Sunset Junction's cancellation has hit lots of folks in their wallets; yesterday we told you about the affected local business owners. Meanwhile, though some ticket-holders can now receive refunds, vendors and performers remain in the dark.
For this installment, we bring you the particularly troubling story of London indie rock band Art Brut, who crossed the Atlantic to perform as one of the festival's headlining acts. According to their frontman Eddie Argos, Sunset Junction offered to cover their flight as part of their payment. (The organization's phone still does not appear to be working, and a representative could not be reached for comment.)
Assuming they'd get paid later, the group opted to borrow money from their manager for their “quite expensive and non-refundable” tickets, Argos says.
“The [organizers] offered us a lot of money. You can't turn something like that down,” says Argos, who used to live in L.A. “I was very excited…It's a great festival and we have a lot of fans in Echo Park.”
You know how this story ends; not only have they not been paid a cancellation fee for their show, but they weren't reimbursed for their plane tickets.
“I thought we were fucked. I was freaked out that [the organizers] bankrupted my band,” he says.
Once news of the festival's undoing broke, the band scrambled. Argos says they are grateful to festival booker Jennifer Tefft for quickly securing them a replacement gig at the Satellite on Saturday, which was well attended. “She was very passionate about the festival…as long as we could play somewhere, we were going to go and play.”
However, Art Brut's guarantee from the Satellite was “not comparable” to what Sunset Junction had offered, and they have solicited fans for donations on their website to help cover their travel costs.
“The plan is to try and get the money back,” however possible, he adds, noting that he hasn't received any word from organizers about the money owed to the band–and that “I don't really expect to.”