Paul Tollett—the proprietor of live performance promotion firm Goldenvoice and co-founder of Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival—has spoken to the Los Angeles Times’s Steve Appleford in a uncommon, intensive interview about Kanye West, the pageant’s sexual harassment difficulty, AEG’s Philip Anschutz, the radius clause, and extra. Tollett started with the circumstances behind Justin Timberlake and Kanye West’s abrupt exit from the recently announced 2019 lineup shortly earlier than its public reveal. (It was reported that Ariana Grande and Tame Impala changed them as headlining acts). According to Tollett, Timberlake needed to drop out because of bruised vocal cords, whereas Kanye left because of conflicts with stage design.
“He has some great [production] ideas, but we just weren’t able to pull them off right now,” Tollett stated about Kanye. “I’d like to circle back with him and figure out a future plan of what to do with what’s in his head…Up until Jan. 1, we were making a poster with Kanye on it. We started realizing we’re probably going to have an impasse production-wise.”
Later within the interview, Tollett spoke on the acquisition of Goldenvoice by the Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), which introduced Coachella controversy because of AEG proprietor Philip Anshutz’s donations to conservative and anti-LGBTQ organizations. “Most billionaires are Republicans. The billionaire attached to Live Nation is a Republican Trump supporter,” Tollett stated, stating that neither he or Anschutz are Trump supporters. “I run the show 365 days a year, making all the decisions. Anyone who knows me and the Goldenvoice staff, they know we have a very colorful public history.” Tollett continued, mentioning Anschutz’s million-dollar donation to the Elton John AIDS Foundation’s LGBT Fund and the pageant’s “diverse from the beginning” employees.
Tollett was additionally requested about FYF Fest creator Sean Carlson, who was accused of sexual assault and misconduct in 2017. “There were allegations brought to light, and we felt they were credible enough for us to distance ourselves with him.” Goldenvoice partnered with FYF in 2011. Though the corporate’s government committee voted to present “the festival back” to Carlson following their parting, Carlson handed the pageant over to Goldenvoice, who now have full possession of the occasion.
Tollett then talked about Coachella’s controversial radius clause, which restricts the place its acts can carry out earlier than and after the pageant. Last yr, Portland, Oregon’s Soul’d Out Music Festival filed a federal antitrust lawsuit towards Coachella, Goldenvoice, and AEG over the clause. “If you want to play a whole bunch of shows in town, I’m not mad at you. I just don’t have to put you on the [festival],” Tollett stated. “I want something unique and fresh for a 100-day window.”
When Appleford introduced up the criticism Coachella has confronted for not together with sufficient feminine headliners, Tollett stated he agreed and made an effort to vary the discrimination “systemic in the industry”: “Everyone needs to do better.” Tollett then mentioned Coachella’s new initiative to combat sexual harassment and assault, Every One, which was a response to final yr’s report of widespread sexual misconduct on the occasion.
Tollett additionally talked about Beyoncé’s “Beychella” performance, reuniting Guns N’ Roses for Coachella 2016, and the twenty yr anniversary of the pageant. Read the full interview at the Los Angeles Times.
Read “6 Takeaways from the 2019 Coachella Lineup” on the Pitch.