Strawberry Music Festival

So you thought, “hey Mark can get away from festivals for a couple of months… this will be good for is health, his hip pocket and most notably the stress level of his mother and father”… YAY! wrong.

This weekend was May Day – one of two of China’s long weekends commemorating the workers on their decision to adopt the eight hour day. Therefore everyone converges on Beijing to get drunk on Union-pride and celebrate. It saw Beijing for the first time hold two competing festivals.

That would be a win for capitalism and competition if it weren’t for the fact there are only three festivals in the calendar year. So dumb! I say. Spread them out, let the high last longer.

NOT MY PHOTO - Curtsy to

Between MIDI Music Festival and Strawberry Music Festival, I chose the one with fruit in its title. Unfortunately, a friend bailed  at the last minute so I had to brave the hordes alone. A festival by my lonesome? a tough task. A festival in a foreign country, by my lonesome? a tougher task.

Let’s tell the journey in pictures, it’s more fun that way.

Firstly it was a gorgeous 30 degrees (where the f*ck this weather came from, I have NO idea). The site was gorgeous – lush rolling hills. But the organisation was beyond shit. Like I mentioned in a previous post, China not so strong on the operations. And this failure translated to a huge scale, a festival scale if you will. HUGE lines. Bad positioning of stages and, the cardinal sin: the drinks ran out.

You know what they say: There is nothing sadder than the festival with no beer.

Umbrellas in the Sun - Violent Femmes

But it was a packed day anyway, and everyone was in great form.

Among highlights –

– Getting interviewed by MTV China and making significant shout-outs to everyone back home

– Realising China has more hipsters than Australia and New York combined. This will be it’s own post later, but you should have seen the scenesters.

That douchebag

I apologise I also had to take self-shot to confirm I am indeed alive, and have converted.

There is one band I want to alert you to…

AV Okubo. They played an incredible set of synth-infused indie. The best mix of ArtVsScience and The Presets. Lead singer was jumping around like no ones business. A band tipped to travel to Europe next year.

Well there was another band. A heavy metal band I have no idea the name of. All I know is that they made everyone lose their marbles.

Like the composition of this shot? the guards, the rock, the dark, the light, the totalitarian, the x-generation. Yellow men in vests? pfffft. Let’s get military guys in here.

Fight the Power - Rage Against the Party

So it all got a bit fuzzy after that. I found the DJ tent and some other fans of some cheap electro.

But a great effort Beijing. Room for improvement, but a start and definitely on your way to holding your very own Parklife next year.


About Mark

Twenty-something young man, graduate of journalism
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