For Rob Hagey, founder and promoter of Street Scene, San Diego’s largest music festival, adding the Beastie Boys to the lineup on July 10 was an unexpected coup. “It was a nice surprise. They fell into our lap after most of the bands were booked,” said Hagey during a July 22 phone interview.
However, ten days after the top-drawing band was added to the schedule, the Beastie Boys announced that they were delaying the release of their upcoming album, Hot Sauce Committee, Part One, and canceling all of their live dates due to group member Adam “MCA” Yauch’s recent cancer diagnosis. Yauch has a treatable “little lump” in his salivary gland, according MCA’s online video announcement (beastieboys.com).
Hagey says that despite an increase in ticket sales during the ten days that the New York hip-hop trio were billed as the headliners, the festival will go on as planned without necessarily getting a comparable act to replace the band.
“We have an offer out to a band to fill the open slot but nothing comparable to the Beastie Boys, and they are not their replacement either,” says Hagey, who was waiting for confirmation at this writing and unable to disclose the name of the band.
Adds Hagey: “We are just going to sell the event as we have it.… It’s a festival, and the lineup is always subject to change. We have just shy of 50 artists. Unfortunately, sometimes these kinds of things happen.”
As for this year’s ticket sales, Hagey says the festival is far from sold out, but he expects sales to increase as the August 28 and 29 weekend approaches.
“San Diego is a laid-back town,” says Hagey. “It’s always been known to be laid back. It drives promoters like me crazy.”