7107 music fest hopes to promote local music globally

Chuck Smith - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – The organizers of the 7107 International Music Festival say the most challenging part of putting up the event is making people believe they can succeed.

The sentiment is apt, considering the sentiments and buzz that surround the new music festival, which will be held in Clark, Pampanga on February 22 to 23. Aside from the persistent rumor that the event is financed by a son of Janet Napoles, the alleged mastermind of the pork barrel scam, numerous complaints about the event have cropped up since they opened ticket sales last month.

Not a few have wondered about the length of the performances of 7107’s main acts—namely, Red Hot Chili Pepper, Kaskade, and Kendrick Lamar. Others questioned the logistics of the event and the possibility of the main acts backing out a few days before the event (a legitimate concern since the festival has a no refund policy). There are also allegations of poor ticket sales a month before the event.

RELATED: Red Hot Chili Peppers headlines 7107 International Music Festival

But Tina Herrera, executive producer of the 7107 International Music Festival, believes it can be done.

“The challenge was, will people believe in it? Do people really think we can achieve this? And my answer to that is, yes. I’ve always believe in the talent of the Filipinos,” Herrera told Philstar.com and other media outfits in a press conference recently

Herrera, along with 7107 producer and founder Mike Pio Roda, explained that the Red Hot Chili Peppers will perform a “whole concert”—or approximately 90 minutes—for the festival. Kaskade and Kendrick Lamar will perform for 75 minutes.

Other international acts include Empire of the Sun, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, and Asteroid Galaxy.

The local artists include Up Dharma Down, Radioactive Sago Project Sponge Cola, Itchyworms,and  Taken by Cars. Over 50 bands will perform during the two-day event.

Herrera said the venue—Global Gatewat Logistics City in Clark—is enough to accommodate their expected crowd. The organizers are expecting a crowd of over 20,000 concertgoers but Herrera said they are ready to accommodate 35,000 people. Roda said they have coordinated with local government units to ensure security during the event.

As for any of the acts backing out of the event? Not very likely, Herrera explained, as most foreign acts (she didn’t specify which) have already been paid in full.

Many have criticized the festival for its line-up, saying the three major foreign acts aren’t enough to make 7107 an international music festival. But it is also diverse, as Herrera admits they patterned 7107 to the Coachella Valley Arts and Music Festival.

“We have hip hop, R &B, electronic dance, as well as rock and indie. That’s what we wanted—a little bit of everything that the audience can enjoy,” she said.

They also hope to use the event to promote Filipino music. After all, the foreign acts have a wider reach online—and when they promote 7107 on their social media accounts, they consequently promote the Philippines and, if their foreign fans attend the event, local artists.

“We’re definitely using the artists and their access to the market to help us push the event and basically promote the event and the local artists,” Herrera explained.

And then there’s the Napoles rumor, as an issue they already clarified in a previous interview with Philstar.com. But Herrera wants to ensure the public that they have “no connection here with the Napoleses at all,” adding 7017 is funded by “multiple revenue sources” including corporate sponsors such as Smart Communications and the mobile music streaming service Spinnr.

RELATED: 7107 IMF team denies Napoles link to much-awaited music fest

Of course, it remains to be seen if the new music festival can actually fulfill its promise. But Herrera is already envisioning 7107 to be an annual festival.

“For this to become even more successful, we invited other talents who we would to love at next year’s event so we’re flying them in to check this one out,” she shared.

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