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Photos: Sunset Strip Music Festival Brings Life Back to the Streets
For years, the Sunset Junction Street Festival has been a hub of Los Angeles' music event scene. Now, a few miles down the same street, a new festival--serving up a different kind of music--has appeared and organizers say it's here to stay.
"This was an open party for the strip, almost like a grand re-opening," explained Nic Adler, a Sunset Strip Music Festival organizer and owner of The Roxy. Back in 70s and 80s, the Strip experienced its heyday, putting its name down in music history. These days, it can feel more like a ghost town, prompting venues and local merchants to put their heads together to produce the festival along with the city of West Hollywood.
Organizers estimate that around 10,000 people attended and are ready to grow the audience in future years. "There were many things we took note of to make it a better experience next time," said Adler.
Ozzy Osbourne headlined and some 50 other bands performed during the 12-hour-long event, including KORN, Shwayze, Iglu & Hartley, Kottonmouth Kings, Iration and The Donnas. Two stages were on Sunset Boulevard while four venues--Key Club, Roxy, Cat Club and Whiskey A Go Go--opened their doors up during the day. The Viper Room played host for VIPs and media.
"It was just a great mix of L.A.," Adler said about the line-up. "I felt we just got what we normaly get on the Sunset Strip, just times 10,000... I really loved the SXSW feel, that was something that really worked--seeing people running out of one club and running to another.
Once night settled in, The Roxy and Cat Club stayed open for free, with full houses and lines out the door, until 2 a.m. The other two venues, the Key Club and Whiskey A Go Go, closed doors for paid ticket shows (however, the festival would have been better served if they stayed open for free).
Only one person was arrested for public drunkenness, sheriff's deputies told organizers. Otherwise, the event was peaceful leaving room for fun. And that's what the Strip was and is about: rock n' roll and a great fucking time.