Rock gods bless Westfest
Soundgarden, Judas Priest and Faith No More are coming to Auckland next month thanks to the efforts of a 23-year-old music promoter and his team.
The headlining acts include some of the biggest names in rock and metal music and will be performing at the music festival Westfest.
Other popular acts include Fall Out Boy, Frenzal Rhomb and Lamb of God.
It is being put together by West Aucklander Olly Martin and his team at ODR Productions.
Martin and a business partner set up the business in 2006 when they were playing in a band in Palmerston North as teenagers.
‘‘Being in a band you are a promoter of five or six people. There’s always that person who takes control and organises people – gets them from A to B. Perhaps I’m not good at it but I’ve always done it,’’ he says.
He enjoys promoting more than playing music and he says it is very rewarding work
‘‘It’s not so much the money at all. It’s literally the more effort you put in the more you get back. If you push something really hard then you can see the rewards.’’
He began promoting small ‘‘grass-roots shows’’ but business began picking up in 2013 when ODR promoted the band All Time Low, which played a sold-out show at the Powerstation.
It was also around that time the idea for the festival took shape. The inaugural Westfest was held last year at Vector Arena.
Well-known bands Korn, Rob Zombie and Megadeath played to more than 10,000 people.
Martin is able to secure the big name acts by ‘‘piggy-backing’’ on the Australian music festival Soundwave.
He says the bands are already in the area so without too much effort or expense they make the trip to New Zealand as well.
Martin was encouraged by the Facebook page Bring Soundwave to New Zealand, which is followed by more than 9500 people.
He saw the demand for it and had built up enough contacts in the music industry to go ahead and do it.
‘‘We thought ‘ why not?’ People want it, so we took a crack at it and it seems to be doing OK.’’
While trying to decide on a name, he laughed with his business partner that it would predominantly be West Aucklanders attending because of the metal and rock line-up.
It was also originally planned for The Trusts Arena in Henderson. They moved it to Vector Arena because they needed a bigger venue and now it is off to Mt Smart Stadium as they always intended it to be an outdoors festival.
But the name and brand of the festival has stuck. He says a better name for it might be SouthWestfest as a large number of ticket sales are from the South Island.
Go to centralleader.co.nz and click on Latest Edition to see headlining act Soundgarden play
Young promoter: Olly Martin, 23, is one of the main people behind the alternative music festival Westfest which is bringing big name acts to New Zealand.