Dear all parties involved in the Sunset Junction fiasco,
What the fuck was that? I mean, I am no professional, and I am no politician, and the LA Weekly has not yet hollered at me to bestow my words upon their columns, but as one burned by this mess I feel free to say Jesus, that was obnoxious! All of you are at fault.
City Council members and politician types, your statements in the press sounded like the forced shit my middle school teachers in North Carolina would tell me when they were explaining why I shouldn’t act up in class. “They use our neighborhood so that Coachella in our community can happen.” I mean really? Really Ms. Janet Cunningham, Silver Lake neighborhood council? Now I would stutter less if you lived in let’s say, Birmingham, Alabama (ed. note: although they might not even give a flip). However, you live in Silver Lake, CA. Let me ask you the last time you walked outside for overpriced coffee and didn’t see a dinkus dressed like they were going to a happy fest? Answer me the last time your neighborhood looked like a normal, quiet, let’s not have one weekend of music in our streets type-a-place? You can’t answer that, because it hasn’t, not for a damn long time. You live in one of the most artsy, musicy, fuckin’ dress like you want attention neighborhoods in the WORLD (ed. note: the world is huge).
I get that there were issues with the payment of fees, and to deny a permit based on that is fine. I wasn’t there at the council meeting, so I got only what I read in the LA Times and LA Weekly, but it was enough to get that there were people on that podium whining about the festival’s noise, and traffic, and what it did to the community. To Ms. Cunningham and anyone else who made this cry for attention, let me recommend Asheville, North Carolina as a place of relocation. There you can find an affordable house in the mountains where nobody will come and have Coachella in your community. There you’ll also find a bunch of like minded conservative, church goin’ creatures who’ll love to sit an gripe with you about noise, and young people, and Jesus, always with the Jesus. If you get nostalgic you can always come down off the hill and revisit with the funky-dressin’ folks downtown.
Now, I said at the onset of this letter that I was disappointed in everyone involved, and I am. The Sunset Junction people, only two weeks ago took a check from us for a vendor spot, then another check for a grip of tickets about a week ago. Never once was it mentioned to us that there were maybe issues with the City. Never once was it hinted at that there was permit trouble. Had we known any of this, had we a vague idea that we were writing a check to a company that owed $400,000, do you think that maybe we might have been a little hesitant to give them a decent amount from our very limited bank account? The answer is no. We would have re-thought that tactical play on our business plan.
We didn’t know though. Mr. Michael McKinley (ed. note: festival organizer), nobody in your camp made us aware of that. I wouldn’t have expected it to come from you sir. No, certainly not, as you have a stink trailing off of your name that reeks worse than the collection of bottles and cans that my neighbor piles next to my fucking door every Monday so she can make thirty-bucks. Get the metaphor? What kind of non-profit organization are you that everyone in the community despises you? I’ve never met you, never really knew of you before this week, but to have such visceral skeeviness associated with the reporting and mention of your name when you’re trying to do something that is supposed to benefit children, well that’s both deplorable and ridiculous.
McKinley, you could have flipped the caution switch and given people a heads up that this shit might go down. However we just established that you’re not a stand up character, so you probably wouldn’t have done that when people were still cutting you checks up to a week before. City council, Mayor, Silver Lake Council members, LA Weekly with your up to the minute updates, you’re all guilty of the same. Where were any of you with a heads up? Where were any of you to help out the businesses that you seem so concerned for and the bands who really did nothing to you but make music that you don’t have to listen to? Where were you for all of the working folks and kids who spent their $20.00 to buy tickets in advance? How come if community is such an important part of this equation, did none of you manage to make sure this got handled in somewhat of a decent manner? How come? Why is an acceptable method of sticking it to McKinley to break up the festival at the last minute and leave a shit ton of regular folks minus a lot of money, and a lot of time and effort? It’s not.
I got no answers for how any of this shit works out in the heads of any of y’all that were involved. I know that most people think too much about themselves. I know that fucks up a lot of shit. I also know that this is a done issue, and in the scheme of worldly issues, a minor done issue at that. So that is all I have on it, I hope it fell on an eye or two that it may affect at some juncture in some place at some time, so that maybe someone will hesitate and think a bit more about something that affects other folks. Do what you gotta do, of course, but do it correctly.
As for the Jam Van, our bucket list just got a couple new hash marks. First we’re gonna work on getting our money back from a group that owes $400K to the City. Then once we do get that back, and we will, we’re gonna continue to work towards bringing Bonnaroo to Silver Lake. Because Bonnaroo is way fuckin’ dirtier than Coachella. When Sourthern folk drink PBR it’s because it’s cheap, not because it’s cool.
Keep it heady.
Links for the Day:
– Learn some shit from Weezy (via Complex)
– Sweet Lucinda (via Stereogum)
– I’ll sell out too if I get the chance (via Pitchfork)
– The people that got to watch this are some lucky fucks (via Glide)
– It’s always summer in Venice (via NPR)