Sunday, May 30, 2010

B.O.M.B. Fest 2010 exclusive interview with Frank Bombaci

Sunday, May 30 2010:

Durham Fairgrounds
Durham, CT

$60 ($50 advance), 12 Noon doors (Gates open at 10:30am)

Frank Bombaci Sr took the time out of his ultra-busy schedule to answer a few questions from us about the upcoming B.O.M.B. Fest. The key thing is that Frank is an intensely enthusiastic and positive person, qualities that his son Frank Jr shares as well. B.O.M.B. Fest and Bring Our Music Back could never happen without that kind of energy. But it's also the cooperation that matters. It's nice to see that Connecticut's generally Balkanized music scene is finally getting its shit together. Because, let's face it, anything like B.O.M.B. Fest also needs a show-going community, and it's here, and it's about bloody time.

Read on:

CT INDIE: How did you get started doing B.O.M.B. Fest? Did you have a background in concert promotion?

FRANK BOMBACI: The concept of B.O.M.B. Fest (Bring Our Music Back) started with my son Frank Jr who just finished his freshman year at Loyola University as a music business major. He wanted to produce a music festival for his senior project in high school. The concept was to unite undiscovered local talent with national acts - touching all musical genres in a professionally produced concert with all net proceeds being donated to charity. Last year’s event was put together in six weeks with Say Anything and the Cool Kids headlining the show - 6 national acts and 11 local acts. The weather did not cooperate but the music and the people were amazing and everyone had an incredible time and we raised 30K with proceeds donated to charity including the Make a Wish Foundation.

C: Thinking about last year's fest compared to this year's, did you come away from last year's wanting to change anything and/or build upon it?

F: Last year’s festival taught us a lot, especially that Connecticut needs a festival like this - music that is young and fresh - incredible non-commercialized national acts and amazing local artists that need a voice. We wanted to start a new tradition taking our concept and advancing the festival to a whole new level! It is our intent to put Connecticut on the national festival scene. For this year and into the future, we found a great partner in the Durham Fair - the site is amazing, right in the center of Connecticut, and the site will be transformed into a festival village with four stages featuring 13 national and 35 local artists - 11 hours of nonstop music and free rides. We wanted to create fun for all, have great food, and have all types of crafters creating a really cool atmosphere to enjoy Memorial Day weekend with family and friends!

C: What are some of the main things that you hope to achieve with this year's fest?

F: The most important thing we hope to achieve is really establishing our mission and organization Bring Our Music Back, Inc. ( We are a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing life and healing through music, or as we call it "music with purpose". We truly believe that music and art have healing properties and can really help lift the spirit! No one in our organization profits from any of our productions. All the net proceeds from our events are donated to charities and organizations who advance life and healing through music or provide artists education and inspiration to our youth. So many music and art programs are being cut or eliminated in our school systems, which is tragic. Music therapy programs do amazing things to lift spirits and hope for so many people throughout the nation, and here in our own state who need our help. Just watching the results that music can have in lifting the spirit - smiling faces and tapping feet - is all the inspiration I need!
Our charities this year are:
The Hole In The Wall Gang Camps
The Connecticut Children's Hospital
YPI Camp for music and art development

C: Did you look to other festivals, such as Coachella, as inspiration?

F: Frank Jr and I have looked at and attended many festivals all around the country. Things we looked at were layout, look and feel, the overall experience, and purpose, if any, outside of just a commercial effort. One such example is Voodoo Fest in New Orleans. Overall the festival has a great location in a city park, great look and feel, but had a very overpriced and lousy VIP experience. We have tried our best to make the B.O.M.B. Fest an overall fantastic experience - unique, fun, and one that will make fans want more! Our VIP package blows away most festivals that I have been to!

C: How were you able to get such a killer lineup together?

F: Putting a lineup together is a real challenge especially for a new festival and independent one like ours. We had to fight for credibility and were very fortunate to have two really good middle agents working with us - Pretty Polly Productions and Howling Wolf Productions. We start out with two want lists - headliners and support acts. Then we go through the process of availability and cost to make an overall talent budget work. Frank Jr is amazing with his talent knowledge and putting together a great mix to touch on multiple music genres. Local bands start submitting their music months in advance - there is tremendous undiscovered talent out there and we want to give them a voice and opportunity to play a festival like this. We have an incredible lineup of local and regional talent! To that end we already have over 60 submissions for next year’s show.

C: There must be a ton of people that you'd like to thank for their help in making this festival possible. Who are they and what were some of their contributions?

F: We are very fortunate to have a really dedicated and passionate team to make an event like this happen. There are too many to mention all (but I love them all) but without the contributions of Gail Stevens our executive director and glue to the organization, Peter Smith our production manager who is amazing and really knows how to pull the details together, and Andrea Anderson our events manager who makes sure that everyone has a great experience, this show would never have happened. And of course our partnership with the Durham Fair organization - they have an incredible team of professionals headed up by Gene Chiappetta and Debbie Waz, and the beautiful town of Durham, CT, and their terrific town officials. Without this amazing venue we would not have the great vibe we want to deliver to our attendees. This has been a great partnership and it what will make B.O.M.B Fest the special event it will be rain or shine!

The humongous lineup includes:

Lupe Fiasco
Of Montreal
Girl Talk
30 Seconds to Mars
Mute Math
The Cool Kids
Roots of Creation
Christine Olhman & Rebel Montez
40oz to Freedom
Quintron and Miss Pussycat

Plus local/regional stages with:

1st Class, Alabama Black Smoke, Anna Lennard, Aquaforce, Citylark , Clarias, Contagious Collective, Dan Stevens, Distoria, Do I Dare?, Dr Rocktapus and the Nunks, DS@STR, Edison, EULA , Fugue , G-EAZY, Greg Strong, Kate Manatee, LOLHS Select Singers, M.T. Bearington, Parabellum, Patter Cubs, Pie Boys Flat, Raina Mullen, sayWHAT?, Skyfactor, Sleeping Lessons, Sounds in Silence, States Away, Sun Hotel, The Band Eclypse, The Energy, The Land of Dreams, The Shills, The Tawny 12

Head on over to the B.O.M.B. Fest website for plenty more details.

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