry over the past three decades. During the CD “boom” of the 90’s, it seemed like a ton of music buyers were looking for inexpensive ways to find out about new bands, or to sample tracks from their favorite artists’ upcoming album. The compilation CD was a great way to not only save money by not investing fully in a ton of individual albums, but also to discover artists that you may not have ever considered checking out otherwise.
Senses Fail have announced a few appearances on Warped Tour.
Variety is reporting that Warped Tour’s final run will be filmed for a four-part series on the tour:
“The documentary that we’re putting together is really about the legacy of the tour,” director DJay Brawner tells Variety. “Of course, this year being the final year it’s important for us to capture moments from the culmination, but what we’re really trying to put together is a story about how the tour started and grew over the last 24 years, with all of it culminating with the final day and what that means for this team of people, the future of the brand and everything in between.
The lineup for the final Warped Tour has been announced.
Ahh, it’s almost Warped Tour lineup announcement time. I wonder if the Warped Tour Twitter account is doing some hinting at what kinds of bands will be playing the tour. Let’s check in on how things are going over there:
@blink182 we have the same agent & yet nothing. @therejects we tried, a band member didn’t want to do it @paramore word on the street is they’re doing their own tour @Yellowcard is no longer a band @MCRofficial not reuniting @SayAnythingMuz we’ll look into it!
Ok, interesting way to do this. I wonder what happens if The All American Rejects respond:
pretty sure this isn’t how it went down…pretty sure we were down with y’all paying a few shows…pretty sure we were told 3/4 band members were into it by your agent.
Oh, hmm, well, wonder what they’d say if The Story So Far got a little annoyed about how Warped Tour is hinting toward other band’s tour announcements early:
shall we start to count the times our lineup was leaked from insider information ….and this coming from the band that posted weed during an IG takeover on our account when we specifically asked not to
Oh, things are fine it seems.
Warped Tour will be announcing the lineup for the final tour on March 1st.
Warped Tour is coming to its end in 2018. Billboard has an interview with Kevin Lyman:
Next year, The Vans Warped Tour will ride into the sunset for a final summer’s worth of North American dates. According to producer Kevin Lyman, who founded the fest in 1995, numerous factors — including an evolving summer festival industry, a shrinking pool of bands, and declining ticket sales amongst its teenage demographic — led him to declare the tour’s 24th year its last.
This stood out to me at the end:
Well, that sexual harassment didn’t happen on Warped Tour. If you go through every one of those stories, it didn’t happen on Warped Tour.
I’ve heard from multiple people that this is bullshit.
Warped Your have a launched a survey asking who you’d like to see on the tour next year.
There will not be a UK version of Warped Tour this year.
I recently attended Warped Tour and interviewed a whole bunch of artists. You’ll find links to all of the video interviews below. There’s quite a few!
Shawna Potter, writing at Noisey:
I wish I could laugh it off with some clever joke, like “the Dickies are just boys who are as immature as their name,” but they’re not boys, they’re not immature; they are grown men. And the grown-man lead singer of the Dickies had such a problem with one single woman holding a protest sign during their set (not a group of friends, as he reported), that he threw a tantrum about it.
The anger that erupted in Phillips is always under the surface of men like this, even beneath their onstage characters. They do not like being challenged in any way, especially by women. And they definitely don’t equate their right to free speech with anyone else’s. In fact, they see others’ right to free speech as an affront to their own, and in this case, one to be met with anger and hate. That’s not punk.
This incident highlights one of the often overlooked problems the music industry in general has been plagued with. While recent controversies at Warped have typically revolved around young male performers in their early 20s engaging in predatory behavior, there is a subset of older men, waving the “punk/rock/metal means free speech” flag as an excuse to put others at risk. This seems to always get shrugged off because they’re elder statesmen of the genre and are connected to the right people. But how do you suppose they got that far? At one point they were all young men pushing the limits of what they could get away with, a cycle that repeats itself each time their friends turn a blind eye and victims are silenced or belittled because someone really liked that one song they wrote.
That’s why it’s so important that we call out bad behavior when it happens, especially with our friends, no matter what band they’re in.