LOVELIFEST 2017: A Malaysian music festival
I remember my very first music festival experience outside of Malaysia. It was a hot sunny summer in Chicago and I was performing my very first festival set there, at the Lollapalooza. I still couldn't believe it. I remember being on stage and thinking 'I can't believe Florence and the Machine is performing right now too..'. After I was done with my set, I packed my stuff, and started running around the festival site to catch some of my favourite artists performances.
Then, came Coachella in 2014. I had the opportunity to perform with Adventure Club, we had made 2 songs together and I was invited to perform at the Sahara tent, it was amazing! I try to go to Coachella when I can since it's not that far from LA and they usually have really great lineup.
I was in my office in Subang Jaya with my cousin Wawa (also my partner), we run the company together since we were only 21 years old. We had just signed a wonderful electronic duo called Pastel Lite, and they were in the studio recording. "What do you want to do for your 10th year anniversary?" Wawa asked, typing away in her computer. Wow. 10 years? Has it been that long? "I don't know." I said. "Maybe a concert? Another concert." Not that I'm not fond of organizing yet another independent concert for myself in Kuala Lumpur, I just get really bored of doing the same sit down show, performing at the theatre where my audience are just on their seats, either singing along or falling asleep. "Maybe.. let's make it a show where I can perform with Hujan, OCK and everybody else."
Local Malaysian rock bands Hujan and OCK (OhChentaku) started their music career around the same time I started in 2008 when the indie music scene in Malaysia started coming up. We've been friends for a long time and gone through a lot together, Malaysian music industry is really small, and back in those days, it was like a community college, with a bunch of kids who just did their own recordings at home and printed their own albums for their fans. We were one of the pioneers, a generation of musicians who didn't take the major label deals, instead, created our own scene where we could make and sell the music that we wanted, sell our own merch, set up our own shows - all without men in suits taking a huge cut from our hardwork. And we were only 21-23. It was incredible.
Wawa came up with a brilliant idea. "Let's make a music festival then." My face lit up. YES! LETS DO IT.
And so, we created Lovelifest. It took us about 5 months to put all of it together. Thank goodness we had an incredible team. Everything and everyone we met, were super supportive of the festival. Many liked the idea that it was an alcohol-free festival, parents with small kids were excited to come. And sponsors wanted to be a part of it. We partnered up with Joox Malaysia, a music streaming app that is becoming popular in the country, and they streamed the concert live on their app on that day. Other sponsors include Uber, Uniqlo, Suka Sucre cafe.. it was amazing.
We had an amazing line-up, all home grown bands. Some have been in the industry for 20 years, some for only 2, but they all put up a great show!
Here are some of the photos from the event. Thank you all for purchasing the tickets to our little festival! I was so tired, but it was worth it. I hope you guys had fun!