It might not be the Beatles at Savile Row, but Eslite Bookstore’s annual rock festival this weekend is still likely to draw a crowd.
The Rooftop Live! festival, which takes place from today to Sunday, is inspired by the Fab Four’s legendary rooftop concert in London when they recorded Let It Be.
Since starting the series in 2007, Eslite has held the concerts on the outdoor 7th floor terrace of its flagship store on Xinyi Road (信義路). This year is no different, and the program runs today to Sunday with a line-up of over 20 rock artists and indie bands.
Now is the time to make plans if an open-air concert by a handful of local fan-favorite bands sounds appealing. Sunday’s show featuring singer-songwriter Deserts Chang (張懸) and Hong Kong rocker Ellen Loo (盧凱彤) is already sold out.
Friday’s roster is a jam-packed evening with 15 acts, including Tizzy Bac, 1976 and Bobby Chen (陳昇), who are all rocking for a cause. Tonight’s show, which is free, is being held under a charity event that organizers have labeled “For a Better Tomorrow.”
Each act will perform two or three songs, and will be encouraged to speak about the social issues that are personally important to them, according to Zoe Yang (楊芷茜) of Eslite’s public relations department.
Tonight’s audience members will be encouraged to make donations to the Taiwan Environmental Protection Union (台灣環境保護聯盟), Taiwan Rural Front (台灣農村陣線) and the Taiwan Environmental Information Center (台灣環境資訊中心), all of whom will set up information booths at the concert.
Saturday’s roster is full of testosterone-fueled rock acts, with headline sets from Kaohsiung pop-punk group FireEx (滅火器) and rock veterans The Chairman (董事長). Emo-punks Punkhoo (胖虎樂團) and shoegazer rock band Sorry Youth (拍謝少年) are also on the bill.
What: Rooftop Live! A weekend of concerts on the 7th floor outdoor terrace at Eslite Xinyi Store (誠品信義店), 11 Songgao Rd, Taipei City (台北市松高路11號)
When: Friday from 7pm, Saturday from 6pm and Sunday 6pm
Admission: Free on Friday; NT$900 (NT$800 in advance) on Saturday and Sunday; available at 7-Eleven ibon kiosks, from artsticket.com.tw or indievox.com (http://indievox.com) and at the door
On the Net: www.rooftoplive.com.tw (http://www.rooftoplive.com.tw)
Those expecting roughshod, impromptu performances a la the Beatles’ fabled show will be disappointed. Rooftop Live! is a tightly-organized and smooth-running production, given the number of bands and the 1,000-person audience that fills the rooftop terrace.
Although concert-goers won’t be allowed to sit on the ledge, they will get treated to full views of Taipei 101, and if lucky, an end-of-summer evening breeze and a clear, starry sky as a backdrop for the stage.
Spaces are limited, something to keep in mind especially for tonight’s free show. Those interested in attending will have to line up at the Agnes B cafe on the first floor at the Eslite Xinyi Store, and tickets will be distributed starting at 4pm today.
The festival will go on if it rains, barring severe weather (the venue provides cheap plastic raincoats to patrons if it rains), and all updates will be posted on the festival Web site, www.rooftoplive.com.tw (http://www.rooftoplive.com.tw).
Mary See the Future
Jonas Left (左光平)
Zulin Wu (吳志寧)
IGU Band (那我懂你意思了)
Bobby Chen (陳昇)
Dadado Huang (黃玠)
Ayu Huang (黃連煜)
Sissey Chao (趙一豪)
The Chairman (董事長)
Emo-punks Punkhoo (胖虎樂團)
Sorry Youth (拍謝少年)
Ellen Loo (盧凱彤)