After incessant rumours, multiple promises, and just as many cancellations, rock veterans Van Halen are finally heading to Australia, and it’s not just for a standard national tour, but to headline a brand new music festival to take place in Sydney this April.

Van Halen will be joining Billy Joel – on his first Australian visit since 2006 – in headlining the inaugural Stone Music Festival to be held over two days at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium, an event that “takes its name and its attitude from the iconic 1974 Ozploitation biker flick, Stone,” according to a press release from organisers and promoters Ardline, which has been put together in the lead up to (and celebration of) Anzac Day.

Festival-goers can also look forward to a special ‘2013 Director’s Cut’ screening of Stone, the cult 1974 bikie flick, each day of the festival, while organisers also not that there is a “new contemporary motion picture production” remake of Stone in the works.

Along with Van Halen and Billy Joel, the Sydney based media company has also roped in Kings of Chaos – a heavy rock supergroup that includes Guns N’ Roses/Velvet Revolver members Matt Sorum, Duff McKagan, and Gilby Clarke, Def Leppard vocalist Joe Elliott, original Skid Row member Sebastian Bach, and members of Deep Purple, and Billy Idol’s band.

Other acts on the two day festival lineup include Buckcherry, Richie Ramone, Lifehouse, and Illumination Road, but the biggest coup is managing to score Van Halen for their first Australian tour in 25 years.

It’s quite the achievement that the small Sydney-based Ardline Media has scored Van Halen exclusively for the headline performance at a brand new music festival

Following on from the release of their latest studio album, A Different Kind of Truth – the band’s twelfth in their forty-year career, fans have been clamouring for an Australian visit. Particularly ever since ‘Diamond’ David Lee Roth and the Van Halen family pulled the plug on their September 2011 appearance as headliners for Soundwave’s Revolution Festival, but unfortunately their supposed in-fighting brought the event to a miserable end.

The rumours persisted however, originally whispers came of a Van Halen tour in February 2012 then again for an August/September visit, then talks with two promoters for a touted October visit, which was eventually shelved.

It’s quite the achievement that the small Sydney-based Ardline Media has scored Van Halen exclusively for the headline performance at a brand new music festival, especially given their current artist roster is a small pool of local bands, and this is their first step into the savage festival market. A market that has seen the collapse of music events from much larger, more experienced companies let alone smaller groups with high ambitions.

Hip hop events have been the most notrious, with Heatwave festival withering away amidst financial struggles and going belly-up, and Supafest owing $2 Million in debts to creditors (and still planning a 2013 return); then Raggamuffin canned its Australian leg, echoing the cancellation of its 2012 edition.

At least Stone Music Festival has already gotten further than another festival start-up, the charity event One Great Night On Earth, which quietly folded before even announcing its “dream lineup” that they boasted would sell over 100,000 tickets in a few short months.

Given Van Halen’s patchy history with committing to Australian visits does place some concerns over Stone Music Festival, especially banking on a one-off headline show from a band that has cancelled on much bigger promoters with bigger budgets.

But despite the potential risks of launching a virgin music festival in today’s climate, where many have crumbled before they’ve even begun under far less ambitious aims (2011′s music event death toll should be a stark reminder); when the dust settles, the addition of new blood to Australia’s live music scene is always welcome.

Stone Music Festival 2013 Lineup

Saturday, 20 April 2013


Sunday, 21 April 2013


Stone Music Festival 2013 Dates & Tickets

Saturday 20th April and Sunday 21st April, 2013

Gates open: 11.00am
All Ages event
Tickets on sale from 12 noon – Thursday, 21 February, 2013

Visa, Ticketek and ANZ Stadium Members pre-sales commence from 12 noon Monday 18th February
–to- 11.00am, Thursday 21st February, 2013
* All times AEDST

Tickets available online from, and all Ticketek outlets or phone 132 849

Ticket Prices (all including GST but exclusive of Transaction and Credit Card fees):

Arena GA Standing and GA Seating:
Single Day – $179.00
Two Day Package – $319.00

Platinum Zone (GA Standing):
Single Day – $279.00
Two Day Package – $429.00

2013 STONE Run:

Official Premium Ticket & Hotel Packages or 1300 414 697

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