How do you get more than 100 bands and DJs, including top-drawer performers such as Wu Bai (伍佰) and China Blue and Van Fan (范逸臣), to play at a two-day festival in central Taipei — for free?
That’s the feat that Brown Chen (布朗) pulled off for this weekend’s Jump Festival (跳起來音樂節) at Huashan Culture Park (華山文化園區).
Armed with a compelling concept but hampered by a meager budget, Chen turned to blogs and social networking sites such as Plurk, Twitter and Facebook to spread the word.
“We didn’t buy a Web domain so our main page is on Wretch. Two months ago we were getting 50 hits per day,” Chen said.
He traveled around the country, met and interviewed bands, many of which he had never heard of, and photographed them jumping in the air. After this content was uploaded to the Web site, interest in the festival erupted.
“A few of the famous bloggers in Taiwan started talking about it,” Chen said. “Now we’ve gotten a total of 200,000 hits so far.”
The buzz reached the big guns, but an inadequate budget remained a problem. Both Chen’s friends’ bands and the bands he didn’t know were playing free of charge. After Wu Bai and China Blue, Jam Hsiao (蕭敬騰) and Van Fan spoke with him, they all agreed to waive their fees, energized by the idea behind Jump Festival.
“It’s amazing because all three of them have had their own huge concerts in arenas,” Chen said. “But here, every band is equal. Everyone is open-minded.”
“Wu Bai has been great,” Chen said. “He’s the only one that did his own video because our schedules didn’t match. We’ve asked him to tell people to come and he has. All for free.”
Chen is enamored with the hip-hop lifestyle. He used to frequent the now-defunct Da Project record store on Guangfu South Road (光復南路) and organize freestyle battles in parks through online message boards. In 2005, he grew a full-blown Afro measuring more than 1m in circumference, and released an album with his group DaXiMen (大囍門), their combined efforts leading to the hit Office Lady: “Office lady make me crazy. Office lady u are so sexy. Office lady u are a beauty. Office lady u are my baby.”
At this year’s Spring Scream, Chen once again reinvented himself: long hair, a full back-up band and a boisterous primetime performance featuring a sound reminiscent of Linkin Park. After returning from Kenting and realizing that he was just one performer on a long list of others, Chen decided to gather his friends together and organize a smaller-scale music festival in Taipei.
“First of all, I wanted to perform. Then I had five groups of people who wanted to help. Soon, five more told us not to forget about them. Ten turned into 20 which turned into 50 ... 100 and even 200,” Chen said. “But the problem is that we only have 100 time slots for people to play.”
WHAT: Jump Festival (跳起來音樂節)
WHERE: Huashan Culture Park (華山文化園區), 1, Bade Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市八德路一段1號), near the intersection of Jinshan North (金山北) and Zhongxiao East (忠孝東) roads
WHEN: Tomorrow from 2:30pm to 4am and Sunday from 2:30pm to 10:30pm
ON THE NET: www.wretch.cc/blog/JumpFestival
ADMISSION: Tickets are NT$500 for one day and NT$800 for two days, available through tickets.books.com.tw or by calling (02) 2782-1100 X531, X532, X534, X535, X566
Until this summer, when the idea of hiking the length of the island first occurred to me, I didn’t even know that Cijin (旗津) had been a peninsula until 1967. That’s when diggers and dredgers severed Cijin from Taiwan’s “mainland,” because the authorities wished to create a southern entrance to Kaohsiung’s fast expanding port. The island is just under 9km long, but a bit of research quickly convinced me that a south-to-north trek wasn’t a good idea. The southern third of Cijin is dominated by container-lifting cranes, warehouses and other facilities off-limits to the public. Dunhe Street (敦和街) forms the boundary between
Sept. 28 to Oct . 4 A large number of 3000-year-old slate coffins were unearthed on a hill near Nanhe Village (南和村) in Pingtung County on Sept. 30, 1985. Unfortunately, the United Daily News (聯合報) noted that they had been seriously damaged by construction, and no artifacts or human remains were found. Although the newspaper called the find a “significant discovery,” little information can be gleaned about this specific site because it’s just one of countless locations where stone sarcophagi have been unearthed across southern and eastern Taiwan, and as north as Yilan County. These stone receptacles for the dead were
As if the climbs and views and snacks and companions of cycling in Taiwan aren’t sufficient, the GPS-generation of route-planners are now using apps such as Strava and Endomondo to create works of art as they ride. One such is nicknamed the Dove Road of Sijhih (汐鴿路), a 25km ride that follows the riverside bike path from the Nangang-Neihu Bridge (南湖橋) to New Taipei City’s Sijhih District (汐止), climbs around 400m up the Sijhih-Shiding Road (汐碇路), before dropping back down past Academia Sinica to generate a very dove-like pattern. Originally called Kippanas by indigenous Ketagalan people and transliterated into Hoklo (more commonly
Sitting at the bar, martini in hand, Kristin Scott Thomas rolls her eyes briefly heavenwards. And then she declares, in one of the most memorable monologues of the cult BBC drama Fleabag, that menopause is the “most wonderful fucking thing in the world. And yes, your entire pelvic floor crumbles and you get fucking hot and no one cares. But then — you’re free! No longer a slave, no longer a machine with parts. You’re just a person, in business.” When an entranced Fleabag says she has been told the whole thing is horrendous, Scott Thomas’s character responds: “It is horrendous,