Music festivals are one of the best things in the world. If you read this blog regularly, you probably agree with this statement 100%.
But nobody has bottomless pockets or unlimited free time to attend every single live music event there is in Australia. And if you’re after some stats on legendary events from the past, there isn’t always one place online with this sort of info.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a page compiling all of it together? ‘That Festival Site’ is exactly that type of database.
Just so we’re clear: sure you can find all this information in other places.
For starters, there’s a pretty exhaustive list of Aussie festivals on Wikipedia. Music bloggers often drop articles about worthwhile live music events Down Under. Entertainment platforms/apps gather some basic info as well. And there’s an excellent resource dedicated to the promotion of festivals in Oz called Music Festivals Australia.
So how’s ‘That Festival Site‘ different then?
Well, for starters, it’s a list of live music events past, present and future. So not only will you find out about what’s going on in Oz this winter or in the upcoming summer festival season. You can also browse historic events.
And that’s the part that speaks to me – a music geek – the most. There are 19,000 artists listed on the site, and 30 years of live music are documented. That’s enough to keep me occupied for a good few weeks.
Take the above screenshots, for instance.
Falls Festival (the left screen grab) happens at the turn of the year in a few locations (it used to be four of them, but Tassie was dropped, and some current sites are also new). To say that it’s one of the Aussie live music events you want to visit before you die is an understatement. Called the “Music And Camping New Year Festival”, it has a massive line-up every year and draws huge crowds, regardless of the location.
If you hover over the artist breakdown graph at the bottom of the event’s overview page, you’ll see there have been a few years when more local than international acts have performed at Falls, even before the pandemic. That’s something I want to see more of in the future, for instance.
On the other hand, Big Day Out was one of the coolest festival brands in the history of live music Down Under. Sadly, after a super successful over 20-year-run, it was cancelled in 2014. But thanks to ‘That Festival Site’, you can see the impact it had on the local scene.
There’s a “Hall of Fame” breakdown of the artists that played it most frequently. Also, it’s interesting how ticket prices evolved during the time it was active. And if you click on the year that interests you, you’ll be redirected to more detailed info on that specific edition with heaps more in-depth stats. Pretty awesome, right?
That same principle applies to every event on the page. And there are around 95 of them there. Although it’s not rocket science to request all that info from organisers, for example, it’s still an impressive collection, presented in a palatable way (for stats, I mean).
The event search is not the only filter you can apply, either. If you wanna check where your fave acts are playing next (or have played over the years), you can do that, too. Plus, there’s an option to search for a few artists performing at the same event. This helps if you’re tight on money and can only choose one event to attend. So you can sort of filter the festivals by your dream line-up. Fun, innit?
And have I mentioned you can browse events on a traditional calendar for both Australia and New Zealand as well?
When it comes to searching for artists, the database has a crazy amount of (somewhat yet unrefined) info. You can filter an act by their genre, country of origin, or a festival they’re playing next. This part is still “work in progress” to a certain extent, I reckon, as some fields are labelled as “missing”. But hey, Rome wasn’t built in a day, either.
It’s worth mentioning here that websites are generally not the best place for real-time updates. So check out ‘That Festival Site’ on the (usual) socials for last-minute announcements.
Now, who was bored enough to build this database, is what I wanted to know. It turns out a 21-year-old live music fan had some time on his hands. Jack Malloch just felt he was “struggling to find the information I wanted about festivals on one comprehensive site”. So he built one.
Although not entirely innovative or 100% polished just yet, ‘That Festival Site’ is a welcome addition to the already existing online databases. And the way facts and numbers are presented offers a good insight into how things have been gradually changing in the music biz Down Under in the span of a few decades. It will surely go down in history books as a valuable resource for the fans of the Australian scene.
I’m definitely making it my “go-to news source for first-time and experienced festival lovers across Australia and New Zealand”. Just like the young founder envisioned it (cheers, Jack!).
Check out one of the site’s playlists featuring artists appearing at the upcoming Splendour in The Grass festival:
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