Though currently in the thick of putting together Soundwave 2015 with a “little announcement” due later this month, festival promoter AJ Maddah has opened up once more about the Big Day Out.

More specifically, the festival’s downturn in the recent years before Maddah joined last September and the precise moment the Big Day Out “fucked their brand” for good.

“I remember I was driving on the M2 [in Sydney] when I got the call … telling me [the 2012] Big Day Out just put on 2-for-1 tickets for the second Sydney show. And I pulled over on to the shoulder and I was sick. I knew they had just fucked their brand, they had just destroyed the Big Day Out.” The comments come from an interview with The Vine set to be published soon, as FasterLouder reports.

Despite the “ugly” financial losses from this year’s edition, Maddah has already indicated he thinks the Big Day Out is “a brand people will come back to,” admitting that “the event was seriously wobbly” before he purchased his 50% stake into the festival, telling Triple J’s Hack that he “got involved for very selfish reasons … all my happy memories from my childhood are from the Big Day Out, from Livid Festival. It was the one or two days of the year where I could get away from my shitty home life or whatever else.”  “I knew they had just fucked their brand, they had just destroyed the Big Day Out.”

As well as his concerns over the Big Day Out’s tarnished image, other quotes from The Vine’s forthcoming feature with Maddah sees him taking swings at the music media’s portrayal of the music festival business and confirmation of the Big Day Out’s return in 2015, with a reduced ticket price.

Maddah previously labelled the 2014 edition’s $185 price tag as “ridiculous” and “just insane;” he plans to rectify the situation for 2015 “with a $150-$160 ticket. Rather than a $190 ticket.”

The Big Day Out/Soundwave promoter also went into further detail about Blur’s high-profile cancellation after previously telling Triple J that in-fighting was to blame for the Britpop headliners pulling out. “The other three [Blur] members were desperate to come out… Essentially Damon cancelled the tour.”

He further iterates in the new interview that though the band were to be paid around $5 million for their appearance, their cancellation “wasn’t for financial reasons” but due to bickering while on tour. “There’s no financial reason for it, and the fact [is] that the band [were] having fisticuffs on tour in South America. And that’s why they cancelled the tour because they don’t want to see each other,” he says.

“Damon [Albarn] has a solo record coming out. The other three members were desperate to come out. You know, Graham [Coxon, Blur guitarist] and the other guys wanted to do it. Essentially Damon cancelled the tour.”

Albarn himself recently opened up about the cancellation, revealing the Big Day Out shows were “going to be the last Blur show[s] … [I] was genuinely concerned that the whole [Big Day Out] thing wouldn’t be quite as spiritually conclusive as we hoped it would be, because we weren’t sure if the organisation was quite right, or supportive of our ambitions.”

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